Daily Archives: May 14, 2014

As he does every mid-month, NPR ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos invited readers today to participate in his Open Forum. And they did, asking….

“What’s up with the Ombudsman?”

“Almost two months since ESM has posted anything. Where is he? What is he doing”

I asked Schumacher-Matos to solve the mysteries. He responded:

I am about to post a complicated piece now.ombud But no mysteries: I have been on vacation, have gone through a change of two assistants in two months, killed a circular piece that didn’t pan out and have been very busy with internal and diplomatic matters, including preparing for my succession. My contract ends August 1. I should be looking for a new job! Any suggestions welcomed.

Will the position be filled or killed? “I think that I will be replaced,” he says.

* Open Forum for May 14, 2014 (

Why Jill Abramson was fired: “Several weeks ago,” writes Ken Auletta, “Abramson discovered that her pay and her pension benefits as both executive editor and, before that, as managing editor were considerably less than the pay and pension benefits of Bill Keller, the male editor whom she replaced in both jobs. ‘She confronted the top brass,’ one close associate said, and this may have fed into the management’s narrative that she was ‘pushy,’ a characterization that, for many, has an inescapably gendered aspect…..” Read the rest of the New Yorker piece.

* NPR’s David Folkenflik explains Abramson’s downfall (
* Walter Isaacson: Baquet can be a tough reporter and also a nice person (
* How Times editors learned of Abramson’s ouster (

-- The masthead's already updated

— The masthead’s already updated

New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr.’s memo to staff:

From: NYT Company Mail
Sent: Wednesday, May 14, 2014 2:34 PM
To: All Company Employees
Subject: Note from Arthur

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing to announce a leadership change in the newsroom. Effective today, Dean Baquet will become our new executive editor, succeeding Jill Abramson.

This appointment comes at a time when the newsroom is about to embark on a significant effort to transition more fully to a digital-first reality and where, across the organization, we are all learning to adapt to the rapid pace of change in our business.

We owe Jill an enormous debt of gratitude for positioning the newsroom to succeed on both of these critical counts and of course, for preserving and extending the level of our journalistic excellence and innovation. She’s laid a great foundation on which I fully expect Dean and his colleagues will build.

As those of you who know Dean will understand, he is uniquely suited to this role. He is a proven manager, both here at The Times and elsewhere. He is also a consummate journalist whose reputation as a fierce advocate for his reporters and editors is well-deserved. And importantly, he is an enthusiastic supporter of our push toward further creativity in how we approach the digital expression of our journalism.

I know you will join me, Mark and the rest of the senior leadership team in wishing Jill the best and congratulating Dean on his appointment.


“I loved my run at the Times,” Abramson says in a press release. She was named Times executive editor in June of 2011.

Times staffer Ravi Somaiya tweets: “The change was attributed, by Arthur Sulzberger Jr, to ‘an issue with management in the newsroom.'” | Check out the photos from the Times newsroom.

* Jill Abramson is replaced by Dean Baquet at the Times (
* Abramson wasn’t at this afternoon’s news meeting (
* The Abramson-era New York Times was a business success (
* Nate Silver says he’ll always be a huge Abramson fan (@NateSilver538)
* Baquet is “the Doc Rivers of journ editors. Has respect of whole team” (@patrickbigpix)


* Bwog: Keeping accused student on staff would have been on conflict (
* Who’s writing the names of alleged rapists on Columbia’s walls? (
* Comments from my Facebook friends | Comments from Bill Grueskin’s friends (


Actual war, left, and a “newspaper war,” right, between the @latimes and LA Register.” — Patrick Fallon, writing on Instagram.

-- Photo by Patrick Fallon, used with his permission.

— Photo by Patrick Fallon, used with his permission.

Update — Register spokesman Eric Morgan tells Romenesko readers: “It is not a slogan, but rather one piece in a larger campaign that explicitly illustrates our right-of-center political perspective on the Opinion pages. It is about giving Los Angeles a new alternative and strong voices from this perspective.

“The Register brand has always stood for free markets and individual liberties, and Los Angeles Register carries this tradition forward. Our editorial board is providing opinions from this perspective, and we invite commentary from across the political spectrum.”

MarketWatch editor Glenn Hall, who once served as Glenn Beck’s managing editor at, succeeds Jennifer Forsyth as US news editor at the Wall Street Journal. She has been named deputy editor/investigations.

At MarketWatch, personal finance editor Jeremy Olshan is promoted to top editor.

The memos from Wall Street Journal’s editor-in-chief:

From: Baker, Gerard
Sent: Wednesday, May 14, 2014 9:16 AM
To: WSJ All News Staff
Subject: New US News Leadership

Glenn Hall

Glenn Hall

I’m delighted to announce a new leadership team for US News, one that will build on the progress we have made in this vital area of news coverage in the last few years and drive us to new frontiers in storytelling, digitally and in print.

Glenn Hall, currently our MarketWatch editor, will succeed Jennifer Forsyth as US news editor. In this important job, Glenn oversees US general news bureaux for print and digital platforms for all our national news coverage./CONTINUES Read More

* Baltimore Police Department stops talking to Sun reporter Justin Fenton. “Since last fall, Fenton has written stories that embarrassed Commissioner Anthony Batts and his media spokespeople as the department took steps to control its public image,” reports City Paper. (
* Strange ethics: A Georgia newspaper claims it’s okay to lift stories as long as it includes the author’s byline. (
gotta* People are waiting for the Bezos-owned Washington Post to cover the Amazon/Hachette dispute. The Post’s ex-ombud in 2013: “If the Post doesn’t cover the crap out of Amazon, then the paper isn’t doing its job, and will get grief from a thousand media outlets for not doing so.” ( | (@jackshafer) | “We’re looking into it,” says Post executive editor Marty Baron. (
* The May 25th issue of New York Times Magazine will be the first under editor Jake Silverstein. (
* Dan Kennedy: Should the Boston Globe have released the names of the officers involved in the Florida shooting death of a Tamerlan Tsarnaev associate? (
* So everyone seems to be starting sentences with “So…” (
* New York Press Club announces its 2014 journalism contest winners. Steve Brill gets the club’s highest award for “Bitter Pill.” (
* The Toledo Blade, which lost over $8.5 million last year, wants to outsource printing rather than invest in new presses. (
detroit* A marriage proposal in the Detroit Free Press newsroom. (Warning: The video is auto-play.) (
* How Capital New York’s “60-Second Interview” is put together. (
* Prediction: We’ll all be wearing a Google Glass-like device by 2025. (
* “Life will go on if George Norcross wins [Philly’s dailies]. Just as it would if Donald Trump directed the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra.” (
* Patch is looking for a CEO who is “deeply committed to connecting communities (and brands) with news, storytelling, and social information.” (

You be the editor: Your newspaper lets readers upload photos to a Prom Gallery on your website, and a high school couple posts the picture below. The girl’s mother calls and asks that you pull the photo. Your paper generally doesn’t unpublish web content. What do you do?

-- From Instagram (@isassysunshine)

— From Instagram (@isassysunshine)

Knoxville News Sentinel editor Jack McElroy tells Romenesko readers what his paper did:

We removed the photo not on the basis of its content, as such, but in reaction to the mother’s unpublish request. We have an unpublish committee, and one of the criteria we consider is whether a photo might endanger the subject in any way.

Jack McElroy

Jack McElroy

The mother made the case that the young woman had been subjected to bullying because of the publication, and because the photo had been submitted by a juvenile in the first place, we decided to take it down. … We got almost no reaction to pulling the picture.

Looking back, I’ve asked myself if it was right to include the photo in our prom gallery. I was at the Rocky Mountain News during the Columbine shooting and have re-examined the image in the light of the recent history of school shootings. From that point of view, I would say only that the question might have deserved more pre-publication discussion. We did talk about it, but not in a broad and formal manner. We saw the context as “Duck Dynasty” rather than Columbine. There was nothing threatening in the kids’ demeanors, and we already had published another photo of three young men in tuxes doing a sort of James Bond/Charlie’s Angels pose, pointing their fingers like guns. It all seemed pretty harmless, just kids being exuberant. But the issue probably warranted deeper scrutiny.

* Editor: Prom picture with guns stirs controversy (
* Read what News Sentinel readers said about the photo (