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 Sorry, but I’m no longer accepting sponsored posts or job ads.

* Check out Romenesko’s posts – and reader comments – on Facebook


Norman W. Larson, a retired University of St. Thomas professor and former staffer at the Minneapolis Tribune (it merged with the Star in 1982), posts on Facebook (friends-only setting):

My son sent me this photo along with a message that this is his “neighbor’s attempt to get his newspaper delivery contract fulfilled according to its original terms.” We get both the Minneapolis and St. Paul papers, and delivery significantly deteriorated when “service” was consolidated into one carrier about a month ago. The carrier also delivers the Wall Street Journal since we received that one morning. I think the carrier also delivers other papers, such as the New York Times and USA Today.

Minneapolis Star Tribune reporter Kevin Duchschere writes in Larson’s comments section: “Service has been so bad that it’s not unheard of for Star Tribune reporters to drop their subscriptions for a while — including me. It’s maddening since we’re working so hard to bring more people to the print edition, not drive them away.”

* June 2015: Strib, PiPress get cozier with combined home delivery (

UPDATE — Star Tribune chief marketing officer Steve Yaeger writes in an email:

“It’s true we’re experiencing some bumpy delivery in a few areas as we’re dealing with a shortage of carriers.

“I always remind people that we do something no one else does: deliver a product to hundreds of thousands of homes every day of the week, 365 days a year. Most of those deliveries are right on target. But of course when we do screw up it’s enormously frustrating for the subscriber. We’re working very hard to get delivery right in the St. Paul neighborhood Mr. Larson mentioned – and everywhere.”

Gannett CEO Bob Dickey sent this letter to employees Thursday morning:

Good Morning,

I wanted to let you know that today we are offering eligible, long-term Gannett employees within certain business segments and departments of our company the opportunity to take advantage of an early retirement program.

The employees who are receiving the offer all satisfy the criteria of being 55 years of age or older with at least 15 years of service as of October 12, 2015.Unknown This program provides an incentive for employees who voluntarily want to take advantage of retiring at this point in their career. This offer is completely voluntary and it is solely up to those eligible employees as to whether they wish to accept it. As with any retirement decision, we are encouraging eligible employees to speak with family and trusted advisers before accepting to assess their financial and lifestyle needs. We will finalize acceptances after the 45-day consideration period has closed, which ends Oct. 12, 2015./CONTINUES Read More

David Sze, who works for Arianna Huffington, sent this note to veteran journalist Lauren Lipton last week:

Subject: Inquiry from Arianna Huffington’s office:

Hi Lauren,
I’m David, a Research Editor from Arianna Huffington’s office. Arianna is currently working on a book about the importance of sleep in our lives. In our research, we came across your piece on hotel beds.arianna In that article, you mentioned that: “According to a 2014 Gallup survey, more than half of guests who stay in the highest-priced properties said they would pay more for an improved bed. Among all respondents, a comfortable bed was most often named as the most important feature of a hotel room”.

We were wondering if you have access to the Gallup research you mentioned in the article? We would like to cite it in Arianna’s book.

Thank you!


Lipton’s response:

Hi, David:

I know you’re just doing your job. So what I am about to say has nothing at all to do with you. It is solely for your boss, and I do hope you pass it along to her.
I have worked my entire career as a professional journalist. I have a masters degree in journalism from the USC Annenberg School and developed my skills as a staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal and other A-list newspapers and magazines. These days you can find my byline in the New York Times, the WSJ, Allure and Town & Country, as well as numerous additional print and online publications.

I am very, very good at what I do.

Unfortunately, your boss’s predatory business practices have deeply undercut the ability of all reporters, writers and editors to make any kind of living wage. The rapacious Ms. Huffington seems to believe that journalism skills are worth nothing, and that my beleaguered colleagues and I should be thrilled to help her make hundreds of millions of dollars in return for “exposure.”

If Ms. Huffington would like to know how I uncovered that particular statistic, she is free to hire me and pay me for my time and expertise.

If she doesn’t wish to do so, she is welcome to track it down herself.


Earlier on
* National Writers Union blasts Huffington for not paying masseuses
* Huffington received $21 million when her website was sold to AOL


* All Trump, all the time on Washington Post’s op-ed page (
* The one page where Trump hasn’t appeared yet (

— Via @MrDanZak

Dan Reimold, a journalism professor who founded the College Media Matters website, died this week. He was 34. (An official cause of death hasn’t been released. A friend tweeted early Friday morning that it was “an accident.”)

The College Media Association sent this note to its members this morning.

From: Kelley Callaway
Sent: Friday, August 21, 2015 8:52 AM
To: CMA list
Subject: [CMAmembers] Dan Reimold

Rachele and I are very shocked and saddened to report the passing of our friend Dan Reimold. He was a great friend to college media in general and to us in particular. Our thoughts go out to his students, colleagues and family. As we learn more about arrangements, we will update our website,

Dan Reimold

Dan Reimold

Dan Reimold, an internationally recognized leader in the field of college media, died this week. He was in his thirties.

What Jim Romenesko did for professional media, Dan Reimold did for college media through his popular blog College Media Matters. He covered the students who were covering their campuses, and he consistently legitimized an often-overlooked area of journalism. When collegiate media was facing budget cuts, publication thefts and other threats, he shed light on their struggles./CONTINUES Read More


The present cold weather, the high price of cotton used for quilts and “comforters,” and the recent increased cost of wool adapted for blankets, all suggest to us to remind the readers of the American Agriculturist that common newspapers make a very good addition to the bed covering.

Several papers can be pasted at the edges to form a large single sheet, to spread on the outside of a bed or even under the outside cover. The paper itself is a good non-conductor, and aids to retain much of the heat that would otherwise escape.

A much more effective covering is made by placing two of the large pasted sheets together, and fastening them at the edges, and at a few other points. The thin space of air between the sheets is an admirable non-conductor. A cover of this kind is quite as effective as a closely woven woolen blanket. We have heard of an over-coat lined with paper stitched to the inside. Those who have not tried it will be surprised at the effectiveness of these bed coverings, which can be prepared in a few minutes from newspapers that would otherside go to waste. (Of course no one would think of spoiling the Agriculturist by using it thus.)

– Thanks to Pete Selkowe for sending this #ThrowbackThursday item


JULY 23: Mary Junck, CEO of the Lee newspaper chain, gets rid of 192,501 LEE shares at $3.09/share for $594,828.

AUGUST 6: Junck announces fiscal 3Q earnings – revenue is down – and the stock begins falling.

AUGUST 17: LEE shares are at $2.40. (Junck’s shares, if she’d kept them, would be worth $462,002.)

* Read comments from my Facebook friends and subscribers

A Romenesko reader and Cleveland Plain Dealer staffer sends this email: “[In a memo to staff], Editor George Rodrigue summarizes the number of seconds readers spent on online posts on average, broken down by type of story. Note that Watchdog stories ranked highest — two minutes. Sports remain popular.
“The big picture here is this: when are advertisers going to start caring more about these numbers – seconds per story – rather than just clicks? As [a PD journalist] who has listened to all of management’s demands about quotas, etc. during the last two years, I would argue that they’ve dug their own grave. [Rodrigue became PD editor in January.] The editors focused on the quantity of posts with sometimes sensational headlines, but not much on substance. They’re currently pushing everyone to increase their number of posts and page views by 25% compared with last year.”

From: George Rodrigue
Sent: Monday, August 03, 2015 11:10 AM
To: pdeditorial
Subject: This week’s digital report


I did an unusual thing with last week’s Omniture report. I measured time spent reading, then sorted the list according to that. I’ve posted that list on the door to Thom’s old office. [He’s referring to former M.E. Thom Fladung.]

These measurements are not perfect. People can wander away from their computer or leave a window open, and it looks like they’re still reading. On the other hand, they’re all we have, and they might teach us a few lessons. For instance, the headline’s what gets readers to spend their first few seconds with one of our articles. The content’s what keeps them around. Time spent reading is a good index of engagement with our material, and engagement is what produces loyalty./CONTINUES Read More