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Posts Tagged ‘Stuart Taylor’

NJ Going Through Major Revamp, Layoffs, Buyouts, and a Search for an Editor-in-Chief

Major changes are happening at National Journal Group today. Some will be favorable – a shift to the web with more positions specializing in topics such as health care, White House, Congress and energy. And for others, this will be a hard pill to swallow.

This is especially true if you’re among the eight people who will be let go when all is said and done. There are 106 editorial employees at the publication as it stands and 98 will remain.

Here are the big points:

1. NJ is in search of an Editor-in-Chief to oversee all operations – NJ magazine, the Web Site, The Hotline and CongressDaily. Charles Green, who currently serves as Editor of National Journal, will shift into the number two spot.

2. Today at three meetings, reporters from each part of the company will receive packets with detailed information of taking buyouts should they so choose. They will be given a list of newly written reporting positions they must apply for to remain at the publication. All reporters must reapply for their posts. Those with the highest salaries will see pay cuts if they stay.

3. Columnists Stuart Taylor, Clive Crook and Jonathan Rauch are out, unless they decide to stay on and write in other capacities for NJ Magazine. Their columns have been scrapped. “Hopefully they will continue to have a presence in the magazine,” said Green.

In a phone interview this morning, Green told FishbowlDC: “We’re going to be adding positions for reporters who are more web oriented, and subtracting positions for some of the more print focused reporters. We are going to put a lot more emphasis on digital. We’re still going to maintain the quality of our print publications, but like everybody else, we recognize the future is in digital and we need to enhance our presence there.

“Everybody realizes that the media landscape is changing very quickly. We need to adapt to it.”

Green said he wasn’t nervous about the difficult meetings before him and the long day ahead. “Sure, shaking up a newsroom and reorganizing things isn’t easy, particularly when you’ve been a part of it for a fairly long time,” said Green. “But while it isn’t easy, it’s exciting to be trying to do some new things and meet some new challenges. There’s a lot of enthusiasm on my part to try to position our newsroom better to meet the challenges we’re facing to serve our readers better, and be more visible in Washington.”

He didn’t anticipate the situation to turn ugly today. “I don’t expect the meetings to get hostile,” he said. “That’s not the culture here.”

Still, doesn’t he feel slighted about not getting the number one post at the publication? “I think they felt it was helpful to bring in someone new and fresh and add to the editorial team we have,” he said. “I completely understand their thinking.”

Three months ago, owner David Bradley stepped in with Justin Smith, now president of National Journal Group, and created task forces to come up with solutions for improving the publication. Recommendations from those task forces (comprised of reporters and editors at NJ) are the basis for what is happening today.

Green said his responsibilities have increased over the years, but he explained that he has never been Editor-in-Chief of the entire operation of National Journal Group. He insisted that he would not step down. “I’m committed to making this unified newsroom work,” he said.

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Shuster, Ifill, Taylor Weigh In On “Imus” … Sort Of

We’ve been keeping a tally of which 2007 Imus guests will go back on Don Imus’ program when it returns. Out of the previous D.C.-based guests on Imus’ program in 2007, we’ve heard back from Howard Fineman, Craig Crawford, Chris Wallace, Chris Matthews, Ana Marie Cox and David Gregory.

Three more have gotten back to us:

Gwen Ifill: “I have no thoughts.”

David Shuster: “I subscribe to the Howard Fineman way of thinking about this — I will follow company policy. However, I don’t know what NBC/MSNBC policy is and I haven’t asked yet. So, I don’t know.”

Stuart Taylor, Jr.: “If Imus calls, which he has not done in several years, I expect that I would say I’d be glad to go on, but with the understanding that I might say that those of us who are critical of the excesses of racial victimology need to be especially careful to avoid anything close to a racial slur or racist remark. The reasons are to avoid any insult to African-Americans as a group and to avoid giving openings to those who are quick to charge ‘racial insensitivity’ to divert attention from the important issues of race in this country. I feel especially strongly about these dangers given that my recent book happens to focus on an episode in which white Duke lacrosse players – who are good guys — were victims of lying and character assassination by a mob including many black (as well as many white) abusers of power.

We’ll let you know when we hear from the rest of Imus’ 2007 DC guests.

WSJ Honors Taylor…And His Moustache

taylor_lrg.gifLast week, the Wall Street Journal made National Journal columnist Stuart Taylor the first journalist admitted into the Law Blog Moustache Society. (via The Gate)

Morning Reading List, 09.24.07

morningsun.gifGood morning Washington.

  • You think Dan Rather has totally lost it.

  • An NBC release announced, “According to national Nielsen Media Research data, ‘Meet the Press with Tim Russert’ was the top-rated Sunday morning public affairs program, winning the week ending Sunday, September 16 in all categories across the country and in Washington, D.C.” Nationally on Sunday, the Russert-moderated program
    attracted 2.991 million total viewers, a +30% advantage over ABC’s “This Week,” a +36% lead over CBS’s “Face the Nation” and +162% more than FOX “News Sunday”

  • An ABC release announced, “According to Nielsen Media Research for Sunday, September 16, 2007, ABC News ‘This Week with George Stephanopoulos’ outperformed CBS’ ‘Face the Nation’ among both Total Viewers and the key Adults 25-54 demo for the 16th time this season. In addition, ‘This Week’ is the only Sunday discussion program up season-to-date (2%) and year-to-date (5%) among Total Viewers.”

  • Smithsonian Channel To Make Its Debut, But Only on DirecTV

  • Discovery Closer to Going Public

  • Deb Howell on “Protest Coverage Worth Protesting

  • And Clark Hoyt takes NYT task for MoveOn.org’s ad.

  • Random question: Will Dan Rather’s lawsuit affect whether Chris Matthews continues to have him on “The Chris Matthews Show”?

  • Today marks the launch of P.O.T.U.S. ’08 on XM Radio.

  • TV Week reports, “Commercials in high definition not only look better, they sell better. That’s the conclusion of research tied to a major upfront deal that put Starcom USA clients on Discovery Communications’ Discovery HD Theater channel.”

  • The Nation’s Marvin Kitman reports, “The launch of Katie Couric a year ago as the anchor of the CBS Evening News was hailed by CBS as the biggest thing in news since, well, the invention of denture fixative commercials. It was also the biggest flop. The CBS Evening News Without Dan Rather or Bob Schieffer had its lowest ratings since Nielsen began tracking evening news shows in 1987.”

  • “Overall media advertising spending in the U.S. dipped 0.5 percent in the first half of 2007 compared with the first half of 2006, the Nielsen Co. said” last week, reports TV Week.

  • Los Angeles Times reports beginning last week, “season premiere episodes of seven Fox Broadcasting programs will be made available for free through Apple’s iTunes store, a move that highlights the TV industry’s race to harness the Internet and try out potential business partners.”

  • E&P reports, “The Newspaper Association of America is launching a contest that asks teens to create a YouTube video showing how they use newspapers in print or online.”

  • Washington Post reports, “Industry speculation has it that CBS might seek a quick financial settlement to avoid the spectacle of its former star taking depositions from its top brass. But [Dan] Rather dismissed that notion.” Rather “said he’ll give a ‘substantial’ portion of the money to journalism groups if he wins, reports the New York Daily News.

  • “It’s been a while since the debate over Iraq policy was the nation’s top talk show topic. But the Iraq doubters drove the suddenly re-ignited conversation on the airwaves last week. Meanwhile, the strange saga of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick and his dog fighting operation proved a difficult topic to tackle,” according to the Pew Talk Show Index.

  • DMNews reports, “While circulation numbers continue to fall for large metro paid dailies, free papers are stepping in to meet the needs of the younger urban demographic.”

  • Last week, Google “released a free software tool that allows Google AdWords advertisers to create their own Google Print Ads for display in newspapers,” reports Information Week.

  • Poynter Online’s Amy Gahran writes, “I figured I should check out what NYTimes.com is doing in terms of online advertising, now that they’ve finally let go of the subscriber-wall model. The answer — at least from a quick perusal — was disappointing. NYTimes.com seems to still be relying mainly on large, generic banner ads that are mostly irrelevant to page content.”

  • Check out Public Eye’s Matthew Felling’s take on Dan Rather’s lawsuit against CBS/Viacom.

  • C-SPAN announced the re-design of www.campaignnetwork.org, the political network of record’s website specializing in Campaign 2008.

  • Qorvis’s Quin Hillyer has some fun with a “Fact Check” story in the Washington Post.

  • Don’t miss the upcoming deadlines for the National Press Foundation’s annual awards entries. Check out details here.

  • “During the 2007 SPJ Convention & National Journalism Conference, federal shield laws will be debated during a panel discussion. Serving on the panel are Randall Eliason, a professor from American University; Eve Burton, general counsel for Hearst Corp; Jim Taricani, a reporter at WJAR who was held in contempt of court, and Bruce Sanford, an attorney for Baker Hostetler. Mike Walter, an anchor with WUSA will moderate the panel. The event will take place at 10 a.m., Friday, Oct. 5 at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill, 400 New Jersey Ave., NW in the Ticonderoga room.” For more info, click here.
  • B&C reports, “The endorsement of stars like Oprah Winfrey, Jon Stewart or even Tiger Woods would not translate to any more votes and — somewhat curiously in the case of Stewart, Woods and several others — could actually hurt their chances.”

  • Asbury Park Press reports, “Technology threatens to replace traditional news sources with independent Web sites and blogs, making news gathering more democratic but raising questions about the veracity of stories, Myron Kandel, founding editor of CNN Financial News, said Thursday.”

  • New York Times reports, Michael Arrington, founder and (strong) voice of Techcrunch, an influential tech-centric blog about startups, is moving over to share his pulpit.
    Willingly. Starting Wednesday, Techcrunch will be co-edited by Erick Schonfeld, formerly an editor-at-large and blogger for the erstwhile Business 2.0 and a senior writer at Fortune Magazine.”

  • RCN announced in a release, “the company won its second consecutive Thoth Award for Investor Relations at the Public
    Relations Society of America National Capital Chapter’s 39th annual Thoth Awards Dinner at the National Press Club.”

  • John F. Sturm, president and chief executive officer of the Newspaper Association of America, writes in the Seattle Times, “Those who continue to support the 30-year-old ban on cross-ownership of newspapers and broadcast stations in the same market are living in a curious time warp — where a community’s communications consisted of a newspaper and, at best, a handful of local television and radio stations.”

  • Chicago Tribune reports, “Federal Communications Commission members got an earful Thursday night in Chicago, the fifth of six public hearings around the country on its media-ownership rules. Much of the crowd at Rainbow/PUSH Coalition national headquarters applauded whenever panelists and speakers from the community called for less consolidation of media ownership and more minority representation on and as owners of broadcast outlets.”

  • A tipster tells us, “HD history that almost wasn’t The Presidential address to the nation made a little history when it was shot and fed out in High Definition for the first time. But about 5 minutes into the speech, NBC, the network pool (and all the other networks) lost transmission of the HD signal. They immediately replaced it with the standard definition signal, but when it came to the refeed the HD version to the networks later on, it turned out nobody had recorded it. The transmission had been lost somewhere between the White House and the NBC Washington Bureau, and what’s even worse, NBC staff at the White House hadn’t recorded it. Enter struggling HD outfit HDNews. The 24 hour national news network broadcast entirely in HD and available on Dish Network and several cable systems in the northeast. They had subscribed to the pool feed and instead of going to NBC to receive the signal, went to the White House and plugged into NBC’s White House pool drop instead. This week NBC contacted the HDNews Washington Bureau, and they were able to provide a copy to NBC and the other networks that had subscribed the Presidential HD pool speech. And thus, saving September 13th 2007 as the first Presidential Address to the nation in High Definition.”

  • The Hollywood Reporter reports, “With $12.6 billion, Anne Cox Chambers of Cox Enterprises fame is the richest American whose fortune is tied to the media industry, but that’s only if you don’t count the Internet as ‘media.’”

  • Wall Street Journal reports, “When the Democratic-led Congress started debating a big Food and Drug Administration bill earlier this year, pharmaceutical companies worried that it would sharply restrict one of their most powerful sales-boosting tools — drug ads. But in the final bill, which passed the House overwhelmingly on Wednesday and the Senate last night, such marketing is largely spared. One major reason: the drug industry found powerful allies among media and advertising firms who were determined to protect one of their biggest and fastest-growing advertising categories.”

  • Bloomberg reports, “Comcast Corp., the biggest U.S. cable television service, and 10 other cable television providers were sued over claims their bundling of channels forces consumers to pay for services they don’t want.”

  • Poynter Online reports, “This just in, courtesy of our Anglophile-eyed British colleague, program coordinator Jacqueline Davies: Hypens are history, at least for 16,000 words deemed hyphen unworthy.”

  • “ABC is reaching beyond its Web site and iTunes with a deal to carry its prime-time shows on AOL Video. The agreement marks the first time ABC has offered its shows on an online portal. The deal also calls for ABC to syndicate its player to AOL Video,” reports TV Week.

  • EMDashes writes, “About that piece in the Voice that’s been getting a lot of press: good for them for creating something so timely and buzzworthy, and I’m wholly sincere; for many years, I never missed a copy of the paper. … Unfortunately, I can’t agree with Rose Jacobs here. It’s certainly true that the PEN World Voices Festival is an excellent series; I saw how fulfilling the events were (and how hard the small staff works) when I was at PEN, and it’s an inspiring program. But Jacobs’s accounts of two previous New Yorker Festival events, both of which I also attended — John Updike and David Remnick, in 2005, and Milos Forman and David Denby, in 2006 — puzzle me.”

  • Local freelance writer Kelly Dinardo makes Page Six!

  • The Orlando Sentinel editors try a Facebook experiment.

  • TV Week reports, “Electronic Local People Meters (LPMs) are set to be installed in 38 additional markets by 2011, the Nielsen Co. announced.”

  • Check out the latest installment of Mediabistro’s J-School Confidential.

  • Rachel Sklar writes, “Dan Rather Has Nothing To Lose”

  • Jay Rosen writes, “If I were to underline one thing about Dan Rather’s $70 million suit against CBS, it’s the theatricality of it, which is the key to understanding Rather himself.”

  • PBS Ombudsman writes, “PBS seemed to be making news this week rather than just broadcasting it. The news revolves around two debates, officially called “forums,” for 2008 presidential candidates — one in Iowa for Democrats and one in Maryland for Republicans. Both were scheduled months ago, are being broadcast on PBS, and are taking place within days. And both, in odd and contrasting ways, have become controversial.”

  • ’60 Minutes’ clocks in for its 40th season

  • Lloyd Grove has an interview with Barry Diller, “The internet mogul speaks his mind on videogames, newspapers, and his own style of management.”

  • TVNewser reports, “ICN says moveon.org’s use of ‘Gen. Betray us’ was not original; that it may have come from a Countdown with Keith Olbermann broadcast on August 16.”

  • TV Week reports, “Cox Communications on Wednesday announced it will be adding four high-definition networks from Discovery Communications. High def simulcasts of Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet and the Science Channel will be rolled out on a market-by-market basis, the company said. Customers will be able to see such shows as ‘Deadliest Catch,’ ‘Dirty Jobs’ and ‘Meerkat Manor.’”

  • Beltway Blogroll writes, “When Arianna Huffington and Jay Rosen announced their plan for OffTheBus early this year, I was excited by the prospect of a network of citizen journalists covering the 2008 presidential campaign. I even pondered the idea of volunteering as an OffTheBus professional mentor to the budding reporters. The more developments I see at OffTheBus, however, the more skeptical I become about whether it can fulfill its promise of offering ‘a wide variety of voices and perspectives” on the 2008 campaign.’

  • E&P reports, “After completing a two-year conversion of its 85 daily papers from 52-inch web size to 48-inch, Gannett Co. Inc. is conducting a national review for a possible second size cut to 44-inch web.”

  • New York Observer reports, “Blaise Zerega, Portfolio’s managing editor will be taking over the job of deputy editor–a position left vacant since the high-profile firing of Jim Impoco last month. Also, New Yorker managing editor Jacob Lewis will be joining Portfolio to fill Mr. Zerega’s role.”

  • Mary Mapes writes, “Gee, just when I was all excited about Wednesday’s big premiere of the new CBS cultural triumph Kid Nation, my old friend Dan Rather went and blew my whole evening out of the water by filing a massive lawsuit against the company. Here we go again.”

  • Stuart Taylor offers an apology “to MSNBC talk-show host Joe Scarborough and to The Post for the cutting description of Mr. Scarborough in a Sept. 7 op-ed, ‘Guilty in the Duke Case,’ by me and KC Johnson about the Duke lacrosse case. I wrote that description on the basis of transcripts of “Scarborough Country” programs early in the Duke case. My attention has since been drawn to transcripts of several subsequent programs, and I realize that Mr. Scarborough was one of the handful of journalists who deserve credit for calling attention early in the case to the emerging evidence of innocence.”

  • Brendan Nyhan writes, “Believe it or not: the AP has released a piece by Ron Fournier titled ‘Analysis: Is Edwards Real or a Phony?’ Talk about parroting Republican talking points! Can we expect an equivalent approach to covering the GOP candidates? (‘Giuliani: Sane or Crazy?’) Also, there’s an obvious epistemological problem here — Fournier can’t resolve whether Edwards is “real” or a “phony,” nor can anyone else. And this sort of character-focused coverage diverts attention from issues that Fournier can effectively address such as, well, policy.”

  • CJR writes about the Fournier piece, “one thing a political attack does need to work—whether it’s right or wrong—is for reporters to give it a thorough airing, to ensure that it gets proper traction with voters. Which is what Fournier does with today’s piece, headlined: ‘Analysis: Is Edwards Real or a Phony?’”

  • Harry Jaffe writes, “Now the Washington Post has come up with a surefire way to make its employees know they are valued cogs in the wheel of news production. Gary Corso, director of administration and operating services at the paper of Watergate fame, this week authored the following memo: ‘The Northwest cafeteria Coffee Cart is offering Post managers an opportunity to reward their employees with tickets for either a free box of popcorn or a free 16-ounce regular coffee. Tickets must be purchased in sheets of ten and can only be redeemed at the Northwest Coffee cart. The price is $11.00 for ten popcorn tickets and $15.50 for ten 16 oz. regular coffee tickets. (Taxes are included)’”

  • Real Clear Politics launched RealClearPolitics Fantasy ’08, “a market-based game for the 2008 election powered by Intrade.”

  • City Paper’s Erik Wemple writes, “Two reporters took on Vice President Dick Cheney. One of them will stay on the case.”

  • Bob and Lee Woodruff know how to draw a crowd. The boldface names will be out in full force Nov. 7 in New York City for the “Stand up for Heroes” gala. The event is a partnership between the New York Comedy Festival and the Bob Woodruff Family Fund,” reports TVNewser.

  • “FactCheck.org, the St. Petersburg Times, and the Washington Post smoke out the political BS,” writes Slate’s Jack Shafer.

  • “The Knight News Challenge is offering up to $5 MILLION for innovative ideas using digital technology to revolutionize community news!”

  • CyberSoc writes, “I started a post about social bookmarking but ended up writing about the apparent disappearance of technorati from the Washington Post’s article pages”

  • Rachel Sklar writes, “Color us not-surprised: Brian Stelter has…a blog! About TV!” Check out TV Decoder here.

    Jobs

  • The Chronicle of Higher Education is looking for a paid intern.

  • The Aspen Institute is looking for a Deputy Dir of Communications and Public Affairs.

  • The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy is looking for a Senior Manager, New Media Program.

  • National Association of Manufacturers is looking for a Graphic Designer.

  • Diverse: Issues In Higher Education magazine is looking for a Webmaster.

  • Northern Virginia Daily is looking for a Copy editor/page designer.

  • Carroll County Times is looking for a Westminster Reporter.

  • The Salisbury Daily Times is looking for a Page Designer/Copy Editor.

  • The Humane Society of the United States is looking for an Associate Editor.

  • C-SPAN is looking for an Assignment/Logistics Editor and a Washington Journal Producer.

  • America Abroad Media is looking for an Associate Producer for AAM TV.

  • The RAND Corporation is looking for a Director of Media Relations.

  • Congressional Quarterly is looking for a Committees Reporter, a Video Producer, CQ Politics and a User Interface Designer & Developer.

  • Washington Business Journal is looking for a Reporter.

  • Times Community Newspapers is looking for a Reporter.

  • ASCRS is seeking a Special Projects Editor.

  • American Chemical Society is looking for a Web Production Associate.

  • Reading Is Fundamental is looking for a Manager, Media Relations.

  • Bisnow on Business is looking for a Tech Reporter/Writer.

    Hat Tips: DCRTV, TVNewser, IWantMedia, Romenesko, MediaBistro, JournalismJobs, JournalismNext

  • All Libby, All The Time…

    We won’t even dare try to summarize all of the Libby coverage this morning (for that, go here).

    Howard Kurtz chimes in and has this to say:

      The case, in which special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald forced journalists to testify by using the threat of prison, was also a setback for media arguments that such testimony jeopardizes important newsgathering. “We do not think that what Libby was telling reporters was whistle-blowing,” Fitzgerald said yesterday, adding that subpoenaing journalists “should be a last resort.”

      The one plus for the media in Libby’s conviction involved Tim Russert, NBC’s Washington bureau chief, since the case turned on his credibility. The Libby defense was built around his contention that he learned about CIA operative Valerie Plame from Russert and, therefore, believed it was widely known, but the “Meet the Press” host insisted that it never came up in their conversation. The jury believed Russert.

      The searing spotlight on how reporters do their jobs was less than flattering. Miller said she lost one of her notebooks and couldn’t remember the names of the other sources she said had told her about Plame. Former Time correspondent Matt Cooper, who wrote a piece questioning whether the administration had “declared war” on Wilson, had trouble deciphering his own notes. Bob Woodward, the Washington Post editor and author, apologized to his boss for failing to disclose for more than two years that former deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage had told him about Plame.

    Stuart Taylor weighs in here, as does Liz Halloran here. And Denis Collins, Juror #9. John Dickerson here.