In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 30, 2005 / 19 Adar II, 5765

The scandalous Internet

By Tony Blankley

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It's not only the top of the market old media like CBS and the New York Times that are under assault. In the last few days there have been stories about the travails of the National Enquirer and the New York Daily News' gossip columnist, Liz Smith, drowning in the digital storm.

It seems the Enquirer has lost a cool million readers per edition in circulation over the last eight years — down to 1.5 million over its historic high of 4 million in the halcyon days of the 1970s.

Liz Smith, proud to be a gossip columnist a publicity agent could do business with, is down to 70 newspapers for her syndicated column. She cheerfully admits that she may be the last of the breed, and that it would be nuts to pay the million bucks a year she pulls down for a new hot print gossip columnist.

Unnamed Washington Post gossip staffers confess on background that they spend their days reading Wonkette on the Internet scooping their stories — because she can be up as fast as she can type, while they have to wait for the next day's Washington Post to be manufactured and shipped to its distribution points almost a day after the hot rumor has already been consumed by a ravenous public.

Is nothing sacred? Walter Winchell must be rotating in his grave, considering that the noble work of print gossip is being usurped by irresponsible digital gossips. In the old days, you could rely on printed gossip to be a genuine, certified rumor or double entendre sexual reference. (Have you noticed that there is invariably only one possible meaning to a double entendre?)

But today, the public is being fed unreliable digital gossip. What you read on an Internet gossip blog may not be a genuine rumor at all. The blogger may have made up the rumor out of whole cloth (or, to update the phrase, out of virgin electrons.)

Of course, its true that once the fabricated rumor (again, our language is lagging behind our technology. Something made of whole cloth is fabricated. But something made up of virgin electrons is "inputed" or "uploaded" — once the uploaded rumor has been downloaded, it becomes a genuine rumor.

Still, there seems to be something more reliable, more substantial, about rumors printed on paper. Behind that rumor stands a large building filled with hundreds of employees paying federal state and local taxes. The words used to make up the rumor weren't just typed, willy-nilly, on some $50 keyboard. When print media was really print media, each letter of each word of each sentence was cast in molten lead and assembled in large trays.

Even today, a printed rumor is then processed by large printing presses. The New York Times spent three quarters of a billion dollars a few years ago to buy some new printing presses. These are machines that require good relations with a major financial institution in order to acquire. Compare that impressive sum with the paltry few dollars a month it takes to bring a web server online.

The paper, measured by its tonnage, is delivered by train from Georgia. Oxen could drown in the ink vats. Platoons of highly trained, often unionized, press operators work around the clock to successfully bring the paper, ink and words together to form a proper setting for a genuine, certified rumor.

When those kinds of assets and those kinds of people are behind a paper-printed rumor, a reader has solid grounds for relying on it.

But today, inexperienced youthful readers are willing to consume cheaply produced rumors by unlicensed persons in their basements — if they even have basements. Knowing the type, they probably only have lofts. Having a basement suggests a substantial building of multiple stories. But today's decadent youth don't care from where they get their rumors. Just like the steel and other heavy manufacturing industries, the paper-printed rumor business is being hollowed out. Digital rumor manufacturing is to the rumor industry what ten cents per month Chinese wage rates are to the steel industry.

The impending death of the paper-printed rumor business should be a warning to the news divisions of those papers. While the newspaper's rumor department is at a competitive disadvantage with the digital rumor blogs, the news departments actually have some advantages — if they choose to use them. Hundreds of trained reporters and editors, if they are committed to objective news gathering, can actually produce more usable, objective news each day than even the most hard-working blogger. But if they print rumor and prejudice masquerading as news, they will surely go the way of their official, certified rumor departments.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Tony Blankley is editorial page editor of The Washington Times. Comment by clicking here.


© 2005, Creators Syndicate