Author Archives: Bob Stepno

About Bob Stepno

mild-mannered reporter who sank into computers and the Web during graduate school in the 1980s and '90s, then taught journalism, media studies and Web production, retiring to write and play more music.

The Post Office, the Press & Hoppy

https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Hopalong_Singles/Hopalong%20Cassidy%2051-05-12%20%28071%29%20The%20Bandit%20of%20Blackton%20Bend.mp3 Plenty of communication media here, as Hopalong Cassidy and his comedy sidekick California track The Bandit of Blackton Bend … The crime is a Post Office robbery and murder, while the editor of the financially-troubled local newspaper is too … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s, 19th century, editors, ethics, newspapers, westerns | Leave a comment

Newsman as canary in a coal mine?

A newspaper takes on the dangers of coal mining — and the power of the local mine owner, a banker who threatens a takeover of the newspaper, in this vintage 1940 episode of Big Town, “Deep Death.” (Click the title … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s, closing, Drama, editors, newspaper crusades, newspapers | Leave a comment

Maybe the stories were true

https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Lux_Radio_Theater_Singles/Lux_Radio_Theatre_45-12-10_505_Guest_Wife.mp3 “Guest Wife” was a 1945 film and corresponding Lux Radio Theater production, with foreign correspondent Don Ameche returning from India to collect something like a Pulitzer Prize. Unfortunately, as ethical as his reporting from India may have been, he … Continue reading

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Hollywood royalty meets a journalism Royall

The folks at DuPont’s Cavalcade of America made three attempts at telling the story of 19th century journalist Anne Royall, but the first one, in 1940, was something special. That’s despite her introduction as a “little old woman who lived … Continue reading

Posted in 19th century, cavalcade, historical figures, media history, newspaper crusades, political corruption, women | Leave a comment

Newspapers, charity and a nose for news

Wealthy owners have long been part of American newspapers, for better or for worse. This Green Hornet episode, Dead Man’s Topcoat, opens with a visitor asking newspaper publisher Britt Reid to write a check for $1,000 because a local charity … Continue reading

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Even 1950s cowboys-for-kids followed newspapers

Wild Bill Hickok, the fictional version, sold plenty of breakfast cereal (“flaked, popped, shredded, ready-sweetened, every one’s a favorite…”) to 1950s kids on television and radio at the same time, with Guy Madison and Andy Devine as Bill and his … Continue reading

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Reporters as ‘practically policemen’

https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Casey_Crime_Photographer_Singles/Casey47-02-20173TheTwentyMinuteAlibi.mp3 This “Twenty-minute Alibi” episode from “Crime Photographer,” February 1947, almost makes me wonder whether the script was originally an idea for “Your Truly, Johnny Dollar,” the hit series about an insurance investigator. I even checked Radio GoldinDex’s credit list … Continue reading

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