Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: Is there a Pulitzer for "Bullshit journalism of the year"? Cos I have a contender!

  1. #1
    Partridge Guest

    Is there a Pulitzer for "Bullshit journalism of the year"? Cos I have a contender!

    [Partridge: This is the most shocking piece of trashy fear-mongering, youth-fearing journalism I've possibly EVER seen! Who draws up a fucking contract with their teenage daughter for fucks sake?!?]

    Mom on MySpace

    I've covered murders, grisly accidents, airplanes falling out of the sky and, occasionally, dirty politics. But in nearly two decades of journalism, nothing has made my insides churn like seeing what my 13-year-old daughter and her friends are up to on

    Here's a bulletin I recently found posted to her site:

    "OMG! Add this hott guy! He will whore the first 20 people added to his friends list Add him! You can do it in his van!"

    Loosely translated, the teenage girl was "pimping" a teenage boy, shown smooching his guitar, as a potential new friend -- or more -- for my daughter. If Taylor added him to her MySpace "friends" list, the tousled-hair teen would be able to look at her Web site and send messages to her.

    The soliciting girl made the pitch to all 245 of her own "friends" with a simple keystroke.

    In the MySpace world, this is called a "whore code." It's a mild -- very mild -- example of the coarse language and often profane messages that are plastered all over the social networking site like graffiti on bathroom walls.

    It was this coarseness and an abject lack of manners (not to mention extremely poor grammar) that bothered me the most as I entered the second month of a deal that I had worked out with my often-headstrong daughter.


    Though MySpace tells users that they must be at least 14 years old to join, all it takes is a casual search to see that the requirement is routinely violated. All of the kids at her junior high had a MySpace account, Taylor pleaded. Why couldn't she?

    After consulting with a circle of friends and relatives, I relented. I would let Taylor have a MySpace site, but only if she agreed to follow some rules.

    The first was that her site would have to be set to "private." That meant that only those she had approved as "friends" could see her page.

    Next, she could not add as a friend anyone she did not personally know. We also agreed that no foul language or inappropriate materials could be used.

    And, most important, she had to give me complete access to her site, including a password that let me view hidden e-mails.

    Taylor was so excited that she immediately agreed to everything and signed the contract that we had drawn up.

    In the high of the moment, I felt good, too. I had found a way to allow my daughter an activity that she seemed to love while protecting her from online predators -- my biggest worry.

    But in the days and weeks to come, our honeymoon glow would turn to alarm on my part and an increasing boldness on hers. And I would find it harder and harder to balance my parental instincts with technologies that seemed to me to be rewriting the rules of adolescence.


    This all started in late December when my cell phone rang. It was the mother of one of Taylor's friends, explaining that she needed Taylor's help to shut down her own daughter's MySpace account.

    Taylor, then 12, had helped the daughter set up a site without the mother's permission, and only Taylor knew the password necessary to delete it.

    All of this was news to me. With an embarrassed apology, I promised to set things straight.

    I didn't know much about then. I have since had to do my homework.

    I learned that MySpace was created by a couple of Santa Monica tech-heads, and over its two-year life, it has become the biggest Web site that allows people to find dates, keep in touch and socialize.

    If you sign onto the site, now owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., you get free personal "space" to post profile information and photographs, write blogs, link music and send e-mails to other members. MySpace claims 68 million members, up more than 20 million in just the three months since I began visiting it.

    Some of its fans are young adults. Many are kids like Taylor.

    When I confronted her about the mother's call, Taylor sheepishly admitted that she had become something of a MySpace guru for her friends. She helped them set up accounts and even designed their pages.

    Yes, she had her own page, Taylor said. She showed it to me.

    Looking back, I realize that my reaction had little to do with the primping photographs of young girls, creepy "bulletins," and occasional foul language that I found on her site.

    It was more the shock of discovering a different Taylor, a cool-teen version of the girl who used to cuddle up on the couch and watch cooking shows with me. My daughter was too young for such an uncensored world, I decided.

    I immediately shut down her site.

    I had to ask her to do it for me.

    This is how she responded: "I'm really mad because it feels like you're saying I can't talk to my friends anymore. On MySpace, I get to talk to my friends and see people I don't see a lot. You get to keep in touch with everyone, and it's fun. You took away my fun!"


    Several things happened that made me change my mind.

    My 49-year-old sister, Christine, joined MySpace and told me she was having fun using it. She urged me to set up my own account so we would have a free, easy way to exchange e-mails and photographs.

    I thought about the technical skills Taylor had acquired in creating pages for herself and for her friends. And I started noticing a lot of news stories about MySpace, usually focused on its dangers.

    What if I allowed Taylor to maintain a page while keeping a close eye on it? I would join it too so I could become familiar with the site's benefits and drawbacks.

    So I typed out the contract, and Taylor enthusiastically signed it. She created an account for me and assigned me a URL,, that reflected the giddiness of our truce.

    Taylor was thrilled by this turn of events: "Yeah! I can't believe you're letting me do it. I guess it's OK that I have to sign this thing. I don't want you supervising me. I think I can do it on my own. But I'm glad you let me have my own page. It's a generous thing for you to do."

    Taylor constantly tried out different looks on her site, as naturally as if she were changing clothes.

    Almost daily she linked different music files (from a MySpace-sanctioned cache) to her site. From my daughter, I learned that Beyonce is hot and that Britney Spears definitely is not.


    I also watched with surprise -- and pride -- as her flying fingers from memory tapped out HTML, the specialized language of Web page design, to add color and unique script to photo captions.

    I was impressed and found that I was bonding with my daughter in a way that had become difficult of late.

    As for predators, six weeks into our experiment, Taylor had not received messages from anyone other than friends or schoolmates.

    Foul language was a constant, and it annoyed me. Some posts were truly disturbing, such as the cautionary and detailed tale of a young girl who was raped by her father, died from a sexually transmitted disease and now haunts those who read her story.

    Surveys are also popular and contain such telling questions as "Have you ever taken drugs?" "Are you a virgin?" and "Abortion -- for or against?"

    Talk about a permanent record!

    I reminded Taylor that she shouldn't leave any identifying information in her writings, even if she was writing to a friend.


    In late February, about two months after we made our pact, I logged onto Taylor's account. As I scrolled down, some new photographs caught my eye.

    I froze.

    Taylor had posted shots of herself and two other girls giving a one-fingered salute. I couldn't believe that she would post the photos knowing that I was looking over her shoulder. What was she thinking?


    This is what she was thinking, Taylor said: "I was like, 'Should I do this? I don't know.' But I thought you wouldn't care because I didn't say anything on them. They were just pictures. And (the two other girls) already had them up on their pages."

    I told her I was shutting down her account because she had broken the rules.

    Later, we talked about what happened. Taylor knew she had blown it and was as angry at herself as she was at me.

    If she showed more maturity, I said, she could reopen her MySpace account when she turned 14 next March. That minimum age requirement was making a lot of sense to me.

    Taylor listened and accepted her fate. She had just one question: "Can I get my cell phone a little earlier?"

    In the 24 hours before her MySpace account went dormant, Taylor received one last helpful e-mail from a friend: "U know u can just make another one but have a different name. That's what I did."

    [Partridge: Like I said, what a fucking crock of non-journalism shit! "My daughter curses, flips people off and likes BOYS! - Well, at least she doesn't like GIRLS or I'd have to lock her up forever for her own good!'

    When I was 13 I was listening to Guns N' Roses and Bob Marley, wearing anti-police and pro-marijuana t-shirts, and every now then I'd be allowed drink a can of beer - all with my parents approval!!! they even bought me a kickass Bob Marley t-shirt that I still have somewhere.]

  2. #2
    PhilosophyGenius Guest
    Shiiiitt....if this bitch can be a reporter for the Duluth News Tribune, I can be the Editor-In-Chief over there.

  3. #3
    PhilosophyGenius Guest
    "When I was 13 I was listening to Guns N' Roses and Bob Marley, wearing anti-police and pro-marijuana t-shirts, and every now then I'd be allowed drink a can of beer - all with my parents approval!!! they even bought me a kickass Bob Marley t-shirt that I still have somewhere"

    Well that explains a lot!

  4. #4
    Partridge Guest
    Dude, she's a SYNDICATED COLUMNIST!!! The piece was written for the LA TIMES, and syndicated from there. Appalling, truly appalling.

    Next Week: The Insidious World of 'The Mall' - where our kids 'hang out' (a euphamism for standing around talking about boys and using swear words). I made my daugther draw up a contract whereby if she wants to go to the mall, she must wear a wire at all times and must leave as soon as I say so in her earpiece.

  5. #5
    Partridge Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by PhilosophyGenius
    "When I was 13 I was listening to Guns N' Roses and Bob Marley, wearing anti-police and pro-marijuana t-shirts, and every now then I'd be allowed drink a can of beer - all with my parents approval!!! they even bought me a kickass Bob Marley t-shirt that I still have somewhere"

    Well that explains a lot!
    Hey, ain't nuthin' wrong wit me G!

  6. #6
    PhilosophyGenius Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Partridge
    Hey, ain't nuthin' wrong wit me G!
    Fightin' the system since age 13! No wonder you make those long ass posts bashing world goverments!

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-03-2009, 09:35 AM
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-29-2006, 10:59 AM
  3. A "Pulitzer Prize For Treason"
    By Gold9472 in forum The New News
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 04-19-2006, 01:34 PM
  4. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-08-2005, 10:30 PM
  5. What Is "Yellow Journalism"?
    By Gold9472 in forum The New News
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-30-2005, 06:24 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts