Daily Archives: June 21, 2013

Earlier today, Bloomberg BNA employees were told that surveillance cameras would be put in the snack pantry to stop people from stuffing treats into bags and taking them home.

The company has now backed off on that plan. Here’s the memo from BBNA president Darren McKewen.

From: BBNA Broadcasts
Sent: Friday, June 21, 2013 4:28 PM
Subject: About the Pantry Abuse Memo

I’m sorry for the approach we took today about the abuse of the pantry. We’re not going to be installing cameras to monitor food and drink. nevermind

The pantry is a special benefit to BNA employees, and we ask that everyone be respectful and use their best judgment in consuming the food and drinks we offer. When a few people fill back packs and shopping bags with dozens of items, that kind of abuse hurts everybody. Please show common sense, as most of you have done, so we can keep a well-stocked pantry for all to enjoy.


* Bloomberg BNA to put surveillance cameras in the snack pantry (

Drinks for laid off Oregonian staffers (over 35 today, reports Willamette Week)

University of Oregon Daily Emerald publisher and former Oregonian staffer Ryan Frank tells Romenesko readers about the fundraising efforts:

We started as a bar tab fund for the first night. There are more layoffs today. So we’ll keep a tab open at the bar across from The Oregonian, Higgins. Starting tomorrow, we’ll shift the fundraising to focus on building an employee fund.

I just ran the numbers. We’ve raised $3,512 through our direct fundraising. (Many others sent money directly to Higgins [Restaurant and Bar] yesterday.)

At this point, we’re making the tab available for food and drinks at Higgins. As for how we plan to distribute the money after tonight, we’re still working on that. I’ll probably see about getting former Oregonian staff on a board to help manage the distribution. But I’m working on that now. I need to connect with folks who did something similar in New Orleans to learn more.

Readers can donate or send comments to the staff at

We’ll expand that page next week to include disclosures on fundraising, etc.

* More than 35 newsroom staffers laid off at the Oregonian (
* Follow the fundraising progress on Frank’s Twitter feed (@rfrank_emerald)


“Glad to see I am not the only one a tad worried about this prison inmate release plan!!! tweets @shelbygrad (via @jimmyorr). || Los Angeles Times front page (

nprNPR showed off its new 400,000-square-foot headquarters to the media this week and, writes Paul Farhi, “it immediately began drawing some grumbles from those who see the edifice as far too luxe for a nonprofit radio and digital-news organization that depends, in part, on taxpayer support.”

Farhi points out: “The new headquarters wasn’t financed with tax dollars, at least not directly. The organization raised funds through a combination of tax-free bonds, individual donations and the proceeds from the sale of its old building.”

* NPR’s new headquarters refuels funding debate (

Romenesko reader Emerson Schwartzkopf writes:

For some reason (and not by my choice) I began receiving the Daily Yahoo e-newsletter. When I clicked to unsubscribe, I received the following screen:


Maybe Yahoo took a page from the print-subscription playbook in stretching out unwanted deliveries. Or, all the work is being sent offshore to a moon of Neptune on alternate Tuesdays.

Or, maybe the processing lag is the real reason is why Marissa Mayer needs to have all employees reporting to their desks in Sunnyvale.

Bloomberg BNA is cracking down on employees who have been filling bags with food and drinks from the snack pantry and enjoying them at home.

A memo warns: “In order to deter this behavior going forward, BBNA plans on placing cameras in the pantry… [and] if you are observed taking any amount of soda, juice, milk, fruit or snacks home you may be subject to termination from BBNA for cause.”

From: BBNA Broadcasts
Date: June 21, 2013, 8:07:05 AM EDT
Subject: Pantry Abuse

As many of you know, the pantry was put in place for your personal consumption while you are at work. Unfortunately, over the past few months there have been several instances where employees have been observed filling bags with sodas, snacks, fruit, and in some cases cartons of milk, to take home with them.newmemo It has become so excessive that in the last few weeks there have been multiple times when the coolers were almost completely empty prior to the end of a workday. Employees who worked later in the day, or over the weekend, found there were essentially no snacks or drinks available.

While I am sure this is not the normal behavior for the majority of our employees, it does present a problem for BBNA, and one that we need to address immediately. In order to deter this behavior going forward, BBNA plans on placing cameras in the pantry. Prior to the installation of the cameras and even after the cameras are installed, if you are observed taking any amount of soda, juice, milk, fruit or snacks home you may be subject to termination from BBNA for cause.

As noted above, the pantry was put in place for your personal consumption while you are at work and we believe it is a very nice benefit to have at BBNA. Unfortunately, the behavior of a few individuals impacts all employees. If this type of behavior continues we will have no other option than to consider closing down the pantry. That would be a shame.

Mike Schmidt
Vice President, Human Resources

UPDATE: Laura Francis, acting chair of the Bloomberg-BNA unit of the Washington-Baltimore Guild, responds to the company’s memo:

From: Francis, Laura
Date: June 21, 2013, 12:27:56 PM EDT
Subject: Pantry and Cameras

Hi everyone — by now you’re probably aware of the broadcast message talking about installing a camera in the pantry, and I just wanted to send a quick message to allay some concerns.

First, BBNA is required to bargain with the Guild over the installation of any cameras here, in the pantry or elsewhere, and we already have initiated the process with HR.

In addition, any discipline that BBNA imposes is subject to the grievance and arbitration process under the contract.

Furthermore, BBNA cannot close the pantry because, under our contract, it is required to maintain benefits it provides to the employees.

We will provide further updates in the future as our bargaining progresses. We are currently scheduled to meet the afternoon of July 1.

Hope you have a good weekend!


UPDATE 2: Bloomberg BNA boss apologizes for the memo and says cameras won’t be installed.

journo* The full Journolist listserv archive — the one that Andrew Breitbart was willing to pay $100,000 for in 2010 — is now online. (
* A freelance writer who made $45K in the first six months of 2013 says “it’s possible to succeed in this gig economy [but] it’s also exhausting.” (
* A grammar columnist writes after meeting Randy Newman: “Is anything better than talking to one of your idols about grammar?” ( via Charles Apple)
* BuzzFeed business editor: “We’re more likely to do enterprise pieces on Urban Outfitters or Abercrombie than we might be on Walmart.” (
* Patriots owners decide not to bid for the Boston Globe. (
* People are leaving flowers and notes at the site where Michael Hastings died. (
* editor denies that the Danger Room blog is history. (
* “I request three memorial celebrations of my life,” Al Neuharth wrote in his will. (
* Examination of Al-Monitor content “shows a distinct tendency to mirror the Assad regime’s version of events.” (
* Sree Sreenivasan leaves Columbia for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. (
* “I won’t be clicking on your Instagram video, no matter how much you want me to.” (
* Publishers Weekly’s “The Battle of $9.99″ e-book is a rush-job: “It took less than a month from inception of the idea to having the book available to consumers at digital retailers.” (
* The Architect of the Capitol wants the newspaper boxes at the Capitol South Metro Station removed. (
* Freedom Communications gets into the naming rights business. (
* Spotted on the IRE conference bulletin board: Amarillo Independent sale notice. (@TWallack)
* Friday fun: David Letterman leaves his CBS studio and takes a ride with Jerry Seinfeld. (

- h/t Lily O'Connor of Edina, MN

– h/t Lily O’Connor of Edina, MN

* New York Times front page for June 21 (
* “Great NYTimes video on Brazil’s protesters by @nadiasussman” (@viaSimonRomero)