The Wire: Should I learn something from Season 5

I’ve been told relentlessly that The Wire is the best show that has been on TV in years. Aside from Slate magazine, I got that message no less than a dozen times from friend and journalist Chris Reber.

I watched the first episode for the first time yesterday and, instead, got caught up in reading about the background from creator and writer David Simon, a former reporter for the Baltimore Sun. He wrote a fascinating piece in a February issue of Esquire, focusing on his time and learning with the Sun – whose then editor, Bill Marrimow, now leads the ship at the Inquirer – to whom I recently offered advice.

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Patriot-News: Pennsylvania Cable Network breakout box

I had a story on the Pennsylvnia Cable Network (PCN) in the Patriot-News two weeks ago. Here is some extra information that didn’t make it into the Sunday story.

  • More than 10 million Pennsylvanians in 3.3. million homes on 150 cable systems can watch PCN.
  • PCN has a $4.5 million operating budget and a 34-person staff.
  • PCN is funded entirely by the participating Pennsylvania cable TV companies, private underwriting and a small sales operation. PCN receives no state or federal funds.
  • In February 2004, PCN opened its renovated and drastically enlarged Camp Hill headquarters – a 21,000-square-foot office, studio and technical facility that works in partnership with single-person bureaus in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh to cover the entire Commonwealth.
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How a journalist can best use MySpace

MySpace is lame, so how come many journalists are on the site and, as I posted recently, I now have a MySpace page too?

In last week’s post, I described it largely as just another front in the world over branding my name online.

Others see it for slightly different purposes.

MSNBC commentator and Philadelphia Daily News editorial board member Flavia Colgan has a page. I can only speculate, but, judging from what she shares on her page, I suspect she sees it as an easy way to help brand her identity – her name, her position and her work.

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My internship with the Philadelphia Business Journal

With the editorial staff of the Philadelphia Business Journal on May 5, 2008.

Last Thursday, during a week revisit to Philadelphia, I shared happy hour with a few friends from my internship with the Philadelphia Business Journal, with which I had a great six month-internship the last semester of my college career.

With a little work, I got tons of solid clips and great experience (detailed below) with the Journal, and so I thought it was worth pointing that out.

The primary responsibilities of editorial interns with PBJ, owned by American City Business Journals, are to keep up their pages that follow the region’s philanthropic community, profile business leaders and all managerial movements in and around the city. While I pitched other stories of greater size, these base-level jobs never offered anything more than a few hundred words. Still, I worked hard to make them worth reading – if only to keep me focused and interested.

The internship meant a lot more than all of that, though.

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Are things changing at the New Jersey Herald?

The newspaper of record for northwest New Jersey is the Herald. As such, it was the first newspaper I knew, the first read and the first I learned to criticize. But things may be changing.

The New Jersey Herald, now active six days a week, has published continuously since 1829. It is like many small, rural newspapers. With small communities, investigation is sometimes rare. Might Publisher Bruce Tomlinson and Editor Chris Frear avoid criticizing potential advertising streams when their coverage area is less than 150,000 people and their circulation is less than 15,000? Of course, but they’ve made a series of changes in recent years – like dropping their old God awful masthead seen above – and I’ve seen more of late.

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The new Facebook bumbles on


Even if I am just a couple months into my Facebook life, I believe it is fair to say there is lots of complaint against its new version – beyond just common resistance to change. I’ve jumped into things with Facebook - and MySpace for that matter – so I think I’ve got a sense of how obsessively people take their social networking.

Recently I posted a collection of the most widespread and best articulated rails against the new form. That post on why the new Facebook sucks is just a small matter.

After that post, I was invited to join a Facebook group called People agains the New Facebook System – with more than 100,000 members. There are others here, here, here, and here – I’m sure there are more.

I got a comment on my post mentioning one could revert back to the old version – which I did. There was a delay in the rollout, but now – there’s no going back, the new version is the only version.

Does any of that actually matter? Any thoughts?

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My Flickr account reawakened

I joined Flickr in February. But it sat there with just one photo.

That has changed.

I always thought I would use Flickr in a more limited way – just photographs I took with some purpose and others that carry some meaning. I’ll continue to use Slide to collect slideshows of any travel or experiences. My Flickr account will be more selective. Perhaps that is for my own sense of organization, but I like the idea for now.

Does anyone else do something similar?

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Number of Views:9848