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morning opinion digest

Wikipedia vs. NSA, Apple’s ‘lost’ soul, and more

NSA headquarters in Maryland.
NSA headquarters in Maryland.Getty Images/file

Check out five opinions trending online, from political dynasties to the (lost) soul of Apple.

Wikipedia sues NSA: Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, and Leila Tretikov, executive editor of the Wikimedia Foundation, blasted the National Security Agency for illicit spying and announced that they are filing suit. In an op-ed column in the New York Times, they write:

“Today, we’re filing a lawsuit against the National Security Agency to protect the rights of the 500 million people who use Wikipedia every month. We’re doing so because a fundamental pillar of democracy is at stake: the free exchange of knowledge and ideas.” Read more.

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Heirs apparent: Americans love political dynasties, writes media critic Jack Shafer in Politico – so get ready for Chelsea vs. George P.

“The filling of the executive branch has become almost as hereditary an operation as the elevation of British princes and princesses to kings and queen. Some writers, such as historian Matthew Dallek, believe family dynasties are good for America. Others, including political theorist Rob Goodman, think the incestuousness of it all soils our democratic ideals.” Read more.

Apple loses its soul: With its $10,000 watch, Apple has lost its “Think different” soul, writes Robinson Meyer for The Atlantic.

“The Apple pitch was one of exceptionalism: Apple alone combined pre-existing technology with incremental advances and holistic, humane design.” Read more.

Welcome to Achzivland: Writing in BBC’s online News Magazine, Raffi Berg takes readers on a tour of Achzivland, a micro hippie state run by its self-declared president for life.

“Set among picturesque landscape, and with a history stretching back to the Phoenicians, Achzivland has been governed by its oldest inhabitant, Eli Avivi, and his devoted first lady, Rina, since the couple ‘seceded’ from Israel in 1971.” Read more.

The meltdown at NBC: Brian Williams is just one of many problems at NBC, writes Gabriel Sherman in a compelling analysis for New York magazine.

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“While the Williams fiasco might seem to be the cause of NBC News’s struggles, viewed through a wider lens it looks more like the symptom of a much bigger problem. Over the past year, all of the NBC News marquee franchises – Today, Meet the Press, Nightly News – have been badly damaged by bungled talent decisions and control-room shake-ups. Taken together, the upheavals portray a news division that has allowed talent to take over.” Read more.


Ellen Clegg is a member of the Globe staff. She tweets @ellenclegg.