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Internal Memo

Say Hello to the Promoted Intern Sitting in Cubicle 473D

Does it get any more clinical than this?

U.S. News & World Report distributed an internal memo this week announcing that an intern, Teresa Welsh, has been promoted to associate opinion editor. The memo has a lot of details about the woman’s journalism experience — she joined the pub last May, she worked at Rare Earth Media, Wisconsin State Journal and has a degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The best part of the memo comes at the end when they mention that she sometimes brings in treats for everyone. She also sits in Cubicle 473D. Seriously, are newsrooms numbering their cubicles these days? There are just so many reporters that they feel a need to do this?

What cubicle do you sit in? If yours has a number write us about it at fishbowldc@mediabistro.com.

See the memo. Read more

Politico to Test Paywall

Politico is testing out a paywall to see what the reception is. The testing phase will last for at least six months and will affect a small number of states scattered across America. Washington, D.C. residents, however, don’t need to fret. The memo says it won’t likely ever affect them.

“We are a unique publication – with unique opportunities in this area. The most unique aspect of POLITICO is that unlike other media companies, we often sell out our ad inventory in the Washington, D.C., market because demand for our ad space is so high. This means it’s highly unlikely we would ever institute a metered system in the D.C. area.”

See the full memo: Read more

Tucker Carlson Welcomes New Exec. Editor, Instructs Staff to Treat Him as Such

On Friday afternoon, Daily Caller Editor-in-Chief Tucker Carlson sent a memo to staff signaling to them that they officially have a new editor for at least for six weeks while all parties see if it’s a good fit. As we reported yesterday, his Tim Cavanaugh, formerly of Reason and the non-pornographic Suck.com.

“I want to be completely clear that although he hasn’t yet signed a permanent contract with us, Tim is now the executive editor, and I expect him to be treated as such,” Carlson wrote, adding that he’s traveling this week but to do all they can to welcome him.

See the full memo. Read more

Human Events Publisher’s Wife to Groom Dogs

The annual Fashion For Paws benefit is two months away and Joe Guerriero, publisher of Human Events, really wants people to attend. Not for him, but for his wife, who will be primping and prepping the dogs backstage.

“I never do this type of stuff, but as many of you know, my wife Jenn is an avid dog lover and dog trainer,” Guerriero wrote this morning in an email blast to a handful of media types, including FishbowlDC. “Last night she strong-armed me into reaching out to some folks I know in hopes there might be some dog lovers among you.”

Later in the email Guerriero urges recipients and their friends to purchase tickets to the event and explains that until last year, he wasn’t aware “that the show brought out a veritable ‘who’s who’ D.C. crowd.”

Noteworthy names CCd on the email include… Read more

Politico Offers ‘Enhanced’ Maternity Leave

Politico, known for working its employees to the bone, is making life easier for new parents in its midst. Announced this morning in an internal memo, COO Kim Kingsley tells staff that the maternity policy has changed. Employees with primary care of a “newborn or newly adopted baby” may now take up to 12 fully-paid weeks off. Originally, staffers had to take advantage of the Family Medical Leave Act and use their own vacation/sick time for time off if they wanted to be paid.
See the internal memo… Read more

CNN’s Zucker: ‘We Must Not Always Be Bound By What Has Come Before Us’

CNN’s new head honcho Jeff Zucker checked in with staff this morning at 9:05 a.m. with a quick memo:

Just a quick note to say I am excited to finally be here, with you.

I spent Monday, my first official day with CNN, at our bureau in Washington, during our coverage of the President’s inauguration. The reporting, storytelling, production and innovation, across all of our CNN platforms, came together beautifully. It is clear that the capability of this organization to inform, enlighten and entertain on big stories is limitless.

Last week, I had a terrific time meeting and hearing from many of you in the town hall meetings in New York, Atlanta and Washington. In each place, we discussed how we can best showcase our journalism, provide more differentiation among our programs, and how we can chart a course for the future that is beyond just politics and breaking news. Those are the immediate challenges I look forward to working on with you.

As I noted in those town halls, I have great respect and deep admiration for all that you do. And for the legacy that you have helped build. But now, as we embark on the next chapter together, we must think even more broadly, and not always be bound by what has come before us.

I look forward to working with you. Thanks for welcoming me into this great organization.

JEFF

WaPo Reorganizes White House Team

Kevin Merida, one of WaPo‘s more adept internal memo writers, has co-authored “exciting changes” to the publication’s White House team.

His begins with high drama: “We’re marking the dawn of President Obama’s second term…”

The highlights: Scott Wilson, who won a couple of important-sounding awards last year, will be White House Bureau Chief; David Nakamura will forge on as a member of team, focusing on (yawn) immigration reform — never fear, his Pool Reports are a fun read; Philip Rucker, who covered Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, will cover Obama, gun control, and the President’s complex relationship with Congress; Felicia Sonmez, who “seems to never sleep”, will head up digital White House coverage; Zachary Goldfarb joins the team as a economic policy writer.

See the full memo…

Read more

David Bradley Equates New Site to Times Square

Atlantic Media has unveiled a brand new corporate logo and website they’re hoping will catapult them into a world class, digital-first enterprise. They formally released the expected statement this morning. They write, “The logo—modern minimalist geometric letters using a blue and silver grey color split—reflects key principles of digital design: simplicity and clarity of brand identity.”

But the statement we prefer is the one that wasn’t released to the public. This is the company-wide doozy from Publisher David Bradley to Atlantic Media that has him marveling over the invention of horse drawn carriages and hazelnut goodness of Nutella. No, no, not really. But he is marveling over the idea of a — hope you’re sitting down for this — whoa! a brand, spanking new NEW LOGO. He also gushes over the concept of one of his employees securing the URL called “Atlantic Media” for their site. Did we somehow miss the invention of the automobile?

Bradley writes, “The logo is something very new in my life – modern, spare, simple, minimalist.   And, the website itself is, at least to those of us in media, sheer excitement. … If one website only could be Times Square, this would be it.”

As for praise, Bradley spares nothing. “I think it’s fair to say that no finer work has been accomplished online on my watch.” Really, it is clean and beautiful, but are we still in Roman times? There are a number of lookers out there.

Bradley ends the romantic memo by saying this will be his last correspondence with staff before the new year. Damn! We were hoping for a daily diary. Delivered by pigeons, of course.

See the internal memo Atlantic Media didn’t widely circulate… Read more

Ask Ms. Politico: ‘Smith is a Jerk, Jones is Toast’

Ever since we got our hands on Politico‘s hot new ethics manual, we’ve been staying up late at night memorizing the lines. Here’s one we like…”If you find yourself heading into a problem area, it is a lot easier to ask for guidance in advance than to scrape off your shoe after stepping in it.” In what, dog shit?

We like to keep manual under our pillows, hoping the wisdom will seep in by osmosis. Today we continue with our advice column, Ask Ms. Politico, in which we ask the knowledgeable woman a question and she answers us directly from the ethics manual. While the questions are the ones we invent, her answers are real. To see past questions and answers, see here and here. We’re working our way through this as slow as we possibly can. Or as NBC’s Luke Russert might say, we’re “slow-walking” our way through it. We like to take our time with national treasures.

Q: Hi there Missy. I seem to have a terrible problem with popping off. I have opinions and sometimes it’s hard to keep my big fat mouth shut. Also, I have these horrible friends, Smith and Jones. They are both jerks. But Jones in particular is a real nobody. What should I do?

See Ms. Politico’s response…

Read more

Ask Ms. Politico: ‘They Did What?!’

FishbowlDC has obtained an 11-page internal handbook handed out to Politico reporters about a week ago. It’s called “The Right Thing to Do: Ethics at Politico.” Those who didn’t do the “right thing” in the past year and a half include Joe Williams, who was dismissed for racially tinged Twitter rantings and TV commentary, but allowed to stay until he found another job while finishing up probation for assaulting his ex-wife and Kendra Marr, who was fired for plagiarism. In an effort to share some of the more golden nuggets of wisdom with journalists in Washington and beyond, we’re turning it into an advice column for as long as it takes us to get through it. In short, we figure we’ll drag this harangue out as long as humanly possible. Enjoy!

Note to Readers: The questions will be the stupid and smart ones we concoct. The answers will be actual quotations from Politico‘s internal manual. And if any of you have questions you’d like answered, we’re sure the Politico ethics handbook addresses them, so send them our way at fishbowldc@mediabistro.com or to Betsy@mediabistro.com.

Q: What do we do when confronted with a decision or problem relating to ethics? Does this ever happen to you Ms. Politico? Do you feel our pain?

Read on for Ms. Politico’s response…

Read more

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