Daily Archives: January 22, 2013

* Donald Trump wants to buy the New York Times. “Details of Trump’s strategy remain scant,” writes Joe Hagan. “And it seems unlikely, to say the least, that the Sulzberger family, which controls the company’s voting shares, would welcome his offer.” (

Victoria Bekiempis, the "pretty girl" reporter

Victoria Bekiempis, the “pretty girl” reporter

* What the…?! Candidate wonders why a “pretty girl” reporter is checking campaign finance documents. (
* Andrew Sullivan: “I don’t fit into any demographic, I never really have.” (
* James Barron’s byline is on two of the three top New York Times stories of 2012. (
* CNN scores a big ratings win on Inauguration Day. (
* Former ABC News reporter Jake Tapper starts at CNN today. (
* Birmingham News and Mobile Press-Register buildings are put up for sale. (
* Tweet to Lone Star College student: “Please stay safe. Your life is more important than CNN ratings.” (@amandaplease223) | (
* Reader’s email: “Take a gander at the zillion hires Al Jazeera is making out of NY.” (
* Swashbuckling is one of Tina Brown’s favorite words. (
* Lee Enterprises sells The Garden Island to Honolulu Star-Advertiser parent. (

Lori Shontz, a senior editor at Penn State’s alumni magazine, pointed me to this paid death notice, which ran last year in the Midland (Mich.) Daily News. It says that Charles Noddings, who died at 88, “was mathematically brilliant and continued to work on the solution to the triangulation of an angle in his later years.” (The project’s now yours, Sheldon Cooper!) Noddings, it’s noted, “outlived two wonderful wives.”

* Charles Richard Noddings: Obituary (

“I wonder if Lance Armstrong apologized to Sally Jenkins,” journalist Jeff Pearlman wrote on Twitter this morning.

The answer: He did.

Washington Post columnist and Armstrong biographer Jenkins told Charlie Rose last week:

Charle Rose and Sally Jenkins

Charle Rose and Sally Jenkins

He said he was sorry for misleading me. He was sorry — and this is a very small thing — but he expressed that he was sorry that my reputation had taken a hit because of my association with him, which I appreciated. It wasn’t a very long conversation, but it was a meaningful one to me. …

You know, I’ve been hearing all this [doping] stuff from other people, and I’ve expressed to him that what has disappointed me most is to hear it from others and not from him. I belong in the category of friend and associate, and I think that he’s been doing a lot of apologizing to people like that in the last couple of days. For better or worse, this is his moment to sort of let people hear it from him rather than read it in a report or hear it in a broadcast.

Is Jenkins angry that Armstrong wasn’t clean? “I don’t rise to the level of anger that I think a lot people want me to,” she told Rose. “I think there’s a level of anger at Lance that is, I think, out of proportion to the offense of doping.”

“Why do you say that?” Rose asked her.

“Well, because you know, let’s face it, he’s a bicyclist.lance I don’t condone doping, I don’t condone breaking the rules. What I have to said to him, and what I have written is that I forgive him. … I think doping is so endemic in cycling apparently that it was the price of competing in that era. Do I agree with it, do I like it? No. I don’t have the heart to be full of rage at him, I just don’t. People are going to have to accept it that I don’t feel that for him. I feel disappointment, but he’s my friend.”

ROSE: “There’s also this aspect of intimidation, and threats that people have stepped forward to say, that is to many people believable.”

JENKINS: “I think that’s what he’s going to have to address with Oprah. It’s certainly equal to the doping. Quite honestly, I thought that was the most damaging stuff in the USADA report. I think those are the toughest questions for him. The Lance Armstrong that I know and that I have dealt with has never been threatening.”

* A discussion about Lance Armstrong’s doping confession (Jenkins’ appearance begins at 27:17)(

Earlier on
* Why Sally Jenkins hasn’t written about Lance Armstrong lately
* Will Lance Armstrong’s downfall hurt Sally Jenkins?

The redesigns of New York Times features sections begin today with the new look of “Science Times.” A Times release says: “The sections, created during the 1970’s, have each been refreshed and updated repeatedly over the years, but this is the first time all of the weekly feature sections have been redesigned as a whole.”
From the release:

“With this redesign, our journalism will be even more accessible and, we hope, more dynamic,” said Rick Berke, an assistant managing editor who oversees The Times’s features departments and weekly sections. “But we preserved and enhanced the content that our readers have long looked for in our print feature sections. I can’t wait to see this all come together in Sunday’s paper.

The release is after the jump.

Read More

NBC Peacock Productions — the company responsible for “The Brokaw Files,” “Secrets of Navy SEALS,” “Storm Stories” and other programs — is planning a “documentary-style reality show” about a small-town newspaper that’s “working hard to stay on top of breaking small-town news and keep financially afloat in an ever-increasing competitive.”

NBC Peacock wants to hear from newspaper bosses interested in being considered for the show. (The production company asks: “Is your team a real version of ‘The Office’ meets ‘Parks and Recreation?'”) If that’s you, email Peacock at or call 212-664-2307. I’ve asked them to give Romenesko readers more information about this project.

* Casting call for newspapers (

UPDATE: Some of the comments from my Facebook friends and subscribers:
“During the series, the show moves from NBC to online only.”
“In the first episode the publisher comes in to demand that his nephew be named the managing editor.”
“Suddenly the cast of Portlandia will be handsome by comparison.”
“This is likely to have a lot of drinking, adultery and off-color comments, so I’d say it will be a success.”
“To steal a line from colleague Jane Burns: Downsized Abbey.”

UPDATE II: Stan Schwartz of the National Newspaper Association says he was told by NBC Peacock Productions that the show is in “the idea phase.” He adds: “I’m not sure when it is scheduled for production, or even if it will ever make it to the little screen.” Schwartz was told the day after the ad first ran that nine papers had asked about the show.

He also notes:

We’ve had some of our members not really happy with this. One newspaper in particular said he ran a similar casting call a few years ago, searching for Amish participants and that ended up as the show “Amish in the City.” The publisher said he was upset with how that show distorted reality and made comedy fodder out of Amish people.

* Editor to producers: “It would be a pleasure to be your national laughingstock” (

A Romenesko reader writes: “Groupon has canceled all of its gun-related deals because of the Newtown shootings, but The Denver Post, which just published a 6-month anniversary package on the Aurora theater massacre, has not followed suit. Interesting.”dd
* Today’s Deal: Handgun class | Aurora theater shooting, six months later (

What the Times says about Philadelphia journalist Ellen Gray’s tweet:

We are simply revisiting concepts for how to package our core digital subscription bundles and/or potentially introduce new paid products as we close in on two years after the digital subscription launch. Like always, we rely on consumer research.

* In Australia, the number of people saying they have “no trust at all” in newspapers hits a new high of 15%. In 2010, it was only 5%. ( via @mathewi)
* CJR post about the decline of longform journalism in major newspapers “generated a fair measure of hostility.” (
* CNN’s Tom Foreman writes to President Obama daily. In Year Four, “it seemed many days as if I’d already said everything I had to say and then some.” (
* Financial Times moves to a “digital first” strategy and cuts 25 positions. (
* The inauguration on 94 newspaper front pages. ( | How college newspapers handled the event. (
* Ethan Sattler, 13, was the youngest member of the inauguration press corps. (
* NFL cities have as many black sports editors as black coaches. (
* “A correction unlike any other.” (@bgrueskin)
* AP business reporter fooled by fake LinkedIn account. (
noguns* Groupon halts all current and future gun-related deals. (
* Ed Sherman’s prediction: “This won’t be the last time Deadspin nails a big one.” (
* “‘Is the photographer going to be in here the whole time?’ Manti Te’o asked. That was my cue to leave.” (
* NYT standards editor: “People seem to think we should have a long list of approved words and another one of banned words. We don’t.” (
* Pew: Free access to the Internet is now nearly as important to library patrons as borrowing books. (
* William R. Hearst III is named Hearst Corp. chairman. (