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Posts Tagged ‘Gary Pruitt’

AP Names Gramling Award Winners

AP logo GThe Associated Press has named its 2014 Oliver Gramling Award winners. The awards are highest honor for AP staffers.

“The winners constitute an extraordinary lineup of talented staff committed to the values of excellence, courage, action and passion that make AP such a special news organization,” said the AP’s president and CEO Gary Pruitt, in a statement.

$10,000 Gramling Journalism Award

Dalton Bennett, video journalist, United Arab Emirates
Muhammed Muheisen, chief photographer, Pakistan

$10,000 Gramling Achievement Award

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AP Video Journalist, Freelance Translator Killed in Gaza

AP logo GSimone Camilli and Ali Shehda Abu Afash — an Associated Press video journalist and a freelance translator, respectively — have been killed in Gaza while covering the conflict there.

The pair, along with three police engineers, were killed when an unexploded missile detonated as the engineers attempted to disarm it. The missile was thought to have been dropped during an Israeli attack. Another AP staffer, photographer Hatem Moussa, was badly injured by the explosion.

Camilli had worked for the AP since 2005. Abu Afash, a Gaza resident, worked often with the media as a translator and assistant.

“As all of you know, this has been a very difficult year for AP,” wrote the AP’s CEO and president, Gary Pruitt, in a memo to the agency’s staffers. “Simone is the second staffer to die in the line of duty this year and the 33rd person since our founding in 1846. As conflict and violence grows around the world, our work becomes more important but also more dangerous. We take every precaution we can to protect the brave journalists who staff our frontlines. I never cease to be amazed at their courage.”

AP CEO Lists Five Ways to Ensure Freedom of The Press

Gary Pruitt, the Associated Press’ president and CEO, has had about enough of the government. After the Justice Department secretly obtained two months worth of phone records from AP reporters and editors, Pruitt now says that government sources are scared to talk to reporters. “The government may love this,” Pruitt added, during a speech at the National Press Club. “I suspect that they do, but beware the government that loves secrecy too much.”

In an effort to nudge the government toward a less creepy lifestyle, Pruitt also announced five measures that could ensure freedom of the press. Here’s a brief summary of his ideas: 1) The press should be able to respond to any request of information before its taken 2) There should be judicial oversight when anything is requested 3) The DOJ’s guidelines need updated 4) A federal shield law that protects journalists should be implemented and 5) A formal rule should be made of the guideline that the DOJ will not prosecute any journalist for being a journalist.

It’s a nice list. Now if only the government would heed Pruitt’s advice.

See below for Pruitt’s full statements on the measures.

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DOJ Sends Another Letter to AP, AP Remains Unhappy

The Department of Justice is trying to brush off the secret accessing of Associated Press editors and reporters phone records. The agency already sent one bland letter to the AP about the incident, and today, it sent another. According to AP CEO and president Gary Pruitt, both letters from the DOJ basically said “Meh,” and not much else about the scary over-extension of the government.

“We appreciate the DOJ’s prompt response, but it does not adequately address our concerns,” writes Pruitt, in a statement. “The letter simply restates the law and claims that officials have complied with it.”

Pruitt goes on to say that he believes the root of the DOJ’s shady move was an AP report about the government stopping a bomb from being placed on a plane in May of last year. Though the AP worked with the government to ensure it didn’t reveal any national security information, Pruitt suggests that ultimately, the AP’s report didn’t paint the feds in a kind enough light.

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Justice Department Secretly Obtains AP Phone Records

This is sort of insane: The United States Justice Department has secretly obtained two months worth of phone records from Associated Press reporters and editors. The records contained incoming and outgoing calls and the duration of calls made via 20 different lines assigned to AP offices, and journalists’ home and cell phones. That’s a scarily large swath.

In a letter to the AP, the DOJ apparently offered no explanation for the seizure. The AP’s CEO and president, Gary Pruitt, responded with his own letter, protesting the DOJ’s actions:

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Shepard Fairey Sentenced to Two Years Probation for AP Photo Case

Shepard Fairey was sentenced to two years probation and 300 hours of community service for fabricating documents in his lawsuit against the Associated Press, which rightfully claimed Fairey had used one of their photos for his iconic “Obama Hope” poster. Fairey has since apologized for the incident, claiming it was the “worst mistake of his life.”

The defense prosecution asked for jail time for Fairey, while Fairey’s lawyers argued that his offenses were misdemeanors.

“After spending a great amount of time, energy and legal effort, all of us at The Associated Press are glad this matter is finally behind us,” said Gary Pruitt, the AP’s president and CEO, in a statement. “We hope this case will serve as a clear reminder to all of the importance of fair compensation for those who gather and produce original news content.”

AP Names Gary Pruitt New President, CEO

Gary Pruitt, currently the President and CEO of The McClatchy Company, has been named the new President and CEO of the Associated Press. Pruitt has been with McClatchy since 1995, and has served on the AP’s board for nine years. He will will succeed Tom Curley in July.

Dean Singleton, the outgoing chairman of the AP board, said Pruitt will help guide the AP’s digital focus.

“Gary has deep experience in the changing world of the news industry, an acute business sense and an overriding understanding of and commitment to AP’s news mission,” Singlton said in a press release announcing the change. “His background as a First Amendment lawyer is a hand-in-glove fit with AP’s long leadership role in fighting for open government and freedom of information. And, he knows AP well.”

McClatchy Considers Pay Wall

kans22as.jpgEarlier today The McClatchy Co. gave a strong impression that 2010 is going to be a good year: online ad sales are on the rise (as they’ve been elsewhere in the industry) and circulation numbers are up. So why would the company start experimenting with pay walls for one of its newspaper’s Web sites, as CEO Gary Pruitt mentioned today in a media conference call?

Pruitt stressed that 44 percent of ad money was currently coming through digital channels last quarter, and that an ad-based revenue system “isn’t broken…but we’ll learn from everything.” So despite the fact that a pay wall will hit a newspaper — like McClatchy’s Kansas City Star — exactly where McClatchy is beginning to see some growth (circulation, online ad sales) the company is planning to try out a pay wall model for a yet-unnamed title, if only for “ideological” reasons.

There are few details available at the moment, but McClatchy’s pay wall system will resemble more Variety‘s plan than The Wall Street Journal‘s, with users being able to view a certain number of sites before they are asked to pay. We can’t blame McClatchy for trying a system that everyone from The New York Times to regional dailies believe is the future of online revenue, but we’re glad that they’re not jumping headfirst into a model that has yet to be proven as successful as print ad sales once were.

Read More: Commentary: McClatchy To Experiment with Pay Model –Editor & Publisher

Previously: Can Classifieds, Online Ads Save McClatchy?

Can Classifieds, Online Ads Save McClatchy?

mcclatchy.jpgReporting its fourth quarter and year-end earnings report today, newspaper publisher The McClatchy Co. seemed optimistic about the future of classified and online advertising.

Although the company reported declines in revenue for the quarter and the year — down 16.5 percent for the fourth quarter compared to last year and down 22.6 percent for the year — circulation revenues actually increased by 6.6 percent during the last quarter of the year, along with online advertising revenues, which were up 14.9 percent for the quarter. Circ revenues grew a total of 4.8 percent year over year.

CEO Gary Pruitt pointed to the uptick in digital advertising as an important growth point for the company, and added that classified ads seem to be making a comeback:

“We’re seeing some evidence of a recovery in classified advertising. It’s typically the first area of our business to suffer in a downturn — and also the first to rebound when the economy improves.”

McClatchy is also workoing on a “transition to a successful hybrid print and online company,” as its online audiences and Web advertising continues to grow. In fact, the company’s online advertising across its papers’ sites make up 16.2 percent of its total advertising revenue for the year.

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Newspaper Publisher McClatchy Poised For Turnaround In 2010?

mcclatchy.jpg2009 has undoubtedly been a rough year for all manner of media companies, not the least of which is The McClatchy Co., which reported a 23.1 percent decline in revenues last quarter and has been struggling with layoffs and a wage freeze since September 2008.

But there is some hope. Yesterday, McClatchy chairman and CEO Gary Pruitt sent a memo to staffers letting them know the wage freeze was set to be lifted in the coming year, McClatchy paper The Sacramento Bee reported. What’s more, Pruitt was upbeat about his business while speaking this morning at the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference. Pruitt told the conference that all 30 of McClatchy’s newspapers are profitable and that the company “expects to maintain, if not grow, cash flow in 2010,” Editor & Publisher said.

And things do in fact seem promising for the publisher: in reporting its third quarter earnings in October, McClatchy revealed circulation revenues had actually grown 6.7 percent during the quarter to $69 million, although advertising revenues were, not surprisingly, down. Online revenues also saw growth during the third quarter, and now make up 17.6 percent of McClatchy’s total advertising revenues compared to 12.2 percent of total advertising revenues in the third quarter of last year, indicating the company’s move towards more digital integration of its content. McClatchy has also announced plans to distribute digital versions of its papers, including the SacBee, to e-readers like the Kindle sometime in the new year.

Looks like McClatchy might be one to watch in 2010.

McClatchy Co. will lift wage freezeSacramento Bee

Pruitt Upbeat On McClatchy: Debt Cut, All Papers Profitable

Previously: McClatchy Papers Go Digital, McClatchy Q3 Earnings: Ad Revenue Down, Circulation Revenue Up