Today's Top Stories

Census: Journalism majors make about $50,000

Journalism majors do slightly better than English majors in the job market, according to 2010 U.S. Census data. The median annual salary for both is $50,000, the same as it is for advertising and PR majors, history majors and communications majors. But the lowest and highest-paid English majors earn less than their journalist counterparts. Journalists have a slightly higher unemployment rate (7%) than any of those other majors.

Tentative agreement reached

The Buffalo Guild and The News reached a tentative agreement Friday morning that includes no changes in health insurance, and a cash bonus of $400 for part-timers and $800 for full-timers. The two-year agreement, which must be ratified by Guild members, was unanimously endorsed by the bargaining team. Although the Guild made numerous wage proposals, starting with 2% raises in each year, the News adamantly insisted on no raises of any kind.

News of the World hired investigators to spy on hacking victims' lawyers

The News of the World hired a specialist private investigator to run covert surveillance on two of the lawyers representing phone-hacking victims as part of an operation to put pressure on them to stop their work. Evidence suggests this was part of an attempt to gather evidence for false smears about their private lives. The surveillance of Lewis and Harris occurred during the past 18 months, when Rupert Murdoch's son James was executive chairman of the paper's parent company.

Internet freedom initiative mere lip service?

In the past few weeks, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Syria have all detained bloggers and online activists, while elsewhere in the region, self-censorship is the name of the game. But while the United States and the European Union have repeatedly condemned the actions of the Syrian government -- where they have virtually no influence -- both have remained largely silent on the threats facing bloggers in allied countries across the region, at a time when arrests are at an all-time high.

If WikiLeaks is dying, then the NYT is partly to blame

WikiLeaks' journalistic nature, which led journalism professor Jay Rosen to call it “the first stateless news organization,” is likely a big part of the reason why the New York Times and other newspapers have done so little to protest what is happening to the organization -- which as Dan Gillmor points out is a restraint on freedom of speech co-ordinated by private companies pressured by the U.S. government, based on allegations that haven’t even made it to court.

Members approve buyout offer; deadline is next Friday

Albany Guild members approved a buyout offer Thursday, and those who wish to take it have until this Friday to apply. The vote was 51-3, with turnout heavy among editorial employees, who are being targeted for the buyout, and light from other departments. The offer includes three weeks of pay for every year of service, with a minimum of 15 weeks’ pay and a maximum of one year’s income.

Up Is Down, Down Is Up: Bill O'Reilly Explains OWS

On his Friday night show, Bill O'Reilly took his viewers to a magical place -- one where the right-wing Koch brothers have no connection to the Tea Party movement, while Occupy Wall Street is a secret project directed and financed by the likes of, SEIU and George Soros. O'Reilly also wondered if we are now in "phase two of the campaign to undermine America" -- apparently the phase wherein activists protest against police brutality.

Steep decline in manufacturing mars employment outlook

Employment in the Canada’s factories has tumbled to its lowest level on record, a shift that highlights the dramatic changes in the manufacturing sector and the impact on workers. The decline is a key reason why the Canadian economy shed a surprising 54,000 jobs last month, the most since February, 2009, in the depths of the recession. The losses moved the country’s jobless rate up two notches to 7.3%.