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Daily Archives: April 22, 2015

Staffers at the University of Missouri’s independent student newspaper had to stop working on their Wednesday edition last night after someone phoned in a bomb threat to the Student Center, where the newsroom is located.bomb

“We were roughly two hours into our production night when the Student Center was evacuated,” says Katie Pohlman, editor-in-chief of The Maneater. (The threat was called in at 7 p.m.)

The staff hoped to put the paper together outside of the newsroom.

We tossed around the idea of going to the Journalism School and working from there – we can work on our server as long as we’re connected to the school’s wireless – but we realized that most, if not all, of our InDesign pages were still pulled up on computers in the newsroom and therefore we couldn’t work on them. We also hadn’t dropped any photos onto the server and the photo editor’s computer was still in the newsroom, so we really couldn’t do much production work.

Pohlman warned her production team and printer that the weekly Maneater might have to come out a day late.

“I knew that if we could get back into the office anytime before midnight, when the Student Center locks, we would produce a paper with this [bomb threat] story as the main article,” the editor says.

Meanwhile, the student journalists set up a temporary newsroom of sorts “on a portion of grass, kitty-corner from the Student Center” and did their reporting on Twitter.

Katie Pohlman

Katie Pohlman

“We also only had one camera on hand so the photographer had to run around a five-block area taking photos of all the aspects of the incident,” says Pohlman. “We had to move around a bit as the police widened the perimeter so there was a lot of picking up and moving ourselves, our laptops and our temporary workspace down the street a little further.”

Finally, at about 10 p.m., The Maneater crew was allowed back into the newsroom.

It was crunch time. My production manager called on other members of our editorial board who had gone home already for design help. Every one was designing pages, reading stories and writing cutlines. Our social media editor and my managing editor came back to the newsroom to help the production process.

There were seven of us designing pages, when usually only three or four do. We all had adrenaline rushes and worked nonstop (usually our production nights are a little bit more casual with breaks to run up to the convenience store for snacks). Our production nights usually last from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. at the earliest, but, even with a two-hour delay last night, we got out at 2 a.m.

It was our fastest production night this year and we produced a 20-page paper.

* Student Center, Memorial Union evacuated over bomb threat (themaneater.com)
* E-edition of today’s Maneater (issuu.com) | Bomb threat news Storified

CINCO

Is this the new “What Time Does the Super Bowl Start?”

* When is Cinco de Mayo? (pennlive.com)

The Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild – in the middle of “extremely difficult” bargaining talks – plans to give Washington Post publisher Fred Ryan a petition on Thursday with 450 signatures “demanding a fair contract.” A brief rally in front of the Post building will follow.
contract
The Guild release says:

The Post’s new owner, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, has seemed bent on sending the message that while the Post is once again on an upward path, its employees — the people who write the stories, film the videos, and sell the ads – are expendable. He has shown that the new media era is not so different from any other era of big business when corporations cite fierce competition to justify unfair treatment of workers. It’s 1 percent versus the 99 percent.

The Guild’s full background statement is after the jump. Read More

rock

Retired Detroit bankruptcy judge Steven Rhodes claims the media had “an odd fascination in my participation in the rock and roll band that I play in.”

Odd fascination? I don’t think so. Senior-citizen judge who strums guitar on the side = decent feature story. Just play along, sir.

Judge Steven ("The Rocker") Rhodes

Judge Steven (“The Rocker”) Rhodes

He also said he wished his courtroom had been open to cameras during the Detroit bankruptcy proceedings, and that “in a public case like this the judge in charge should have the discretion to open it up to the media.”

Rhodes added: “I wish that someone in the media had made a formal issue out of this by filing a First Amendment motion. It’s likely that I would have granted that motion but it never happened.”

The Detroit journalist who passed this story along writes in an email: “Nobody bothered asking, because federal court is the last place in America where 20th Century technology is still barred from being used to document what the hell goes on.”

Update: I invited Detroit News managing editor Gary Miles to comment. He writes:

As your Detroit journalist suggested, it’s probably true that nobody filed because of the highly restrictive history of the federal courts. It’s also true that Rhodes barred laptops from the courtroom, barred the recording any proceedings from an overflow room, barred media interviews inside the courthouse and thwarted any attempts to get a photograph of him inside or outside of the courthouse. Yet, given his statements, maybe he was just waiting for a challenge. We should’ve given him the opportunity.

* Retired judge gives insider’s view of Detroit bankruptcy case (detroitnews.com)
* From 2014: Detroit bankruptcy judge set to rock ABI conference (wsj.com)

* Well, there you go: “The 2015 First Amendment Day celebration at Iowa State is made possible because of a generous donation from the Charles Koch Foundation.” (iastate.edu)
* Prof’s piece in Newsweek failed to disclose his Charles Koch Foundation ties. (washingtonpost.com)
* Young journalists are warned: The rate at which someone becomes a dinosaur is only going to speed up.dino (fusion.net)
* Wall Street Journal plays catchup on the digital front. (niemanlab.org) | A new look for TheAtlantic.com. (theatlantic.com)
* Proud dad Dave Barry mentions that son Rob is part of the Wall Street Journal’s Pulitzer-winning team. (herald.com)
* The computer scientist who came up with the emoticon doesn’t care for emojis. “I think they’re ugly,” says Scott Fahlman. (digiday.com)
* Imagining Howard Cosell as a 21st century media figure. (thebiglead.com)
* Paul Lukas on the psychology of leaking, with a few words from me. (uni-watch.com)
* Former “Daily Show” correspondent Rob Corddry hasn’t watched live news in eight years. (adweek.com)
* A second 2015 Pulitzer-winner recently left newspapers for PR. (cjr.org)
* A Grey Goose vodka “corporate publicity stunt” angers the White House Correspondents’ Association. (washingtonpost.com)fb
* Jay Rosen to Facebook: “Stop treating us like children at a Passover seder who don’t know enough to ask a good question.” (pressthink.org)
* “Facebook has been super shady since Day 1,” writes B.J. Mendelson. (observer.com)
* New York magazine contributing editor Gabriel Sherman is promoted to national affairs editor. (nymag.com/PDF)
* Baltimore Sun crime reporter Justin George, who contributed to the “Serial” podcast, is one of Marquette’s O’Brien Fellows. (baltimoresun.com)
* Some good ear-to-the-door reporting by the AP’s Gary Fineout in Tallahassee. (tbo.com)
* New York Times’ “36 Hours” column becomes a Travel Channel show. (capitalnewyork.com)