USA Today’s editor-in-chief sent this memo to his staff Wednesday morning:
From: Callaway, David
Date: October 15, 2014 at 10:33:04 AM EDT
To: USAT ED Newsgroup
Subject: Comscore September
Folks, I want to share a few highlights from September’s Comscore traffic report. These are the numbers that are used by advertisers and other media to rank success in digital news growth.
USAToday had the highest month on record in comScore in unique visitors and visits, driven in large part by the Tech section’s Apple coverage, as well as the Money section.
USAToday sites in the General News category had 78M unique visitors, the highest recorded in comScore (previous high was 77M in August), and remained at the #5 ranking, down 17% compared to the #4 position (NBC News Digital) and up 4% over the #6 position (Buzzfeed).
We still have much work to do to catch NBC, but the last two months have been great wins for us. Let’s keep it going.
From KQED public radio’s Wednesday morning discussion on the closing of the San Francisco Bay Guardian:
– via @FitztheReporter
Host Michael Krasny: “The timing of this – they put out the Wednesday issue, which went out today, which is a big issue in terms of actually bringing in some revenue.”
Former executive editor Tim Redmond: “They waited until the ‘Best of the Bay’ issue was done, which is traditionally the biggest revenue generator of the year. So of course, they didn’t want to shut the paper down before they got the last money from the ‘Best of the Bay’ issue, so basically the staff worked really hard – as the staff always has to work really hard on the ‘Best of the Bay’ issue – and the minute it went to press on Monday morning, they were brought in and told the paper was closing.”
Listen to Redmond and former Bay Guardian owner Bruce Brugmann
Post-Dispatch deputy managing editor Bob Rose tells Romenesko readers: “We certainly offer a wide range of coverage, and our home page reflects that. We welcome the feedback as we try to present those offerings in way that provides the best experience to our users.”
“It’s my job as an editor to see around corners, to look at all the possible meanings and nuances of words and of images,” writes Boston Herald editorial page editor Rachelle Cohen. “It’s my job and two weeks ago I failed at it miserably” when the above cartoon got into the paper.
The artist who drew it – “a decent and honorable and utterly guileless man who gets an image lodged in his brain” – saw a tube of watermelon toothpaste that his kids left on a bathroom counter before he went to work. Cohen and cartoonist Jerry Holbert didn’t see a problem with the sketch, but why didn’t someone else at the paper raise an eyebrow?
On the night in question — the night the cartoon appeared on a page proof, the proof was not left in the proper bin. No senior news editor ever saw it.
And every evening the publisher gets a copy of the editorials sent to his email — not the images — only the words.
So there you have it. The remarkably simple way in which bad stuff can happen.
Longtime Boston media critic Dan Kennedy says “kudos to Cohen for a straightforward, no-excuses apology, and to the Herald’s management for coming to grips with a serious lapse in a serious manner.”
“Shocktoberfest,” Ebola – You’re scaring us above-the-fold, Reading Eagle
* Ebola Deeply website launches. (fastcompany.com)
* James Risen tells Terry Gross: “I’ve had a lot of time to think about [the possibility of going to prison]. It’s just now part of the background noise in my life.” (npr.org)
* San Francisco Bay Guardian’s owners “have told us that if we can find a buyer, the Guardian can be sold,” says editor Steven T. Jones. “For the members of our community that want to own a progressive newspaper at fire sale prices, contact us.” (sfgate.com) | Check out the last issue under the current owners: (issuu.com) | Joe Strupp‘s tribute. (blogspot.com)
* Bill Simmons, who returns to ESPN today after a three-week suspension, “is furious and has been talking a lot about whether ESPN is still the right place for him.” (NYT via boston.com) | What Simmons did during his suspension: (nymag.com)
* White House correspondents are using Google Groups to distribute pool reports without Obama press office interference. (washingtonpost.com)
* Oh, great: “Although we’re still two years out from the presidential race, there’s more coverage this time around than in previous election cycles.” (pewresearch.org)
* An Indianapolis TV crew is carjacked while covering a prayer vigil. (indystar.com)
* Los Angeles Times sues the Orange County Register. “The Register has repeatedly broken its promises and breached its agreements,” the suit says.
* The Register’s investors are moving ex-publisher Aaron Kushner to the back of the bus. (niemanlab.org)(latimes.com) * Among women, Pinterest is more popular than Twitter. (forbes.com)
* Ezra Klein on Vox’s new email newsletter: “I don’t care if it drives traffic back to the site. I care if the people who read it feel well served by it.” (niemanlab.org)
* What’s Mark Zuckerberg discussing with Samsung in South Korea? (wsj.com)
* You’ll soon be able to buy HBO shows on the web. (recode.net)
* Arkansas journalists learn through a Google News Alert that their newspaper building is for sale. (arktimes.com)