Daily Archives: June 25, 2012

Aaron Sorkin

* Aaron Sorkin has done his share of self-plagiarizing, too. (
* Twitter parody feed @ReutersHulk is shuttered and nobody knows why. (Atlantic Wire)
* Artnet folds after 16 years as the leading arts journalism voice. The magazine had offices in 3 cities. (
* “Flipboard is not a company that we are building to sell quickly,” but… says CEO Mike McCue. (
* Two bottles of wine, then an interview and angry screed about Flipboard and the New York Times. (
* Frank Deford: Colbert will “try to make me the typical slovenly sportwriter. I’m going to dress as well as I can” for tonight’s show. (Sherman Report)
* Just-launched NewspaperAlum blog reports on journalists who’ve left the newsroom to do other things. (NewspaperAlum)

“In both cases, the competition is so broad that customers are likely to go elsewhere rather than pay,” writes Jordan Weissmann.

In 2009, Jessica Pressler also noted that the adult entertainment industry and the newspaper business share the same problems. She claimed that the porn merchants were “adjusting themselves to the new reality” and that the newspaper industry could learn from them by “focusing on their talent … the people whose work has actual value: the reporters.”

* Why porn and journalism have the same problem (The Atlantic)
* What the newspaper industry can learn from the porn industry (

Newseum visitors 18 and under normally pay a $12.95 admission fee, but that’s been waived from July 1 to Sept. 3, thanks to all-news radio station WTOP-FM.

On July 1, the “Summer Fun Deal” will kick-off with a special day of fun activities for families, including caricatures, face painting, “Collection Connection,” story time, a scavenger hunt, prizes and more. “Summer Fun Deal” tickets, like all Newseum tickets, are valid for two consecutive days.

The release is after the jump. Read More

Tom Walsh

Thirty-year newspaper veteran Tom Walsh says he realizes he can no longer be a traditional business columnist and needs readers to point him in a new direction.

Should I spout more opinion or less? Introduce you to more smart, eclectic characters? Or deliver more facts and links to help you draw your own conclusions? Should I write less often and more deeply? Or should I be there for you with something fresh every day?

He knows that some readers will suggest he retire — an idea his wife will veto. “[She] accepts that she signed up for better or worse, but not for lunch everyday.”

* It’s time for me to reinvent myself — and I need your help (Detroit Free Press)

Rex Parker Does the NYT Crossword Puzzle is angry!

He writes on Facebook:

For anyone who has ever doubted the extraordinary monetary value of the xword puzzle to the NYT, behold this new development: “Starting July 9, Home Delivery Subscribers will no longer have free access to Premium Crosswords. You can, however, continue to access Premium Crosswords by subscribing at a special low rate being offered only to Times subscribers.”

So people who Already Subscribe to the NYT (and get the puzzle in their paper) can have access to the Entire paper at the Times website … except the puzzle. And yet constructor still gets a preposterously low $200 for a daily puzzle. Can you imagine what the Real Value of the puzzle is to the NYT? In terms of online subscriptions, paper subscriptions (which would Plummet w/o the puzzle), reprints, etc.??? This is a question I want answered: what is the puzzle worth, in annual dollar income terms, to the NYT? Because they have surely calculated this, and my guess is it’s way way Way higher than anyone knows or would even believe.

One of Rex’s commenters posted this email from the Times:

“In a recent review of the benefits that we provide to home delivery subscribers we made a determination that the Premium Crosswords product is more appropriately treated like Wine Club, Film Club and other products for which we provide discounts to our subscribers. We continue to offer home delivery subscribers free All Digital Access enabling them to enjoy access to The Times via and our apps for tablets and smartphones.”

A Times spokeswoman confirms the change and notes that “we’re offering a 50% discount to subscribers.”

Richard Roesgen, executive editor of the 20,000-circulation Gannett paper in Fond du Lac, Wis., tells readers that he’s “excited to announce a new ‘Full Access’ subscription model” that allows 10 free articles a month and then requires a subscription for additional stories.

Richard Roesgen

After breaking that news, Roesgen says that “today I also want to let our readers know that we are raising our subscription prices.” He adds: “We haven’t made the decision lightly.”

We aren’t raising our rates because of the digital changes. Rather, knowing that we needed to raise our subscription prices, we wanted at the same time to increase the benefits and value to our readers.

Readers — or those writing in the comments section — aren’t as excited about the changes.

One writes: “Today’s rates indicate the FdL Reporter is $174.84 per year. The [Milwaukee] Journal-Sentinel is $104.00 per year and is three times the paper. And the Reporter’s rates are going UP?”

Another points out that the editor didn’t disclose the new rates: “You would think they would put a link to purchasing a on-line subscription and a price but guess that is a secret too, just like the news!”

* The Reporter launches Full Access subscription model ( || Comments
* Earlier: Leaked Gannett memo tells news execs how to explain new paywall (
* Downtown News in LA asks for voluntary payment from readers (

When I heard the news that Mary Cheney and longtime partner Heather Poe got married last Friday, I wondered: Will this lead the New York Times “Weddings and Celebrations” pages one of these Sundays?

Poe (left) and Cheney

I called New York Times society news editor Robert Woletz to see.

“It’s hard to say,” he says, because the Cheneys haven’t submitted a wedding photo or details about the memorable day to the newspaper.

“Typically they approach us,” he says of couples who get the longer features in the Sunday wedding pages, “but something that’s newsworthy might deserve some extra effort.”

Woletz took my contact information and said he’d keep us posted on the hunt for the Cheney/Poe wedding details and photos.

* We’re thrilled for Mary and Heather, but we can’t help but have a certain distaste about the whole thing (
* Earlier: The secret cultlike rituals behind NYT’s “Weddings and Celebrations” (Gawker)

A memo from Washington Post executive editor Marcus Brauchli confirms that Liz Spayd plans to resign as managing editor after the election.

Liz Spayd

From: Marcus Brauchli
Date: Mon, Jun 25, 2012 at 11:01 AM
Subject: Liz Spayd
To: NEWS – All Newsroom

Colleagues, by now you will have seen the reports that Liz Spayd plans to step down as managing editor at the end of this year, after the election. We hadn’t intended for the news to filter out in this way or at this time, but, since it has, let me set it in context.

Since my arrival four years ago and for many years before that, Liz has piloted this newsroom through events of immense complexity and importance. She is a bulwark of sound judgment upon whom we all have come to depend, whose views are reasoned and thoughtful. She is steeped in this great institution’s traditions and has ensured we honor them in our journalism, in whatever form, on whatever platform, at whatever speed we produce it. She epitomizes the best of The Post.

When Liz leaves, and we’re in no hurry to set an exact date for that, we will miss her, nobody more than I. By that time, we will have given more thought to how or if we should adjust our newsroom structure.

Until then, we will continue as we have been, producing under Liz’s leadership the strongest, smartest and deepest coverage of our communities, our area and our nation.


* Collegian Online || PDF edition
* Patriot-News’ Sarah Ganim talks about the verdict, is praised in comments (

UPDATE: Last night’s episode is free to watch online.


Aaron Sorkin, creator of HBO’s “The Newsroom,” tells David Carr:

I don’t know anything about ratings (and I’ve had the ratings to back that up) but if I were the president of CNN I would put the smartest news people I know in a room and ask, ‘What would a utopian news show look like?’ and then I’d ask “What’s stopping us from doing that?”

Then Carr offers his recipe for CNN success:

Leave the Tot Mom to others and stick to coming up with a well-cooked, nutritious news diet. Why not ride through the news cycle with some dignity and feed a loyal, reliable audience, standing by for when the world threatens to blow apart and ratings skyrocket?

* Aaron Sorkin’s newsroom as a lofty map for CNN (New York Times)
* Dan Rather reviews the show for Gawker, says “there’s a lot to like” about it (
* Former “Nightline” anchor Dave Marash says the series is “as real about news as Jack and the Beanstalk.” (CJR)
* Andrew Romano says Sorkin’s new show is flawed ( | David Zurawik loves it (
* You can’t recap a Sorkin show without recapping Sorkin (
* Michael Wolff: Sorkin treats today’s TV news business as though it were 1976 (Guardian)