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Archives: August 2009

Chapter 11 For Owner Of The OC Register

According to the Wall Street Journal, Irvine-based Freedom Communications Inc. is going to declare bankruptcy sometime this week. Freedom Comm is the parent company of the Orange Country Register and 32 other daily newspapers, as well as 77 weeklies and 8 television stations. From the WSJ:

Freedom was founded in the 1930s by R. C. Hoiles, a former printer’s apprentice who used his publications in part to spread his libertarian views. The Orange County Register continues the libertarian approach but, like other newspapers across the country, has had to confront the question of its survival.

“We are continuing to work with our lenders to address our balance sheet,” said a Freedom spokesman.

CBS Correspondent McCormick Injured In Afghanistan|Newspaper Ad Revenues Down 29%|A Closer Look At Nemanzee|Glenn Beck Can’t Spell

TVNewser: CBS News correspondent Cami McCormick was injured in Afghanistan today. While traveling with the U.S. Army, McCormick’s convoy was struck by an IED. She underwent surgery and was transported to Bagram Air Base for additional treatment.

Associated Press: Newspapers’ ad revenues dropped by 29 percent during the second quarter of 2009, depriving the industry of $2.8 billion — the deepest loss since the industry started to feel stressed three years ago.

WhoWhatWhy: A closer look at political fundraiser Hassan Nemazee, who was arrested earlier this week.

Mediaite: Glenn Beck forgot how to spell “oligarchy.”

Mediabistro.com At The Center Of Mistaken Journalist Identity

cayton.jpgThere’s a feud going on in Denver between two journalists and a mislabeled photo from a 2005 Mediabistro has helped drag a third journalist into the fray.

It all started last month, when Denver Westword reporter Jared Jacang Maher wrote an article about local consumer reporter and radio personality Tom Martino, claiming Martino may have been earning cash from a product he promoted on his show, the energy drink Efusjon.

Martino struck back at Maher on his blog, and tried to ambush interview him at a McDonald’s. When he failed to get an interview with him or an editor at the Westword, Martino made a video blog about Maher, displaying a photo of him he had found on the Internet.

The photo was from a 2005 Mediabistro party. But unfortunately, the photo was mislabeled. It was actually a photo of Maher’s friend and fellow journalist Adam Cayton-Holland, who had stolen Maher’s nametag at the party. Annoyed with being accused of being an inaccurate liar, Cayton-Holland made a video of his own for The Onion‘s A.V. Club.

Martino has since taken down any reference to the incorrect photo, but you can still watch his original video here. When we did a Google image search for Maher, the first photo that came up was the Mediabistro shot of Cayton-Holland. But, as Cayton-Holland himself points out, there are many other photos of Maher online, too. The whole case of mistaken identity is just a sidebar to a serious piece of journalism that tried to shine a light on possible impropriety. But it’s pretty funny.

The video is pretty funny, too. (After the jump)

Read more

DJ AM Found Dead Of Suspected Drug Overdose

DJ AM, aka Adam Goldstein, was found dead this afternoon in his New York apartment. The details, as reported by the New York Post:

DJ AM was found dead today in an apartment on Lafayette Street in Manhattan. He was 36.

Sources said drug paraphernalia was found in the apartment and cops are looking into whether it was an overdose.

DJ AM was a celebrity deejay best known for being engaged to Nicole Richie. He had also been romantically linked to actress Mandy Moore and former Miss USA Tara Conner

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NYT And ProPublica: Keeping Long Form Journalism Alive?

nytimesmag.jpgThe New York Times magazine this Sunday will feature a 13,000-word article that reveals the findings of a two-year investigation that was a joint venture between the Times and non-profit investigative organization ProPublica.

The piece’s author, Sheri Fink, details the stories of what happened to patients who died at New Orlean’s Memorial Medial Center after Hurricane Katrina. The lengthy story is something that we’re seeing less and less of in newspapers and consumer magazines (outside of the New Yorker, that is): long form journalism.

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Michael Jackson’s Death Officially A Homicide

The Los Angeles County coroner has ruled that Michael Jackson‘s death was a homicide. The coroner’s office made the official announcement this morning in a statement, which reads in part:

The drugs Propofol and Lorazepam were found to be the primary drugs responsible for Mr. Jackson’s death. Other drugs detected were: Midazolam, Diazepam, Lidocaine and Ephedrine.

The final coroner’s report, including the complete toxicology report will remain on security hold at the request of the Los Angeles Police Department and the Los Angeles County District Attorney. In accordance with this request, the Department of Coroner will not comment on its completed investigation.

Previously on FBLA:
Michael Jackson Died Of Propofol Overdose

Globe Readies For NYTCo. Execs’ Visit

nytco.pngThe New York Times Co. Chair Arthur Sulzberger Jr. and CEO Janet Robinson informed staff members at The Boston Globe yesterday to expect a visit on September 9, The Boston Herald reported.

Robinson and Sulzberger will be in town for two all-staff “business update” meetings, the execs told Globe staffers in a memo. But they shouldn’t expect a very warm reception. Tensions are still high between the Boston paper and its New York-based owners, and there is still uncertainty over future layoffs and whether the Globe will be sold.

Dan Totten, the president of the paper’s biggest union, which rejected the Times Co.’s concession plan in June, told the Herald that people are considering picketing outside for the executives’ visit. However, the execs said they will be taking questions, alongside Globe publisher P. Steven Ainsley.

Hopefully, Globe employees will get some answers.

Times execs. can expect a chill at Globe meeting - Boston Herald

Earlier: Times Co. Admits Boston Globe Is Up For Sale While San Diego Paper Owner Makes A Bid

An Embedded Reporter’s Thoughts On His Own Background Report

tobia.jpgToday, FishbowlLA points to a True/Slant blog post by P.J. Tobia, a journalist who has been embedded with U.S. troops in Afghanistan. In his post, Tobia writes about his background check by the Rendon Group, which he had obtained.

Earlier this week, an article in Stars & Stripes about such background checks raised questions in the journalism community. (It was even a topic on the mediabistro.com Morning Media Menu podcast.) So Tobia’s insight as someone scrutinized by the Rendon Group is worth reading. He also posts excerpts of his own report.

Although Tobia admits that he doesn’t think the reports are a violation, he called them “creepy,” and said the military should be honest about them:

“Most troubling by far is that when S&S asked the military about Rendon, they denied the existence of these reports. I’m holding one of these reports in my hand right now, trust me, it exists. I’ve also met people who work for The Rendon Group in Kabul. In conversations, they deny that there is any nefarious objective to what they do.”

You can read all of Tobia’s thoughts here.

Journalists’ recent work examined before embeds -Stars & Stripes

FishbowlLA: PJ Tobia Posts The Rendon Group Report On Him

FishbowlNY Editor Amanda Ernst Joins This Morning’s Menu

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It was an all-blog morning as GalleyCat editor Jason Boog and AgencySpy‘s Matt Van Hoven welcomed FishbowlNY editor Amanda Ernst to the mediabistro.com Morning Media Menu podcast.

Amanda spoke about the Audit Bureau of Circulation’s semi-annual report due out on Monday and what it might mean for the magazine industry. She also discussed one magazine that is expected to post positive numbers in the upcoming report, Saveur and her recent interview with the epicurean magazine’s publisher Merri Lee Kingsly. Saveur is leaving its competitors in the dust by approaching ad sales in a new and different way, motivated by Kingsly’s unconventional approach, Amanda explained.

Also discussed: Sen. Edward Kennedy‘s upcoming memoir and how it will fare against Dan Brown‘s much-hyped new release and A&E‘s acquisition yesterday of Lifetime.

You can listen to all the past podcasts at BlogTalkRadio.com/mediabistro and call in at 646-929-0321.

Journal News Sacks Business News Staff, Rehires Cartoonist

jouranl news.pngEarlier this week, we learned that Gannett-owned Westchester paper The Journal News was completing its restructuring this week by giving transitional pay packages to employees who chose not to reapply for jobs at the paper.

Today, Talking Biz News, a business journalism blog, exclusively reports that the Journal News‘ entire business staff was among the 50 editorial staffers cut in the reorganization.

According to the blog, business editor Mike Bieger and reporters Julie Moran Alterio, Jerry Gleeson and Jay Loomis were among those recently laid off, along with former business editor Frank Brill, who was recently working as data desk editor. After these cuts, there is no one left in the department that once boasted as many as 14 people. (Have more news? Let us know.)

What’s interesting about this decision is what it says about the Journal News‘ commitment to covering business news, especially the news of corporations that are based locally and local small businesses. Is this a decision from on high at Gannett? Will the publisher’s smaller pubs share content from its flagship USA TODAY?

But, here’s some good news. What the Journal News now lacks in business coverage it will make up for in editorial cartoons. The Daily Cartoonist blog reports that the paper has decided to keep Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist Matt Davies on staff, after previously intimating that he was among those set to be laid off.

Westchester biz news staff goneTalking Biz News

The Journal News Will Keep Matt DaviesThe Daily Cartoonist

Earlier: Gannett’s Westchester Paper Wraps Up Restructuring Process

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