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Feb. 9, 2011 buzz: Killing journalism, killing foreign languages


The buzz for Feb. 9, 2011:

Most viewed | Trending on Twitter | Shared on Facebook:

In Wednesday's Opinion pages, Op-Ed columnist Tim Rutten skewers today's media-saturated environment. In "AOL ♥ HuffPo. The loser? Journalism," which is most viewed, most Tweeted and most shared on Facebook, he writes, "To grasp [the Huffington Post's] business model , you need to picture a galley rowed by slaves and commanded by pirates. Given the fact that its founder, [Arianna] Huffington, reportedly will walk away from this acquisition with a personal profit of as much as $100 million, it makes all the Post's raging against Wall Street plutocrats, crony capitalism and the Bush and Obama administrations' insensitivities to the middle class and the unemployed a bit much.”

He continues: “The fact is that AOL and the Huffington Post simply recapitulate in the new media many of the worst abuses of the old economy's industrial capitalism — the sweatshop, the speedup and piecework; huge profits for the owners; desperation, drudgery and exploitation for the workers. No child labor, yet, but if there were more page views in it…"

Most commented:

Elsewhere in our pages, the editorial board writes that "there's simply no need for a bill that would make English the official language of the U.S." in "English-only? Press 'no'." Just as any topic that hovers around the topic of immigration, this editorial has brought readers to our comments board like bees to a hive. We love it when they call us "La Raza Times."

-- Alexandra Le Tellier

Photo: The homepage of the Huffington Post on Monday. AOL agreed to buy the Huffington Post for $315 million as the Internet company spun off from Time Warner Inc. increases its investments in online content to help revive growth in advertising revenue. Credit: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg


Comments () | Archives (2)

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Charles Morris

whats wrong with AH personally pocketing $100 million. Does the LA Times want to end capitalism as well as English as a first language.

Franklin D. Lomax Sr


The death of journalism, the birth of new journalism, progress: hardly, rather, we are teetering still, on the cusp of declaring the freedom of writers, to write for themselves, as all do, and get paid directly, by their millions/billions of fans. We end the AOL/Huff before posting, and all other monstrous editorial controls, bias, and agendas, anywhere, print or digital. It is far from rocket science, in fact, it is obvious, simple, and content producer enriching, world educating, right now.

Call in the Google boys! My often touted Google Free World Library of all content, at no cost to the needy, and two cents an article, two bits per book, for those of us with a GFWL deposit sized to support GFWL free distribution costs, and allow consumers to pay producers directly, leaving the soul dead publisher monopoly dead in the electronic backwash. Gate and Buffet can provide the web access devices, scholarships for those who will never see a dozen books. No more murdered trees, no printers, loggers, pulp mill operators, and thousands of truckers killing trees, and us, to enrich physical publishers all too eager to force producers to kiss their rings, or TV broadcasters behinds, to control what we read, see, and consume. I'd deposit $500 to $1000 as Premium GFWL Patron prefunding, and bet millions of other content consumers will join me, to allow Google/PayPal to pay every producer two cents for any article I read past the first 25%, or two bits for any book, film or other content I consume beyond the author's chosen "Pay author to read on line". One million times two cents equals $20,000 per article, and unlimited millions, and soon billions would have access to uncensored writings of our favorite content producers.

With the Lomax Micro Payment arrangement, a payment honor system, including trust but verify, taken with Google's proven capacity, to serve, while earning profits, handing this item off to Google right now, will jump start the Google Free World Library. It will become, of course, the Free World University, and will bring the least wealthy of all humans into the Free World quickly and at nuisance level costs to those of us who can afford the world wide individual liberty that GFWL comprises, from the day it begins distribution.

This may well avoid the otherwise inevitable wars, to deal with the continued SinoRussianLevant gobbling up the world's petty dictators, commodities, and their people's futures, for chump change bribes, paid with US dollars that will soon have the same value as Zimbabwe Dollars, and come in rolls, for convenience in the bathroom. The producers and consumers of content must eschew all editorial controls, (bias and agenda) and allow sapient producers, owners, and consumers of good heart to enable Google's GFWL. Those trustworthy billionaire's have clearly proved that they personally have enough money, and they have proven you can get anything done, and your stockholder's can get paid for your work, as long as you do not care who gets the credit for doing it. This is the angel's work, like my proposed GFWL, please stand up and pass this along, or hand it up, to those who can help us: Git'er Done!



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The Opinion L.A. blog is the work of Los Angeles Times Editorial Board membersNicholas Goldberg, Robert Greene, Carla Hall, Jon Healey, Sandra Hernandez, Karin Klein, Michael McGough, Jim Newton and Dan Turner. Columnists Patt Morrison and Doyle McManus also write for the blog, as do Letters editor Paul Thornton, copy chief Paul Whitefield and senior web producer Alexandra Le Tellier.

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