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Daily Archives: June 27, 2014

Mr, Bralow: You and Digital First Media CEO John Paton should be dealing with chief technology officer and memo author Bob Mason right now – not me.

* Earlier: Digital First memo names staffers being considered for dismissal (jimromenesko.com)

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Who is Bralow? “Prior to attending law school, David was a reporter and editor for newspapers in New York, Pennsylvania and Florida. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Hampshire College and a master’s degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. David is presently an adjunct faculty member at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He has had a similar appointment at New York University.” — From JSchoollegal.org

Update: Read comments from my Facebook friends and subscribers


detroit

The head of Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert’s real estate company says “we … look forward to transforming the DMP [Detroit Media Partnership] building to provide forward thinking, growth-oriented companies a new place to call home.” (Should that be read as a slam against newspapers?) The sale price wasn’t disclosed, but the building was listed at $8 million. Detroit’s dailies will move to the Federal Reserve Building.

Gilbert buys home of Detroit News and Free Press (detroitnews.com) | (freep.com)

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I’m told that Digital First Media laid off about 45 technology division staffers on Tuesday. After the cuts were made, DFM chief technology officer Bob Mason emailed an updated organization chart and other information to the remaining employees – including names of employees cut, staffers to keep and those being considered for dismissal. (I’m told that about 15 employees received Mason’s 15-page memo.)

I asked DFM chief executive John Paton about this and he replied:

Jim, not sure what charts you are referring to. It would be unfortunate if in any way publication of same would violate employees’ privacy.

That said, restructuring the workforce is something that happens monthly in a company like ours as we move from a print centric org to a truly multi-platform org.

I am not sure of exact numbers as I trust our managers to do what they need to do as they follow our strategy. We did in the past week or so restructure some I.T. and digital positions along with others. Similar to Thunderdome some work was de-centralized to the field.

We have outsourced some digital work which is consistent with our strategy.

I then sent Paton the above chart and he replied: “I couldn’t possibly comment as it would violate employee privacy. Whoever sent to you has done that which is, of course, a serious breach of that very privacy.” I responded: “John, Another obvious issue is Bob Mason putting out a memo with names of employees he’s considering axing.”

* Digital First Media tight-lipped about layoffs (denvernewspaperguild.org)


Connecticut Sun general manager Chris Sienko apologized to the newspapers that cover his WNBA team after a “Go Green Night” public-service announcement during a game advised fans to help the environment by canceling their newspaper subscriptions.
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He told the Sun beat reporters and editors at the Hartford Courant, Norwich Bulletin and The Day:

I am very sorry for the public service announcement made at (Wednesday’s) game. While I had no knowledge of it until after it aired, I take full responsibility for my staff and their actions.

There are no better supporters and conveyors of our message than the three of you and your papers. That said, it does not lessen the sick feeling I have about last night’s 60 seconds with the Sun, that was about 10 seconds too long. I apologize profusely. As you can imagine, this was a hot topic of conversation last evening after the game and something this silly will not happen again. Thank you for your continued support.

“Water under the printing press,” John Altavilla, who covers the Sun for the Hartford Courant, wrote in an email when I asked about the apology.

* Connecticut Sun GM apologizes to newspapers for anti-print PSA (norwichbulletin.com)

* Iraq war boosters – not the critics – are getting calls from TV bookers. (huffingtonpost.com)
* “It is nearly as hard for me to photograph grief as it is to feel it,” writes Oregonian’s Michael Lloyd. (oregonlive.com)
* New York magazine’s “Science of Us” vertical is a hit. (capitalnewyork.com)
* Table Talk magazine – published by 21-year-old Benjamin Moe – aims “to bring in voices that up until this point have been largely ignored by literary journals.” (washingtonpost.com)orlando
* [AT RIGHT] Orlando Sentinel sports editor: We couldn’t decide which story should lead the sports section, so flip the page for your choice. (@rogersimmons)
* A Neshaminy High School student editor reacts to the “Redskins” usage compromise: “There are so many things that are wrong with this.” (buckscountycouriertimes.com)
* New York Post columnist says he didn’t know “spear chucker” was a racial slur. (nydailynews.com)
* There’s more on TV these days, but fewer listings in TV Guide. (nypost.com)
* The late Diana McLellan‘s advice to D.C. gossip columnists: “Don’t get too serious. You ain’t gonna get the Pulitzer Prize.” (washingtonpost.com) | (washingtontimes.com) | (washingtonian.com)
* TV execs should start showing TV-lovers a little more love. Note to James Poniewozik: Aereo wasn’t “a stupid product” IMHO, simply because it recorded Letterman and Ferguson for me every night. (time.com) | How will traditional TV be disrupted now that Aereo’s history? (pakman.com)
* Michael Miner: St. Louis Post-Dispatch was grandstanding when it dropped George Will. (chicagoreader.com)
* Salon lost $2.2 million in the 12 months ending March 31. It lost $4.2 million the same period the previous year. (benzinga.com)
* Agree! Million-dollar bloggers are giving fashion a bad name. (observer.com)
* Sarasota Herald-Tribune has “some of the most fascinating help-wanted ads in the business.” (saintpetersblog.com)
* “This is what we call the Denton discount.” (gawker.com)


- WSJ A-Hed

– From a Wall Street Journal Page One feature

* Q: The first WSJ alien dot-ink portrait? A: That we know of (@erikholmwsj)
* A close-encounter group for alien abductees (wsj.com)