No Tilff-Bastogne-Tilff just more theory

31 05 2009

Another day, another section completed in my thesis. Tilff-Bastogne-Tilff will have to wait until next year. In the meantime, I revised my introduction and added this theoretical summary.

(i)                 language is central to journalism and applied linguistics has greatly increased our understanding of news products. However, obscured in this body of literature is a universe of producers, practices and processes;

(ii)               ethnographic interest in news production has a long-standing tradition in sociology but undertheorizes agency, i.e. the human capacity to act. A structure-in-use approach to news production can illuminate the technological mediation and interpretive practices of news producers;

(iii)             a political economy of print journalism suggests that journalists have become news processors rather than news generators. This highlights source reliance in print journalism but fails to lay bare the discursive process underlying churnalism.

It is against this backdrop that I will present analyses of economic journalists’ discursive practices as they discover, source, negotiate and write economic news. The goal is to be able to describe how and where journalists add value to news texts that rely wholly or partially on press release and wire copy.

Print journalism as emotion, on weekends

30 05 2009

At last month’s European Newspaper Congress, Juan A. Giner and Mario Garcia introduced their so-called 30/30 model of print journalism. Basically, it’s what The Economist has been doing for some time now: an online, 24/7 news hub and a high quality print news mag on weekends, focusing on analysis and opinion.

Giner calls this ‘news caviar’ (as opposed to ‘news porridge’ I guess): an aesthetically pleasing, selective and easy to read, pocket sized newszine, written in a crisp, ‘newsy’ fashion. My takeaway from all this: journalism is here to stay. The medium is changing. That’s all. Is there still a market for print journalism? I think so, but not for the newspapers we know today. You know, the ones that regurgitate yesterday’s news or that ‘please politicians’.

An antidote to frustrations in academia

29 05 2009

Doing research is a lot like blogging. I often find myself asking the big questions. So what? Who cares? Why bother? Pessac Léognan or Chasse Spleen? Sex before or after dinner? You get the picture. I guess Phillip Vannini feels the same way. Maybe that’s why he sent out this call for papers.

Much too often research in the social sciences and humanities suffers from an ivory tower complex, the symptoms of which prevent wide audiences from fully enjoying the processes or appreciating the value and utility of research. As a result, research is often destined for and consumed by a small cadre of readers who have access to both the narrowly accessible media in which research is published, and the difficult lexicon that characterizes academic writing.

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Life is a To Walk Again charity

28 05 2009

On Saturday, May 30th, TriKa is organizing a swim marathon for charity. Care to chip in a few laps? Sponsor us as we try to break our personal records? I’m gunning for 300 laps. That’s 7500m. A chlorine smell for days. All for a good cause. Marc Herremans’ foundation, To Walk Again. He da man.


Nicolay’s Nautilus tribute to Bob James

28 05 2009

One of the most sampled songs in hip hop history, Bob James’ Nautilus, as interpreted by The Foreign Exchange’s Nicolay. Strictly niceness, yes sir.

Nicolay – Nautilus (, 2006)

Brownswood Bubblers Vol. 4

28 05 2009

This has been on my mind for some time now: when will the good people at Brownswood Recordings turn out another Brownswood Bubblers compilation? Apparently, it’s in the works and Lisa Papineau’s Rene Thomas (listen on her MySpace) will be one of the tracks on the album. I needed this news.


Inspiration: ?uestlove by Squid/Delay

26 05 2009

?uestlove Illustrated by Squid/Delay. Check out his portfolio.

A t-shirt with this imprint would be nice, but a mural would be so much cooler.


I used to love h.e.r.

26 05 2009

Common’s bittersweet ode to hip hop. A stone cold classic, every bit as meaningful today as it was in 1994.

As a term designating a particular…

25 05 2009

If you like theoretical language – and who doesn’t? – then this introduction to Linguistic Etnography by Angela Creese will undoubtedly float your boat. By the way, I like the new design of the UK LEF website. Elegant and transparent. All it needs now is a fitting logo.

As a term designating a particular configuration of interests within the broader field of socio- and applied linguistics, ‘linguistic ethnography’ (LE) is a theoretical and methodological development orientating towards particular, established traditions but defining itself in the new intellectual climate of late modernity and post-structuralism.

Continue reading here.

Race report: 7 van Kettelo time trial

25 05 2009

The 7 van Kettelo is an annual gentleman’s time trial over a rolling 7km course in Asse. I enjoy competing in this race because of the atmosphere, the challenging course and the heart-warming effort put in by disabled tricycle racers. So far, I’ve competed twice in this race.

In 2007, I placed 12th (81 finishers) in a time of 10:35,93 (average speed: 39,63 km/h). In 2008, I placed 10th overall (68 finishers) in a time of 10:28,59 (average speed: 40,13 km/h). This year, my goal was a new PB.

Having trained irregularly this week, I didn’t quite know what to expect. The good news was that I did manage (i) to mount my aerobars without damaging my new bike or hurting myself in the process and (ii) to squeeze in a recon ride on Friday night to try out some corners at top speed (love it!) and in the aero position (scary!).

I would like to tell you my official race time this year, but since there was no electronic time registration, the referees opted for manual time registration. 200m before the finish, I caught up with the racer who had started in the 2 minute interval before me. He completed the course in 12:21,74. Somehow, the referees did not see me cross the finish line. Go figure. I hate sore losers as much as anybody else, but can’t help feeling a bit cheated. Anyhow, I placed 8th this year (73 finishers) in a fictitious time of 0:10:27,627 (average speed: 40,19 km/h). Mission accomplished. Sort of.