Why assassinating U.S. citizens is a bad idea, why Americans are watching fewer foreign films, and how English became the international language of choice.

On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and odds and ends that found their way to Larry Gross, director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication. A specialist in media and culture, art and communication, visual communication and media portrayals of minorities, Gross helped found the field of gay and lesbian studies.

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Will the Internet Kill Traditional Car Radio? The Internet’s tentacles seem to have no limit, reaching out and strangling CDs, bookstores, newspapers and magazines. Now it has its sights set on the car radio.

How English erased its roots to become the global tongue of the 21st century ‘Throw away your dictionaries!’ is the battle cry as a simplified global hybrid of English conquers cultures and continents. In this extract from his new book, Globish, Robert McCrum tells the story of a linguistic phenomenon — and its links to big money.

The Language Divide Tearing Belgium Apart Belgium doesn’t exist, only Flanders and Wallonia as Dutch and French communites live apart.

Americans are seeing fewer and fewer foreign films Once upon a time, when foreign-language films dominated art houses like Philadelphia’s Ritz Five, in a given week moviegoers could sample French, Italian, or Chinese fare as easily as they could at local eateries. …

U. of Chicago Press’s E-Book Giveaway Wired editor Chris Anderson argues that sometimes it pays to give things away. Could that strategy help build an audience and/or a market for university-press books?

Uri Avnery: A Fantasy I ADMIRE Prof. John Mearsheimer. His rigorous logic. His lucid presentation. His rare moral courage. …

Assassination of U.S. Muslim Cleric is Illegal, Immoral and Unwise Agents of the United States are openly trying to assassinate Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, a US citizen, while he is in hiding in Yemen. Despite what the apologists for assassination argue this is illegal, immoral and unwise.

Methodology Change for Ph.D. Rankings [but Don’t Hold Your Breath] The National Research Council — responding to criticism it received in the internal peer review of its forthcoming doctoral program rankings — is changing the methodology in a few key places for the long-awaited project. …

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