The Society of Professional Journalists has employed strong language to rebuke news organizations who sidestep journalistic ethics rules against paying subjects for interviews. In a statement released at its Indianapolis headquarters, the SPJ said that it "condemns the growing trend of 'checkbook journalism' at major broadcast networks." It particularly focused on the revelation that ABC News paid the family of Casey Anthony, who has been charged with murdering her daughter Caylee, $200,000, for an interview. (ABC recently said that the money was paid for the use of photos and home videos but has acknowledged that the payment should have been disclosed.) However, SPJ Ethics Committee Chairman Andy Schotz said, "Paying someone while covering them breaches basic journalism ethics. ... ABC's failure to disclose this business relationship as part of its coverage the last two years made the breach worse." The SPJ Ethics Committee went on to say that it "is troubled by how widespread The Practice of paying sources has become and the extravagant amounts of money changing hands." In conclusion, Schotz said, "News organizations that claim they're getting free interviews or access after giving sources thousands of dollars in cash or gifts are being disingenuous. ... It's time to end this unethical shell game."
Continue reading: Spj Condemns Networks For "Checkbook Journalism"
Neve Campbell is campaigning against oil companies mining in her native Canada, with her new film 'Dirty Oil'.
Neve Campbell is campaigning against oil companies with her new movie 'Dirty Oil'.
The 'Scream' actress narrates the British film, which highlights the controversial about The Practice of extracting oil from tar sands on the beaches of her native Canada, which is believed to be the largest industrial project on the planet today.
She said: "I was invited to see what was going on there and speak to some of the people who have been affected and I was really overwhelmed. It's devastating for the environment, and devastating for the First Nationals - Canadian Aboriginals.
Continue reading: Neve Campbell Overwhelmed By Oil Project
The Practice of assigning increasingly difficult -- and often dangerous -- challenges to reality-show contestants culminated on Aug. 19, when a contestant on a Pakistani reality show drowned in a lake in Bangkok during the filming of an episode, the Associated Press reported Sunday. The death was not officially disclosed until the body of the contestant, Saad Khan, 32, was returned to his home in Karachi. According to the A.P. account, Khan had been challenged to swim across a lake wearing a 15-pound backpack. He reportedly called out for help, before disappearing underwater. Although fellow contestants attempted to come to his aid, they later said that the water was too murky to spot him. Divers later recovered the body. Unilever Pakistan, the show's sponsor, said that while it did not have a hand in the production of the show, it would nevertheless provide for Khan's wife and children "out of rightness."
Continue reading: Reality Show Contestant Dies During Production
Panic At The Disco have promised fans they are not planning to split up, despite the departure of two members.
Guitarist and songwriter Ryan Ross and bassist Jon Walker left the group earlier this week, but singer Brendon Urie and drummer Spencer Smith have promised fans nothing has changed about their immediate plans.
They wrote on their MySpace blog: "Panic At The Disco is alive and very very well. We are working on new songs that we are excited for you to hear. Our dates with Blink-182 and No Doubt start in a little less than a month, and we wouldn't miss those for the world. We know everybody has a lot of questions at this point with everything being so out of the blue, most of those should be answered in the coming weeks. We appreciate every one of you, and hope you continue with us on this incredible ride."
Continue reading: Panic At The Disco To Keep Going
Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich has revealed that he illegally downloaded the band's latest album DEATH MAGNETIC.
The revelation is something of a volte face for the rock musician, who has been one of the most vocal opponents of The Practice.
However, he said he could not resist downloading the record after it was leaked onto the internet.
"I sat there myself and downloaded Death Magnetic from the internet just to try it," he told VH1. "I was like, 'Wow, this is how it works'. I figured if there is anybody that has a right to download Death Magnetic for free, it's me."
The rock band famously sued file sharing site Napster in a bid to stop music fans getting hold of their music without paying.
Meanwhile, the band were forced to pull out of a gig in Sweden after singer James Hetfield was hospitalised with a stomach bug.
Continue reading: Ulrich Downloads Metallica Album
Jk Rowling has admitted to feeling suicidal after the collapse of her first marriage.
The Harry Potter author married Portuguese journalist Jorge Arantes in 1992 while working as an English language teacher and the pair had a child, Jessica, in July 1993.
But the couple divorced in November of that year and Rowling has now told Edinburgh University student journalist Adeel Amini that she was prescribed cognitive behavioural therapy to deal with the trauma of the marriage.
"Mid-20s life circumstances were poor and I really plummeted," she said. "The thing that made me go for help... was probably my daughter. She was something that earthed me, grounded me, and I thought, this isn't right, this can't be right, she cannot grow up with me in this state."
Rowling added that the intervention of her regular GP was instrumental in helping her cope with her depression after a replacement doctor had at first sent her away, advising her to contact The Practice nurse if she felt "a bit low".
"We're talking suicidal thoughts here, we're not talking 'I'm a little bit miserable'," Rowling added.
"Two weeks later I had a phone call from my regular GP who had looked back over the notes She called me back in and I got counselling through her.
"She absolutely saved me because I don't think I would have had the guts to go and do it twice."
The 42-year-old writer, who married anaesthetist Dr Neil Murray in 2001 and has had two children with him, was named the 13th richest woman in Britain in the 2007 Sunday Times Rich List, with a personal fortune of £545 million.
"I have never been remotely ashamed of having been depressed. Never," she added.
"What's to be ashamed of? I went through a really rough time and I am quite proud that I got out of that."
Continue reading: Rowling Admits "Suicidal Thoughts" After Marriage Breakup
Actress Camryn Manheim has a huge regret that's she's not a lesbian.
The former star of The Practice admits she once felt that she fitted the stereotype of a gay female - and held a strong desire to be a lesbian - but it was never to be.
She says, "I had 12 earrings in my ear, I rode a motorcycle, I had a tattoo and, strangely enough, I just did (lesbian drama) THE L WORD.
Continue reading: Manheim's Lesbian Dreams Dashed
Actress Lara Flynn Boyle has embarked on a hot new romance with rock hunk JARON LOWENSTEIN.
Boyle, former star of The Practice, once dated Hollywood lothario JACK NICHOLSON, but she's now happily stepping out with the EVAN AND JARON hunk at a variety of hot-spots.
A source says, "Lara looks great and seems so happy. She's incredibly cheerful and looks like somebody in love."
Continue reading: Lara Flynn Boyle Romancing Rocker
Short-sighted actor JAMES SPADER spends his days in a blur - because the writers on hit legal drama The Practice don't like his character wearing glasses.
The SECRETARY star wore his spectacles when he made his debut as ALAN SHORE in The Practice earlier this year (03), but producers hated his look.
Spader says, "In the first episode I wore glasses and I thought, 'Great, I'm going to be able to see,' because my eyes don't tolerate contact lenses.
Continue reading: The Practice Is A Blur For Spader
Movie actress Lara Flynn Boyle is finding it difficult to get work because of her dramatic recent weight loss.
The MEN IN BLACK II star has startled friends with her emaciated figure since she split from lover Jack Nicholson earlier this year (03), and concluded her six-year stint on American TV show The Practice.
Now Lara's worrying appearance is reportedly putting off casting directors.
Continue reading: Lara Flynn Boyle: Too Thin For Work