Now retired, but still online. Thank you for checking my latest tweets and occasional retirement-era posts. (I’m still posting to Facebook, too.) Please continue to send your news tips and memos to Jim@JimRomenesko.com. Sorry, but I’m no longer accepting sponsored posts or job ads.
Memo to the Gawker Media staff:
From: Nick Denton
Date: Thu, Jul 2, 2015 at 3:06 PM
Subject: Gawker financials ahead of Hogan trial
To: All Staff
Hey, a heads-up that there will be a negative story on Gawker’s financial position by Keith Kelly in Monday’s New York Post.
Kelly is the same guy who wrote of the “disgrace” of the hacking of Gawker in 2011. And the Editor of the Post owes us no favors, especially after John Cook [Tom Scocca, actually] called him a pig-fucking drunk. It’s payback time. We dish it out; sometimes we have to take it.
Anyway, we got out ahead of the slam by releasing company financials that would have come out in trial anyway. The more facts that are out there, the harder it is to twist the story.
The information has gone out widely, but here’s the Observer pickup.
By the way, I know I’m deluging people’s inboxes with all this press pickup. I assume you’d all rather know more than less.
Enjoy the long weekend!
Update: Here’s Keith Kelly’s story
Denver Post editor Greg Moore sent the memo below to his staff earlier today. Some key points:
* No one should assume he or she will be doing in the future what they do now. We are going to have to reassign some people after the buyout is completed.
* Beginning July 6, you’ll notice the Monday and Tuesday newspapers are smaller. These days were our weakest in terms of circulation and revenue.
* We want to create an Audience team that will sit (figuratively) between Digital and the content departments. This will include an expanded social media team that will also dig into our analytics in real time.
When we announced the buyout, I mentioned there would be changes to the print product, our work processes and new assignments. I also said that there would be dialogue about some of these changes. We will start some public meetings to share ideas the week of July 13.
In the meantime, here is where we are so far.
Beginning July 6, you’ll notice the Monday and Tuesday newspapers are smaller. These days were our weakest in terms of circulation and revenue. Denver and The West will start on page A2 Monday through Saturday. It will remain a stand-alone section on Sunday. On Monday, we will go to a two-section newspaper. The A section will have DTW, Nation/World, and editorials and weather on one page. The B section will have Sports, comics, puzzles and a single page of TechKnow. We are eliminating the $mart pages.
Tuesday’s newspaper will be similarly slimmed down. It is already a two-section newspaper. We will keep Fitness to one page on the back of the Sports section. The editorial page and weather will remain where they are.
These “quick read” newspapers will require much tighter editing of stories and virtual elimination of jumps. We imagine fewer jumps off Page One and Sports with maximum lengths of about 20-25 inches on stories. The space savings are significant but these changes also allow us to realign people and processes. We are beginning to think about that./CONTINUES Read More
– h/t Len Iwanski
Letter to Romenesko
From DUANE MARSTELLER, former Gannett employee: In celebrating its first day on its own, the “new” Gannett has been touting a stat that claims that it accounts for 40% of Internet usage.
The company also has made the claim in earnings reports, on its web site and I also saw it included in one USA Today story on company earnings. There was no attribution for the figure, which seemed rather high to me, so I looked into it.
I found a comScore report from January that said Gannett sites have 105,237,000 unique visitors/viewers, which is about 40 percent of the total of some 252 million.
My question is: Is this the source of Gannett’s claim, and if so, is the company representing the data accurately? To me, the comScore figures are a measure of audience reach, not internet usage as Gannett is claiming.
If I’m wrong, then it’s staggering that a news company could so dominate an Internet full of porn sites and cute cat videos. If I’m right, then it’s ironic that a company whose newspapers take glee in calling out others’ misrepresentations is guilty of misrepresentation itself.
STATEMENT FROM GANNETT SPOKESPERSON AMBER ALLMAN: “The stat is via comScore per multi-platform visitors and speaks to the fact that Gannett sites REACH 40% of the U.S. online internet population. It is saying 40% of internet users access New Gannett (USA TODAY and our domestic publishing assets) content via their PC, phone or tablet devices. 40% of total internet visitors (according to comScore universe).”
Last Tuesday, the union representing journalists at the Wall Street Journal and other Dow Jones properties asked members if they wanted to extend their contract with a small raise, or negotiate a new one. “The results are in,” the union says, “and your answer is clear: extend the contract.” The memo:
From: IAPE TNG/CWA Local 1096
Sent: Tuesday, June 30, 2015 8:01 AM
Subject: IAPE Contract Update: Survey Says . . . !!
IAPE members – thanks to all who responded to our survey request last week.
To refresh your memory, we asked whether you would prefer to extend our current contract for another year – keeping all terms, including the Company’s flexibility to modify healthcare – or negotiate toward a brand new agreement with Dow Jones.
The results are in, and your answer is clear: extend the contract. That’s the message we received in 497 responses, while 148 told us to negotiate and 17 were undecided./CONTINUES Read More
Romenesko reader “Pasquino” shares this email he sent today to New York Times editors:
Subject: Bogus New York Times stories popping up on FB
Several of my very astute, very politically involved friends have posted these stories [linked below] this morning thinking they came from the Times [because of the nytimes.com.co domain]. Sometimes it is hard to distinguish fact from satire. A counterfeit source doesn’t help.
Story #1, #2, #3, #4, and #5.
And Facebook is participating in this by including further bogus nytimes.com.co stories in their “suggested” links below these and other stories.
This bogus news site is trying to inoculate the Right and confuse the Left––and everyone else. Why? Just as a joke? I don’t think so. It’s meant to make us cynical. To get us to discount the real nonsense these people actually say. To make us think politics is a joke, something to laugh at rather than participate in, which is the opposite of what genuine satire like the Daily Show, Borowitz and Colbert aim to do.
Update: Tentative agreement reached.
Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News human resources chief Keith Black tells Guild members that, in case of a strike, they can continue working and “we will make arrangements for security to protect everyone’s safety.” He adds that “at your manager’s discretion, you may be permitted to work from home or from another remote location.”
Journalists who choose to strike are welcome to return to the newsroom when there’s a settlement “if there is still work available … [but] if there is not work available for everyone, then some of the striking employees will not be able to return at that time.”
The Philadelphia Newspaper Guild says the HR boss is trying to scare journalists into settling with management.
From: Guild Bulletin
Date: 06/25/2015 11:04 AM (GMT-05:00)
Subject: GUILD BULLETIN: RESPONSE TO KEITH BLACK EMAIL
Keith Black’s memo regarding strike–related issues is a rather clumsy and predictable attempt to frighten our members to accept the Company’s inferior contract offer. His ‘helpful advice’ in the FAQ on how you can work in the event of a strike, that he claims the company “created” is a disingenuous blueprint on how to become a scab, that has been used by union busting employers for decades. Plagiarism in its purest form. As your bargaining committee can assure you, Black’s absence of credibility and incompetence has been consistent throughout these negotiations./CONTINUES Read More
Bruce Murphy, editor of Urban Milwaukee and a former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel staffer, asked Journal Sentinel editor George Stanley about the paper’s latest staff changes. Here’s how he responded:
I’m guessing my emails to Stanley go to spam, too. Disclosure: I worked with Murphy at Milwaukee Magazine two decades ago.