Monthly Archives: March 2015


Letter to Romenesko
From MIKE HOTCHKISS: The St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s website makes you answer questions occasionally, if you’re not a subscriber, to read an article. I’ve never seen this question before: What is the current year?

The best part is that the first time I answered, the site told me to take more time and try again. I put in 2015 both times. Second time was the charm.

This is the article [about the Riverfront Times being sold] where it happened to me.

* Screenshot of the story intro and questions (Google Drive)
* “It’s data and information collection used to make money” (



- Patty Hearst's T-shirt

– Patty Hearst’s T-shirt

Jill Abramson’s answer (from the Harvard Gazette, March 24):
Turn upside-down for the correct answer:

* Do you remember who pardoned Patty Hearst? | It was Clinton (
* For Jill Abramson, journalism comes full circle (


The Midland Daily News’ story about Tony Lascari being promoted to news editor includes this quote from the journalist: “I enjoy spending time with my nieces and my nephew, I’m an occasional runner and I love spending time in Midland’s parks. I live in Midland with my husband, Mark.”

That last sentence prompted State Rep. Gary Glenn to post a Facebook status update and send out a tweet “to alert readers to the reasonably observed possibility that this new position might be used to promote a political agenda or bias that’s at odds with our community’s values.”

Lascari says of Glenn: “I welcome him to contact me to speak about any topic at any time. In my new role as news editor at the Midland Daily News I look forward to helping my team produce quality stories that are accurate, interesting and important.”

Update — Lascari tells Romenesko readers: “I wrote a column yesterday that is the best statement of my views/reaction to Glenn that I can give.” He adds:

I have heard overwhelming positive feedback from the Midland community about my promotion. I also have received positive support about the column I wrote about my marriage, in which I say that I don’t think my marriage is worthy of receiving an “agenda alert” from a state representative. Rep. Glenn didn’t reach out to me to see what my political leanings may be before issuing the “alert.” …

The journalist (left) and the politician.

The journalist (left) and the politician.

On Facebook, my column has reached 47,200 people and received 579 likes, 96 comments and 67 shares as of 1:30 p.m. today. Those are enormous numbers for us at a small community newspaper. The comments have been almost all positive. The column was published in today’s print edition, and we will have to wait to see what the response is from our more traditional readers.

My colleagues at the Daily News have been supportive of me from the start. We may not agree on all issues, but we respect each other as journalists and intend to do the best work we can for our community.

* Glenn issues “agenda alert” over gay journalist’s promotion (
* “My marriage is a non-issue in Midland,” writes the news editor (
* Read Glenn’s Facebook post and comments about it (
* Glenn is accused of blocking Facebook comments (

Forbes contributors were told Tuesday that their pay will be cut for visits to content that’s more than 90 days old, because “advertisers are increasingly buying premium ads for new content, not old.”

Assistant managing editor Kerry Dolan writes in a memo [with my boldface]:

“We [currently] pay the same for every view, whether it comes from new content, or content that’s 90 days old, or a year old, or 3 years old.images-3 Starting April 1, we’ll pay the same rate we now pay per visitor to content that’s within 90 days of publication. We’ll pay 25% of that amount for visitors to content more than 90 days old.

The full memo:

As you’re probably aware, the digital advertising marketplace is changing, radically and suddenly.

In the past few months there’s been a drastic move toward ad viewability — in other words, advertisers only paying for the ads we can prove that people see.

In addition, advertisers are increasingly buying premium ads for new content, not old.

To keep pace with these changes we need a reset on the way we’ve paid our contributors.

And that’s going to impact the way your earnings are calculated./CONTINUES Read More

* “Can’t help but wonder if this will end up on @romenesko tomorrow. Double byline: Tom Hamburger and Rachel Weiner.” (@MichalskiLaura)burger | “He’d relish the opportunity.” (@bbellafiore)
* Report: U.S. and Syria are in talks to release missing journalist Austin Tice. (
* Steve Brill on “The Jinx”: “Once they catch him at the end muttering to himself, if you’re a journalist, you go back and ask him what he meant. The basic rule of journalism is you ask people for comment.” (
* How BuzzFeed got $4 million in tax credits from New York. (
* Denver press critic Michael Roberts calls Colorado Springs Gazette’s “Clearing the Haze” series “a beautifully presented but woefully one-sided anti-weed screed.” (
* Cal Thomas tells Liberty University students that he had his first column framed. It ran in the New York Times. (
* “Digital is making money for us now,” says Conde Nast president Bob Sauerberg. (
* The Advance ax swings again: “Many employees of The Times of Trenton, The South Jersey Times, NJN Publishing and The Express-Times will be offered jobs with NJ Advance Media, although officials of the newspapers say there will be some job losses. They did not say how many employees will be laid off.” (
* Expect to see more video advertising on Facebook. (
sea* Clare Farnsworth retires after covering the Seattle Seahawks for 36 years. ( | Richard Sherman tells the journalist: “This place won’t be the same without you.” ( | h/t @sportsrapport
* JOBS: A new NYC-based website is looking for education reporters; Honolulu Civil Beat seeks an investigations editor. (Romenesko Jobs)
* “I just threw away 420 death notices that I accumulated through the years,” says a 96-year-old devoted newspaper reader. (
* #RaceTogether to deadline in a temporary AP “newsroom” at an Albuquerque Starbucks. (@RussContreras) | h/t Matthew Keys
* “Meerkat will literally change the world.” (My bullshit detector just blew a fuse.) (
* Providence Journal weekday newsstand price goes from a buck to $2. (

Michelle Leder reports on her footnoted* blog that payments to Ochs-Sulzberger family members employed by the New York Times Company during 2014 rose from 2013. She sends this excerpt from her footnoted*Pro subscribers-only post:

Samuel Dolnick, the deputy sports editor and senior editor, mobile, for the New York Times, received compensation of $172,456 in 2014, up from $122,761 in 2013 as staff reporter and deputy sports editor for the paper. Samuel Dolnick is the son of Vice Chairman Michael Golden’s sister. Michael Golden and Chairman and Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. are cousins.
James Dryfoos was employed as program director and senior director, project management, and received compensation of $192,445, up from $175,503 in 2013.

Michael Greenspon, who was employed as general manager, news services and international, received compensation of $460,343, up from $360,933.

Rachel G. Kirscht was employed as a manager in marketing and received compensation of $103,498, up from $79,635.

David Perpich, who was employed as general manager, new digital products, received compensation of $356,252, up from $287,926.

Arthur Gregg Sulzberger was employed as an assistant editor and senior editor for strategy for The New York Times and received compensation of $153,910, up from $118,285.

The company said Arthur Sulzberger Jr., Michael Golden and the mother of Carolyn D. Greenspon are cousins. James Dryfoos and Michael Greenspon are each the son of a cousin of Arthur Sulzberger Jr. and Michael Golden, and Michael Greenspon is Carolyn D. Greenspon’s brother. Rachel G. Kirscht is Michael Golden’s daughter. David Perpich is the son of Arthur Sulzberger Jr.’s sister and Arthur Gregg Sulzberger is Arthur Sulzberger Jr.’s son.

* footnoted* (Uncovering actionable information in SEC filings since 2003) (

New: The Times publisher gets $6.8 million in total compensation (

I’m told the headline was written by NJ Advance Media managing producer Tom Troncone.

* Stuffed bunnies were hopped up on meth, agents say ( | h/t Debbie Luczak Hoffman

Wall Street Journal editor-in-chief’s memo to staff:

From: Baker, Gerard
Sent: Monday, March 23, 2015 3:42 PM
To: WSJ All News Staff
Subject: David Bird

As we mourn the loss of David Bird, I want to share with you details of his funeral and offer a way to make a contribution in his memory.

David Bird

David Bird

David was a widely respected reporter for The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones for more than 20 years. He went missing more than a year ago and was found dead near his home in New Jersey last week.

He is survived by his wife, Nancy Fleming, and their two children, Alex and Natasha.

After receiving a liver transplant ten years ago, David and Nancy became advocates for organ donations. He became an avid runner and cyclist and completed the New York City Marathon in 2013, inspiring many transplant recipients. In lieu of flowers, his family is asking that donations be sent either to a family trust or to the NJ Sharing Network Foundation, which advocates for organ and tissue donations (details are below)./CONTINUES Read More

The New York Times is dropping Joe Sharkey’s “On the Road” at the end of the month.
“I wrote it every single week for 16 years,” he writes in an email, and “never missed a week, including when I just got back from custody in the jungle after the Brazil mid-air collision over the Amazon in 2006.”

He adds: “Didn’t see this coming, frankly. They said they had to cut the freelance budget -and I was a freelancer, working without any kind of contract. … I intend to write occasionally for the NYT here and there. It’s an amicable parting on the column, though as I said, rather abrupt. The perils of the freelance life, as we all know.”

Sharkey says he’s working on a novel about a travel columnist who hates traveling, and teaching at the University of Arizona journalism school.

* Joe Sharkey’s “On the Road” columns (