That first year I interned at my first paper, there was a day that always stuck with me for some reason, even after I quit journalism.
We were sitting around the conference table, a bunch of us young students, listening to our seasoned head editor. She was talking emphatically about the Line. That included photos you may or may not publish on the cover.
Back then, in the late 90s or so, it was a man’s successful suicide, midair while jumping off the Verrazanno Bridge.
It was a different time.
Ynet did it again. This isn’t the second time I’ve noticed the blatant anti-religious fervor that an Israeli newspaper is purposely trying to spread. This is the 328975623th time.
I used to actually enjoy reading Ynet. It was one of the central papers; sitting somewhere between JPost and Haaretz (in English, anyway).
Their credibility has completely been shot as in the last few years it has become repeatedly obvious that Ynet can’t control itself regarding its one-sided commentary on religious and haredi life.
Let me include a disclaimer: I’m no haredi, and I don’t look or act dati leumi. It doesn’t matter what I actually am. I’m a former newspaper reporter and I’m angry at this ridiculous, blatant, one-sided hatred pouring from Ynet’s pages.
This isn’t the best example; there are tons of others. I’m just tired. It’s this essay in Ynet about haredi weddings. Yes, it’s tongue-in-cheek. Yes, it ends in a positive light, if you get to the end and haven’t gotten bored and moved on before that. No, it is not indicated anywhere that it is meant to be humorous or satirical. It falls under the often-infuriating ‘Jewish Life’ column. Why not add a tag at the top that it’s meant to be humor? And why do your Jewish Life columns always focus on either a tiny out-of-context detail related to sections of haredi populations or poking fun at them without explaining truth?
Your audience is mostly secular, Ynet. Why fan flames of distrust, dislike and hatred on a weekly basis? Why not promote understanding, reporting the deeper stories about all kinds of demographics, the stories most Israelis on different sides don’t see?
Here’s something you don’t see everyday:
Ynet made me do a double-take with that one. But they really ought not to lie in journalism…
I learned a new word – or rather, term – today at the Arab-Israeli Journalism panel I sat on: etrog journalism.
The idea, thunk up by a Haaretz reporter a few years ago, is that certain items of news need to be treated as delicately as an etrog, the yellow citrus fruit we Jews use on Succot. We keep them in boxes, wrapped carefully in styrofoam or straw hair-like substances so as not to break the end of it.
The example given, and the original story, apparently, was that Sharon needed to be protected like an etrog to play down corruption in the government so that other news about the peace process and disengagement could prevail. From there came “etrog journalism”: protecting an issue so that other issues can thrive.
As is known, I work for an American (Israeli) hi tech Internet company. Thanks to Dapper, (another American (Israeli) hi tech Internet company) we’ve been dabbling in creating Facebook applications as a word-of-mouth marketing tool.
Last week I got messaged from a guy who was interested in interviewing me for an article he was writing on Facebook app developers. I said, sure, of course – I used to be a journalist and I revel in giving journalists what they want. For some reason, it didn’t occur to me to ask which paper; I work in marketing and I guess I’m used to pitching by now.
After we finished, he casually mentioned it was going in Globes. Globes! That’s only the fanciest high profile financial business paper ’round these parts…
Today, I got a call from the photographer who wanted to come take my picture for the article. The whole thing was a trip because I used to be the one asking the questions and taking pictures.
I’ve been interviewed for articles before though. This was especially fun because I got to do the photog chatter in Hebrew. The photographer was actually the antithesis of pushy Israeli photojournalist. I posed and probably look incredibly dorky in the photos, but then again, see the second paragraph of this post.
The article is supposedly coming out for the weekend paper (Thursday/Friday). We’ll see how it comes out.