Comments: Week of October 23, 2023


“Do Any of These People Stand a Chance Against Trump?” October 9–22

For New York’s latest cover story, ­Olivia Nuzzi spent 13 weeks on the campaign trail with the presidential ­candidates who say they’re vying for the Republican nomination. Many readers praised the cover illustration by Joe ­Darrow. Levi Teitel said, “Magazine covers are still alive,” and@vagrantcow wrote, “Is this not the best political magazine cover ever?” On Instagram, @stephenjosephs added, “The Scotch tape is brilliant!” Sami K. Martin, however, asked, “Could you please stop putting Trump on the cover?” @mothernlaw wrote, “I wish the candidates could express their stance on important subjects without being obscured by the shadow of Trump and his baggage.” On Instagram, Barry Misenheimer noted, “Aside from Christie, all the other candidates are trying to beat Trump by praising and defending Trump. And they wonder why they are far behind.” And tigersatthezoo commented, “This is by far our worst reality show and I wish that we could get it over with in 3 months as ­opposed to 2 years of who’s in/who’s out/who is up/who is dumb and broke … Vivek has ­accomplished what he set out to do: get ­famous in addition to being merely rich. The other ones are just ­deluded at this point.”


“Scoop Dreams”

In “Scoop Dreams,” Reeves ­Wiedeman profiled The Athletic’s Shams Charania, who is reshaping how NBA news gets made, one tweet at a time. “Reeves Wiedeman isn’t the first to profile Charania,” wrote Peter Rubin for Longreads. “He is, however, the first to do so in a way that lays bare the larger forces set in motion by ­Charania’s ascendancy: chiefly, the New York Times’ decision to disband its sports department in favor of The Athletic, its $550 million acquisition that just happens to be Charania’s current home. Wiedeman has written stories far more cinematic … but there’s something undeniably pleasing about how this acts as both unflinching profile and business ­story. As much as ­Charania’s inde­fatigable M.O. is the stuff of legend … it happens to be a prime ­example of how journalism has been subsumed by that formless extrusion known as ‘content.’ ” Regarding Charania’s ubiquitous presence on X, ­Politico’s Jonathan Martin said, “it only left me more curious what happens to this whole genre when this site inevitably collapses.” Former ­Fashionista editor-in-chief Tyler McCall wrote that she was “fasci­nated” by the ­story: “I could see a lot of parallels to the fashion industry here, though most ­people trying to pull off these kinds of social ­media scoops lack the ­access or ­patience ­Charania seems to have.” Of the reporter’s intense workday, Aaron ­Mendelson said, “Sports scoop ­artist is ­maybe the most ­hollow job in all of jour­nalism. 18 hours of screen time per day just to tweet about a Charlotte ­Hornets transaction 12 seconds before the other guy.” And Jack Hittinger asked, “Why would anyone aspire to this life? It sounds like literal hell. This story is actually pretty good and clear eyed about how effed our media ecosystem is if guys like Shams get millions of dollars for ­‘breaking’ bullshit stories while at the same time the New York Times disbands its ­entire sports dept. We’re so screwed.” SB ­Nation’s James Dator ­responded, “We really grabbed on to ‘Shams sends a lot of texts!’ And not ‘holy shit he helps players get screwed in negotiations to keep the ­access going.’ ” ­Sydney Bauer said, “The anecdote about an NBA ­reporter quitting the paper to open a gym which he then ­offers fitness regimes to other reporters because the lifestyle is so unhealthy ­really describes the change in sports media over the last ­decade.” Bloomberg’s James Cham added, “Fascinating piece on the state of sports journalism and building relationships over SMS. Only question: does ­Charania know that he could connect messages to his laptop or iPad and type much, much faster?”

“Grub Street Diet”

Book critic Dwight Garner’s “Grub Street Diet” won affection from many readers. Tisya Mavuram said she “read all of this with a big dumb smile on my face the whole time. Dwight Garner is really ­living!!!” The New Yorker’s Philip ­Gourevitch called it “a total pleasure,” and Janine ­Barlow wrote, “I haven’t felt ­actively jealous of ­another person’s life in a while but this did it.” Matthew Kassel tweeted, “Dwight ­Garner’s delightful Grub Street Diet entry is kind of medic­inal right now. Also, how does one get ­admitted into the Organ Meat ­Society?” Publicist Kaitlin Phillips wrote, “People who hate NY don’t know how to live in NY and this is how to live in NY.”

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Comments: Week of October 23, 2023