‘Context, perspective and facts’ casualties of industry financial squeeze, says Bloomberg co-founder

Bloomberg Editor-in-Chief Emeritus Matthew Winkler talks about the news organization’s local training program. (File Photo / Reuters)
Updated 10 September 2018
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‘Context, perspective and facts’ casualties of industry financial squeeze, says Bloomberg co-founder

LONDON: Arab News Business Editor, Sean Cronin, talks to Bloomberg Editor-in-Chief Emeritus Matthew Winkler about the news organization’s local training program.
Q: What is the next step for the students who go through the course?
A: The course exposes students to the various elements of financial journalism, and introduces them to Bloomberg’s brand of data-driven reporting, based on the “Bloomberg Way,” the students will hear directly from more than 20 Bloomberg journalists and analysts from London and the Middle East, on everything from using social media as a reporting tool and multimedia journalism, to journalistic ethics and principles and covering Middle East economies.
We hope to strengthen their existing interest in pursuing a career in financial journalism, and to inspire them to explore these specific areas further following the completion of the course.
Q:Will any go on to work for Bloomberg?
A: Through this course, and indeed all our global financial training programs, we want to inspire students to pursue a career in financial business and news organizations, whether that is at Bloomberg or elsewhere. We encouraged a number of participants from last January’s course to apply for our global internship programs. Two participants were particularly interested in how we use data across Bloomberg, and recently completed our summer data internship program in London. A third participant will begin a news internship in Dubai later this month.
Q: How many students do you expect to train every year?
A: We expect to train 40 to 50 students in total every year. Thirty students participated in the first edition of the program; this number dropped slightly in the second edition as we have implemented a rigorous application process to ensure we have the strongest candidates.
Q: Do you see core journalistic skills being threatened by financial pressures facing the industry and the churn demanded of reporters?
A: Yes, I believe this is especially the case in broadcast news where context, perspective and facts are casualties of this. This is where accuracy, which is at the heart of the “Bloomberg Way,” becomes particularly important.
Q: Is it becoming more challenging for local and national media to hold organizations accountble, and what can be done to change that?
A: Financial pressures have eroded local news reporting, so there is a lack of accountability when there is no vibrant local press, which in turn leads to limited public discourse.


Facebook accused of discrimination with job ad targeting

Updated 19 September 2018
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Facebook accused of discrimination with job ad targeting

  • It charges that job ads on Facebook targeted male users only
  • Facebook lets advertisers target ads on the basis of gender and age, which is against the law in America

WASHINGTON: A complaint has been filed with the US government accusing Facebook and 10 other companies of using the platform’s job ad targeting system to discriminate on the basis of gender.
The complaint was announced Tuesday by the American Civil Liberties Union, a union called the Communications Workers of America and a labor law firm, on behalf of three female job seekers and a group of “thousands” of members represented by the union.
It charges that job ads on Facebook targeted male users only. It also alleges that most of the listings were for jobs in male-dominated fields, so women and non-binary users were excluded from seeing these ads.
Facebook lets advertisers target ads on the basis of gender and age, which is against the law in America, the complaint reads.
“I shouldn’t be shut out of the chance to hear about a job opportunity just because I am a woman,” said Bobbi Spees, one of the three women named in the complaint.
Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne said in a statement to CNNMoney that there is no place for discrimination on Facebook.
“It’s strictly prohibited in our policies, and over the past year we’ve strengthened our systems to further protect against misuse,” Osborne said.
Facebook will defend itself once it has reviewed the complaint, he added.
The ACLU noted that online platforms such as Facebook are generally not liable for content published by others.
“But in this case, Facebook is doing much more than merely publishing content created by others,” the advocacy group argued.
“It has built the architecture for this discriminatory marketing framework, enabled and encouraged advertisers to use it, and delivered the gender-based ads according to employers’ sex-based preferences.”
Last month the US Department of Housing and Urban Development accused Facebook of breaking the law by letting landlords and home sellers use its ad-targeting system to discriminate against potential buyers or tenants.
Facebook responded by cutting more than 5,000 ad-targeting options to prevent advertisers from discriminating on the basis of traits such as religion or race.