In fact, that’s one of the biggest problems we’ve got in how folks report about Washington right now, because I think journalists rightly value the appearance of impartiality and objectivity. And so the default position for reporting is to say, “A plague on both their houses.” On almost every issue, it’s, “Well, Democrats and Republicans can’t agree” — as opposed to looking at why is it that they can’t agree. Who exactly is preventing us from agreeing?
Yesterday they raided radio stations; today we have explosions at journalists’ homes.
There is an open effort to terrorize the media, a vital part of our democracy.
Simos Kedikoglou, spokesperson, Greek Government, in response to an attack against five journalists by a group called Lovers of Lawlessness. The group claims the journalists are sympathetic to the austerity measures being imposed on the country due to its economic crisis. New York Times, Journalists in Greece Are Becoming Targets.
The News: On Friday, attackers detonated gas canisters at the homes of an editor, two broadcasters, a crime reporter and a former journalist who’s now spokesman for a government agency privatizing Greek assets.
"These attacks are the most visible expression of an increasingly dangerous climate for all journalists, who are being turned into the scapegoats of a crisis they are just analysing," said Reporters Without Borders in a statement.
As the Times reports, “Activism by far-left groups appears to be on the rise after a series of attacks and threats against journalists last year by Golden Dawn, the far-right neo-facist group.”
No one was injured in the attacks.
President Obama “maintained the top spot” among world leaders on Twitter per number of followers, having added 15 million followers during an election year. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, in second place, added two million followers. Turkish President Abdullah Gül also added two millon followers and sits at third.
Alex Fitzpatrick, Mashable. You Can Tweet at 75% of the World’s Leaders.
See the above link for a detailed account of world leaders on Twitter. Obama, whose post-election victory photo became the most retweeted post in history, leads by number of followers.
But that isn’t necessarily surprising. What is surprising is the number of non-democratic, “instable” nations that have a leader online. While they appear near the bottom by popularity, there are many Central Asian and African governments that, until recently, have largely viewed social media as a threat.
Also interesting: who isn’t on Twitter. For one, there’s China’s Xi Jinping, who doesn’t want his citizens on the site, or Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. And, sorry to say, the Dragon King of Bhutan is nowhere to be found.
As I indicated at the outset, this is the beginning of a serious conversation. We won’t be taking questions today.