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Chion Wolf / WNPR

Frustrations over a lack of media transparency, New England-naysayers, and negativity made the list of year-end grievances for panelists on WNPR’s weekly news roundtable last week.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The publisher of two small newspapers in Central Connecticut is receiving national attention as his ties to Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson are being called into question.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The state-funded, off-the-air Back9Network has filed for bankruptcy, with the hope of emerging with an existing group of shareholders who will restructure the company. 

If you typed "Lamar Odom" into the Google search bar this year, you're certainly not alone.

The former NBA player and reality TV star was the most popular search item of the year, Google says.

Republicans took the gloves off for their fifth presidential debate in Las Vegas. Focusing almost entirely on foreign policy and national security, the candidates revealed big divides in how they would handle the threat of terrorism and deal with foreign leaders.

When NBC first considered bringing The Wiz Live! to television, the network couldn't have known how much America would need to see this.

At a time when the country is reeling from mass shootings, protests over police killing black teens, and presidential candidates railing against immigrants and refugees, there is no better time to experience a soothing, expertly executed celebration of family, friendship and black culture.

A story about a deadly terrorist attack briefly inspired a frenzied media scrum Friday morning in Southern California when dozens of reporters and TV news crews entered the home of the two shooters in the San Bernardino massacre.

As yet another mass shooting claimed the lives of 14 people Wednesday in San Bernardino, Calif., a familiar refrain echoed from the lips of politicians: Pray.

But for many fed up with the now seemingly routine shootings and the resulting inaction from each over how to stop another tragedy, pleas to God weren't enough anymore.

The Trouble With Changing Your Mind

Nov 25, 2015
Jose Maria Cuellar flickr.com/photos/cuellar / Creative Commons

Changing our mind on an issue is something we're all free to do. But that doesn't mean it comes without a cost. What would it cost a lifelong liberal to suddenly turn conservative, or a career scientist to suddenly start denying climate change? As we typically associate with others of like mind, chances are the costs could be high.

The second Democratic debate was a subdued affair, where even the slights felt polite. Sanders and O'Malley attacked Clinton's — and by extension the Obama administration's — record on foreign policy but when it came time to talk about how to fight the Islamic State, the separation felt a matter of semantics. "This cannot be an American fight, although American leadership is essential," said Clinton. O'Malley said he disagreed: "This is America's fight, but not America's alone." Sanders pivoted quickly from foreign policy to the economy.

For the first 30 minutes of the Democratic debate, the attacks in Paris loomed large, starting with a moment of silence and continuing with the opening statements.

The candidates were asked to address the attacks and what they would do in their opening statements, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spent her entire opening statement talking about them.

On Friday, coordinated terrorist attacks struck the French capital, killing more than 120 people.

Deadly attacks hit multiple sites simultaneously. There were explosions outside a massive stadium. Scores of people were held hostage inside a concert venue. Diners at several cafes and restaurants faced volleys of gunfire.

The incident has prompted anger, grief and an outpouring of sympathy from around the world.

Lawrence OP / Flickr

According to Yale Philosophy Professor Shelly Kagan, many of today's political issues are actually philosophical ones. Kagan says no one ever asks philosophers to weigh in.

Wouldn't a deeper understanding of the day's news -- including why people think what they think and hold the positions they hold -- be beneficial?

One reason for the lack of philosophical commentary in the media might be the relatively short attention spans many Americans have for absorbing information. Who has time for philosophy? And are political debates real outlets for philosophical argument?

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The Back9Network has been on life support since February, having burned through the millions of dollars it raised from the state and private investors. Now another group of people is being squeezed by Back9’s demise: unpaid contractors who built the network’s downtown Hartford studio. 

Peter Stevens / Creative Commons

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy is condemning a radio ad that supports Republican presidential candidate Senator Ted Cruz.

The presidential campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., announced Sunday that it will begin airing its first campaign ads on television in Iowa and New Hampshire starting Tuesday.

Known for its talented writers and in-depth reporting, ESPN's sports and culture website, Grantland, was suddenly shut down early Friday afternoon.

The sports media giant released a statement, saying Grantland was suspended, "effective immediately." The statement reads, in part:

"After careful consideration, we have decided to direct our time and energy going forward to projects that we believe will have a broader and more significant impact across our enterprise.

The pundit world is still trying to decide which of the 10 Republican candidates for president won the third Republican debate of the 2016 race.

But it didn't take long for there to be consensus on one thing: CNBC was the night's "biggest loser."

Greg Howard is a staff writer at Deadspin, a Gawker Media site that covers sports and culture, and has written and reported on everything from the Black Lives Matter movement to the shortcomings of boomerangs. But he's become best known for his writing over the past year about the behind-the-scenes turbulence at a planned ESPN site called "The Undefeated," which meant to focus on issues of sports and race.

Football's popularity has made it among the most lucrative business franchises. So it should come as no surprise that the NFL and other organizations holding the broadcasting rights to games felt very strongly about Deadspin and SB Nation, popular sports publications, attracting readers by posting highlights on Twitter.

What came next were complaints of copyright violations. Then came Twitter's suspension of the accounts. Now comes the question: Do GIFs of sports highlights qualify as fair use?

Tonight, as you plop down on the couch to watch the Democratic presidential debate or the baseball playoffs, consider for a moment what you're waving your remote at. If you're like millions of Americans, your cable box sits on a shelf under your flat screen, gathering dust, easy to overlook.

It's also easy to overlook the rent you're paying for that box month after month.

Flickr user comedynose / Creative Commons

America has seen a renaissance in storytelling of various forms, especially on the radio. This hour, we talk with two producers who are telling very different kinds of stories. Joe Richman has been putting tape recorders in the hands of people for nearly two decades as part of his Radio Diaries series heard on NPR. He's speaking at Quinnipiac University this week.

Updated at 4:10 a.m. ET

Imprisoned American journalist Jason Rezaian has been convicted, according to an Iranian Judiciary spokesman who appeared on state TV Sunday night. The spokesman did not say on which charges Rezaian had been convicted or whether a sentence had been imposed.

It's the latest development in a case that's been marked by secrecy and uncertainty. Rezaian, The Washington Post's Tehran bureau chief, was arrested in Tehran in 2014 and accused of espionage, a charge the Post denies.

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"This is DraftKings. Welcome to the big time. You can play when you want with the team you want. Just pick your contest, pick your team, and pick up your winnings."

It's all too raw: the grieving of survivors, the images of carnage, the way we learn of events and the way we consume them.

Viewers of the morning show for WDBJ-TV in Roanoke, Va., actually watched the deadly shootings of reporter Alison Parker and videographer Adam Ward. And they watched it live, unexpectedly, without warning. So did the program's anchors, who were themselves shocked, initially uncomprehending, appalled.

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