Re: Voxxed

1

Yeah... most of those are pretty minor. I can't remember the last thing I read on Deadspin that wasn't a lame attempted "takedown" of someone more successful than the author.


Posted by: torque | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:51 PM
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TL;DR. I need some site to summarize that article in a short, pithy headline.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:52 PM
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The bridge connecting Gaza and the West Bank is a big deal, the number of toilets per capita one is completely trivial.

The Deadspin piece is basically lazy clickbait, so hard to take it seriously.


Posted by: Disingenuous Bastard | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:53 PM
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All the more damning because it's just a list of their own corrections.

Actually less damning for that. How long did it take the NYT to acknowledge Judith Miller's enormous fuckups, and how many other organizations explained it first?

If Deadspin wants to list the daily errors in Fox News, it would have to expend some significant effort to do it. Fox isn't going to help them figure it out the way Vox did.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:54 PM
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For the record, I was not the dude in the comments sticking up for Sarah Kliff.


Posted by: kermit roosevelt, jr. | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:55 PM
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Come on, people: these are errors small and large, and what most of them have in common is some kind of laziness/rushed/not-giving-a-shit that should really make you suspicious of anything you read there.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:57 PM
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1 - Deadspin published some really solid work in the wake of Ferguson, even if what I mostly associate them with is YEAH JEETS and A-Rod's centaur portrait.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:57 PM
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these are errors small and large
So what you're saying is that Deadspin totally fucked up with the headline, "46 Times Vox Totally Fucked Up A Story," because well under 46 of them are totally fucking up a story if some are just small errors.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 1:59 PM
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I mean, at least rank them in order of seriousness, where's the value add?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:00 PM
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6: Maybe, but it's hard to evaluate this without some sort of comparison to other new sites/publications and the sorts of errors and corrections they make.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:01 PM
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I agree with 6. I'm also pissed because I had read the "Tonight will be the longest night in the history of Earth" without previously seeing the correction. Now I feel like I've been hoaxed.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:02 PM
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The YEAH JEETS story is one of the more important tales of our age, so if it was Deadspin who broke that, they've earned at least some respect.


Posted by: torque | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:05 PM
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Most of those seem pretty minor (or obvious in the case of the toilets), but I will say this -- I was fairly exited when vox launched and have completely stopped reading them. Several months ago they re-designed their front page so that it was a disorganized collection of click-bait headlines and it just wasn't worth it any more.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:19 PM
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14

I was amused the the "Grumpy Cat made $99.5 million" meme that Vox helped to spread. Really, nobody looked at that, and though "no fucking way".


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:19 PM
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what most of them have in common is some kind of laziness/rushed/not-giving-a-shit

OTOH, some of them don't reflect any problems at all. For example:

Original Headline: 12,000: the number that shows voting in America is way too hard

Corrected Headline: 18,000: the number that shows voting in America is way too hard

Correction: This article originally stated that the hotline received 12,000 calls. It has been updated to reflect a Lawyers' Committee press release reporting that the final number of calls received was more than 18,000.

That isn't remotely a fuck-up.


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:24 PM
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16

The Deadspin piece is basically lazy clickbait, so hard to take it seriously.

Like Vox.


Posted by: TJ | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:41 PM
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17

Vox aside, there has to be some sustainable "online magazine" model that's not selling your soul to clickbait or posting fifty times a day like Sullivan. If I had to make up an answer, I'd say a buck a week (or per article for non-subscribers) for one 2-3,000 word interview/article per week from one of a few very smart staff writers and one very interesting interview subject--think Gladwell if Gladwell were true. That's probably sustainable at 10k subscribers, which is peanuts. One key would be to not produce more than that, to keep people feeling like they can stay up to date, and to keep the quality high.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:42 PM
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Rather than read the article in the OP, I'll just wait for the upcoming Aaron Sorkin series about the plucky group of young web journalists who took their time and got the stories right.


Posted by: MAE | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:49 PM
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Really, nobody looked at that, and though "no fucking way".

This is a real problem with people playing at being experts on topics they aren't really experts about. Since this is basically my job description, I am keenly aware of the importance of sanity checking numbers.

The thing with vox is that it's really two publications. There's a part of the site that remains true to Ezra's original, somewhat utopian conception, where reporters with deep experience (if not academic expertise) in a subject make it transparent for an educated readership. That part of the site is personified by Kermit's blogcrush. The other part of the site, which inevitably has come to overshadow the former, is the upper middlebrow Buzzfeed knockoff that combines the unearned authoritative pose of The Economist, the slapdash editorial standards of Gawker Media, and the journalistic sensibility of Slate. Also, the unselfconscious innumeracy of Forbes. It's an experiment gone awry.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:53 PM
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20

I'm still disappointed Vox couldn't come up with a better name than a shortened version of their parent company name.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 2:58 PM
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The other part of the site, which inevitably has come to overshadow the former, is the upper middlebrow Buzzfeed knockoff that combines the unearned authoritative pose of The Economist, the slapdash editorial standards of Gawker Media, and the journalistic sensibility of Slate. Also, the unselfconscious innumeracy of Forbes

Add in Yglesias' knack for spelling and you've got yourself a winner!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 3:17 PM
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Doesn't 17 describe something very like The Magazine , originally by Marco Arment? ~4 articles per issue, released every other week. It was curated, rather than all from 1 or 2 "bloggers", but it worked well for awhile (and was apparently done in by distribution issues as much as anything; subscribers weren't consistently getting it "delivered").

Anyway, I still find that no online reading satisfies me as much as old fashioned blogging, which is ridiculous, but there it is. The clickbait stuff is annoying and the wordy stuff doesn't deliver the quick gratification I want. Alas.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 3:48 PM
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no online reading satisfies me as much as old fashioned blogging

Yes. Both Yglesias (well, GW Bush era Yglesias, before he got into economics) and Klein had decent formulas that worked well, and suckified them massively (but maybe are richer). Vox is terrible from the little I've seen, though I probably shouldn't comment because I almost never read it.


Posted by: Tim "Ripper" Owens | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 4:43 PM
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Doesn't 17 describe something very like The Magazine

Sounds like a similar publishing schedule, but the content doesn't seem to be what I was envisioning. But I suspect it's a lot easier to say "stuff people will talk about at cocktail parties" than to actually produce non-sucky versions of it.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 4:50 PM
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Correction: This article was totally wrong.

I respect this a lot. Any source that can print a retraction like that has some virtue.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 4:57 PM
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16: of course. I don't read Vox. But I wouldn't tout a Buzzfeed listicle of "21 stupid listicles that make you stupider" either.


Posted by: Disingenuous Bastard | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 5:49 PM
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GW Bush era Yglesias, before he got into economics) and Klein had decent formulas that worked well, and suckified them massively

Part of the problem is we are not in the blogging era anymore, we are in the social media era. It used to be that, to get traffic, bloggers needed to optimize for sounding smart in a way that other bloggers would want to link the them. Making nuanced arguments and such. These days, post-bloggers need to optimize for getting someone's attention in a Facebook feed and proving the quick, quirky, lite, emotional gratification calculated to most likely inspire a re-share.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 5:49 PM
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But I wouldn't tout a Buzzfeed listicle of "21 stupid listicles that make you stupider" either.

To be fair, number 14 was hilarious.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 5:50 PM
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obviously I don't know what was in Ezra's pitch, but I'd bet that "upper middlebrow buzzfead" was always part of it. He always emphasized both explanatory and social and knowmore was always going to be as much of an influence as wonkblog.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 7:37 PM
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27 is very smart and seems totally right. Of course that's the difference, though I hadn't thought about it quite that way. I wonder what the audience numbers are -- does Yglesias get 10x the number of viewers now than he did when he was at, say, the American Prospect, because more people are sharing and linking and social-media-ing. I have no idea one way or another.


Posted by: Tim "Ripper" Owens | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 7:46 PM
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31

Blogs are, like, artisanal now.


Posted by: Standpipe Bridgeplate | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 7:50 PM
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27 also explains why blog-era internet viewing seemed to prioritize pithy slightly counter-intuitive summaries of issues and commentary (I'm thinking of, say, the "crazification factor" or some of Atrios or the "and a pony" post, whereas the social-media era political-ish internet seems to be primarily about HERE IS AN OUTRAGE.


Posted by: Tim "Ripper" Owens | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 7:50 PM
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HERE IS AN OUTRAGE.

That's a really weird spelling of "kitten".


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 8:01 PM
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Blogs were always artisanal. But the online world is now dominated by other means of production.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 8:08 PM
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34: Indeed.


Posted by: Cosma Shalizi | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 8:19 PM
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27 and 32 both pretty good.

I poke around Vox more recently than I had been. It's very hit or miss, both in terms of being actually interesting and in terms of scratching the old itch. That is, I'm only clicking on things I expect to like, and yet half the time it's either utterly vapid or simply a tone that loses me (perhaps the same tone that drove me away from Wonkblog almost immediately).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 8:21 PM
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37

The 20-something liberal technocrats I know fucking love Vox. So it's hitting at least part of the market.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01- 6-15 9:18 PM
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38


The 20-something liberal technocrats I know fucking love Vox. So it's hitting at least part of the market.

The world is on course to turn me into a crotchedy old man before my time.

Also interesting to see that Yglesias is an innovator, of sorts.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 5:30 AM
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37 & 38. When I read Vox articles, my reaction is similar, but with the addition of "when I was still a 20-something I probably would have actually liked this."

That is, I know far more stuff, and am old and cynical, so the pseudo-Wikipedia articles don't often tell me anything new, and the pseudo-Slatepitchy articles no longer have the zing they did when Slate was new and contrarianism was edgy.

Really, the go-to place for expanded listicle articles these days is Cracked. Even though they are often bs, they are more entertaining. The Toast for long-form snark and a surprisingly large number of insightful, personal stories. But you probably knew that already, right?

I no longer have a clue where to go for reliable political stuff.


Posted by: DaveLMA | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 5:43 AM
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I no longer have a clue where to go for reliable political stuff.

Even TPM has gone way downhill in the last couple of years. I have not been impressed with Josh's recent hires. I have been a consistent reader and financial supporter of TPM since the earliest days, and I remain one, but damn, it ain't the indispensable read it used to be - which is ironic, given that it has vastly more resources available than ten years ago.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 5:50 AM
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TPM ran a "most read stories of 2014" list. #1? Ann Coulter. Heartbreaking.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 6:39 AM
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42

Standpipe!


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 6:40 AM
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40: I couldn't agree more. It was a much better site when it was just Josh and then, after that, just Josh and a few more people cranking out short posts about the news of the day. But Josh is an empire builder, or at least he wants to be an empire builder, so he's trying to build something big, Big, BIG. It doesn't seem to be working, at least to these eyes, but I also wonder if your point above about getting old before my time might not be pretty telling.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 6:47 AM
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44

The attack on a newspaper in France sounds pretty bad.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 7:21 AM
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45

Less of a newspaper than a satirical magazine, but, yes, it's horrific.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 7:40 AM
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I've heard absolutely no news about France recently. Is it really that likely that the attack was Islamic, or is the NYT fear-mongering?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 7:46 AM
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44. Apparently the gunmen called out the names of individuals they were looking for on the PA. eyewitness account. Killers at large.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 7:46 AM
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48

46. "We have avenged the prophet"


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 7:47 AM
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46. Unquestionably. But immediately denounced in the strongest terms by mainstream French Muslim leaders. Does the NYT mention this?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 7:59 AM
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46: Every news outlet immediately labeled it "terrorism", so it must be.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 8:06 AM
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Unlike the bombing of the Colorado NAACP office by a 40s balding white guy, which is just an incident.
Maybe he meant, "We have avenged the profit," these are those bond vigilantes we keep hearing about.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 8:10 AM
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Sure, US reporting about domestic right-wing whackjobs is defective.

This isn't a story about the US press though. To me, it looks a lot like what happens in Mexico, where now anything like journalism for drug crimes leads to violence against the journalist.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 8:16 AM
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Is it really that likely that the attack was Islamic, or is the NYT fear-mongering?

"The police said that they had discovered an abandoned car used by the gunmen in the 20th Arrondissement of Paris." Not dispositive, but highly suggestive that the attackers fled to the densest concentration* of Muslims in the city.

*Don't know if that is literally true, because the secular French state doesn't keep stats on that sort of thing, but I would be surprised if it wasn't.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 8:16 AM
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Is this one of the newspapers that published whatever cartoon pissed people off a couple years ago? I thought that was a Danish paper.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 8:18 AM
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54. Charlie Hebdo reprinted them in solidarity. I believe they've done some of their own too.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 8:21 AM
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46. According to the NPR on-the-ground-reporter in Paris, she reports hearing in person the gunmen shout something about avenging Allah (or something something very clearly an Islamic attack something--I don't remember the exact quote from the reporter).


Posted by: Rance | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 9:25 AM
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40, 43: I wonder how much the funding model for TPM has changed, and how much that drives the structure of the site. Back in 2007-2010 or so, when I followed the site closely, there was a real emphasis on invertigative reporting with the Muckraker sub site. That doesn't seem as prominent now - I've barely read the site for the past year so I may be wrong - and all those reporters have moved on.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 3:09 PM
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CNN in the airport says something about an operation to arrest the gunmen in... I think... Reims? The reporter isn't using the vowel sound I thought "Reims" had but maybe I'm hopelessly ignorant of French pronunciation.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 4:12 PM
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Wait, it's the vowels that baffle you in Reims?


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 4:21 PM
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51 is tremendous. I hope DeLong sees this thread.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 4:25 PM
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I can't pronounce a French 'r' but I think I can recognize it and it sounded like the reporter was saying it. I thought it should be followed by an 'eh' sort of sound, I guess nasalized? But what CNN was saying sounded more like an 'ah'. Then an 's'.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 4:25 PM
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61: Worked with a guy from there. Your vowel is how I'd put it, maybe halfway between a short e and a short i. The end of the word is a subtle "ns" sort of like rinse.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 01- 7-15 4:32 PM
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