Daily Archives: March 13, 2013

Craig F. Walker/Denver Post

Craig F. Walker/Denver Post

“As editors, it’s often our job to make difficult decisions,” writes Denver Post director of newsroom operations Linda Shapley. “We were faced with one on Tuesday, with the above photo,” which shows House Speaker Mark Ferrandino kissing his partner goodbye after the passage of a bill that allows gay couples to form civil unions in Colorado.

“We all knew there would likely be a negative reaction to running the picture of Ferrandino,” Shapley tells readers. “The civil unions vote was historic for Colorado and celebrating it was not a surprise. That led one editor to note, ‘We have no issues showing a straight couple kissing on election night.'”

* Mark Ferrandino kiss photo shows truth, even if it offends (
* “Not what I needed to see on my front page today. Gross” and more comments from the Post’s Facebook page

UPDATE — Shapley tells Romenesko readers: “We’ve received a fairly steady stream of calls, and a few emails and letters — more than 50 for sure, but I haven’t received a number from our Op-Ed Department. Nearly all have been negative. Interestingly, the comments on the blog have all been positive, save for my less-than-ideal word choice [in the first-version headline]. Different audiences, obviously.”

Her first headline read, “Mark Ferrandino kiss photo shows truth, no matter how objectionable.” She changed it to “…even if it offends.”

Former Philadelphia Inquirer music critic Tom Moon — author of “1,000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die” — is looking to write for a publication – even for free – “where the goal from the outset is compelling writing, not racking up big [traffic] numbers.”

Any editors interested?

* Letters: Any editors value compelling writing over pageviews? (Romenesko Letters)

Five weeks ago, the Laurel (Miss.) Leader-Call received hate letters and subscription cancellations over a front page story about two women getting married. One of the newlyweds, Crystal Craven, had been diagnosed with brain cancer in early 2011 and underwent her third surgery just before the wedding. (She wore a cowboy hat during the ceremony to hide her scars.)
The woman told the Leader-Call in early February: “If chemo doesn’t work, we don’t know what happens after that.”

A week after her controversial wedding, Craven learned of new tumors and decided against chemo. “She was tired of hurting, tired of being sick and tired of fighting,” says her “special friend,” as the obit calls Jessica Powell.

Craven died on Monday. She was 34.

* Crystal Craven has died, her family needs your help (
* March 2: Newlyweds deal with somber news while messages from around the world pour in (
* Earlier: Paper gets support after being criticized for gay marriage story (

“I have 160,000 Twitter followers having never said one word.”


NBC anchor Brian Williams tells Jefferson Graham that he doesn’t hang out on social media or read mentions of himself because “you’d have no time for anything else, you’d have no self esteem, and you’d never leave the house.” (Gee, Brian, many other people in media seem to manage it.)

He also says:

I’m a night owl, cruising various websites, looking for stories for the next day … for anything we missed. I love getting challenged by the staff. I hate being the only one who brings a find to the afternoon story meeting.
I have a list of favorites — BuzzFeed, Daily Mail and Gawker. There is a reason Daily Mail is the No. 1 news site in the world. It’s 90% candy-based, and then once in awhile they’ll do a deep dive of gorgeous photos from the Smithsonian that will take your breath away. BuzzFeed is a fascinating website. They have really locked into a formula. Who isn’t going to click on ’20 pets being jerks,’ or the baby otter being bottle fed at the San Diego Zoo?

I start my day with the big aggregators. New York Times, the Washington Post, Politico. I’m a non-fiction guy living in a non-fiction world.

* Talking your tech: Brian Williams is a “hopeless nerd” (
* Why exactly did Brian Williams join Twitter? (
* September 2010: Brian Williams reluctantly joins Twitter (


Philadelphia Magazine: “In a city that is largely poor and segregated, white people have become afraid to say anything all all about race. Here’s what’s being said.”

Philadelphia Weekly: “In a city so full of the frumpy and unglamorous, beautiful people have become afraid to talk freely about how amazingly attractive they are. Now, at long last, we of the media take a brave stand to focus on them.”

* Being white in Philly (
* Being hot in Philly (

* Philadelphia is blasted for its “White in Philly” story (

Detroit TV reporter and former New York Times staffer Charlie LeDuff is accused of fighting and urinating in the street after a St. Patrick’s Day bash on Sunday.

LeDuff via @charlieleduff

LeDuff via @charlieleduff

“I don’t remember taking a leak,” he tells a TV reporter. “It’s no reason to get your head stomped.”

LeDuff says an offer to have a drink turned into a fist fight.

“I tried to get guys off me and my brother. There are no hard feelings on my end.”

A police report says a security guard “tried to separate LeDuff from a fight but instead ended up being bitten on the index finger, breaking the skin. The guard declined medical attention.”

LeDuff’s station, WJBK-TV, did a very brief report on the incident.

He appeared on “Real Time with Bill Maher” last Friday to talk about his new book, “Detroit: An American Autopsy.”

* LeDuff accused of brawling in Detroit’s Corktown (
* “When asked if he had too much to drink, LeDuff said, ‘Probably.'”(
* LeDuff was heard arguing with three women whom he called “whores” (

* American Society of News Editors names its writing and photography contest winners. (Boston Globe’s Kevin Cullen wins the Batten Medal for the second time.) (
* American Society of Journalists and Authors announces award winners. (
* “Our two Siobhans today on @wsj’s Page One.” (@lisafleisher)
* The Hollywood Reporter says Keith Olbermann has settled his dispute with Current TV. (
* Shep Smith: “I don’t watch a lot of TV. …I usually have Jon Stewart or Colbert on our DVR.” (
* American Conservative magazine aims to generate “new kinds of discussion and ideas out of an unpredictable approach.” (
* “The New York Observer has always punched above its weight,” writes editor Ken Kurson. (
* UT-San Diego’s Doug Manchester: “We have no partnership with Koch Industries or with the Koch brothers.” (Reuters via
* Anna Wintour adds artistic director to her Conde Nast duties. (
* New York Times rivals ignore Joe Nocera’s “fantastic” Goldman Sachs scoop. (
* A LinkedIn acquisition of news-reading app Pulse makes sense, says Mathew Ingram. (
* “This image has been pixelated to protect the identity of the child.” Why bother, NBC News? You’ve named the kid’s mother. (
* NPR courts the under-30 crowd. (
* Blogger covers the papal conclave from his parents’ South Philly basement. (
* Washington Monthly and Washington City Paper have changed journalism in different ways, says ex-Washingtonian editor. (
* Orange County Register to cover local universities in three weekly sections. (
* Appreciating SiriusXM even more! Boston terrestrial radio guys play a death row last-meal game. (
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