Headline Correction: ‘Donald Trump Reaches Turning Point, Endlessly Surviving Empty Threats from Disgruntled Media’ 

tr

Paul Waldman writes: The news media have come in for a lot of criticism in the way they’ve reported this election, which makes it exactly like every other election. But something may have changed just in the last few days. I have no idea how meaningful it will turn out to be or how long it will last.

But it’s possible that when we look back over the sweep of this most unusual campaign, we’ll mark this week as a significant turning point: the time when journalists finally figured out how to cover Donald Trump.

They didn’t do it by coming up with some new model of coverage, or putting aside what they were taught in journalism school. They’re doing it by rediscovering the fundamental values and norms that are supposed to guide their profession. (And for the record, even though I’m part of “the media” I’m speaking in the third person here because I’m an opinion writer, and this is about the reporters whose job it is to objectively relay the events of the day).

110628_washington_post_ap_605-e1314912828580

If this evolution in coverage takes hold, we can trace it to the combined effect of a few events and developments happening in a short amount of time. The first was Trump’s press conference on Tuesday, the ostensible purpose of which was to answer questions about a fundraiser he held in January to raise money for veterans’ groups. In the course of the press conference, Trump was at his petulant, abusive worst, attacking reporters in general and those in the room. “The political press is among the most dishonest people that I’ve ever met,” he said, saying to one journalist who had asked a perfectly reasonable question, “You’re a sleaze.” These kinds of criticisms are not new — anyone who has reported a Trump rally can tell you how Trump always tosses some insults at the press, at which point his supporters turn around and hurl their own abuse at those covering the event — but Trump seemed particularly angry and unsettled.

[Read the full story here, at The Washington Post]

To see how the press looked at that revealing event, it’s critical to understand what led to it. It happened because the Post’s David Fahrenthold and some other reporters did what journalists are supposed to do. They raised questions about Trump’s fundraiser, and when they didn’t get adequate answers, they investigated, gathered facts, and asked more questions.

The New York Times' editorial page is not exactly beloved by staffers, according to a New York Observer report. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

It was excellent work — time-consuming, difficult, and ultimately paying dividends in public understanding. And Trump’s attack on them for doing their jobs the way those jobs are supposed to be done couldn’t have been better designed to get every other journalist to want to do the same. They’re no different than anyone else: When you make a direct attack on their professionalism, they’re likely to react by reaching back to their profession’s core values to demonstrate that they can live up to them. Trump may have wanted to intimidate them, but it’s likely to have the opposite effect. Read the rest of this entry »


‘I’m a Prince and I Do What I Want’

prince

Prince Majed bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, who is the son of the late King Abdullah, allegedly engaged in the lurid behavior at his $37 million mansion in Beverly Hills, according to a lawsuit filed by a trio of women who worked for him there, the Daily Mail reports.

The lawsuit accuses Al Saud, 29, of being drunk and on drugs — and of making crude sexual advances on men and women alike.

The prince is accused of getting on top of one woman and grinding on her in a “sexual and aggressive manner.” He also allegedly threatened the life of another woman after she refused to “party” with him, the report said. Read the rest of this entry »


OH YES: MacKeeper to Pay out $2 Million in Proposed Class Action Settlement

13855-8962-150810-MacKeeper-l

Mikey Campbell reports: The original developers of much maligned Mac security software MacKeeper have agreed to a $2 million settlement in a class action lawsuit over deceptive claims and false advertisement, with part of the sum set aside for customer refunds.

Under the proposed settlement, ZeoBIT, creators of MacKeeper that later sold the software to German firm Kromtech, will put up to $2 million in a fund to cover attorney fees, refunds and administrative costs, reports MacWorld. One-third is earmarked for lawyers, with a large chunk of the remainder to be meted out equally among claimants who purchased MacKeeper prior to July 8. Read the rest of this entry »


New York Times Hit With Age, Gender Discrimination Suit

Inside the New York Times

The suit claims that in September 2013, 30 employees were targeted for dismissal, mostly older and minority employees. They were replaced ‘in virtually every case by a white employee under the age of 40,’ the suit claims.

Keith J. Kelly reports: The New York Times Co. and its chief revenue officer are being sued by a former ad executive with nine years of service for “age, gender and race” discrimination after she got a new boss.

Tracy Quitasol, a 51-year-old Asian-American woman, was let go in January 2014 by Meredith Levien, who was a high-profile hire from Forbes two years ago and is now the chief revenue officer of the NYT Co.

Quitasol had been heading the Idea Lab, designed to come up with new digital ad programs, and was the executive director of product marketing and ad platform innovation.

The most explosive claim in the suit is the allegation that Levien, in a downsizing that took place in September 2013, let go predominantly older and minority employees.

A Times spokeswoman pointed out the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has passed on taking action on Quitasol’s complaints and said, “We plan to mount a vigorous defense against this suit.”

[Read the full text here, at New York Post]

On the personal front, Quitasol claims in the Manhattan federal court suit that her problems began when Levien — then the executive vice president of advertising — along with the company’s human resources department failed to curb a junior-level staffer who refused to follow her instructions.

Quitasol claims it was a case of “gender discrimination” by the male employee — who, the suit claims, would only respond to instructions from male superiors. She brought the problem to the attention of Levien and HR who, the suit alleges, failed to take action. Read the rest of this entry »


U.S. Court Approves Condé Nast $5.85 Million Intern Pay Settlement

conde-nast

(Reuters) – Condé Nast on Monday won a federal judge’s preliminary approval to pay $5.85 million to settle a class-action lawsuit by thousands of former interns who claimed the magazine publisher underpaid them.

The settlement, made public on Nov. 13, applies to roughly 7,500 interns who had worked at magazines including Vanity Fair, Vogue and the New Yorker.

Former interns who worked at Condé Nast from June 2007 to the present are expected to receive payments from $700 to $1,900.

In granting preliminary approval, U.S. Magistrate Judge Henry Pitman in Manhattan said the payout appeared reasonable, citing an estimate by the interns’ lawyers that it exceeded 60 percent of estimated unpaid wages.

“Given defendant’s size and stature in the publishing world, I assume it could withstand greater judgment,” Pitman wrote. “This fact, by itself, however, does not render the proposed settlement unfair.”

The law firm Outten & Golden, which represents the interns, plans to seek legal fees of $650,000, or 11.1 percent of the settlement fund. Read the rest of this entry »