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Posts Tagged ‘John Lynch’

Investigative Report Questions U-T San Diego Political Ad Policies

According to a report by Amita Sharma and Ryann Grochowski for KPBS/inewsource Investigations Desk, it appears that U-T San Diego may have played favorites during last fall’s campaign for city mayor.

Some frustration and general befuddlement from the side of Democratic candidate Tom Filner over the sheer number of attack ads that appeared in print during the campaign has now given way to some apparent public-records confirmation. And that, in turn and if further corroborated, could really get the newspaper in trouble:

“It’s clearly not appropriate for a news organization to make that kind of contribution without reporting it,” said Dan Schnur, former chairman of the California Fair Political Practices Commission, now director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at the USC.

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U-T San Diego Unveils Redesigned Website

On Tuesday, after four months of work, U-T San Diego flipped the switch on a new website design. The revised color scheme and navigation work well, offering something akin to USA TODAY ’s original print edition.

The paper has had an official presence on the Internet since the earliest days of daily newspaper websites – 1994 – and was previously parked at the URL signonsandiego.com. Wisely and cleverly, the paper’s new owner Doug Manchester and his CEO John Lynch partnered with a local firm for the online revamp:

The redesign was executed by Mindgruve, a San Diego-based digital marketing and technology consulting firm. In keeping with readership trends, its designers paid particular attention to the article, or story, page.

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In San Diego, Tis’ the Season for Daily Newspaper Melancholy

Media Matters for America blogger Joe Strupp offers a thorough, depressing review of the first year of Doug Manchester’s tempestuous tenure as a San Diego newspaper baron. Among those chiming in are New York Times media columnist David Carr, KPBS director of news and editorial strategy Suzanne Marmion, fired U-T sports reporter Tim Sullivan and an anonymous current employee:

“Saying you are going to be a cheerleader for business… goes against everything we have been taught and trained as journalists,” said one current U-T San Diego staffer who requested anonymity. “A lot of people have rolled their eyes at the front page editorials that have run… The quality of the paper is less because there’s more fluff in the paper, an emphasis on running more society photos and celebrity photos. That space could be better used on actual news and information.”

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Doug Manchester Expresses an Interest in Buying Tribune Co.*

Amita Sharma (pictured) has been working at San Diego’s KPBS TV station as a reporter for more than a decade, after graduating from USC with degrees in journalism and international relations. Tonight, she has filed a report that will likely send shudders through her former college stomping grounds.

Sharma spoke earlier this week in person with U-T San Diego owner Doug Manchester. Here’s what he told her when asked whether he has an interest in bidding for the LA Times’ bankruptcy-exiting parent Tribune Co.:

“We certainly are going to look at [buying] it,” Manchester said. “We are looking at it, yes. I would like to, yes…”

Added U-T CEO John Lynch: “We believe our business model will work and create great economic benefit to all of the investors.”

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More Funny Business Tied to U-T San Diego Braintrust

Media watchdogs are barking up the U-T San Diego tree once again. Voice of San Diego CEO Scott Lewis obtained some explosive evidence this afternoon, on the heels of an earlier investigative report by KPBS:

U-T San Diego CEO John Lynch threatened to use the newspaper he manages to push to dissolve the Unified Port of San Diego, an email given to Voice of San Diego Thursday by port Commissioner Scott Peters reveals. The threat came as Lynch pressed Peters on his decision to vote for a long-term lease with Dole, which operates at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal…

The threat to disband the port was not in the email KPBS posted because that was an email forwarded to the port by Peters seeking advice. He’d truncated it to edit out the threat so as not to distract port staff.

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Reporter Throws a Wrench Into U-T San Diego ‘Car Museum’

Score one for Voice of San Diego contributor Randy Dotinga. Thanks to his efforts in connection with an article published yesterday, the city of San Diego is renewing efforts to determine whether modifications made to U-T San Diego headquarters in Mission Valley to accommodate a “car museum” were done to code.

Never mind that the idea of an automotive showplace at a daily newspaper office makes no sense whatsoever. According to Dotinga’s article, a city inspector was turned away by newspaper staff last month and a new city permit office investigation has now been launched:

John Lynch, the newspaper’s CEO, seems unconcerned. “Get a life,” he wrote in an email after I asked him about the investigation Monday. Lynch, who’s previously expressed dissatisfaction with city regulations regarding the use of the U-T building, declined to make any other comment…

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Paywall Goes Up at U-T San Diego

In their first major tactical move, the U-T San Diego tandem of Douglas Manchester and John Lynch have chosen to follow the LA Times’ lead.

The paywall launched today is similar in many ways to that of the LAT. After 15 monthly article views, users who do not get the print edition will be required to participate on a subscription basis to continue reading:

A digital subscription will give readers unlimited access to utsandiego.com and its mobile site; the U-T San Diego iPad News App; the eEdition and the eEdition iPad app. The initial subscription price will range from 99 cents to $5.49 per week, depending on the “bundle” of digital and print products chosen. Digital products that remain free include: U-T TV, DiscoverSD.com, the U-T Padres iPad App and U-T eBooks, available in the Apple store.

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UT San Diego CEO: Talks with OC Register in Final Stages

It’s been mentioned in recent months as a logical possibility. Now, according to a dispatch in the San Diego Reader (and several other reports), the notion of UT San Diego taking over the Orange County Register has moved to the reality stage.

Per Don Bauder’s blog post:

John Lynch, chief executive of the UT, told the Downtown Lions in a Power Point presentation May 8 that the UT is in final talks to purchase the Orange County Register, Coast Magazine, and 24 local newspapers in Orange County.

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San Diego Union-Tribune to Launch Television Network

San Diego-based KPBS television and radio producer Megan Burke is tweeting up a storm about a proposed plan by San Diego Union-Tribune (we’re still not ready for U-T San Diego) CEO John Lynch to launch a new television network under the paper’s banner. The new network will apparently air on cable TV as well as the paper’s website and will be called UT-TV.

Memo to Lynch: There’s nothing more demeaning to a real journalist than being called a “content provider/contributor.” More to come on this story we’re sure.

San Diego Union-Tribune Shills for Owner’s Waterfront Redevelopment Plans

San Diego Union-Tribune… nee… make that “U-T San Diego” owner and real estate magnate Douglas Manchester ran not one, but TWO editorials in his new toy… er… paper today, shilling for his waterfront development plans. And one of them ran on the friggin’ front page!

San Diego is not pleased. Voice of San Diego CEO Scott Lewis called the plans “half baked.”

The paper provided no new insight on deep, decades-old disagreements. It merely posits that problems can be solved because problems can be solved. It worries about a skeptical public unwilling to invest in big ideas because it has been misled so much and then immediately misleads on how expensive this big idea would be.

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