Daily Archives: February 10, 2015

smalllFrom NBC News president Deborah Turness’ memo:
barnI’m guessing the American public will see Williams in six months and go, You again? We came to really like Lester. My suggestion for the embattled anchor: Hit the comedy clubs the next six months and see if that works out as a second career. Reinvent yourself as a self-deprecating stand-up comedian; really.

* Brian Williams is suspended for six months without pay (
* Don’t assume he’ll be back as anchor in six months (@brianstelter) | (ScottDPierce)
* Lester Holt gets a six-month “Nightly News” audition (@brianbolter)

The editor of Gannett’s Cincinnati Enquirer tells her staff that many readers complained about mistakes in Sunday’s paper.

“I need to share these examples with you now,” writes Carolyn Washburn, “and ask each of you to take full ownership of your own clean copy.”

* November 2014: “There is no longer a copy desk staffed by copy editors at the Enquirer … One can imagine what that copy will look like now.” (

From: Washburn, Carolyn
Sent: Monday, February 9, 2015 3:19 PM
To: CIN-News Users
Subject: getting slammed by readers on sloppy copy

Just a reminder that clean and accurate copy starts with each reporter and photographer sending clean and accurate copy along to their producer or coach… then that producer or coach reviewing to make sure it’s all good before sending it along to digital publication or the Studio.
I’ve been communicating one/one as I see things, especially things that can still be fixed.

I know we aren’t at full staff. I know our workflow is different.

But I need to share these examples with you now and ask each of you to take full ownership of your own clean copy.

I know none of you want this either. So the only way to fix it is for each one of us — me included — to pay special attention to our own work. (I even made myself spellcheck this email.)

Choose a system that consistently works for you.

And ask your editor if there is something that can help you do that.

Let’s keep readers focused on our high-end work, not distracted by this.

I appreciate it.

Complaints from readers today about yesterday’s paper:

* the caption on the front page picture of the More Local section cited “Olyer School” (not Oyler)
* the bar graph at the top of p.A6 for the cover story twice read “…delinquint” (not delinquent)
* a headline for a letter to the editor said “Get all that that traffic out of Downtown” (rather than just one “that,”)
* the headline of the Business section read, “What you waiting for, entrepreneurs?”
* Page A10 – Kasich Jobs – Col. 4, Para. 4: ” …. wholistically”
* A14 – Driver Training – Col 4, Para. 5: ” … some outstanding very committed people” – comma or ‘and’ missing after ‘outstanding’
* A21 – Carol Motsinger – Col. 3, Para. 1: “I overuse explanation points” – I think she means ‘exclamation points’
* A22 – Cincinnati Bell – Col. 2, Para. 5: ” … giving the complaint” – should be ‘given the complaint’
* B3 – On Politics – Kitzhaber – Col. 4, Para. 5: ” …. Democratto resign” – missing space after “Democrat”
* C1 – Paul Daugherty – Xavier – Col. 1, Para. 1: ” … awe-ful and awful” – should be awesome; awe-ful means filled with awe; pitiful pun, Paul
* C2 – Reds -Col. 2, Para. 3: ” … admit he too expensive”; writer – you very careless, include the “is” after ‘he’
* same article: Col. 4, Para. 5: ” ….. Aroldis Chapman over $2 million apart.” – apart from what? Error repeated in same sentence
* C5 – Bearcats – Col. 1, Para. 1,2: 1st 2 sentences directly and completely contradict each other. Totally confusing.

* “This memo is like telling people to perform their own dentistry. It reeks of cheap.” (

Oops, never mind!

Here’s a suggestion for USA Today and parent Gannett: Instead of charging college students to be published on your websites, how many paying them to fact-check outsourced pieces like this? (24/7 Wall Street was responsible for this screw-up.)

* USA Today article wrong about Monroe crime (
* Cities where crime is soaring (with correction) (

Baylor University Chief Justice of the Court Cody Coll’s order:

The Baylor Lariat’s response:

At Baylor University, two student senators are suing the student government’s vice president for failing to do her duties.

Judge Coll

Judge Coll

The student newspaper is not involved in the matter – other than to report on it – so “I was confused that we received the order [from Coll] in the first place,” says Baylor Lariat editor-in-chief Linda Wilkins.

Student Press Law Center attorney Adam Goldstein tells the newspaper that he’s never before seen a case where the student press was issued a no-contact order by a student court. “It’s so completely beyond the scope of authority delegated to this institution,” he says.

* Baylor student court issues no-contact order to newspaper (
* No-contact order violates freedom of the press (

New: “What’s the penalty for contempt in this court? An unflattering Instagram photo?” (

Bakersfield Californian executive editor Robert Price warns staffers that their short “what I saw driving in to work”-type pieces “will be measured on your annual reviews.” However, “so far I have seen almost none of these.” Uh-oh.

From: Robert Price
Date: Mon, Feb 9, 2015 at 1:33 PM
Subject: {News Staff} weekly notes
To: News Staff

Several weeks ago, [director of audience development] Louis [Amestoy] and I introduced a set of new expectations for reporters and editors. Chief among them was that reporters and editors shall write publishable content every single day.bake Not blow-out, eight-source 30-inchers (although they have their place), but quick-hit 4-inchers based on as few as a one source or even personal observation — “what I saw driving in to work” stories. So far I have seen almost none of these.

These are required and will be measured on your annual reviews (which are coming up). Please think about how you might start creating these. If you’re like me, you may think some stories (weather related, seen on a business marquee, etc) just don’t clear the bar of importance. Not true, in most cases. Readers gobble this stuff up.

Consider what our top stories on Facebook were last week:

• Store bought grated cheese vs. grating it yourself
• Scottish chimps
• Target stores walking suspect employee- thieves through their stores in handcuffs
• The weather

This does not mean we can’t or won’t cover the big, meaningful, impactful stories. Of course we will. And this week each of you will be receiving a list of weekend and enterprise assignments you’ve invited to add to (and discuss with Bob one on one). But, in addition, we need a short daily contributions. Poignant, funny, informative … whatever. Please think about this each day,

We will be launching a BHealthy section on Feb. 15 — a bi-weekly addition that runs in the back of A section each Sunday. The newsroom will handle the content implementation for this section, with input from Olivia’s team. We will also launch BWealthy on the same day — personal finances pages that replace the WSJ pages, which that company has discontinued.

Friday was our last day with Associated Press content. This has been a big change for our copy desk and has caused some mild disruptions. The biggest change is that Reuters does not conform to AP style, and that has caused some confusion.The copy desk needs to not stress out about these issues. We’ll work through them.

Thanks for your participation in our morning staff standup meetings. Let’s keep it going. Please continue to bring your ideas, opinions and (very brief) jokes.

* Bakersfield Californian on Facebook

New: Comments about the memo from my Facebook friends and subscribers

* Washington Post columnist John Kelly finds a “Missed Connection”-like ad in a Post from 1891. (
* How Alabama papers played gay marriage on the front page. (
* John Hockenberry: “Brian Williams’ focus on his own story may have kept him selling a flawed war along with nearly everyone on TV.” (
alabama* “America loves when journalists get taken down,” notes Will Leitch. ( | Williams slips – a lot – in a new trustworthiness poll. ( | NBC’s fact-checking will be finished “sooner rather than later.” ( | Now “an excruciating decision” for NBC. ( | What Williams told Stars & Stripes on February 4: (
* Jon Stewart on Williams and his case of “Infotainment Confusion Syndrome.” (
* Fox News boss Roger Ailes is “a huge embellisher,” too, says his biographer. (@gabrielsherman) | “My favorite dubious Ailes story was his fantastical account of meeting Nixon with a belly dancer and a snake.” (@gabrielsherman)
* Tablet now charges $2 a day or $18 a month to post comments. “We are not looking to make money, but instead to try to create a standard of engagement likely to turn off many, if not most, of the worst offenders.” ( | (
* Nick Kristof: “Beware of advice from has-been journalists who rose in a different era.” (@nickkristof) | The advice compiled: ( | #AdviceForYoungJournalists becomes a global trend. (@bbctrending)
* In terms of pay, journalism is just an average job. (
* The State identifies a University of South Carolina shooting victim before the name is officially released. A debate follows. ( | (Steve Buttry)
* RIP Laurie Becklund, who “was born a reporter.” The former Los Angeles Times journalist was 66. (
* Merrimam Smith, called “the greatest wire service reporter ever,” would have turned 100 today. (
* Advertisement: Study Media Innovation at Northeastern University. (
* Keep it up with your crazy hashtagging and you’ll stay single! (
* Meanwhile, in the UK: “With immediate effect the Daily Record newspaper will banned from attending all Rangers press conferences and games at Ibrox Stadium and Murray Park.” (