Sam Thielman, The Guardian

Sam Thielman

The Guardian

New York, NY, United States

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Recent:
  • Unknown
Past:
  • The Guardian
  • Columbia Journalism Review
  • NBC News
  • The Daily Beast
  • VICE
  • AdWeek

Past articles by Sam:

Goodbye, Alan Moore: the king of comics bows out

The pioneer of serious superheroes – who is retiring – has transformed the genre over 40 years of rebellious invention → Read More

Raphael Satter on brilliant spies, terrible spies, and “medium” spies

Raphael Satter’s beat at the Associated Press covers straightforward crime reporting and high-tech espionage, with a special fondness for people who are bad at their jobs. His most recent scoop, shared with colleague Isabel Debre, chronicled Facebook’s purge of “coordinated inauthentic activity” on accounts run by an Israeli company called the Archimedes Group, “a Tel […] → Read More

Raphael Satter on brilliant spies, terrible spies, and “medium” spies

Raphael Satter’s beat at the Associated Press covers straightforward crime reporting and high-tech espionage, with a special fondness for people who are bad at their jobs. His most recent scoop, shared with colleague Isabel Debre, chronicled Facebook’s purge of “coordinated inauthentic activity” on accounts run by an Israeli company called the Archimedes Group, “a Tel […] → Read More

'John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum' is cotton candy entertainment that has to be seen to be believed

The third installment in the "John Wick" franchise has great fight scenes, terrible dialogue and Keanu Reeves. What else do you need? → Read More

The fascist next door: how to cover hate

At UNC Charlotte in North Carolina on Tuesday, April 30, a 22-year-old man allegedly shot six people in his anthropology class with a handgun, wounding four and killing two. Three days earlier, on the last day of Passover, in Poway, California, a 19-year-old man walked into a synagogue with what police described as an “AR-type […] → Read More

All our righteous scumbags

The First Amendment, like a great party, seems to attract the least reputable people. If the roster of those who have tested its limits the most enthusiastically were a guest list, it might look like this: Larry Flynt, who published a mock-up of a Campari ad in Hustler featuring a fake interview with Jerry Falwell […] → Read More

Mark Zuckerberg Thinks You’ve Napped Through the Last Decade

The Facebook chief rolled out his pivot to privacy—as if his company hasn’t been caught lying about protecting customer data over and over and over again. → Read More

Despite backlash, Jason Leopold stands by his story

Jason Leopold has a long list of national security scoops to his name. He covered the brutal mistreatment of detainees at the Guantanamo military prison. He won a court victory securing the public release of emails on Hillary Clinton’s private server. With a team, he reported on Donald Trump’s attempt to build a tower in […] → Read More

Despite backlash, Jason Leopold stands by his story

Jason Leopold has a long list of national security scoops to his name. He covered the brutal mistreatment of detainees at the Guantanamo military prison. He won a court victory securing the public release of emails on Hillary Clinton’s private server. With a team, he reported on Donald Trump’s attempt to build a tower in […] → Read More

A new group devoted to transparency is exposing secrets Wikileaks chose to keep

“The truth is its own goal,” Emma Best says of the new journalist collective, Distributed Denial of Secrets. Think of DDoSecrets (a play on the name of a type of cyberattack called a “distributed denial of service”) as an alternative to Wikileaks—indeed, in some cases it hosts the same material—that devotes more attention to explaining […] → Read More

Comics and graphic novels of 2019: from Miracleman to Scrooge McDuck

Hotly anticipated titles from stars such as Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore will be joined by fresh work from new talents including Julie Delport and Emily Carroll → Read More

TL;DR: Spies (do not) like us

In recent weeks, there have been plenty of stories—mostly unpleasant ones—covering clashes between journalists and security services. They include revelations about a new FBI unit apparently devoted to ferreting out anybody who talks to a reporter without permission, more news about Russian discord operations disguised as news organizations, and, of course, front-page stories like the […] → Read More

Jonathan Albright on the new Senate report, and the importance of Instagram to Russian disinformation

After laboring in secret for months, a new report commissioned by the Senate Intelligence Committee names a culprit more useful on a user-for-user basis to Russian espionage services than Facebook or Twitter: Instagram. The Senate committee ordered the report from researchers at cybersecurity company New Knowledge; Jonathan Albright, director of the Tow Center for Digital […] → Read More

Facebook burnishes image in Bryant Park, with marshmallows, emoji pins, privacy guide

It was the perfect day for some corporate warmth: On Thursday, Facebook hosted a privacy-themed pop-up in a cozy trailer with free hot chocolate and cupcakes, along the edge of Manhattan’s Bryant Park. The event, a single-day engagement among the park’s Christmas market stands, had the nominal goal of increasing information literacy among users who […] → Read More

Google should have been grilled by more intelligent lawmakers than the House Republicans

Google CEO Sundar Pichai deserves to be questioned thoroughly about his company's contribution to creeping fascism. Instead, they asked him about iPhones. → Read More

Emptywheel’s Marcy Wheeler knows more than she tells, but she tells a lot

In the sometimes murky world of national security reporters, few people are wrong less often than Marcy Wheeler. Wheeler’s insights, gleaned from tireless, detailed reading of declassified documents, are unique because they rely on public information, rather than access, and because Wheeler takes great pains to show her work. The longtime blogger’s site Emptywheel focuses […] → Read More

Weaponizing hypocrisy, in Russia and beyond

Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose government oversees the country’s omnipresent state news services—Tass, RT, and Sputnik—claims to be cracking down on fake news online. A new bill, which has passed one of three votes in the Russian parliament, would compel social media companies to remove material deemed erroneous, under penalty of an $800,000 fine. According […] → Read More

TL;DR: From Russia, with love

There’s something for most of the US news media to be ashamed of in two new court documents related to Russian political interference. The first, Friday’s indictment of 12 hackers who allegedly worked for the Russian military to disrupt the 2016 US election, got the most attention since it came from former FBI director Robert […] → Read More

TL;DR: Tools for covering ICE

This column is focused on research that can help workaday journalists do the difficult job of reporting the news, and no such column could be complete without a nod to the humanitarian crisis dominating coverage in recent weeks, namely the ongoing detention of families at the border and the crisis of parents separated from children, […] → Read More

Steve Ditko’s Genius Made Him Something He Disdained — A Beloved Celebrity

For the artist who gave the world Spider-Man, the focus was entirely on his work, and he wanted other people’s focus there, too. → Read More