Mexico should just buy Twitter

Muck Rack Daily

Mexico should just buy Twitter
January 12th, 2017
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Muck Rack Daily
Hello from Muck Rack, where you can get a snapshot of what journalists around the world are reading, thinking and commenting on right now.

Muck Rack's own Greg Galant will moderate a panel on "How to Use Social Media for Public Relations" at the upcoming HIGH TECH media conference March 22-23 at the Cornell Club in New York.  HIGH TECH is the ultimate networking event for PR professionals in higher education who work in technology and engineering.  Over two days, PR pros will personally meet 16-20 journalists during four media panels including reporters from Wired, Popular Mechanics, Reuters, Forbes, Associated Press, Popular Science, PBS, Mashable, VICE News, CBS, Gizmodo and many more.

Register Here.  HIGH TECH is open to all PR professionals at universities, non-profits and agency professionals who represent colleges or engineering schools.  

Admission includes a cocktail party hosted by the Washington Post March 21. Email for more information.

Also don't miss the latest Muck Rack blog post from PR expert Michelle Garrett: "How to hit the ground running with a new client."

Mexico should just buy Twitter

The saga of the dossier won't quit

With the salacious, unverified details out of the bag, and with Trump having dispensed his usual form of revenge-by-insult against his perceived journalistic foes, the New York Times and Wall Street Journal slow things down with a pair of articles offering enlightening bits of backstory to the scandal.

At the Times, Scott ShaneNicholas Confessore, and Matthew Rosenberg explore "How a lurid, unverified dossier became a crisis for Donald Trump." Or, as Confessore puts it on Twitter, "How a mystery Republican donor's ask led to an intel report on President Obama's desk."

Matt Ford of the Atlantic calls it a "fun NYT origin story."

To some, however, the story was hardly perfect. "How [does] this @NYTimes story fail to mention that @DavidCornDC wrote about the dossier in Oct?" asks Clara Jeffery, editor-in-chief of Mother Jones where David Corn works. (The New York Times later updated its story to include Corn's reporting).

Meanwhile, The Toronto Star's Daniel Dale (who once spent 33 straight days fact-checking Trump) adds, "Why Trump dossier exists: rich Republican and then Democrats put up cash to hire ex-journalist, who hired ex-spy."

As for that ex-spy who prepared the dossier, The Wall Street Journal's Bradley HopeMichael Rothfeld, and Alan Cullison say they've identified him as ex-British Intelligence agent Christopher Steele.

"Wait, I thought it was a kid on 4chan with an anime vendetta against Rick Wilson," jokes Ben Collins of The Daily Beast.

"WSJ answers the question of the day," tweets Politico'a Josh Dawsey.

"'We have no political ax to grind,' says director of [Steele's] firm," says WSJ's Gráinne McCarthy, highlighting an important detail about the story.

A number of intelligence experts have also vouched for Steele's credibility, according to The Guardian's Nick Hopkins an Luke Harding. Linking to their article on the matter, Liam Stack of the New York Times adds, "UK officials and intel agents said the argument that the Trump/Russia dossier is fake is 'completely untrue.'"

And finally, WSJ's Alex Martin couldn't resist: "Steele, Christopher Steele..."

In other news:

"Senate Republicans have a bridge they’d like to sell you," tweets Matthew Yglesias of Vox in response to the GOP's claim to "build new bridges to better health care." That quote comes from the New York Times' report that the Senate has taken a major step toward repealing President Obama's health care law.

In the wake of allegations that Trump appointee Monica Crowley—in addition to plagiarizing parts of her book—plagiarized parts of her PhD dissertation, CNN's Andrew KaczynskiChris Massie, and Tal Yellin analyzed the dissertation and found that Crowley lifted "thousands" of words. "Please consider revoking Monica Crowley's PhD," advises NBC's Charles Jaco, tweeting at Crowley's alma mater, Columbia University. "This is enough to get anyone else's doctorate cancelled."

The New York Times reports that the U.S. Department of Justice plans to open an investigation into the letter FBI director James Comey's sent to Congress 11 days before the election about the possibility of newly relevant information in Hillary Clinton's email server investigation—specifically, whether the letter was "politically-motivated." The Guardian's Paul Lewis asks, "When was there last a transition a tumultuous as this?"

"Whoa, this is a doozy of a midnight decision," tweets CNN's Tal Kopan in response to Charlie Savage's report in the New York Times revealing that the NSA has given itself far more latitude to share intercepted communications with other agencies.

Guess who now owns the biggest house in Washington, DC? Amazon CEO and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos, according to his own newspaper's reporting. "WaPo reports Bezos is buying a $23 mlllion DC house 'to avoid hotel bills,'" tweets Philip Klein of the Washington Examiner. "How much room service does he typically order?"

Bloomberg reports that a number of peso traders are floating an idea for Mexico's future that's either totally nuts or totally brilliant (or both): "Instead of spending its precious reserves to defend the peso," write Brendan Walsh and Isabella Cota, "Mexico should just buy Twitter Inc." Cota later added in a tweet, "‘Shut Down Twitter’ Cry Goes Out Among Exasperated Peso Traders. No more Trump tweets!"


Question of the Day

Yesterday, we asked: A few of you answered "the porn industry" in response to our last question so hey why not let's make it the topic of today's question: According to Pornhub's most recent, er, probe of Planet Earth's porn habits, which country's inhabitants spent the longest amount of time per site visit? (Hint: It's not the U.S. – we clocked in at number 3).

Answer: The Philippines. Congrats to Craig Pittman for answering first. Honorable mention goes to former Guardian reporter Jack Schofield.

Today's question is... As journalists and investigators alike try to separate truth and fiction surrounding the explosive but unverified claims in a dossier about Donald Trump this week, it's been revealed that Michael Cohen, Trump's lawyer whom the dossier places in Prague for a secret meeting with Russians, may be the victim of mistaken identity. Czech agents say a man named Michael Cohen was indeed in Prague around the date in question, but that it's a different Michael Cohen, not Trump's lawyer.

It just so happens that a nearly identical thing happened over a decade earlier during another era marked by unverified but supposedly explosive reports: The run-up to the Iraq War. What infamous man was mistakenly said to have been in Prague meeting with Iraqi spies in 2000, when in reality it was a different man with the same name who was in the city?

As always, click here to tweet your answer to @MuckRack. We’ll announce the winners tomorrow!


Career Updates
NYT expanding tech team (plus new bureau chiefs)

The New York Times is expanding its tech team, hiring reporters and editors in New York, San Francisco, China, and India. (You can apply here).

The newspaper has also appointed two new foreign bureau chiefs: Ian Fisher will head up its Jerusalem bureau, while Jason Horowitz will lead its Rome bureau.

Don’t forget - if you change your job in journalism or move to a different news organization, be sure to email us (hello [at] muckrack [dot] com) so we can reflect your new title. News job changes only, please! Thanks!
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