Media Mashup: January 8, 2015

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 5.23.22 PMWhen Black Lives Also Mattered

An African-American professor at the City University of New York has written a book in which he chronicles how black communities tried to fight back against crime in their communities during the crack epidemic.

Michael Javen Fortner was raised in Brooklyn during the height of the epidemic in the 1980s. He can thus describe “the hurt and terror of those who clutch their billfolds as they sleep, of those who exit their apartments and leave their buildings with trepidation, and of those who have had to bury a son or daughter because of gang activity, the drug trade, or random violence.”

The book, Black Silent Majority: The Rockefeller Drug Laws and the Politics of Punishmentis reviewed at

Attacking Political Correctness

In the 2016 Republican presidential primary season, “political correctness” has become the all-purpose enemy. The candidates have suggested that it is the explanation for seemingly every threat that confronts the country: terrorism, illegal immigration, an economic recovery that is leaving many behind, to name just a few.

For more, see

New Journalism Strategy: Less Content notes: “One of the few workable business models in this age of digital disruption has been to produce as much content as cheaply as possible. But flooding a glutted market only leads to a deflationary spiral until it becomes completely uneconomic to produce that commodity. It is a simple matter of economics, and it doesn’t matter whether that commodity is maize or media.”

For more, see

Christopher Harper is a longtime journalist, who reported in Europe and the Middle East. He teaches media law and international journalism. Send suggestions and tips to


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