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"My experience is that journalists report on the nearest-cliche algorithm, which is extremely uninformative because there aren’t many cliches, the truth is often quite distant from any cliche, and the only thing you can infer about the actual event was that this was the closest cliche. I should write a separate post on this at some point.

It is simply not possible to appreciate the sheer awfulness of mainstream media reporting until someone has actually reported on you. It is so much worse than you think."

-Eliezer Yudkowsky, http://www.overcomingbias.com/2009/01/predictible-fakers.htm...




On the other hand, if you hang out with journalists you'll start to see it from their side as well.

They've got some short deadline to write a few thousand words on some topic they don't really understand and don't really care about, either... and the consequences for rushing out a just-good-enough article are pretty minimal.

Sound familiar? It reminds me of high school, and dashing off some crappy just-good-enough essay on the night before it was due. Journalists (or the vast majority thereof) are stuck in an endless loop of having to write two crappy high school essays on different subjects every day. I don't envy them.


Your idealist view of the perfect article is something that quickly goes out the window, when you begin to write for a magazine or newspaper.

The character limit on articles alone is enough to break the hopes of many people.




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