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Daily Archives: September 3, 2013

News Corp. is selling Dow Jones Local Media Group to an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group, and the newspapers will be managed by GateHouse Media. (Fortress is the majority owner of GateHouse.)

Press release

News Corp Sells Dow Jones Local Media Group

News Corp announced today that it has sold the Dow Jones Local Media Group, which operates 33 publications, including 8 daily and 15 weekly newspapers, to an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group LLC.
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The Dow Jones Local Media Group daily newspaper franchises include the Times Herald-Record (Middletown, N.Y.); Cape Cod Times (Hyannis, Mass.); The Record (Stockton, Calif.); The Standard-Times (New Bedford, Mass.); The Pocono Record (Stroudsburg, Penn.); The Herald (Portsmouth, N.H.); The Mail Tribune (Medford, Ore.), and The Daily Tidings (Ashland, Ore.). In addition to daily and weekly newspapers, the Dow Jones Local Media Group operates other print and online community media, including web sites, magazines as well as news and advertising niche publications.

The Dow Jones Local Media Group operations will be managed by GateHouse Media, one of the largest publishers of locally based print and online media in the United States with a portfolio of products that includes over 400 community publications and approximately 350 related websites.

Waller Capital Partners, a leading independent investment bank focused on the telecommunications, media and technology sectors, advised Dow Jones on the sale of the Local Media Group.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Here’s the memo sent to GateHouse employees:

TO: GateHouse Media Employees
FROM: Mike Reed, CEO
DATE: September 3, 2013

Good Afternoon,

News Corp announced today that it has sold its Dow Jones Local Media Group. The purchase was made by an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group LLC. Fortress is also the majority owner of GateHouse Media and has engaged GateHouse Media to provide management services for the properties./CONTINUES Read More

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* Why did WaPo’s Page One Bezos piece get a Style section banner? (niemanlab.org)

- Front page coupon promotions in last Sunday's papers.

– Front page coupon promotions in last Sunday’s papers.

These are just a few of the page one, above-the-fold coupon promotions that I saw while perusing Sunday newspaper print-edition replicas via my NewspaperDirect iPad app two days ago. For newspaper publishers, it’s “an opportunity to take advantage of the recent increase in extreme couponing,” says Peoria Journal Star executive editor Dennis Anderson. “I’ve been tweeting on Friday afternoons and Sunday mornings the value of the coupons since I joined the Journal Star in July 2012. I also did it at the Lawrence Journal-World, where I worked from 2005 until 2012.”

Who counts the savings in Journal Star coupons? “Our advertising department does it and sends out a note to circulation and news.”

* Earlier: Extreme couponing forces Dollar Tree to set a 3-papers-per-customer limit (jimromenesko.com)

The Baltimore Sun’s John McIntyre warns students that his Loyola University Maryland CM 361 (Copy Editing) class isn’t easy, and that it’s “appallingly, unrelievedly dull.”

Prof. McIntyre

Prof. McIntyre

A student from a previous term complained in the course evaluation that “he just did the same thing over and over day after day.” Exactly. So will you. Editing is done word by word, phrase by phrase, sentence by sentence, paragraph by paragraph, and we will go over texts in class, word by word, phrase by phrase, sentence by sentence, and paragraph by paragraph. No one will hear you scream.

I’m going to turn my back for a minute so that anyone who wants to bolt can escape.

He also warns students that “my manner and sense of humor may not be to your taste.” It’s not, however, a course requirement to appreciate it.

* Day One in John McIntyre’s copy editing class (baltimoresun.com)
* “Made a boring, dry subject bearable,” and other reviews of McIntyre (ratemyprofessors.com)


A reporter for a large news organization asked me to post this:

I’m looking for a reporter, editor or photog who may be spending their last days/months in their newsroom — or at least has the anxiety many journalists have these days about the future.query I want to profile them as things unfold — a “day in the life” approach, spending time as they work and in off-hours too. What first comes to mind is that veteran cop reporter with decades of service who can’t bear the thought of doing anything else. But it doesn’t have to be a cop reporter or someone older. The key is passion. They live and breathe this crazy work of ours.

I’d want to know what the business did for them? What are the stories of their reporting adventures they tell when it’s time to have a beer with colleagues? What’s the future hold for them and their families?

I posted the note on my Facebook wall last week and got numerous comments from friends and followers. They ranged from “I’d love to read the piece once it’s finished,” to “It’s one thing to cover the car crash after it happened, but I’d like to think that we still have the ethics not to hover over the dying body and watch it bleed to death.” I also received a few emails about the reporter’s query; here’s one:

Too late, Jim. After 17 years as a staff photographer, I was laid off via phone call on August 1st while on vacation. A lousy phone call. Does it get any more classless than that? Ok, what the Chicago Sun Times did to their photo staff gets a really special prize. button Still, I thought/hoped my work would speak for me. No explanation other than the standard corporate spiel was given: “Due to reduction in staff, your job has been impacted by that… Here’s the HR rep.”

And that was that. It leaves you reeling and your head swirling with unanswered questions with no answers.
I wasn’t the last hired, I’m not the oldest, I hadn’t been there the longest, I didn’t have the highest salary. I have no dependents costing the company extra money. I won awards (was even nominated for a Pulitzer), mentored students and interns, worked well with co-workers and do have tremendous ties to this community./CONTINUES Read More

Mark Duffy (below) left a small New York ad agency in April 2012, to join BuzzFeed. At 53, he’s the site’s oldest employee.

markdI am old enough to be the father of nearly every other editorial employee.

And, these whiz-kids completely baffle me, daily.

I am in a constant state of bafflement at BF HQ.

In fact, I’ve never been more confused, day-in and day-out, in my life.

I am not being hyperbolic, for once.

* What it’s like being BuzzFeed’s oldest employee (buzzfeed.com)
* Earlier: Median age of Facebook employees is 28; it’s 29 at Google (nytimes.com)

bezosstoryjeffJeff Bezos says the “three big ideas” that have made Amazon.com successful — put the customer first; invent; and be patient — will be introduced at his Washington Post. Bezos tells Paul Farhi that he’ll be giving his “point of view” to Post leaders about how the newspaper should evolve, but “if we figure out a new golden era at The Post, that will be due to the ingenuity and inventiveness and experimentation of the team at The Post. I’ll be there with advice from a distance. If we solve that problem, I won’t deserve credit for it.” (washingtonpost.com)
* The rise of the Washington Post, as documented by Fortune magazine in 1944. (It’s “a newspaper of courage and conscience and one gaining in national prestige.”) (fortune.cnn.com)
* The typical Bloomberg News headline is “a pile of words that somehow adds up to something meaningful, if not understandable.” (qz.com)
* Maine Gov. Paul LePage blabs to national media but won’t say boo to local reporters. (bangordailynews.com)
* “I find a newsletter personal — more personal than a blog,” says Brendan Dougherty, editor of a daily baseball email newsletter. (niemanlab.org)
* Charlie Cook found Mark Leibovich’s book “too snarky for my tastes, in fact tasteless in a few places.” (newspaperalum.com)
* Mike Allen is the most followed journalist on Twitter among members of Congress. (nymag.com)
* Review-Journal says in court papers that a proposed deal to stop publishing the Las Vegas Sun wouldn’t crimp media competition in Las Vegas. (reviewjournal.com)
* AFL-CIO writer: “The biggest fault of media companies may be a lack of imagination.” (dissentmagazine.org)
* NYT’s John Schwartz: My decision to type for a living didn’t initially sit well with my politician father. (nytimes.com)
vanity* Kate Upton is on the cover of Vanity Fair’s 100th anniversary issue. (vanityfair.com) | (wwd.com)
* How to write a cover letter for an entry-level media job. (“What I see time after time from young media hopefuls are not the classic no-nos, like misspellings and typos, but what appears to be a fundamental lack of understanding of how to sell oneself.”) (slate.com)
* Deadline Hollywood claims an “exclusive” on a story tweeted by the “Fifty Shades” author to her 350,000+ followers. (gawker.com)
* Katie Couric is engaged to John Molner. (@GStephanopoulos)