• Category: Latest News
  • Written by Rick Ellis

Pick Three: Today's Media Stories Worth Reading - 07/11/2016


Every day, we pick three media-related stories we think you should read. These are generally not long reads, but instead lesser-covered topics that deserve some extra love.

Send any suggestions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

1) Some Of The Best Places To Play Pokemon Go Are A Bit Creepy

The hottest mobile game right now is Pokemon Go, which allows players to find and catch Pokemon in real life locations. Players can also collect special items in areas called "Pokestops," which can be located just about anywhere. Most of the pokestops are located at familiar landmarks, such as statues and tourist attractions, which can make for some interesting visuals when players are trying to play the game in the middle of a crowd.

But as Jacob Shamsian notes on ThisIsInsider.com, some of the places where you can find Pokestops are pretty creepy, including lots of cemeteries:

It doesn't seem like a fluke; other players are reporting similar experiences. One commenter in that Reddit thread said a local cemetery has three gyms -- places where you can battle other Pokemon Go players -- and is filled with Pokestops. A few
YouTubers found Pokemon gyms and Pokestops at nearby cemeteries, and there are are also Pokemon Go locations at memorials, including the 9/11 Memorial Pool.

2) When Writing A Novel, Timing Is Everything

After his stint as Mitt Romney's chief strategist for his failed Presidential campaign, Stuart Stevens spent most of his time as a professional political pundit. And, as it turns out, he also devoted a lot of time to writing a novel. "The Innocent Have Nothing To Fear" is set in the midst of a political campaign increasingly dominated by a populist, xenophobic Strong Man Republican candidate. Most of it was written before the rise of Donald Trump, but if the excerpt just published in Atlantic is any indication, this may be the novel that best reflects America in 2016:

Armstrong George bounded up the steps, took the mike in one hand, and detached it from the stand—no fancy headset for him, he wanted to work the mike the old-fashioned way—and let rip. “Americans!” he cried. “This is our moment!” It was chilling.

The crowd went from fever pitch to berserk. “Are you with me? Are we together? Are we ... Americans? Eddie leaned in to me and whispered, “He’s big on this American
thing.” It was more a shout than a whisper, the stadium was so loud.

“These have been dark days in America. Our beacon has been dimmed, but not extinguished. Within each of you glows the fire to reignite the torch of American genius and greatness. You are our future!”

“God help us,” Eddie groaned, looking around at the crowd. “It’s 1930s Nuremberg.”

I waved him off. I was there to see Armstrong George. Every time I saw him, I got some different perspective. I’d snuck into a dozen of his rallies over the past six months.

“You are the Founding Fathers of Tomorrow,” he said in a suddenly low, intense voice, so the crowd leaned forward. “I say to you that, like the Founding Fathers before us, now is the time we must seize the day and control our own destiny. It is time for a New Bill of Rights. It is time for a new beginning.”

Then the shout went up from a woman in the crowd. I would have bet anything she was a plant, but it was picked up, and soon the whole stadium was chanting in unison: “America for Americans! America for Americans! America for Americans!”

Armstrong George took a step back, put his arm around his son, and waved. “Jesus Christ.” Eddie sighed. “Jesus H. Christ. We’re doomed.”

3) Reflections By A Dallas Police Officer

There have been a number of posts this week from retired and active police officers discussing what it's really like to be a police officer in America. This piece by Max Geron on Medium is one of the best I've read:

Then came the cell phone footage. The shooter could be seen in front of El Centro college with its distinctive concrete pillars on Lamar St. He was moving and shooting — ducking behind and re-emerging from the pillars shooting at officers.

Finally you could see one officer working to engage the shooter move behind one of the pillars. However this time, the shooter was advancing on the officer but the officer didn’t know it.

The officer moved to the right and looked down the right side of the pillar just as the shooter rounded the left side of the pillar and from a couple of feet away, shot the officer with an assault rifle. Then he stood over him and executed him by shooting him in the head.

All of us in the command post visibly recoiled at that sight.

It was the stuff of flash picture memories — the kind you have when you can tell someone where you were when men landed on the moon, when the you learned that the Challenger space craft exploded or any other incredibly significant event in your life occurs. In that instant it was indelibly burned into our brains.

Back to work.