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Soundbite: Obama, Jackson, And Woods Saved Media This Year

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“Mainstream media have been accused of pathologizing the African-American male, but — let’s face it — three men who happened to be black moved a lot of units this year. Just try to imagine this past year in media without President Obama, Michael Jackson and Tiger Woods.”

The New York Times’ David Carr looks back at a year in media.

Instead of noting all the colossal failures the industry has suffered in the last twelve months, Carr opts for the sliver of sunshine, particularly the ones that come in 140 characters or less (Carr would know!).

“And lest you think it was all pathology and politics, it is worth noting that on Twitter, the elections in Iran outranked Michael Jackson, who came in second, according to What the Trend?, a site that ranked topics in 2009 (whatthetrend.com/zeitgeist). In an age that is ridiculed as chronically unserious, a life-and-death struggle for freedom on the other side of the world is the story that rang the bell on Twitter.”

Carr also notes the rise of real reporting on sites like Gawker, and HuffPo and television shows like Mad Men and 30 Rock as signs that the media apocalypse has not yet arrived. As to what the future might hold it’s really anyone’s guess (12 months ago would you have suspected that the Iran Revolution would have been Twitterized?) but Carr suggests you should be polite to your juniors just to be on the safe side.

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