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Long Reads

Books Without Borders

Link: Books Without Borders A bookseller recounts “My Life at the World’s Dumbest Bookstore Chain” – discovered by @Andrlik. In my youth I worked as a bookseller – at a large chain, then an indie.  This story, told from the perspective of a former employee, tells the sad tale of […]

Online Commenting: The Age of Rage

Link: Online Commenting: The Age of Rage The psychologists call it “deindividuation”. It’s what happens when social norms are withdrawn because identities are concealed. The classic deindividuation experiment concerned American children at Halloween. Trick-or-treaters were invited to take sweets left in the hall of a house on a table on […]

From The New Yorker by Nicholas Schmidle Full Shortly after eleven o’clock on the night of May 1st, two MH-60 Black Hawk helicopters lifted off from Jalalabad Air Field, in eastern Afghanistan, and embarked on a covert mission into Pakistan to kill Osama bin Laden. Inside the aircraft were twenty-three Navy SEALs from Team Six, which is officially known as the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, or DEVGRU. A Pakistani-American translator, whom I will call Ahmed, and a dog named Cairo—a Belgian Malinois—were also aboard. It was a moonless evening, and the helicopters’ pilots, wearing night-vision goggles, flew without lights over mountains that straddle the border with Pakistan. Radio communications were kept to a minimum, and an eerie calm settled inside the aircraft… Read Later -»

Getting Bin Laden: What happened that night in Abbottabad.

Watching the film was a fun and interesting challenge for me: on one hand, I read film like a text, as I sometimes like to wear a film critic’s hat; on the other, I personally know some of the ‘stars’ of the film and seeing David Carr and Brian Stelter on screen was great, but also a bit surreal. I would imagine that any New York media person (whether journalist or PR person who has worked with any of the film’s narrators) had similar thoughts while watching this film. But to applaud the film based on knowing the social actors doesn’t do the film justice, so this ‘review’ looks at “Page One” through an expository mode of representation lens, which is meant to highlight a) how to read documentary film, b) how this film uses a the expository mode of representation to push its agenda and from that, c) can documentary film be objective?

Critical Analysis of “Page One: Inside the New York Times”

NY Times: Children of Darkness

Link: NY Times: Children of Darkness Urban Exploring in NYC July 29, 2007By BEN GIBBERD  JOE ANASTASIO, a slim, dark-haired Web designer for a Wall Street publishing company, was standing outside Madison Square Garden, dressed in black work boots, a torn blue check shirt and a bomber jacket. It was […]

Urban Exploring in NYC July 29, 2007By BEN GIBBERD  JOE ANASTASIO, a slim, dark-haired Web designer for a Wall Street publishing company, was standing outside Madison Square Garden, dressed in black work boots, a torn blue check shirt and a bomber jacket. It was a brisk Sunday morning in the spring, and among the swirl of tourists clutching maps and hockey fans in Rangers jerseys, he might easily have been mistaken for a Metropolitan Transportation Authority track worker heading to a shift. That is how Mr. Anastasio likes it. A 33-year-old native of Astoria, Queens, he is an urban explorer, to use a term he and his fellow adventurers accept somewhat wearily, along with urban spelunker, infiltrator, hacker and guerilla urbanist. Urban explorers, a highly disparate, loosely knit group, share an obsession with uncovering the hidden city that lies above and below the familiar one all around them. And especially during the summer, they are out in full force. Alone and with cohorts, Mr. Anastasio has crawled, climbed and sometimes simply brazenly walked into countless train tunnels, abandoned subway stations, rotting factories, storm drains, towers, decaying hospitals and other shadowy remnants of the city’s infrastructure the authorities would rather he did not enter. Although he records his adventures on his Web site, ltvsquad.com, anonymity is, for him, a necessary tool. A few minutes later on this Sunday morning, Mr. Anastasio was joined by a Korean woman in her 20s named Miru Kim, who with her delicate looks and glossy, shoulder-length black hair offered a striking contrast to Mr. Anastasio’s grizzled appearance. The two headed off, bound for the netherworld beneath their feet. A few blocks west, they looked around cautiously. Several trucks were parked behind a wire mesh fence, its gate wide open, but no one seemed about. Beyond the fence lay an entrance to the Amtrak tunnels that run north-south along the West Side. They stepped through the gate and headed for the tunnel’s mouth.

NY Times: Children of Darkness

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