Al Franken is threatening to trademark the word "funny" and then countersue Fox for using it (it's reminiscent of Iowa Communication professor Kembrew McLeod trademarking the term "freedom of speech"). Press on the frivolous lawsuit has paid off; the book has just hit number-one on the Amazon sales rankings. (But you should buy it here.)

ALSO: The St. Paul Pioneer Press' Brian Lambert, probably the best local media critic, writes a great piece on the brouhaha:
Fox lawyers argued that "Franken is neither a journalist nor a television news personality. He is not a well-respected voice in American politics; rather, he appears to be shrill and unstable. His views lack any serious depth or insight."

This, I remind you, is from the people who employ Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly and give Matt Drudge and Ann Coulter more air time than most non-Republicans. Strictly speaking, can any of the Fox News "team" be considered any more a "journalist" or "news personality" (emphasis on the "news") than Franken, who I don't believe has ever said he was either?

More to the point … "shrill," "unstable" and lacking in "serious depth" … hello!?

Have Fox's lawyers ever watched their own channel? It's essentially programmed by and for the shrill, unstable and depthless. If Roger Ailes, Fox News' svengali, ran the place with any concern for journalism and none for shrill, unstable hype, spin and marketing, CNN would be eating his lunch, instead of vice versa...

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