Daily Archives: November 29, 2012

* Conservatives create news outlets to counter alleged liberal bias. (
* Meet the Washington Post’s newest, and fakest, reporter. (
* National Lampoon co-founder Henry Beard: “Some of those parodies I can still look back at and laugh out loud. I re-read the 1964 High School Yearbook parody recently. That was unbelievable; I mean, just great.” (
* Washington Times editor demanded daily page one Benghazi coverage. (
* Chicago Tribune’s Chris Jones launches “Frank Rich-y type column” to “get away from the reviewing grind.” (
* St. Louis sports talker is spitting mad — literally! — after learning his broadcast is pulled. (
* McClatchy takes on $750 million in new debt due in 2022 so it can buy back $700 million in existing debt that’s due in 2017. (
* Greensboro News & Recod editor: Forgive our new website glitches. (
* Cleveland Plain Dealer layoffs expected to begin in January. (

The original photo:

How it appeared in Sports Illustrated:

Dallas Morning News photographer Louis DeLuca knew that Baylor players wore black jerseys for this game — he watched part of it on TV — so he was surprised to see them green in Sports Illustrated. “This may not seem like a big deal to some,” he writes, “but in an age where digital manipulation can, and is, eroding the public’s confidence in what they see produced by professional photojournalists as visual truth, do we really want to do this?”

I’ve asked Sports Illustrated photo director John Blackmar director of photography Steve Fine to explain the color change. (Blackmar: “I’m at, and we did not use this photo on the web.”)

SPORTS ILLUSTRATED’S RESPONSE: “We’ve looked into this and due to a production error the uniform colors are misleading,” writes Scott Novak, Time Inc. Sports Group senior vice president/communications & development. “We should have caught it and will run a correction next week.”

I told Novak I thought people would call bullshit on the “production error” excuse — Deadspin sure isn’t buying it — and asked if anyone was disciplined for the color change. He replied: “We’ve investigated the issue and consider the matter closed. We’ll correct the record with next week’s issue.”

* When is black not black? When you’d rather it be green? (
* Check out the uniform colors on the Baylor Bears website (

I’m told that Orlando Sentinel editorial cartoonist Dana Summers and business columnist Greg Dawson have accepted buyouts, while golf writer Jeff Shain has been laid off. I hear that three other positions have been eliminated.

I’m working to get more information. Please let me know what you know.

At Tribune’s Baltimore Sun, four newsroom veterans have taken buyouts: tech­nol­ogy reporter Gus Sen­te­mentes; local news reporter Mary Gail Hare; sports reporter San­dra McKee; and long­time film critic/recent copy edi­tor Michael Sragow.

UPDATE — A tipster reports: “The Orlando Sentinel’s sister paper, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, also had layoffs.” Second tipster: “One position included religion editor. Sports columnist. Assistant. Online worker.”

UPDATE II: Greg Dawson confirms he took the buyout:

True. Retiring after 45 years in the business (5 newspapers in 6 states). Last day is Friday, last column runs Monday. I turn 63 in December. No specific plans beyond working on a book about – don’t laugh – the development of Crest toothpaste. Look, Mom, no job, er, cavities!

UPDATE III: “Among the Sun-Sentinel layoffs was religion reporter Jim Davis, who’s been there since 1973.” I got this auto-reply when I emailed him to confirm the news:

To all: I have left the Sun-Sentinel and am no longer replying to e-mails here. I have enjoyed working here and have been inspired, warmed and fulfilled in getting to know so many of you over nearly four decades. Together, I believe we have helped South Floridians understand religious issues and to aid their search for spiritual truth.

If you wish to keep in touch, you can write me at Thank you and bless you all.

* Report: Plain Dealer will have layoffs after January 31, 2013 (

— From the Oakland Press

The paragraph above is from an Oakland Press story about the closing of St. Dennis Church in Royal Oak, Mich.

Rev. Ventline: Citizen journalist

Here’s the problem with it: Tom and Mary Jo Hurley — the couple who “listened” to the final service last Sunday — have been dead for years.

Their son, Tim, learned of the story through a high school friend, who wrote in an email: “Timmy, I thought both your parents had passed. You better read what the Oakland Press printed.”

He did, and tells Alan Stamm that “the grief hit while trying to compose a response [to the paper] without using profanity. A flood of memories came rushing in.”

The son wrote in the Oakland Press comments section:

My parents, Tom & Mary Jo Hurley were indeed, long time members of St. Dennis Parish. My Dad built the advent wreath used for years in the sanctuary. My Mom, Mary Jo was very active at St. Dennis. We Hurley children did attend St. Dennis at one time or another. However, unless resurrected for the last service, my parents have been deceased for years.

Reporter Stamm called the author of piece — Rev. Lawrence M. Ventline, a Catholic priest — who was reluctant to discuss the error.

“What business is it of yours?” he asked. “Why are you bothering me? I already spoke to the editor.”

The priest-reporter continued: “Whoever edited it condensed and took out a lot. My editor screwed it up. ….I’m a citizen journalist. I do this for the community good.”

Stamm writes:

Ventline attended the church’s last service, he says, and after interviewing the man seated next to him asked the man to write down his name and that of his wife. That’s how the Hurleys’ names were used, as Ventline tells it. “I was sitting next to them,” according to Ventline.

Without knowing that, Tim Hurley suggested this explanation: “I was able to piece together that the guy had ‘interviewed’ or at least talked to my brother Dan.”

Oakland Press local news editor Julie Jacobson Hines says: “We’re looking into this. We will fully investigate this.”

* Citizen journalist quotes deceased couple in Oakland Press story (
* Royal Oak’s beloved St. Dennis closes its doors (

Eric Blaisdell, 27, is a registered sex offender who sat in jail for nearly a year and is now on probation for three counts of attempting to solicit a minor.

He also covers the crime beat for the Barre-Montpelier (VT) Times Argus — he’s “a steady and solid reporter,” says his editor — and has written at least 17 stories about sex offenses since June, reports Paul Heintz. (Last week, Blaisdell wrote about a “teen safe space.”)

From the Times Argus’s story on its employee, who was a 21-year-old student when he was arrested:

Blaisdell said that he never had any physical contact with any of the females he met online. When they suggested meeting, he said, he came up with excuses.

Blaisdell’s mug shot (left) and Twitter avatar

“It was never my intention of following through. There was a lot of talk, a lot of talk, but I would come up with some excuse, and say, ‘Oh, my car broke down,’ or ‘My grandmother died.’”

Blaisdell said he was talking about his history to get his side of the story out.

“I think my side needs to be told,” he said.

Blaisdell tells his paper that now that his record is public, “all I can do is move forward.” He adds that “I’m fearful it will compromise my ability to talk to people. People just see the word ‘sex offender’ … I fear it’s going to make my job much harder.”

* Reporter covering cops and courts knows a thing or two about both (
* Experts question handling of sex offender reporter (

Cute, NY Metro (Wednesday’s front page)

* Retired USA Today publisher Dave Hunke returns to Detroit as chief strategy officer of Digerati. (
* How to save the Providence Journal. (“In a state this small, saving the paper feels like an urgent task, even a personal one.”) (
* Battle lines drawn over old Miami Herald building. (
* It’s fun to watch Googlers not be the smartest guys in the room for a change; Nate Silver is (
* Want to be editor of NYC Woman Magazine? You’ll have to submit a resume — and be prepared to write a $25,000 check. (
* CNN finally announces that Jeff Zucker is its new president. (
* Washington Post’s Federal Diary column turns 80. (
* Oh, boy! “Project Runway” winner gets a photo in USA Today, along with an “editorial piece.” (
* Alec Baldwin — a Page Six regular — calls the New York Post “the worst newspaper in human history.” (@ABFalebaldwin)

Don’t we know!

— From The Franklin Times

The chief investigator notes in his 46-page summary of the 1,987-page report:

Too many stories in too many newspapers were the subject of complaints from too many people with too little in the way of titles taking responsibility, or considering the consequences for the individuals involved.

* The report devotes an entire section to Murdoch’s News of the World (
* Guardian live-blogs the report’s release ( | Read the BBC’s reports (
* Read the full Leveson report here (