paper trail

What Disney's "LA Times" boycott says about journalism; Adam Gopnik on life in 1980s New York

Adam Gopnik

Peter Hamby takes a deep dive into the world of the White House press corps. Hamby writes that the inability of White House correspondents to question press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on inaccuracies and pressure the administration into discussing certain topics is having a detrimental effect on the media’s reputation. “The political press is facing a crisis of substance,” he writes, “and it’s not just poisoning the public’s perception of journalism, it’s playing right into Trump’s hands.”

Politico’s Jack Shafer looks at the now-reversed Disney boycott of the Los Angeles Times and explains why Disney, not the newspapers, won the fight. Shafer writes that the company’s blacklisting of the newspaper used Trump’s constant dismissals of the press as a template. “By aping Trump, Disney has encouraged individuals and institutions covered by the outlets it owns—ABC News, ESPN, and local TV news—that snitty boycotts are the correct way to register disapproval,” he concludes.

The 2017 National Book Awards will be broadcast on Facebook Live, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Stephen Elliott |!|talks to| the Los Angeles Review of Books about his novels, the genius of Britney Spears, and why he doesn’t like LA.

Adam Gopnik remembers his life in 1980s New York, where his new novel. Before he started writing for the New Yorker, Gopnik dreamed of being a songwriter. “I had written a college show about the life of Vladimir Tatlin, the great Russian Constructivist architect, and I simply assumed that I was six weeks away from Broadway with a show about him,” he recalls. “And we also had once met someone who had been to dinner with someone who had spoken to the sister of Art Garfunkel’s psychotherapist—some relationship like that—and I had made a cassette of my best songs to send to him, and I never heard back. Still haven’t, in fact.”

Tonight at Book Culture, Jeremy Dauber presents his new book, Jewish Comedy: A Serious History.