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Posts Tagged ‘Jim Farley’

WTOP Reels in Slew of Awards

WTOP received five awards over the weekend by the Virginia Associated Press Broadcasters, including the best website award for  During a Saturday luncheon, the station received four top level awards in the Superior class and one Meritorious Award.

WTOP’s National Security Correspondent J.J. Green was honored with the Douglas Southall Freeman Award for Public Service through Journalism for his series titled “Dignity Denied.”  Political Analyst Mark Plotkin was recognized for his editorial work with the “Mark Plotkin Commentary.”  Reporter Brennan Haselton was awarded best in the Feature/Human Interest category for “Whiskey! Huzzah!” and Michelle Basch in the same category for “Jailhouse Rock!.”

Jim Farley, V.P. of News and Programming, said in a release: “The entire newsroom works incredibly hard and they work amazingly well together.  It’s great to see them get the recognition from their peers.”

WTOP Blasts Fox 5 for No Attribution

paw_print_clipart_5.gif It happens all too often. Sometimes unintentional, sometimes not. Either way, a publication or TV network gets its paws all over your work as if it was their own and doesn’t credit you. In other words, theft.

In a letter to WTTG Fox 5′s V.P. and News Director Phil Metlin this morning with the subject line “Requesting a professional courtesy”, WTOP’s V.P. of News and Programming Jim Farley accused the network of running news reported by WTOP without attribution. The story was by WTOP’s Mark Segraves, who reported that D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty sought an endorsement from President Obama.

Asked how he knew for certain that Fox 5 had stolen the interview, Farley replied:

A) The Fox reporter admitted it when Mark Segraves called him and confronted him with stealing his story without credit.
B) Fenty aides confirmed to Mark the Mayor talked to no other reporter on the topic.

Read the letter from Farley to Metlin after the jump…

We’ve requested comment from Metlin. He did not immediately reply to our request. So far, Metlin has not replied to Farley, nor has there been bounce-back that shows Metlin is on vacation.

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Even in Dog Days, WTOP Strikes its Rich


WTOP scored high in Arbitron ratings for July. The station’s V.P. of News and Programming Jim Farley sent a congratulatory note to employees. “It feels great,” he told FishbowlDC. “WTOP has become a reliable utility for news, traffic and weather on the radio, online, in mobile apps, e-mail and text alerts. In fact, rather than a radio station, we see ourselves as a digital news organization.”

The internal memo:

It’s Summer…schools are closed, teachers and school bus drivers are off the road…people are on vacation…traffic is lighter…but WTOP still managed to win July both 12+ and 25-54.

12+ # 1 in every daypart, and 7th straight month with a double digit full week (10.9)

WaPo Flushes WTOP Info Down Toilet: ‘Ma’am We Have Our Own Reporters’

toilet-flush.jpg A water main break with toilet flushing restrictions is no small thing. But it appears a newspaper correction on water restrictions is a humongous undertaking for WaPo, especially when a journo from another outlet phones it in. When a WTOP editor told WaPo of a Saturday error (one that could affect many people), a WaPo employee on the Metro desk reportedly replied, “We have reporters.” WTOP’s V.P. of News and Programming Jim Farley remarked, “Can you spell a-r-r-o-g-ant?”

The backstory: On Saturday, WaPo reported that the city of Rockville had lifted water restrictions. But that was wrong – it hadn’t. WTOP’s Assistant Editor Kit Rockhill noticed the error, and as WTOP puts it, a professional courtesy, called WaPo‘s metro desk.

Rockhill wrote an e-mail to her boss, Farley, telling her version of what had happened. With the subject line, “Washington Post Rudeness,” Rockhill wrote:

“We got a breaking news alert from the Post saying the water restrictions were lifted in Rockville and citing a police dispatcher. Amy called both Rockville’s Public Works PIO and the City Government’s PIO (Craig Simoneau and Shannon Lumis respectively) and they both said it was not true that restrictions were still in place.

“We decided to call the Post and tell them so they could issue a retraction. I called the Post, asked for the Metro section. A woman answered and transferred me to someone (name sounded like Robert but didn’t quite catch it.) I explained I was with WTOP and wanted to have him talk to our reporter who confirmed restrictions were not lifted. I was told direct quote “We have reporters here ma’am.” I said I understand but…then I was cut off and told again direct quote “We have reporters here ma’am we don’t need to talk to your reporter.” It was all said in a very condescending and frankly quite rude voice and then he hung up.”

Farley told FishbowlDC: “The main motto of the WTOP Newsroom is “First get it right…THEN get it first.” FishbowlDC has requested comment from WaPo and we’ll bring it to you when and if we get it.

WaPo ultimately settled on this correction approximately 30 minutes after WTOP called…

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WTOP Wins Four Murrows

murrow77.jpg The National Edward R. Murrow Awards are being announced today.

For the second year in a row, WTOP wins more than any other radio station with four awards. In the “Major Market” radio category, no other station won more than one national award. WJLA ABC 7 was the only TV winner in Washington. WBAL Radio also won a national Murrow award.

Jim Farley, WTOP’s VP of News had this to say: “This is a tribute to (WTOP) News Director Mike McMearty and a newsroom full of hard-charging, competitive people. Any reports on the demise of Radio Journalism are entirely premature.”

Congratulations to WTOP, WBAL, and WJLA.

> Update: NPR has won four Edward R. Murrow in the category of networks. (FYI: WTOP competes locally.) The awards for NPR recognize; NPR’s news and talk show Tell Me More, on its weekly commentary series, “Can I Just Tell You?”; sports reporting for the series “Friday Night Lives”; and news coverage of the bombing of a U.S. Stryker vehicle in Afghanistan’s Kandahar province.

McConnell Celebrates 45 Years at WTOP

115802.jpgCapitol Hill radio correspondent Dave McConnell is an icon around the hill. If anything is going on, he’s always in the gaggle.

This month McConnell celebrates a whopping 45 years at the WTOP. He came to the station in 1965 and became the full-time Capitol Hill correspondent in 1981.

But don’t expect a party – not because they don’t want to give him one, but because he doesn’t want the fanfare. “He is really quite self-effacing,” said Jim Farley, McConnell’s boss and V.P. of News and Programming at WTOP.

McConnell, who won’t reveal his age but says he’s “old enough to collect Social Security,” says Capitol Hill still entrances him. “Once you think you’ve done everything you can do, something new happens, the so-called underpants bomber, then the upturns in politics, the Harry Reid incident,” he said in a phone interview.

McConnell has zero plans to retire. “As long as I have a seat covering the greatest show on earth, and can witness history being made, I’m going to keep on reporting,” he said. “I get to cover statesmen, scalawags, gentlemen (and gentlewomen) and scoundrels, issues, drama and histrionics.”

His favorites are many. “People who stand out in my mind, the late Sen. Ted Kennedy who I covered and did know personally as a reporter. [Another] on the Republican side would be John McCain. You would certainly think of him. Sen. Robert Byrd — the venerable Sen. Byrd. He has, frankly, such a unique character. … He’s our bridge to the past up here and I mean that in a positive sense.”

So how will he celebrate this monumental occasion? “I will celebrate like I always do by getting up early, working my sources, going to news conferences, going to floor debate, and just keep doing my job,” he said.

McConnell’s anniversary date is January 18.

He is heard weekdays in the morning and afternoon drive times on WTOP on 103.5 FM in the metro, 103.9 FM in Frederick, and 107.7 FM in Virginia and worldwide on

WTOP’s Jim Farley Calls WaPo‘s Bluff

The “Special Section” of WaPo‘s print edition today, says that “nearly three times as many Washingtonians age 25-54 read the Post each week than listen to WTOP, the largest audience station.”

WTOP VP of News Jim Farley says that’s “bogus.” Farley tells FishbowlDC that there is “no source for that wildly inaccurate claim and that 659,600 people 25-54 listen to WTOP each week, more than the entire circulation of the newspaper.”

Nearly 1.5 million individual listeners of all ages listen to WTOP weekly (Source-Arbitron).

Farley says he can’t understand why WaPo would engage in “a pissing match with WTOP using an unsourced claim that can be checked.”

WTOP Scores Five Murrows

WTOP Radio (103.5 FM) today announced it is the recipient of five coveted National Edward R. Murrow Awards, including “Overall Excellence” – the most in WTOP history and more than any other radio or television station in this year’s competition.

The awards this year:

Best Feature Hard News for J.J. Green‘s “Hidden Hunter”

Best Use of Sound for Brennan Haselton‘s “Cathedral Bells”

Best Writing for Chris Core‘s “Core Values”

Best Website for (this is the 2nd National Murrow in a row and the 4th in 7 years for the website)

Overall Excellence

Congrats to Jim Farley and the good folks at WTOP!