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agosto 2010

Abbiamo da Kabul

La settimana scorsa il tg serale della CBS - CBS Evening News - ha mandato in onda un reportage da Kabul di Katie Couric, la anchor woman di punta della rete. La settimana scorsa il tg serale della CBS ha avuto i rating più bassi di sempre. E' colpa del declino della tv generalista, della Couric o  è la  guerra in Afghanistan che non interessa più nessuno?

Media Decoder (New York Times)

Il consumo degli e-book

Pare che qualcuno legga di più da quando ha un e-reader, anche se in modo meno veloce. Di sicuro compra più libri. Che poi è quello che importa a Mr. Bezos. Un ottimo articolo del WSJ.

A study of 1,200 e-reader owners by Marketing and Research Resources Inc. found that 40% said they now read more than they did with print books. Of those surveyed, 58% said they read about the same as before while 2% said they read less than before. And 55% of the respondents in the May study, paid for by e-reader maker Sony Corp., thought they'd use the device to read even more books in the future. The study looked at owners of three devices: Inc.'s Kindle, Apple Inc.'s iPad and the Sony Reader. [...] Among early adopters, e-books aren't replacing their old book habits, but adding to them. Amazon, the biggest seller of e-books, says its customers buy 3.3 times as many books after buying a Kindle, a figure that has accelerated in the past year as prices for the device fell.

Wall Street Journal

Profeta in patria

Nelle primarie di ieri hanno vinto i politici istituzionali (come in Arizona il repubblicano John Mc Cain, che però ha speso una valanga di soldi e come il democratico Kendrick B. Meek in Florida. Battuti tea-bagger e riccastri). C'è una sola eccezione: l'Alaska dove il candidato repubblicano appoggiato da Sarah Palin potrebbe farcela a battere la molto istituzionale  Lisa Murkowsky. Intanto Michael Gerson - che è un repubblicano piuttosto istituzionale -  riflette sui danni - elettoralmente parlando -  che il movimento dei tea party sta facendo al partito repubblicano.

Los Angeles Times,  New York Times, Washington Post

WikiLeaks e l'anonima donatori

Le fonti di finanziamento di Julian Assange sono criptate (in parte a ragione, vista l'aria che tira).

Though Mr. Assange declined to name donors or certain companies through which donations flow, he provided some insight into the funding structure that allows the group to operate. The linchpin of WikiLeaks's financial network is Germany's Wau Holland Foundation. WikiLeaks encourages donors to contribute to its account at the foundation, which under German law can't publicly disclose the names of donors. Because the foundation "is not an operational concern, it can't be sued for doing anything. So the donors' money is protected, in other words, from lawsuits," Mr. Assange said. The German foundation is only one piece of the WikiLeaks network. "We're registered as a library in Australia, we're registered as a foundation in France, we're registered as a newspaper in Sweden," Mr. Assange said. WikiLeaks has two tax-exempt charitable organizations in the U.S., known as 501C3s, that "act as a front" for the website, he said. He declined to give their names, saying they could "lose some of their grant money because of political sensitivities."

Wall Street Journal

La Coppa del mondo non basta. E nemmeno Nelson Mandela

L'ANC, il partito al potere in Sud Africa, il partito di Nelson Mandela, sta pensando di limitare fortemente la libertà di stampa, visto che i media sono accusati di non voler bene all'ANC medesimo.

On Friday, the South African writers Nadine Gordimer, André Brink, Achmat Dangor, John Kani and Njabulo Ndebele added their voices to the protests. “This is the threat of a return to the censorship under apartheid,” said Ms. Gordimer, three of whose novels were banned in that era. After spending billions of dollars to successfully host the World Cup — and reveling in how the monthlong global coverage burnished the country’s reputation as a democratic beacon — the government is finding that it has created a major public relations problem. Many at home and abroad are questioning the party’s commitment to freedom of the press. On Thursday, the cabinet tried to limit the damage, with a spokesman, Themba Maseko, suggesting that the government was open to considering changes in its proposals and calling for a cooling of tempers. As now written, the A.N.C.-led government’s Protection of Information Bill would empower heads of government agencies to classify broad categories of information in the “national interest.” It would also mandate the imprisonment of those who disclose the material for 3 to 25 years. National interest is defined as “all matters relating to the advancement of the public good” and “the survival and security of the state.” The bill is moving through Parliament, where the A.N.C. has a nearly two-thirds majority. The party has also stepped up its push for a tribunal, answerable to Parliament, that would regulate the print media — oversight that Business Leadership South Africa, which represents companies that pay 80 percent of the corporate taxes here, said “raises the prospect of a media answerable to political bosses.” The official hostility to journalists is palpable. In a July 29 party document, the A.N.C. described portions of the press as having an “anti-A.N.C. stance,” and accused the print media of “an astonishing degree of dishonesty.”

New York Times