When someone's writing drives you up the wall, what do you do? Do you read it anyway, cringing all the while, or do you decide it's just not worth your time and find something better to do? In a world full of confirmation bias, we're "blessed" (using that term loosely) with an awful lot of people who--perhaps to prove a point that they aren't limiting their news exposure--read the writing of people they hate just so they can complain about it.
After a weekend in which I battled both fire ants and tears (after receiving a vaccination reminder for my dear, departed furry one), I want to move on to happier things. Alas, it appears time instead to revisit logical fallacies, specifically false/moral equivalence. Donald Trump is far from the only offender in this area (or in what-aboutism, otherwise known in my mind as "but her emails"), but lately he seems to be the most prolific.
After Charlottesville, I really don't know what to say. I've started and re-started this column multiple times. I can't be snarky right now, and I also would like to avoid talking about the president (though that aim will probably fail). No one is completely blameless in what happened in Virginia on Saturday, but when people showed up at the "Unite the Right" rally and the counter-protest armed with semiautomatic weapons, baseball bats, pepper spray, shields and helmets, a clash was inevitable.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Obama AND Romney or Obama + Romney.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used.) For example, search for democrat OR republican to find results that refer to
Democrats and/or Republicans.
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".