“A vibrant press continues to inform, expose, tell the truth and occasionally fill us all with outrage at injustice.” That’s John Darnton, curator of the Polk Awards, commenting on the winners of the George Polk Awards in Journalism for 2016. New York Times reporter David Gonzalez retweets the NYMetro Twitter account’s take: “No fake news here. 2016 Polk winners covered Trump, reported abroad, and exposed wrongdoings.” Award winners included David Fahrenthold of the Washington Post; Alec MacGillis of ProPublica; Craig Harris of the Arizona Republic; Darwin BondGraham and Ali Winston of the East Bay Express (CA); Nicholas Casey and Meredith Kohut of The New York Times; the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists; Rebecca R. Ruiz of The New York Times; Lenny Bernstein, Scott Higham and David Fallis of the Washington Post; Brian M. Rosenthal of The Houston Chronicle; Christie Thompson of The Marshall Project; Joseph Shapiro of NPR; Anand Gopal, for his reporting in The Atlantic; A.J. Lagoe, Steve Eckert and Gary Knox of KARE 11 in MInneapolis; and Robert Lewis of WNYC. Educator, playwright and actress Anna Deveare Smith won the Polk Career Award, and the documentary film award went to director Nanfu Wang for “Hooligan Sparrow.”
This president's men
Here’s what the still-vibrant press has been up to in the last few days. “How’s that dossier looking now?” asks Rudy Foster. New reporting in The New York Times reveals “This president's men, freelancing on behalf of Russia: A Back-Channel Plan for Ukraine and Russia,” tweets the Times’ Matt Purdy. Of the story of “a back channel plan to lift US sanctions on Russia, delivered by a top Trump Org executive,” as Danny Hakim of the Times tweets, John Kelly of USA Today advises, “Note key players in this story, helping secretly work to ease Russian sanctions, are Trump associates Cohen & Sater.” Hillary Sargent sees is this way: “It's not just that Trump has Russian connections. It's that he picked the shadiest ones he could find.” Adds John Cassidy of The New Yorker: “A reminder of why DT is so keen to label NYT, CNN etc as fake news. The Russia link is real and urgent.”
This story! Yikes.
That’s Meredith Melnick of the Huffington Post and The Scope commenting on a widely shared story by Susan Fowler, recounting what it was like to be a female engineer at Uber (10,000+ shares). The gist? “An utterly mind-boggling account of institutional sexism at @Uber. Read it, then go to your phone and #deleteuber,” says Dan Kaplan of TechCrunch. “This is a disturbing blog post and should be read by everyone,” Patrick Stafford says. Dan Primack of Axios adds, “This is not good @Uber. (We've asked for comment, but my guess is it will take a little while).” “Of all the shady things about Uber, this is the most disturbing I've read. Reveals a co infected thruout by misogyny,” notes David Holmes of Fast Company. And “if this is what your work life is like ...... please 1) dm me 2) see a therapist,” tweets Caroline O’Donovan of BuzzFeed.
Evergreen headline: "Trump’s Remark Baffles a Nation"
“The Swedish cops in that Tucker Carlson segment are furious & say they weren't even talking about crime by migrants,” notes Jon Swaine of The Guardian, referring to the eyebrow-raising comments by Trump over the weekend about Sweden, which he later said were in reference to a “Tucker Carlson Tonight” segment on Fox News. In fact, of the film being discussed in the segment, Martin Jönsson of Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter comments on Hugo Lindkvist’s report, “We have interviewed the Swedish policemen in the Fox clip: they call it the ‘work of a madman.’” In other words, tweets Michael Caley of Howler Magazine, “The Tucker Carlson segment that Trump lied about was itself based on lies.” Got that? Glenn Thrush of The New York Times tweets that there’s a lesson in all this: “Sweden=perfect case study of Trump technique: 1) shout falsehood 2) pretend u didn't make a mistake 3) accuse fact-checkers of attacking u.” Referring to the Times article on Sweden’s reaction to the comments, Jeff Jarvis says, “Evergreen headline: ‘Trump’s Remark Baffles a Nation.’” Vera Maria Bergengruen of McClatchy Newspapers offers a final word from the Swedes: Trump: "Look at what's happening last night in Sweden!" Sweden: ?!?! we good.”
In other news
“Sipping rosé & eating cured meats, Mike Piazza tells @andrewkeh what it's like to own a soccer team in Italy,” tweets The New York Times’ Connor Ennis of Andrew Keh’s interview with Mike Piazza.
Bill Neely of NBC News reports, Russia preps a psychological profile of Trump. Here's what it says. “Add Vladimir Putin to the list of people Trump has conned with false promises,” tweets Heidi Moore.
David Weigel of the Washington Post reports on what colleague Drew Harwell calls a "fairly telling anecdote from Trump's Florida rally crowd,” in Trump supporters see a successful president - and are frustrated with critics who don’t (17,000+ shares). The story ends with what many journalists, including Emily Holden of ClimateWire, note is “Quite a kicker. ‘I think the only thing that’s going to reunite us is maybe the Lord coming back.’” “So, you’re saying there’s a chance?” asks Joshua Hatch of The Chronicle of Higher Education.
"I believe that crosses an important line." Fox News Anchor Chris Wallace comments on Trump’s attacks on the media. Defense Secretary Mattis also speaks out against the idea that the media is the enemy, in what Steven Ginsberg of the Washington Post tweets is “Quite a statement.”
New Zealand: fake island? Scientists say it’s the tip of a “hidden continent.”
SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket blasts off from pad 39A.