'Comm 208'

News Comment #5

This week something funky was happening with my NY Times subscription as it was telling me I had reached a free article limit on my subscription so I had to look elsewhere for my news comment. So this week I went out of my comfort zone, NY Times Entertainment section, to… the BBC News Entertainment section. Currently in the news is backlash over the photoshop job on the new Tomb Raider poster. In the poster it looks like Alicia Vikander has an overly long neck and of course the internet snapped it up and made it a meme. The story goes on to relate it to other “poster fails” such as Pretty Woman and more recently The Heat. I think what I learned from this jaunt outside the Times is that other entertainment sections seem really shallow. In the NY Times, because it is based out of New York you get a lot more theatre, art, and dance news and a little less vapid celebrity news. My interest in the entertainment section is, more often than not, for the theatre news (not celebrity or Hollywood news) and that is why I usually read trades and type specific websites rather than a full on news paper. Overall the story was fine for what it was. It was a timely and interesting read that would keep the attention of a millennial because “OMG its a funny internet thing!” That’s just not the type of thing I enjoy.



Lede Exercise 4a

Four Armstrong Aeronautical University students were involved in a boating accident yesterday that led to the death of one.

At about 5 pm yesterday the 16-foot catamaran boat that Randy Cohen, Christy Wapniarski, Daniel Perrin and Tammy Ennis were sailing in sprung a leak and capsized. None of the passengers were wearing life jackets.

At dawn the group decided to swim to Ormond Beach four miles away. Wapniarski called for help claiming a shark attacked her and Cohen went to her aid. When he reacher her she was unconscious so he started swimming back to shore with her. Perrin checked her pulse when he reached them and found she was dead. Cohen swam with her for a while longer before leaving her behind.

Cohen, who was bitten by dozens of Portuguese men-of-war, is being treated at Halifax Hospital. The others were examined at the hospital and released.


A United Airlines flight carrying 61 people crashed in a residential district Friday afternoon while approaching Chicago’s Second City Airport killing most of the planes passengers.

The National Transportation Safety Board in Washington investigation team was immediately dispatched to Chicago. Several board officials were already in Chicago conducting hearings into the October 20th commuter train crash. An official was quotes as saying “We’ll look into this thoroughly.”

One survivor from the flight, Marvin Anderson of Omaha said “The last words the pilot said to us were, ‘We’re at 4,000 feet and everything is going well.’ I knew that was wrong a few seconds later because he began to rev the engines.”

Holy Cross Hospital reported 16 people, including the planes three flight attendants were admitted with injuries. The Cook County Coroner reported 42 bodies had been found. One of the victims has been identified as Rep. George W. Collins who was returning to Washington to “organize a children’s Christmas party.”

“You’re a 90s Kid if” (Article #1- Take 2 REVISED)

Media outlets are reporting that millennials are “killing” many industries and ideals such as lunch, Applebees, and napkins. The release of the Nintendo switch and the current onslaught of Hollywood reboots and remakes demonstrates that millennials are changing the the way advertising and the media conduct their business as they are now utilizing nostalgia marketing.


Nostalgia is defined as a longing for the past. Every generation feels nostalgia at some point but millennials, or anyone born between 1981 and 2001, have proven to have a greater affinity for nostalgia.


Abigail Wilkins of Brogan and Partners reports this could be due to the world in which they were raised.  “They saw the effects of the recession at a young age and are in the midst of a difficult job market. On top of that, Millennials have been inundated with technology and the internet for a large portion of their lives,” Wilkins reported.


Many major companies have brought back marketing tools from the generations childhood. As Digiday reports McDonalds has recently brought back the Hamburgler and KFC has brought back The Colonel as spokespeople in their ads.


Digiday goes on to report that brands are also reviving products sold in the late 80s and early 90s. Among these are Coke’s answer to Mountain Dew called Surge and something called Crystal Pepsi.


Hollywood has also seen a growing call for television and film franchise reboots. Shows from the 80s and 90s are regaining popularity thanks to streaming services and the internet and that resurgence in popularity has lead to shows getting new spinoffs or even straight reboots. As reported by The Guardian, shows such as Full House, Rosanne, and Will & Grace are returning to the airwaves through both streaming services and network television. Movies like Ghostbusters and It have been updated or remade for a new audience.


Playing to millennial nostalgia has also permeated the world of theatre. Playbill reports that in the past ten Broadway seasons, forty news shows that have opened have been based on a movie from the millennial childhood years. The 2017-18 Broadway season will see the opening of Mean Girls: The Musical, Spongebob Squarepants: The Musical, and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Pt. 1  which all cash in on this early onset nostalgia.

News Comment #4

I took my news from a different source than the New York Times this week as the title of this story intrigued me. That title is “Emma Thompson Still Regrets Turning Down That Date With Donald Trump.” This story actually flashed across my Facebook feed as some of my friends on the site like the Huffington Post and because of that I got ads telling me to like the page and this story just happened to be on one of those advertisements and it obviously did its job because it got me to visit the website to read more of this story. When I got to the story it was very basic celebrity news type reporting. Not a lot of story but enough star power to keep you intrigued no matter the lack of real content or story with it. This piece actually revolved around a video that went along with it so the actually written part of the story is very short. The lede does a pretty good job of summarizing the main points in case that is all someone reads before just turning to the video. Personally I found the story very interesting, topical, and had a novelty feel even in celebrity news.


Lede Exercise 1

Unrest caused by disgruntled students hit East High last week resulting in the suspension of ten upperclassmen.

School principal Laura Vibelius took action after general unrest hit the school. Among the incidents was a food fight that closed the cafeteria on Tuesday and three false alarms that sounded on Wednesday.

The ten students suspended said that they were protesting the Monday suspension of five other students who were caught smoking marijuana in the school parking lot. Vibelius believes that the unrest was “Not so much unrest because of the suspensions, but because of summer vacation being so near.”

No continuation of these incidents is expected in the near future.

A Good Lede

This story from the New York times has what I think is a good lead. This story about Hurricane Irma is talking about the damage it has left in the Caribbean before it heads for Florida. It summarizes all you need to know from the story in the first paragraph. You wouldn’t have to read past there if you didn’t have time or if all you wanted to know was the general effect of the Hurricane.


News Comment #3

Currently on Broadway there is a very successful revival of Hello, Dolly! staring Bette Midler. This week it was revealed that Bernadette Peters would be succeeding Ms. Midler in the title role and the theatre world has been a light with delight over this casting choice. Victor Garber will also be joining the cast at the same time replacing David Hyde Pierce. This is news in theatre circles because everyone was worried about who was going to replace Bette Midler. Casting her was a major power move for the producers because there are devoted fans who will come see the show just because she is in it. Hello, Dolly! is one of my favorite musicals but the person playing Dolly has a direct effect on whether or not I will go see the show. Personally bringing in Ms. Peters is interesting to me because she doesn’t fit the usual type to play Dolly. The role is over the top and a strong female role, something in direct contrast to what Bernadette Peters usually plays. Another very interesting fact found in this article is that Bernadette Peters will do all eight performances in the week. Currently Donna Murphy is playing Dolly on Tuesdays so Bette Midler doesn’t have to perform every show. All the information relayed in this story is very “in the know.” It is in the Theatre section of the New York Times so that is understandable. If someone doesn’t care about or know a little about theatre they probably wouldn’t stumble upon this article.


News Comment 2

This week Hurricane Harvey is dominating the headlines. As devastating as the storm is that is understandable. Among all of the reporting on the effects of the storm we got one story that probably wouldn’t mean much on a normal day but in this circumstance it was very important. Melania Trump’s shoes. When boarding Air Force One to head to Texas to be briefed on devastation caused by the storm, the First Lady wore some very uncomfortable looking black stiletto heels. Manolo Blahniks to be exact. As Venessa Friedman of the New York Times reports when Mrs. Trump disembarked the plane in Texas she had changed into a less showy outfit wearing white sneakers. It’s reported that her communications director told her of the backlash her shoes had caused and suggested she change. This story is a prime example of how the role of a President and a First Lady has changed in this world where news stories can be accessed immediately. Also it shows, as Friedman says, that every detail is important and will be analyzed in this media savvy society. Twitter BLEW UP with the news of Melania Trump’s shoes on both sides of the issue. The left was, understandably, critical of the choice while the right went off on “fake news” even caring about the shoes in the first place. Personally I think the First Lady was incredibly stupid to wear such crazy heels to the sight of a natural disaster. As Friedman points out, the Trumps are in a position that is subject to extreme scrutiny on every little detail; therefore you should think of anything the public could make an issue. I can see the side of the issue that says “this isn’t newsworthy” and agree to an extent however I believe this is perfectly suited for the Fashion & Style section of the New York Times. They targeted the story to those who care about fashion, while still being aware that due to the subject of the piece anyone else could read this. The writer didn’t use too much fashion specific language so anyone could understand it. There is a hint of a bias against the First Family (which doesn’t bother me at all) but would make this considered a more opinion piece than a straight news story. That is not at all uncommon on a style based section of news because their main job is to critique clothing and tell people what their clothing says about them.


Who is Dylan Ferguson?

Morningside is full of faces you have seen but may know nothing about. Among those faces may be Dylan Ferguson. Dylan is a sophomore mass communications major with a music minor from Anita, IA who loves that small town feel. “I love that I can walk to my classes and see many familiar faces on the way.” When deciding to come to Morningside he knew he wanted to take his passion for discovering new music and sharing that with others. This drove him to come in to college intending to major in music education. As Dylan began working toward that goal though, he realized that his passion may lose steam. “I knew that some teachers, after a while, get burnt out and the students suffer…. I didn’t want to do that to students since it happened to me.” This made him decide to take his passion for music to the mass communications department where he could share his findings over the radio station where he intends to start his own show soon. Aside from working in his department, Dylan is also involved in the choir, the Morningside Activities Council, and Sinfonia. He says that one of his favorite parts of Morningside is that he has these opportunities that he may not have found at a bigger school. Outside of school Dylan collects records and some thing you may not know about him is that he has a twin sister named Morgan.

News Comment 1

A story I have been following for some time is that of the missing talent agent from Manhattan, Mark Schlegel. He went missing on August 13th and had not been seen since. The news story I will be commenting on is one from Variety that reports that his body has been found. I think this is a very interesting story because no one has any idea what happened. All they know was he left his house reportedly without his keys, phone, or wallet and then he disappeared. This is newsworthy because this was an agent of some note in at least the Broadway community. That is how I first heard about the story was though the Broadway news sources I follow regularly and I found this story after seeing multiple tweets about his passing. The story is more aimed to those who are very invested in the world of entertainment past more than just celebrities. You really have to know about the business to have ever heard of this man. There is really no bias in this story. It is just reporting the facts. What I find interesting is that this story kind of flew under the radar with most news sources. I have mostly found it in New York and New Jersey specific newspapers. This seems like the kind of story that would have been picked up by a more national news outlet if only because it is so confusing but I assume the President is keeping the national news outlets more than busy. Overall this is still a developing story so there are obviously some key facts that people will want to know that are missing but those will come with time.



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