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Happy Days Michael Days of the Philadelphia Daily News wins the Robert G. McGruder Award, along with the New Haven Register

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APME NEWS

From the Editor

Andrew Oppmann

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elcome to the first edition of APME News for 2015! Check inside for two compelling “How They Did It” features by Autumn Phillips that spotlight innovative efforts by The Des Moines Register and the Providence Journal: n The Des Moines project shows how virtual reality and gaming technology can be used as tools for telling compelling stories; n A look at the Providence newsroom yields insight on how they approach long-term, solu-

tion-based journalism projects. Innovation was also one of the themes of last fall’s joint conference of APME and the American Society of News Editors. Read our conference recap, which includes coverage by student journalists from Ball State University, as well as a column by Rem Rieder, courtesy of USA Today. Also, flip to the center of the magazine for our selection of our Great Ideas collection, some of the terrific ideas brought forward by our member organizations.

inside January 2015

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Alan D. Miller: Counting my blessings for our passion and perseverance Ken Paulson: Free speech and readers: It’s the conversation that matters How They Did It: “Harvest of Change” virtual reality project How They Did It: Special reports and a new approach to enterprise reporting APME Sounding Board: Executives accelerate investment in training NewsTrain: Announcing the 2015 workshop schedule From the Statehouse: Doubling down on state government coverage Great Ideas: Recognizing great work in print, Web or social media Rem Rieder: Safeguarding journalism’s mission, finances and future Innovator of the Year: The Wall Street Journal captures APME award Photo of the Year: Miami Herald’s Al Diaz wins annual showcase prize McGruder Winners: Days, New Haven Register win 13th annual award How to Apply: Annual Journalism Excellence contest open for entries Member Showcase: APME Photo of the Month winners AP Stylebook minute: How to identify and fix pronoun errors

ABOUT THE COVER Jayden Dammann, 3, waits for a tractor ride while his father, Justin, visits with others on the family farm in rural Page County in July, 2014. Justin says he feels confident about the management of the family farm one day passing on to Jayden.

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EDITOR

Andrew Oppmann Adjunct Professor of Journalism Middle Tennessee State University Andrew.Oppmann@mtsu.edu DESIGNER

Steve Massie smassie@crain.com

APME News is the quarterly magazine of the Associated Press Media Editors, a professional, nonprofit organization founded in 1933 in French Lick, Ind. Its members include senior editors and leaders from news operations in the United States and Canada that are affiliated with The Associated Press, including more than 1,400 newspapers and online sites and about 2,000 broadcast outlets. The group also includes college journalism educators and college student media editors. APME works with AP to support and recognize journalism excellence and the First Amendment. To learn more about APME’s programs and activities, visit apme.com.

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The President’s Corner

Alan D. Miller APME president and managing editor/news for The Columbus Dispatch amiller@dispatch.com

Counting my blessings for our industry’s passion, perseverance

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s I count my blessings in the new year, I think of all of you – the hard-working editors who are leading newsrooms through some of the most challenging times in the history of newsrooms. Between budget cuts and staffing reductions, more work and less pay, readers who love you one minute and flog you the next, you all eat a pile of manure a day and come back for more. Some wonder why. And I say it’s because you’re either crazy or because you are driven by a passion for journalism. And there’s a fine line between those two. Your passion, your perseverance, your leadership, your strong sense of fairness and your outrage for those who cheat and steal from positions of public trust are all blessings. And they make a difference in the lives of thousands of people each day. Some say that because our industry is struggling through this digital transition that good journalism – rock-solid, indepth, investigative reporting – has gone by the wayside. To that, I say: You’re wrong. It’s just not true. I see the evidence in our readership. Yes, readership. While our print subscriptions might be waning, our collective online readership is exploding. We have more readers today than in the more than 30 years I’ve been in the business. I say that without fear of contradiction. We might have a revenue problem, but we don’t have a readership problem. People want news they can trust. If not, why would so many aggregators steal our good work? I also see the evidence each week in the “Watchdog Reporting” section of the APME Update email newsletters, and in the results of the annual APME contest. Those lists of good journalism have not waned. There is never a shortage of entries in the national contest. If not for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, we wouldn’t know that babies were dying because simple blood tests weren’t being processed in a timely fashion. If not for The Gazette of Colorado Springs, we wouldn’t know that soldiers, some wounded in combat, were being kicked out of the military under dubious claims of misconduct, causing them to lose benefits (and the government to shed the cost of caring for them). And if not for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, we wouldn’t know that bankers were breaking the law to enrich themselves and their friends or that the University of Wyoming was using a secret process to hire a new president. And if not for (fill in the name of your news organization), my community wouldn’t know about… The list is unending,

as endless as the passion you all have for good journalism. This passion is reflected well in a copy of a 61-year-old advertisement, paid for by John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Company that hangs on my wall: “All over the world today, wherever something is happening that you ought to know about, there's a man watching and listening... for you. “He crouches in the mud of the battlefield where your son may be fighting. He sits in the great halls where laws are being made. “He’s in factories, on farms, in laboratories and hospitals, at the scenes of crimes and at the bar of justice. No event that concerns you, whether across the street or across the ocean, takes place without his being there ... watching and listening for you. “When he has seen it all, he will go back to his office, and he will write down in plain English exactly what happened. Tomorrow you will read it in the paper, a true account, a story you can believe, a story by an American reporter. “What is he like, this man who is your eyes and ears around the world? “He's not very different from you. He has your kind of income, lives in your kind of house, drives your kind of car, has your kind of ambitions for his family. He grew up in the same towns, went to the same schools, read the same books, listened to the same sermons. “So he came to feel as you do about the importance of the truth. “Older men taught him the reporter’s special skills. He learned to tell an opinion from a fact. He learned the difference between public interest and private curiosity. He learned to ask questions, to remember the answers and to report the words of an enemy as accurately as those of a friend. “And he learned the most delicate art of all: to pick up a fact and hand it to you without squeezing it out of shape. His greatest pride is to be able to say, ‘Here are the straight facts as I found them. With them you can think straight thoughts and reach straight decisions.’ “There are countries today where it is forbidden to keep your eyes open and tell others what you saw. Such countries have no true reporters. You would not be happy there. “So tonight, when you pick up your newspaper, think a good thought for the man who went out with paper and pencil and reported the facts to you. So long as he is free to ask questions, you are free. As long as his eyes are open, so are yours.” And as I count my blessings, I think good thoughts for you. n JA N UA RY 2 0 1 5 y

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By Ken Paulson

Free speech and readers: It’s the conversation that matters

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t’s been almost eight years since USA Today embraced the then-new idea of inviting readers to comment on stories. I was the editor in 2007 and we thought enough of the concept to dub it “Network Journalism.” You may know it as hate speech. Rather than encourage “the nation’s conversation” we hoped for, many of the comments quickly proved rancorous, racist, sexist and mean. I vividly remember the USA Today staff’s initial reaction to those first postings: “These can’t be our readers.” Of course, we weren’t the only news organization posting comments, and in time, combative and angry comments became the norm for most media websites. We nonetheless embraced comments because they helped drive traffic and in theory, created a bond with readers, even if these weren’t necessarily the kind of people you would want to bond with. Little wonder that many in the media are taking a fresh look at comments sections: This month, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch suspended comments on its editorials, saying the post-Ferguson posts were often “vile and racist.” In November, Reuters eliminated comments on new stories, suggesting that commenters instead gravitate to Twitter and Facebook. In April, Chicago Sun-Times Managing Editor Craig Newman announced the suspension of comments until a better model can be developed. “We are not doing away with comments,” Newman wrote. “But we do want to take some time and work on the qualitative aspect of how they are handled and how we can foster a productive discussion rather than an embarrassing mishmash of fringe ranting and ill-informed, shrill bomb-throwing.” In 2013, Popular Science dropped comments entirely, noting “Comments can be bad for science.” Are hateful comments bad for journalism? Or as beneficiaries of the First Amendment, do we have an obligation to ensure that all views – even the anonymous and vicious –

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get aired? We probably don’t owe anyone a soapbox. The mission of a free press in America is to keep an eye on people in power and keep the public informed. Letting others blow off steam has some value, but it’s not high on a list of journalistic priorities. The First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law,” not “editors shall make no rules.” In fact, we have a free press right to publish – or choose not to. Still, we’re missing a tremendous opportunity if we just shut down the trolls. Truly engaging with readers – and not just offering a blank wall on which to vent – is a critical mission for all news organizations. Steve Buttry, Lamar family visiting scholar at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication, has written thoughtfully about building ties to readers. He notes that news organizations need to work with the public on multiple fronts, including hosting group blogs in areas of community interest, embracing community networks and of course, using social media effectively “in doing better journalism.” And that may be the real problem with comments sections. It’s too easy to believe we’re interacting with readers when in fact we’ve just given angry people a place to shout. If our goal is to live up to First Amendment responsibilities by tapping the insights of our readers, we need fresh approaches. That includes making better use of the content posted on social media beyond our walls, and finding ways to have more meaningful relationships with our readers. It’s not the comments that matter. It’s the collective conversation that helps us build awareness, understanding and consensus in the communities we serve. n Ken Paulson is the dean of the College of Mass Communication at Middle Tennessee State University and president of the First Amendment Center in Nashville. He can be reached at ken.paulson@mtsu.edu


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HOW THEY DID IT:

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GANNETT DIGITAL / THE DES MOINES REGISTER

‘Harvest of Change’ virtual reality project PHOTOS: THE DES MOINES REGISTER

By Autumn Phillips APME News

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he idea came to Mitch Gelman, Gannett Digital’s vice president/product, as he watched his 10-year-old son play games like Minecraft and Call of Duty. As his son explored the virtual realities in the game environment, what Gelman saw wasn’t so much a game as a storytelling tool. “While playing Call of Duty, he was learning more about World War II than he had when we were reading about the battles and looking at strategy on maps.” Gelman wondered, “Could (journalists) take this type of environment, that an entire generation knew how to navigate, and use it for nonfiction storytelling?” lll

What started as a passing thought became reality this summer when Gelman and Anthony DeBarros, director of interactive applications at Gannett Digital, were introduced to Dan Pacheco, a professor of journalism innovation at Syracuse University. Pacheco showed the men the potential of Oculus Rift and the creation of virtual reality as a storytelling device for journalists.

Above: Jayden Dammann, 3, waits for a tractor ride while his father, Justin, visits with others on the family farm in rural Page County. Justin says he feels confident about the management of the family farm one day passing on to Jayden. At top: Danny Dammann unloads a trailer of food-grade white corn at the Minsa Corp. in Red Oak, Iowa. Minsa, a corn flour mill, then ships the milled corn nationwide.

“I was immediately taken by its ability to transport you to another place,” DeBarros said. “It’s the defining point of that technology, that it provides you with a sense of presence, >> Continued on next page

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“As far as we know, we’re the first to do this in a journalism project.” Anthony DeBarros

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> MORE ONLINE n The project: desmoinesregister.com/ pages/interactives/harvest-of-change/ n Read more about innovations in digital storytelling at journovation.syr.edu/ > THE TECHNOLOGY n Oculus Rift virtual reality headset for 3D gaming (oculus.com) n Unity game engine (unity3d.com/unity) n GoPro 3D 360 video mount (bit.ly/13FuNbz)

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your body and mind, actually feel as if they are in another location.” They invited Pacheco to spend the summer at Gannett Digital, where they planned to use those months developing “a new genre of experiential journalism,” DeBarros said. “Journalism has been a late adopter of technology in general. That did not serve us well in the rise of the Internet,” Gelman said. “We didn’t want to be latecomers to an emerging medium. We saw the potential and decided to act quickly.” lll

The first breakthrough came during a gathering of summer interns. Gelman asked if anyone knew how to build virtual environments. “One intern spent much of high school building games, instead of doing homework,” Gelman said. The skills were aligned. Now they needed a story to tell. They reached out to the newsroom of The Des Moines Register, a team that always raised its hand looking for chances to innovate and experiment with new technologies. Together, the Gannett Digital and The Des Moines Register teams settled on the story of changing rural economy, culture and demographics, as told through the experience of the Dammann family. “We wanted to select a serious story to challenge the story-

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Fog blankets a valley at sunrise as seen from the Dammann Farm in Page County. PHOTO: THE DES MOINES REGISTER

telling capabilities of this technology,” Gelman said. “We didn’t want to do something that would be fast and loose, like a rodeo or Mardi Gras. We wanted to see if it would withstand the rigor and the complexities of strong journalism.” lll

DeBarros led the effort with two interns and a contractor who was familiar with Unity, a 3-D-game development rendering engine. While the Des Moines reporter and photographer did the traditional work – interviewing, researching, gaining access – the Gannett Digital team worked to capture every aspect of the farm with 360-degree video. “In most ways, this was the typical, rich reporting we normally do, but including the virtual reality changed it in some ways,” said The Des Moines Register’s editor, Amalie Nash. Des Moines Register photographer Christopher Gannon shot hundreds of extra photos to help the digital team keep the virtual environment as close to reality as possible. He shot close ups of bark and cracks in the sidewalk, she said. The team had three months to complete the project “Harvest of Change.” It was published in September as a five-part series in The Des Moines Register and was showcased at the Online News Association conference in Chicago. Between 400 and 500 journalists lined up to try on >> Continued on next page


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an Oculus Rift headset and experience what Poynter called, “news for the Minecraft generation.” “As far as we know, we’re the first to do this in a journalism project,” DeBarros said. lll

In the end, the project cost around $20,000, Gelman said, including equipment, travel and staff time. They paid two interns $18/hour, hired a contractor with a gaming studio in Maryland that just closed down who offered to do the 3-D modeling of the farm. They hired a crew to shoot and teach them 360-degree video. The largest, single cost, Gelman said, was renting a helicopter for the afternoon to shoot the opening scene, and they hired Les Stroud of Survivorman to record the voiceover. What the staff at Gannett accomplished in three months has a high intimidation factor. How many newsrooms can afford to hire a helicopter or Les Stroud or someone with experience building gaming environments. But there are lessons they learned that can be used, even in smaller newsrooms, DeBarros said. “It doesn’t have to be intimidating.” They integrated 360-degree video into the 3-D game environment, DeBarros said, but any newsroom could start exploring either of those two parts without a large monetary investment. GoPro makes a 3-D 360 video mount

(bit.ly/13FuNbz) that is available for less than $1,000, bundled with a wide array of stitching software on the market (video-stitch.com). The skills needed to create interactive, 360 degree video are a “natural extension” of work many journalists are already doing, DeBarros said. “Once you get used to how the medium works, it wouldn’t be difficult at all for any experienced photographer or videographer to do.” And, he said, “In watching the contractor we hired, building the environment was very similar to building a Web page or editing photos. “You are moving things around, changing sizes and colors. You’re not asking people to start from zero, they would use skills they already have working with these new products.” Once you get passed the newness factor of the technology used to create “Harvest of Change,” you see it is a very traditional piece of journalism, telling the story of our one family, after six generations on the same farm, is coping with change. Nash said her newsroom is looking for other ways to use what they learned from the “Harvest of Change” project. “Politics is huge in Iowa,” she said. “Imagine what we could do with 360-video in the middle of those environments. Or we have an annual bike ride with 10,000 riders. How could you experience that differently?” n

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HOW THEY DID IT: PROVIDENCE JOURNAL

Anna Cano Morales, director Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University, takes a question from the audience. Listening is James Vincent, president NAACP, Providence Branch. GLENN OSMUNDSON

Yearlong special reports with a new approach to enterprise reporting By Autumn Phillips APME News

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very day. All day, and often through the night. That’s how much time Providence Journal Executive Editor Karen Bordeleau spends thinking about how, despite dwindling resources, her newsroom can continue to do the in-depth, ground-breaking, game-changing journalism for which the news organization is known. “In today’s newsroom, with limited resources, you are asking for daily stories, social media, blogging and, by the way, a long-term public service project,” said Assistant Managing Editor John Kostrzewa. “In today’s newsroom, 1+1 cannot equal 2, it has to equal 8.” The Providence Journal newsroom staff is about a “We want to do third the size it was when Bordeleau joined the paper in writing that has 1996. From the outside, you significant wouldn’t know it. The Journal statewide impact, continues to publish several projects a quarter, including that’s really a new tradition of robust yearlong investigations. important.” To accomplish this, the Karen Bordeleau paper took a new approach to enterprise reporting. “We want to do writing that has significant statewide impact, that’s really important,” Bordeleau said, “but we still need to feed the daily beast. How do you do this?” You do both. Providence Journal editors created parallel tracks, where journalists work on projects at the same time they work on daily stories – and they are doing it on multiple platforms. “We tell reporters that we will help you do your best journalism at the Providence Journal, but you have to work with us,’’ Kostrzewa said. “We have a lot of smart people on our staff, but we tell them you will be better if you share that with people who are equally smart.” Instead of assigning one reporter and photographer to a big project, the news team chooses a topic and tackles it as a year-long newsroom collaboration. In 2014, the Providence Journal focused on the “Middle

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Class Squeeze.” For the entire year, they used data to show that Rhode Island’s middle class is eroding. They asked the important “why?” and “how?” questions, but they also asked, “How can we fix it?” The massive collection of work - curated online http://bit.ly/14bbnv9 - moves between stories, videos, data visualization, polls, editorials, columns and coverage of the newspaper’s Publick Occurrences panel discussions. Well in advance of 2014, the news staff asked themselves, “What’s the big story that hasn’t been told?” They settled on the Middle Class Squeeze, wrote stories and collected data in the first quarter and launch the project in March. This is the fourth year the Providence Journal has tackled a yearlong, solution-based journalism project. >> Continued on next page


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MARY MURPHY

Mike Ritz, right, of Leadership RI holds the mic for a question from an audience member for Gina Raimondo regarding why she wants to promote Naragansett Beer at the Providence Journal’s Publick Occurrences forum on the gubernatorial primary at Rhode Island College. >> Continued from previous page

In early 2013, they launched a similar effort, “eWave: The Digital Revolution.” The yearlong series examined how technology is changing Rhode Island. In mid-2013, Edward Snowden leaked classified information from the National Security Agency, revealing the ways technology was used in a global surveillance program. The Providence Journal was already ahead of the story. “We feel very prescient with our approach,” Bordeleau said. “EWave was a great example of how everything converged. We launched at the end of March and by May Edward Snowden happened. We high-fived each other. We were already on this, and it played out all of last year.” The key to keeping momentum behind a yearlong reporting project is regular planning meetings “egging each other on” and involving people from all corners of the newsroom in a way that everyone feels ownership of the project. “This is not a top-down approach,” said Michael Delaney, managing editor for visuals. “The whole idea is that you have to use your brain. You can’t just hide, because there’s not someone at the front telling you what to do. We demand active participation by everyone who has anything to do with it.” Reporters aren’t assigned to the project. They have to volunteer. “There is so much energy in the room at these meetings, because everyone wants to be there,” Bordeleau said. Each project starts with the collection and analysis of data. The Providence Journal has for years invested in hiring and training data journalists. Every year, they make it a priority to send at least two reporters to the NICAR (National Institute for Computer Assisted Reporting) conference. “Data is the foundation of your story,” Kostrzewa said. “You can collect 1,000 anecdotes, but data tells you what the truth is – matches the faces with the facts.”

The Middle Class Squeeze project was given wings after staff saw the data visualization of income growth over time in Rhode Island. The graphic broke the numbers into five “fingers” or quintiles. The quintiles showed that income growth for the wealthy spiked far north, that income for the poor spiked far south, and that income for the middle class slipped below the median. “That was the heart of the whole thing,” Kostrzewa said. “Once we got the data and made it something we could look at, I got it right away. I didn’t really understand it until I saw it.” They took the quintile data chart and displayed it five columns wide and 10 inches deep across the front page of the Sunday paper. Readers got the message right away. The Journal also includes public service forums as part of their coverage of major stories. As reporters explore the facets of a big story like income inequality, they host Publick Occurrences forums – something Bordeleau calls a “face-toface form of journalism.” Publick Occurrences events always feature a panel of experts who offer their perspective and who then take questions from the audience. Audiences usually number between 300 and 400 people. The third and final forum for this year – on mental illness in Rhode Island – brought in a capacity crowd of 400 people with more than 200 people on the waiting list. The live event is covered on providencejournal.com, with journalists on site to either ask questions of the panelists or cover it. They set up a relevant hashtag to keep and take questions from the live audience and from Twitter. The event is reported, photographed and tweeted – and then “storified.” Videos of panelists are also part of the package. “This work is part of a long tradition of public service at the Providence Journal,” Kostrzewa said. “We are continuing that tradition, just as we have been doing for years, despite the changes in our newsroom.” n

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sounding board

Survey: Facing a multitude of changes forces newspaper editors and publishers to accelerate investment in training By Gary Graham APME News ewspaper editors, faced with pressure to reduce costs while remaining providers of quality journalism, plan to invest more in training next year and focus on new ways to increase revenue. A recent online survey conducted by the Associated Press Media Editors Sounding Board drew responses from 52 news organizations, mostly daily newspapers. Ninety percent of the respondents were either executive editors or managing editors, with 60 percent of those saying they plan to increase their training budgets in 2015. Forty percent said they expect their training budgets to decline. “We're only as good as our people, and we must recruit, train and retain a talented and motivated staff with the skills to perform optimally through a period of continuous and significant change,” said Rick Jensen, a former executive editor and publisher of Gannett Co. “If editors and publishers are really serious about change, they must make training a top priority and make the financial investment to give their staff the tools to be successful in the new media model,” he said. Many newsrooms have been encouraged by publishers and owners to help develop content or services that have potential for new revenue. Sixty-one percent of the respondents said they have developed creative ways to improve revenue in print and online. “Change is difficult and the editor must be a change agent. As the newspaper industry continues to evolve, we must continue to change the company culture to adopt new approaches and seek and retain readership across all digital and print platforms,” Jensen said in an email interview. The survey showed wide agreement on what the core mission is for news organizations: local news, watchdog reporting and telling the stories of people in their communities. One editor described the mission as the same as it

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has always been - deliver the news in the quickest and most accurate fashion. Many others reported similar sentiments, but they also emphasized the need to provide unique and quality content that consumers are willing to pay for on a regular basis. One editor said newspapers must continually reassess key topics and coverage strategies, noting, “we can't cover everything well and we shouldn’t try.” Another editor stressed the need to “innovate like a startup.” “Editors today face huge financial and staffing challenges, but the No. 1 priority remains strengthening local news and information content across all platforms to stabilize newspaper circulation and to accelerate mobile and web audience growth,” Jensen said. As editors worked on their 2015 budgets this fall, 50 percent of them said they have outsourced or are outsourcing some reporting work for their publications. More than 20 percent said they have considered or have implemented outsourcing of design or copy desk work. Nearly 15 percent have done the same for photo coverage. Half of the editors reported using 50 percent more correspondents and freelancers than in the past, while the other half said they are not relying more on correspondents. In a trend that began several years ago, only 61 percent of newspapers maintain a weekly television tabloid or booklet. Slightly 90 percent of the outlets publish sports agate, the daily collection of box scores, results and standings. Sixty-two percent of the respondents reported they still have a library or “morgue,” while 53 percent said they continue to do makeovers of their editions. Survey respondents represented all regions of the country and ranged in size from 10,000 in daily circulation to more than 250,000. n Gary Graham is editor of The Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, and chairman of the APME Sounding Board Committee. Reach him at garyg@spokesman.com or on Twitter at Glgraham


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APME NEWS By Linda Austin

In a successful 11th year, NewsTrain trains 342 journalists

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n 2015, APME’s NewsTrain will bring its popular workshops to DeKalb, Illinois; Monroe, Louisiana; Orlando, Florida; and Philadelphia. Dates for the 2015 workshops are still to be determined, but NewsTrain’s first workshop of 2016 is set for Jan. 21 in Lexington, Kentucky. Other 2016 sites will be determined after a review of applications, due in the last quarter of 2015. In 2014, NewsTrain completed its 11th successful year by training 342 journalists in Vancouver, Austin, Las Vegas and Columbus, Ohio. Three of the four workshops were sellouts. We asked NewsTrain attendees to rate the content and the presentation of each session on a 1-to-5 scale with 5 representing highly effective and highly useful. In 2014, the

average rating for content was 4.3, and for presentation, 4.4. NewsTrain emphasizes training in skills that can be used right away. At the Austin NewsTrain, Melissa Crowe, city reporter for The Victoria Advocate, learned that shooting video on her smartphone “doesn't have to be scary - or perfect!” She wrote me a few weeks later: “I was thinking about the conference’s video training…when I shot some almost-live video on my iPhone. Super easy! There was a murder-suicide in a quiet neighborhood here in Victoria. I spent all of 30 seconds shooting a video and explaining what we knew, and ended up with a great response on social media.” >> Continued on next page

LINDA AUSTIN

Attending the Las Vegas NewsTrain in October are Whip Villarreal of the University of Nevada, Reno (left), Gregan Wingert of KSNV and Sandy Lopez of the View Newspapers.

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APME NEWS A screen grab of attendee Diana Mota’s tweet from the Columbus NewsTrain in September. Mota is a staff writer at the National Association of Credit Management.

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Diana Mota, staff writer at the National Association of Credit Management, tweeted after the Columbus NewsTrain’s first session on social media with Storyful’s Mandy Jenkins: “Thought I was crazy to drive thru night to get to workshop in Columbus. One presenter down: would have walked here.” You can find the slides and handouts from Jenkins’ presentation, as well as other sessions at NewsTrain workshops, at slideshare.net/ newstrain. NewsTrain’s low tuition – $75 – is made possible by donors, big and small, who in 2014 included the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation, the Gannett Foundation, The Associated Press, the APME Foundation, Scripps Howard Foundation, GateHouse Media Inc., The McClatchy Co. and The Seattle Times, as well as APME past and present board members. We’d also welcome your financial support. To help keep NewsTrain training coming to your community, please donate at the big red buttons on APME.com. For updates on NewsTrain’s next stops, follow us on Twitter @NewsTrain or like us at Facebook.com/NewsTrain. Linda Austin is the project director for NewsTrain. Contact her at laustin.newstrain@gmail.com or @LindaAustin_

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LINDA AUSTIN

Brenda Young of the Rockford Register Star (left) and M.L. Schultze of WKSU public radio study video they shot on a smartphone at the Columbus NewsTrain in September.


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The California State Assembly met for an organizational session where lawmakers took the oath of office at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. Both houses of the Legislature will reconvene after the new year. AP PHOTO/RICH PEDRONCELLI

Doubling down on state government coverage By Erin Madigan White The Associated Press

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uilding on The Associated Press’ unmatched presence in all 50 U.S. statehouses, we are adding to our competitive advantage by creating a team of state government specialists. As announced to the AP staff, the specialists will collaborate with statehouse reporters, as well as on their own projects and stories focused on government accountability and strong explanatory reporting. Their overarching goal will be “to show how state government is impacting the lives of people across the country,” said Brian Carovillano, managing editor for U.S. news. Tom Verdin, AP’s administrative correspondent in Sacramento, will assume a new position leading the team of specialists full time. He’s supervised a number of high-

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impact projects, including AP’s coverage of the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. Joining Verdin on the team will be National Writer David Crary, reporters David Lieb, Ryan Foley and Christina Almeida Cassidy, as well as Central Enterprise Editor Tom McCarthy. The New York-based Crary is an expert on many of the social issues state governments are tackling, from gay rights to abortion and adoption, and he’ll continue to focus on many of those issues. Lieb has owned the state government beat in Missouri. From Chicago, McCarthy has been Lieb’s editor and partner on some of his best recent work, and he will serve as editor for many of the stories the State Government Team produces. >> Continued on next page


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Cassidy has been AP’s state government reporter in Georgia. And Foley, based in Iowa, is among AP’s strongest watchdog reporters. Here, Carovillano answers a few key questions about the announcement: How will the state government specialists differ from the AP reporters already assigned to all 50 statehouses and state bureaus? The team will complement what our excellent state government correspondents do CAROVILLANO every day across the country and allow us to bring extra reporting firepower in on the most important stories. Let’s say there’s a trend emerging from several statehouses that our folks on the ground identify. The state government team will work with reporters in those states — and with the data team, if necessary — to bring depth and a national perspective to that issue and show how it’s playing out across the country. They’ll be a resource to our statehouse reporters looking for help broadening the scope of their reporting, and a projects team that will partner with folks in the states to pursue bigger and more ambitious enterprise on the business of state government. And the focus really needs to be on how that impacts peoples’ lives. We don’t cover state government for the state government; we cover it for all the people of the state. The message here is that state government coverage is essential to AP and its members, and we are doubling down on that commitment, which should benefit the entire cooperative. How else has AP expanded and strengthened state news coverage across the country? We’ve hired 13 statehouse reporters over the past year. A few of those are new positions; a few filled positions that

had been vacant. We are and will remain committed to staffing every statehouse. And we’ll add about 40 additional contract reporters to cover legislative sessions next year, in addition to the permanent staff. AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt has identified state news coverage as a companywide priority. What other steps are being taken to bolster AP’s state news franchise? Well, we have made some hires in key locations. I mentioned the 13 statehouse reporters we’ve hired this year. We’ve also made hires on some essential beats, such as politics, immigration, courts/crime and education. Beyond that, we are really pushing our state bureaus to focus their time and effort on content that is exclusive to AP and that our members and subscribers can’t get anywhere else. That needs to be our guiding principle. We do that exactly as we always have: by developing sources and breaking stories, being fastest on big breaking news, and by providing explanation, analysis and depth on the stories that have the biggest impact on peoples’ lives. To help the bureaus recommit to this kind of high-value content, we’re setting up centralized operations in each region to handle “shared” news from the cooperative. These are the stories and images we pick up from one member and redistribute to the other members in that state. We’re also going to be putting more resources into social media newsgathering, and especially user-generated content, in each of the four U.S. regions. This lets us be in a lot more places than ever before, but it’s critical that we do it without compromising at all on the AP’s reputation for accuracy and fairness. n Erin Madigan White is senior media relations manager for The Associated Press. Reach her on Twitter at @emadiganwhite

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briefs Church to lead APME in 2018

Bill Church, executive editor of the Herald-Tribune in Sarasota, Florida, was named to the APME leadership and will become the association’s president in 2018. Church, 56, joined the Sarasota paper in 2013. Prior to the Herald-Tribune, CHURCH Church worked with Gannett Co. Inc., for more than 20 years in strategic and leadership roles, including executive editor at the Statesman Journal in Salem, Oregon, from 2006 to 2012.

Mark your calendar for the ASNE-APME conference in California ASNE, APME and the Associated Press Photo Managers will hold a joint conference in 2015 at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. Please save these dates: Friday, Oct. 16 through Sunday, Oct. 18. We’ll start late on Friday afternoon and continue until Sunday evening, and since we’ll be in Silicon Valley, we’ll put extra emphasis on our digital future. Our hotel, the Sheraton Palo Alto, at 625 El Camino Real, is a short walk from the Stanford University campus buildings where we’ll be meeting. And we have a terrific nightly rate of only $169. We’ll build on the success we had at the first joint ASNEAPME conference in Chicago, and a committee representing both organizations already has started planning the 2015 conference, including programming and fundraising. We’ll have more details soon on conference registration and booking a room.

APME joins protest of federal proposal to restrict filming in wilderness areas Seventeen news organizations, photographers’ organizations and First Amendment advocacy groups sent a letter to the chief of the U.S. Forest Service opposing the Forest Service’s proposal to make permanent its interim directive on filming in the nation’s wilderness areas. Leaders of the news organizations, including the Associated Press, told Chief Thomas Tidwell they were also are troubled by the proposal to apply new criteria in decid-

ing whether to issue a permit for filming in Congressionallydesignated wilderness areas. “Language in the proposal is vague enough to allow too much latitude in its interpretation - latitude that could include restricting or banning news photography and videography on public lands,” said Alan D. Miller, president of APME. “That would be an unconstitutional and unacceptable infringement on a free press.” Miller said the organizations that signed the letter of protest have asked the Forest Service to include them in a discussion of the proposal and to reconsider its position on the matter.

Become a member or donate to help promote journalism excellence APME was founded 81 years ago with a simple goal: Combine the forces of newspaper editors and The Associated Press to improve journalism. That’s still our purpose, and even in these challenging times, we’re doing more than ever to fulfill our mission. This is the time to take advantage of all APME has to offer: n We’re a resource for editors looking for good ideas, lowcost training opportunities or for someone to lend an ear over a beer. n Our signature program, NewsTrain, is headed into its 12th year stronger than ever. NewsTrain offers the biggest bang for your training dollars, and the curriculum is constantly updated with the latest digital tools and tailored to the needs of local news organizations. n We keep in touch with regular email APME Update newsletters and the top-rate quarterly APME News magazine. And we seek your ideas and opinions with the APME Sounding Board, an ongoing survey of editors that allows us all to share best practices. n Speaking of great ideas, APME scours the countryside each year in search of new ways to improve journalism, grow readership and increase revenue. The Great Ideas book, which now comes on a thumb drive, is popular in many newsrooms. n Membership provides you with discounts on fees for our annual contest and conference. n Go to www.apme.com for more information

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2014 APME/ASNE CHICAGO CONFERENCE

great ideas

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ave you launched a great new feature, page or Web project, or used a social media tool in a great new way? Well, we want to recognize your great idea. Associated Press Media Editors recognizes a Great Idea every month on APME.com and we showcased monthly winners in our popular annual Great Ideas book, which will be released

at our next conference in October. This is a chance for your newspaper to show off great work and to help fellow editors by providing ideas that might work in their markets. It’s simple to submit your Great Idea. Just go to the Great Ideas page at APME.com, fill out the online form and attach an image or submit a link.

BENCHMARKING DALLAS The Dallas Morning News, Dallas George Rodrigue WHAT THEY DID: To prepare for the meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, The Dallas Morning News gathered an array of data on how Dallas compared to peer cities. Much of the data was easily available from sources like the Census Bureau or the FBI. The information allowed the staff to put Dallas’ performance into a national context and led to a whole special section worth of stories, and to a rich selection of print and interactive graphics. Judging by audience reaction, the project made a lot of people care more about their community.

WORLD CUP BILINGUAL PARTNERSHIP Philadelphia Daily News, Philadelphia Michelle Bjork WHAT THEY DID: Michael Days, editor of the Philadelphia Daily News, brokered a World Cup partnership with Hernán Guaracao, founder and CEO of AL DÍA News Media, the largest Hispanic news organization in the Philadelphia area. Days’ vision came to fruition on June 12, 2014, when the Daily News and AL DÍA published a joint World Cup section in English and Spanish. Every story ran in both languages in print and online. A month later the papers collaborated again to commemorate the World Cup in a second bilingual publication.

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STARK BUSINESS JOURNAL The Repository, Canton, Ohio Dave Manley WHAT THEY DID: The Repository started Stark Business Journal, a weekly tab inserted into the Monday edition, last year to expand its business coverage. SBJ allows reporters to do long-form business journalism, taking a look at how national trends impact the local business community. It has become a good landing spot for coverage of the Utica Shale drilling boom — providing space for in-depth gas and oil industry features and a home for weekly drilling numbers and explanatory pieces.

THE STOLEN ONES Herald-Tribune, Sarasota, Fla. Bill Church WHAT THEY DID: We took an investigative story on child sex trafficking and wrote it as a character-driven narrative. The subject matter was so stark and much of what we photographed took place at night, so we produced the entire package — except for the very last photo — in black-and-white. The result was a 44-page tab that was unlike anything we had ever done, or seen before. The October 2013 tab was sent to more than 200 political heavyweights. The following spring, Florida legislators enacted sweeping laws aimed at combating child sex trafficking and helping victims.

FOCAL POINT BLOG The Columbus Dispatch, Columbus, Ohio Alan D. Miller WHAT THEY DID: Good photos should be seen on a big canvas, so we created the Focal Point photo blog to provide a larger format for online display of photos — and to give photographers space to explain how they make their outstanding photos.

THE PRICE OF POVERTY The Times of Northwest Indiana, Munster, Ind. Bob Heisse WHAT THEY DID: Timed at the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty, The Times’ comprehensive report was published in a 16-page section in June. It was the vehicle to start a continuing community conversation. We planned a town meeting, and we’ve been publishing op-eds and letters.

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Rem Rieder USA Today

Safeguarding journalism’s mission, finances and its future

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HICAGO —It’s a dilemma facing so many legacy news outlets. In an exceedingly crowded and competitive media landscape, with so many platforms to do battle on, with staffs far smaller than in the past, how should they proceed? There are no easy answers. So it’s hardly a surprise that that was one of the first topics to surface as many of the nation’s editors gathered here in an annual rite of introspection and searching for solutions. The Sept. 15 kickoff event at the American Society of News Editors convention, held this year in conjunction with Associated Press Media Editors, focused on “What's new/What's next? Trends every editor should know.” And leadoff speaker Tom Rosenstiel, executive director of the American Press Institute, was quick to cut to the chase. The old days when newspapers could be like the old general store, with something for everybody, are over, Rosenstiel said. So much specialized information is located in so many venues in the digital world, he pointed out. And even if newspapers wanted to pursue the fully stocked model of the past, they don’t have the firepower to do it. All they'd accomplish is doing “everything a little worse,” he said. So what's the prescription, doctor? Rosenstiel says news outlets should think about what they do that makes them “indispensable” to readers, and act accordingly. “Build your brand about a few things that you can be great at,” he said. Rosenstiel stressed that he knows newspapers can’t entirely abandon their efforts to be comprehensive. They can’t become specialty publications. But there's no doubt that whether in print, on the desktop, on the laptop, on the phone, on wearable devices, wherever, newspapers (and all other news outlets) have to offer up material worthy of readers' time and money. And that means presenting engaging and worthwhile material. They certainly are not going to out BuzzFeed BuzzFeed at the clickbait game. Case in point is Marty Kaiser, editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Several years ago, as the Milwaukee paper was forced to reduce its staff, Kaiser decided to protect watchdog reporting. It was too much a part of the Journal Sentinel’s essence, too vital to its readers. There were other painful cuts, but the watchdogs stayed. And year after year the paper does exemplary investigative reporting. Consultant Amy Webb, CEO of Webbmedia Group, had a

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From left: APPM past president Kevin Martin, ASNE past president David Boardman and APME past President Debra Adams Simmons open the 2014 APME-ASNE conference.

concrete example of how news outlets must differentiate themselves from the rest of the hive. Webb lives in Baltimore and says she’d love to be a fan of the Sun. But she finds herself disappointed by its website. Focusing on one Sun homefront that Webb said had only one story she couldn't find elsewhere, she said, “If there’s nothing unique about the Sun’s coverage, why should I go there?” More broadly, she added, vanilla is not a flavor destined to find success on the Web, “Brands with strong points of view tend to do well.” Mike Klingensmith, publisher and CEO of the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, conceded that newspapers can’t do everything. But he thinks they must keep their aspirations high. “Our ambition is to be the Amazon of our news environment.” Recalling Rosenstiel’s remark earlier that news consumers tend to gravitate to local TV for traffic, weather and breaking news, Klingensmith said, “I refuse to concede anything to local TV news.” The publisher, a former Time Inc. executive who has greatly improved the fortunes of the once-sinking Star Trib, made a crucial point when he noted that local and regional newspapers have a responsibility that doesn’t come in to play for sexy Web start-ups. Maximizing the number of unique visitors is not the beall and end-all for his operation, he said. Its mission is to serve local readers. And “that doesn't exist for BuzzFeed.” He’s right. While solving journalism's massive financial puzzle is critical, so is protecting that core mission. n


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innovator OF THE YEAR

Vanessa O’Connell and Andy Regal of The Wall Street Journal.

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he Wall Street Journal received the eighthannual APME Innovator of the Year, based on a vote by attendees of the 2014 APME-ASNE conference who viewed presentations by it and two other two finalists. The WSJ's entry was “Startup of the Year,” a multimedia project that selected 24 entrepreneurs and paired them with noted business leaders to offer them guidance. The project involved extensive use of video, including online video chats between the participants. The WSJ received $1,000; the award was sponsored by GateHouse Media Inc.

The other two finalists were: n Herald-Tribune, Sarasota, “The Stolen Ones,” about sex trafficking of children in an underground economy. n The Columbus Dispatch, for its sustained enhanced format. The judges who selected the three finalists were: Joe Hight, former editor, The Gazette, Colorado Springs, chairman; Meg Downey, former managing editor, The Tennessean, Nashville; George Rodrigue, former managing editor, The Dallas Morning News; Linda Negro, managing editor, Evansville (Ind.) Courier & Press; and Alison Gerber, editor, Chattanooga (Tenn.) Times Free Press. n

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SHOWCASE

photograph OF THE YEAR M iami Herald photographer Al Diaz won the APME Member Showcase Photo of the Year. The Photo of the Year is chosen from among 12 winners of a monthly award for the best member showcase photo of the month, picked from all domestic member/client contributions. The honor was presented at the awards luncheon Sept. 16 during the APME-ASNE conference. Diaz was recognized for his dramatic photo of Pamela Rauseo, 37, performing CPR on her nephew, 5-month-old Sebastian de la Cruz, after pulling her SUV over on the side of a Florida highway. Judges wrote, “This incredible photo by Al Diaz stops you in your tracks and fills your heart with both panic and hope. Diaz was in the right place at the right time. His photo reminds us of the importance of knowing a life-saving response, such as CPR.� n

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“Under Michael, the Daily News has become what may be one of the most diverse newsrooms in the industry, and both our day-to-day coverage and our daily discussions bear this out.”

McGruder Award nomination for Michael Days

Michael Days, New Haven Register selected as McGruder award winners By Angie Muhs APME News

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ichael Days, editor of the Philadelphia Daily News, and the New Haven Register were the recipients of the 13th annual Robert G. McGruder Award for Diversity Leadership, awarded by the Associated Press Media Editors in partnership with the American Society of News Editors and other journalism organizations. Days and the Register were recognized Sept. 15 at the annual awards luncheon of the ASNE-APME conference at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Chicago. The McGruder Award for Diversity Leadership is given annually to individuals, news organizations or teams of journalists who embody the spirit of McGruder, a former executive editor of the Detroit Free Press, managing editor of The Plain Dealer in Cleveland and a graduate of Kent State University. McGruder died of cancer in April 2002. A past president of APME and a former member of the board of directors of ASNE, McGruder was a relentless diversity champion. This year, the 13th annual McGruder awards were sponsored by the APME Foundation, ASNE, The Plain Dealer and Kent State University. Supporters include the Detroit Free

Press, the Chips Quinn Scholars program of the Newseum Institute and Annette McGruder. The honorees will each received $2,500 and a leadership trophy at the awards luncheon. Days and the New Haven Register were honored for their commitment to diversity in news content and in newsroom recruiting and staff development. “This year’s McGruder recipients have diligently and relentlessly made diversity a key priority in their newsrooms even as so many other urgent priorities pull for attention,” said APME immediate past president Debra Adams Simmons. “We are proud to honor their work. Each of these news organizations faced considerable challenges during the past year, yet they held true to diversity as a core value. When we look at news developments around the nation and world, in Ferguson, Missouri, and in Israel, there is no question that diverse voices make us stronger and make us better.” In the nominating letter for Days, his colleagues wrote: “These days, when covering basic news is a challenge, a commitment to diversity might be considered by some as a luxury, a fashionable trend we all pursued in better times. At the Daily News, diversity has never gone out of fashion. “It is deeply embedded in our DNA, and Michael ensures >> Continued on next page

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that it remains critical and” the nomination said. “Under Michael, the Daily News has become what may be one of the most diverse newsrooms in the industry, and both our day-to-day coverage and our daily discussions bear this out." The Philadelphia Daily News newsroom is 22 percent minority, three of the paper's four regular columnists are women; of the 15 columnists across all departments, six are minorities, six are women. Readers of the newspaper are evenly divided between whites and non-whites. And of the non-white readers, 44 percent are African-American. “Those are the data," the nomination said. “What is harder to quantify is the spirit of diversity that Michael encourages and inspires. Ours is a street-sales paper in a big city with many challenges, including poverty, a nearly bankrupt school system and a legacy of political corruption. “In many ways we’re a city of underdogs and one of our core missions is championing the underdog. We speak for the little guy, and constantly challenge the status quo — especially our own. Even our obituary page, a leader in the industry for transforming ‘death notices’ into a repository for human stories, reflects the full fabric of the city: janitors and grandmothers get the same treatment as political leaders and dignitaries.” Days fosters a sense of community partnership, making the Daily News a convener of conversations about President Barack Obama’s “My Brother's Keeper” initiative and public education. And, he brokered a collaboration with Al Dia, Philadelphia’s Spanish-language newspaper, to publish World Cup soccer sections at the beginning and end of the games. Reporters, editors and designers from both papers worked together to create bilingual sections that were published in both papers. The New Haven Register’s attempt to tackle the online comments on Web stories unveiled some important truths. The Register’s nearly all-white newsroom three years ago, its unsuccessful attempts at recruiting and retention, and limited staff development were reflected in the paper’s content and disconnect with readers. The newspaper developed an action plan and quickly got to work. In 2011, the New Haven Register and its sister publications in Connecticut had three minority journalists in its 120-person newsroom. In the spring of 2014, there were 15 minorities out of 100. Today, there 13 out of a staff of 83. The newspaper’s leaders recruited staff members in nontraditional ways. For example, they identified a community member who was managing a cellphone store, active in a local mosque and volunteered at a food bank who had some experience writing for the Muslim Journal and connected him with the Chips Quinn Scholars program for training. He is now the Register’s community engagement

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editor. Within a year, they hired another fellow from the training program. The New Haven Register also diversified its leadership team. And it encouraged risk-taking and debate within the newsroom. It now has frank discussions, and in one example published a story about the media attention generated by Sandy Hook compared with the sometimes limited coverage of gun violence in urban New Haven. “Our approach over the past three years has been not just to report and offer options, but to engage and facilitate,” the nomination said. “The Register is regularly an outlet that now helps the black community talk through and debate important issues.” The newspaper’s front pages now include black and Hispanic faces in all kinds of news stories. It has developed community relationships; hosted live and online forums on education, violence, neighborhood redevelopment; hired a talented reporter from a sister publication, and came up with a new strategy for online comments — each comment is reviewed before it is posted. The paper stopped calling undocumented immigrants “illegal.” It also worked closely with Digital First corporate leaders and has placed 10 Chips Quinn scholars in Digital First Media newsrooms. In his nomination, Matt DeRienzo, group editor of Connecticut Digital First Media, said the news group experienced a wake-up call: “We were limited by our own world view, our own life experiences and our own circle of friends and contacts, which were homogeneous. “In that moment, we learned one of the most valuable things of all: we didn’t, and couldn’t, know many things about life in our community and country. If that was going to change, if we were to become a better newspaper, we would have to diversify our newsroom and the leadership of our newsroom. We decided it would be a top priority.” The 2014 judges included representatives from APME, ASNE, The Plain Dealer and Kent State University and previous recipients of the McGruder award. Jurors assessed nominees based on their significant contribution during a given year or over a number of years to furthering the cause of diversity in content and in recruiting, developing and retaining journalists of color. n


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Panelists say ‘mobile is everywhere’ By Lauren Chapman APME News

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hat is mobile? Mobile is everywhere content,” said Paul Cheung, director of interactive and digital news production for the Associated Press. Cheung was joined by Patty Michaelski, managing editor of mobile and social at USA Today and Max Zimbert, managing editor of Yahoo News Digest. The three panelists discussed the challenges and future of mobile content Sept. 16 at the ASNE-APME-APPM conference in Chicago. Michaelski said 60 to 65 percent of USA Today’s traffic comes from mobile web and its news application. Because of this traffic, Michaelski and others created “Social Tuesday,” an initiative to allow journalists to experiment in social media.

“Take that day and experiment,” Michaelski said. “This is not a fail day. You’re supposed to try something new. Shoot a Vine video. Chat with readers. Live tweet an event.” Editors from the crowd joined the conversation on multiplatform story development. Concerns about what gets lost when reporters are focused on social and how to create individual pieces for different platforms became popular. “At the AP, we do these interactives,” Cheung said. “We do the interactives in five different sizes. You have to think about where the content is going and really looking at the behavior.” Thinking about what device the content is being viewed on has become important for mobile content managers. Zimbert said one of the challenges to approaching mobile is the constantly changing atmosphere. “You live in this constant state of 70 percent finished,” he said. Each panelist echoed the same sentiment: You can’t control much, but you can always control your content. n

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Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff

Vox: Now is the time to innovate By Aric Chokey APME News

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epresentatives of Vox Media gave editors a look into the news startup’s strategy and reminded them now is the time to innovate. After launching Vox in April, social culture played an important role in its business model, Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff told editors Sept. 16 at the APME-ASNE media conference in Chicago. “Our audience demographics are young people who have computers and mobile devices and prefer to consume content that way,” he said. “We want to create a new series of brands that speak to them in their language.” To speak the language, Bankoff said, content should provide clearer understanding for readers and reach them where they are. Bankoff quoting Vox Media Editor in Chief Ezra Klein reminded the audience: “We can’t rest because we now have to figure out how to deliver news on a watch." Achieving both the depth and interactivity for online stories meant Bankoff and his team had to merge two different worlds: journalists and hackers. “We in the media, in journalism in particular, have been victims of the technology companies imposing their will

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upon us,” he said. Lauren Rabaino, product manager for The Verge, said the “product-based company” always includes advertising in the editorial conversation to ensure the product is designed consistently. “We tie both of those together because all of it is one product,” she said. “Where we’re different, we see them as one piece of the puzzle. Our ads fit together like a puzzle beautifully.” Bankoff said audience trust is paramount and that when it comes to native content, the company is held to a high standard avoiding conflicts of interest with sponsored advertising. Moving forward, Rabaino also had advice for editors. “Listen to the young, smart people in the room who might have ideas," she said. "Empower them beyond just taking their feedback. Put them in the decision-making process and hold them accountable.” Empowerment also translates to the rest of the staff at Vox Media. Despite the media group’s success so far, Rabaino said in the office culture, everyone is continually trying to, and are expected to, innovate no matter their position. n


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Annual Journalism Excellence contest open for entries By Angie Muhs APME News

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he 2014 Associated Press Media Editors Journalism Excellence Awards honor superior journalism and innovation among newspapers, radio, television and digital news sites in the United States and Canada. The deadline for all entries is Friday, Feb. 27. The awards seek to promote excellence by recognizing work that is innovative, well-written and incisively reported and has outstanding multimedia. A special award honors innovation by colleges and universities, and a new category recognizes news organizations that build strong ties to their communities. All awards will be presented for journalism published or launched between Jan. 1, 2014, and Dec. 31, 2014. Here are the changes to the 2014 awards:

n A new category – Community Engagement – has been added. This award will be given to news organizations that best demonstrate the ability to provide effective dialogue with their communities and/or seek partnerships that sustain the dialogue and encourages more community dialogue. n The Tom Curley Sweepstakes for the First Amendment Award will be given to a news organization

that is selected from all the entrants and is not a winner of an individual division category. Thus, a best of the best from all from the entrants will be chosen by judges. n The International Perspective Award will have two circulation categories: up to of 59,999 average daily circulation, and 60,000 or more. News organizations can submit the same entry in only two categories. Four of the awards categories will offer monetary prizes: the Innovator of the Year Award for newspapers, the Best of Show in the Public Service Awards and the Tom Curley Sweepstakes in the First Amendment Awards. The entry fees are $75 per entry for APME members and $100 per entry for non-members. The awards will be presented at the joint ASNE-APME Conference in October at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, and are linked on the APME website. The finalists of the newspaper Innovator of the Year will make presentations at the conference, and the winner will be selected by conference attendees. Nominations are received online only. The website is: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy The first step is signing up as an “entrant” at the APME contest site. Please keep your entrant username and password. You will need it to submit entries and return to the >> Continued on next page

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site to edit or add more entries before submitting them for judging. Submit all entries before accessing the payment page to check out. The deadline to submit entries is Friday, Feb. 27, 2015. For more information, contact Sally Jacobsen (sjacobsen@ap.org) at The Associated Press at 212-621-1838 or Sue Price Johnson (sue.price.johnson@ gmail.com) at 919-810-1169. Here are the categories: 45th Annual Public Service Awards The APME Public Service Awards are given to Associated Press or Canadian Press member newspapers for meritorious service to the community, state or nation. From the three division winners, an overall winner will be chosen and receive $1,500, provided by the APME Foundation. Criteria: Entries will be judged on the basis of how the newspaper made full use of its resources in serving the public good and on the high quality of journalism exhibited in the work. Work that demonstrates evidence of positive change that has benefited the public or its institutions will be given strong consideration. The entry may be a single article or a series, and, in addition to the primary print coverage, can include sidebars, graphics, online work, commentary and editorials. Nominations: Nominations may be made by a newspaper itself, by other newspapers, by AP bureaus or by civic or cultural organizations. Circulation categories: There shall be three awards: one for newspapers with average daily circulation to 39,999; one for newspapers with average daily circulation of 40,000 to 149,999; another for newspapers of 150,000 average daily circulation or more, according to the latest audited figures. APME reserves the right to decline to award a winner in any category. Only newspapers are eligible to submit entries, except that bureau work may be entered by a single newspaper for judging in the 150,000-and-over circulation category regardless of the size of the paper in which the work appears. Submissions: Entries should include electronic files of clippings of stories, series and/or editorials and community reaction. No more than 20 electronic files may be submitted, including a detailed letter outlining the background, accomplishments and results of the effort. The letter should discuss significant challenges to the accuracy or the approach of the entry, and steps the newspaper took to address those concerns. The entry must include all published corrections or clarifications. Judging: Judging will be done by the president and three past presidents of APME plus a senior editor of The Associated Press. Judges will select the overall winner from the three division winners. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

45th Annual First Amendment Award and Citations The 2014 APME First Amendment Awards will be given to journalists or newspapers for work that advances freedom of information, makes good use of FOI principles or statutes, or significantly widens the scope of information available to the public. Other distinguished efforts will be honored with First Amendment citations. The Tom Curley Sweepstakes of $1,000 will be given to the entry that overall best exemplifies the spirit of the First Amendment. The sweepstakes winner will not be one of circulation category winners, but will be chosen as the best of all the entrants. The prize is sponsored by the APME Foundation. Criteria: The objective is to honor journalists and newspapers for significant or breakthrough work that protects or advances the First Amendment or federal and state FOI statutes. A story or project that makes good use of an FOIA law does not necessarily meet the criteria for the APME First Amendment Award, and may be deserving of consideration in the APME Public Service competition. Judges in the First Amendment contest will give preference to entries that break ground in the use of freedom of information principles or overcome significant official resistance to legal application of the First Amendment or FOI laws. Newspapers must choose whether to enter their projects in the First Amendment or Public Service contests. Nominations: Nominations will be made by individuals, newspapers, professional societies, journalism schools, state AP associations and others. Circulation categories: There shall be three awards: one for newspapers with average daily circulation to 39,999; one for newspapers with average daily circulation of 40,000 to 149,999; another for newspapers of 150,000 average daily circulation or more, according to the latest audited figures. The Tom Curley Sweepstakes Award, carrying a $1,000 prize, will be given to the winning entry that best exemplifies the spirit of the First Amendment and will be separate from the category winners, thus being the best of the best. APME reserves the right to decline to award a winner in any category. Eligibility: Individual staff members of The Associated Press or Canadian Press member newspapers, or the newspapers themselves, are eligible. However, an individual or newspaper may be nominated for contributions to freedom of information over the years.

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Submissions: The objective is to honor newsmen, newswomen and newspapers for efforts to obtain information to which the public otherwise would not have access. It is important that entries emphasize and document those efforts. Electronic images of pages must include publication dates. A total of 20 files may be uploaded and can be a combination of published pages, documentation and/or multimedia files. A detailed explanation of the entry to be submitted as a document file to your online application should discuss significant challenges to the accuracy or the approach of the entry, and steps the newspaper took to address those concerns. The entry must include all published corrections. Judging: Nominations will be judged by members of the APME Executive Committee, the chairman of the APME First Amendment Committee and distinguished experts on public access issues. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

Ninth Annual Innovator of the Year Award The award recognizes innovation in print, online, management, structure or other areas that demonstrates a bold, creative effort to improve a news or information product and increase audience. Demonstrable success is required for the entry’s standing. The winner will be awarded $1,000. The sponsor is GateHouse Media. Definition of innovation: A new, creative and forward-thinking concept that has long-lasting effects and attracts new audiences or dollars. It can be a product, a technique or a new structure, but it must be able to show how it met a specific goal over a period of time. It should have potential to become an industry standard over a period of time. Eligibility: The competition is open to any editor or staff member of an AP-member news organization, a team from a member news organization or a member news organization. Submissions: A total of 20 files can be uploaded with each entry. This can include a combination of documents, published pages and multimedia files, if applicable. Online innovation: The entrant is responsible for making the site available to judges through a Web link. URL should be submitted with the application. Print innovation: Submit electronic files of published tear sheets. Online and print: Combinations are welcome, and should be submitted according to rules for both. Management, structure or other: Explain thoroughly the innovation and how it improved or increased efficiency, effectiveness, coordination and audience or enhanced the newspaper’s competitiveness or ability to improve content. Provide examples of resulting content as appropriate. Judging: A panel of APME board and committee members will judge all entries and select three finalists. The finalists will be presented to attendees of the ASNE/APME joint conference, and a vote of attendees will determine the winner. A representative of each finalist will be asked to present his or her news organization’s entry at the conference. Attendance is not required to win, but it will difficult for attendees to select a winner without a representative’s presentation. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

Fourth Annual Innovator of the Year awards for Television and Radio The awards recognize innovation in television and radio that demonstrates bold, creative efforts to improve a news or information product and increase audience. Demonstrable success is required for the entry’s standing. An award will be given for the TV winner; another for the radio winner. Definition of innovation: A new, creative and forward-thinking concept that has long-lasting effects and attracts new audiences or dollars. It can be a product, a technique or a new structure, but it must be able to show how it met a specific goal over a period of time. It should have potential to become an industry standard over a period of time. Eligibility: The competition is open to any news manager or staffer of an AP-member TV or radio station or network, or a team from a member TV or radio station or network. Submissions: A total of 20 files can be uploaded with each entry. This can include a combination of produced segments or stories, documents, and/or multimedia files as appropriate. Management, structure or other: Explain thoroughly the innovation and how it improved or increased efficiency, effectiveness, coordination and audience or enhanced the station or network’s competitiveness or ability to improve content. Provide examples of resulting content as appropriate. Judging: A panel of APME board members will judge all entries and select the winner. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

The Al Neuharth Award for Innovation Journalism This award recognizes groundbreaking work by a newspaper that creatively uses digital tools in the role of being a community’s watchdog. The winner in each circulation category will be awarded $2,500. Eligibility: The awards are given to Associated Press or Canadian Press member newspapers. Criteria: This award recognizes groundbreaking work by a newspaper that creatively uses digital tools in the role of being a community's watchdog. Special consideration is given to journalism that helps a community understand and address important issues.

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>> Continued from previous page Criteria for evaluating innovation include interactivity, creation of new tools, innovative adaptation of existing tools, and creative use of any digital medium. Nominations: Nominations may be made by a newspaper itself, other newspapers, by AP bureaus or by civic or cultural organizations. Circulation categories: There shall be two awards: one for newspapers with average daily circulation up to 75,000, and the other for newspapers of 75,000 average daily circulation or more, according to the latest audited figures. The winner in each category will receive $2,500 in prize money. APME reserves the right to decline to award a winner in any category. Submissions: Entries should include electronic files of clippings of stories, series and/or editorials and community reaction. No more than 20 electronic files may be submitted, including a detailed letter outlining the background, accomplishments and results of the effort. Entrants are responsible for making the digital tools available to judges through a Web link. URL should be submitted with the application. The letter should discuss significant challenges to the accuracy or the approach of the entry, and steps the newspaper took to address those concerns. The entry must include all published corrections or clarifications. Judging: Judging will be done by a panel of APME board members, including the APME president. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

Fourth Annual Innovator of the Year Award for College Students The award recognizes innovation by university students in print, online, management, structure or other area that demonstrates a bold, creative effort to improve a news or information product and increase audience. Demonstrable success could improve the entry’s standing. Definition of Innovation: A new, creative and forward-thinking concept that has longlasting effects and attracts new audiences or dollars. It can be a product, a technique or a new structure, but must be able to show how it met a specific goal over a period of time. It should have potential to become an industry standard over a period of time. Eligibility: The competition is open to a student or faculty member enrolled at a U.S. or Canadian college or university. Submissions: A total of 20 files can be uploaded with each entry. This can include a combination of documents, published pages and multimedia files, if applicable. Online innovation: The entrant is responsible for making the site available to judges through a Web link. URL should be submitted with the application. Print innovation: Submit electronic files of published tear sheets. Online and print: Combinations are welcome, and should be submitted according to rules for both. Management, structure or other: Explain thoroughly the innovation and how it improved or increased efficiency, effectiveness, coordination and audience or enhanced the newspaper’s competitiveness or ability to improve content. Provide examples of resulting content as appropriate. Judging: A panel of APME board members will judge all entries and select the winner. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

NEW: Community Engagement Award This award will be given to news organizations that best demonstrate the ability to provide effective dialogue with their communities and/or seek partnerships that sustain the dialogue and/or encourages more community dialogue. Eligibility: The competition is open to an AP-member news organization, a team from a member news organization or a member news organization. Circulation categories: There shall be two awards: one for newspapers with average daily circulation to 59,999; and one for newspapers with average daily circulation of 60,000 or more, according to the latest audited figures. APME reserves the right to decline to award a winner in any category. Submissions: A total of 20 files can be uploaded with each entry. This can include a combination of documents, published pages and multimedia files, if applicable. Online: The entrant is responsible for making the site available to judges through a Web link. URL should be submitted with the application. Management, structure or other: All entries must have a 500-word (maximum) statement that explains how the partnership or engagement enhanced the dialogue within the community, produced results because of it and promoted more engagement from the news organization. It should be clear to judges why the entry made an impact and that plans are in place to continue the engagement in the future. Judging: A panel of APME board and committee members will judge all entries and select the winner. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

Second Annual Best Mobile Platform This award is presented to the news organization that produces or made significant improvements to a mobile (smartphone or tablet) application or platform in 2014, which most advances the state of the art in utility and engagement. The ideal entry will embody

improvements in content, design, functionality and technology that set an example worthy of emulation by the industry. Eligibility: The competition is open to any editor or staff member of an AP-member news organization, a team from a member news organization or a member news organization. Submissions: A total of 20 files can be uploaded with each entry. This can include a combination of documents, published pages and multimedia files, if applicable. Online: The entrant is responsible for making the site available to judges through a Web link. The URL should be submitted with the application. Management, structure or other: Explain thoroughly the mobile application and how it improved or increased efficiency, effectiveness, coordination and audience or enhanced the newspaper’s competitiveness or ability to improve content. Judging: A panel of APME board and committee members, including one who has experience with development of mobile apps, will judge all entries and select the winner. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

Digital Storytelling Awards The award recognizes Associated Press or Canadian Press member newspaper, television, radio and online partners for the effective use of digital storytelling. Criteria: These awards recognize print-online or broadcast-online combinations that draw on feature storytelling, data visualization, social media, use of apps, games, video and/or blogs in presenting the story. The article can be on any topic, but it must have a narrative or feature approach to it. Entries should demonstrate the effective use of the digital medium, highlighting its ability to engage readers, viewers or listeners and present information in compelling new ways. Nominations: Nominations may be made by an AP-member newspaper or broadcast outlet itself or its online partner. Circulation categories: There shall be three awards: one for newspapers with average daily circulation to 39,999; one for newspapers with average daily circulation of 40,000 to 149,999; another for newspapers of 150,000 average daily circulation or more, according to the latest audited figures. APME reserves the right to decline to award a winner in any category. Submissions: Entry should include main URL, three supporting URLs, plus a 500word (maximum) statement explaining why the work deserves recognition. Judges will give special weight to entries that highlight reader engagement and interactivity. You can include electronic files of stories, series and/or editorials and community reaction. No more than 20 electronic files may be submitted, including a letter describing the nominated story and how it was developed. The letter should discuss additional elements produced for online and how the online efforts contributed to development of the story in print or broadcast. The letter also should discuss any action resulting from the coverage. It also should mention significant challenges to the accuracy or approach of the entry, as well as steps the news media outlet and/or the online unit took to address those concerns. Published corrections or clarifications must be included. Judging: A panel of APME board and committee members will serve as judges. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy

International Perspective Awards The 2014 APME International Perspective Awards will be given to Associated Press and Canadian Press member newspapers for outstanding coverage of international news for local readers. Criteria: These awards recognize newspapers that provide effective and thoughtful coverage of world events for a local audience. This could be reflected in coverage from the newspaper's own foreign staff; consistent, discriminating selection of news agency and syndicate material with an eye to overall importance, the quality of writing and the specific interests of the local community; locally produced stories tracing the international connections of people, businesses and other organizations in the newspaper's circulation area; articles about, or by, local people living or traveling abroad; and the effective use of local experts to provide background on international developments. Nominations: Nominations may be made by a newspaper itself, by other newspapers, by AP bureaus or by civic or cultural organizations. Circulation categories: There shall be two awards: one for newspapers with average daily circulation to 59,999; and one for newspapers with average daily circulation of 60,000 or more, according to the latest audited figures. APME reserves the right to decline to award a winner in any category. Submissions: An entry can include electronic files of stories, series and/or editorials and community reaction. The files should include proof of publication date. A total of 20 files may be uploaded, and should include a letter with a description of the newspaper’s criteria and philosophy for internationally related coverage. The letter also should discuss any accomplishments resulting from the coverage. It should also discuss significant challenges to the accuracy or approach of the entry, and steps the newspaper took to address those concerns. Published corrections or clarifications must be included. Judging: Judging will be done by a committee appointed by the president of APME, to include a senior online editor of The Associated Press and other top online journalists. Enter at: http://bit.ly/1vNh4Zy n

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editors in the news

Industry’s promotions, appointments, awards and recognition Mark Davies named to senior AP day manager post Mark Davies, a senior AP news manager with strong expe-

rience in designing news coverage for specific customer needs, has been appointed to lead the AP’s Nerve Center during the U.S. day. The Nerve Center, located in New York, coordinates the news organization's worldwide coverage in text, broadcast, photos and interactives.

Editor Kaiser to leave Journal Sentinel Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editor Martin Kaiser says he will leave the company in February. Kaiser led the newspaper to three Pulitzer Prizes. His successor will be George Stanley, the Journal Sentinel’s managing editor and former APME board member. Kaiser, 64, has been with the organization 20 years. The Milwaukee native returned as managing editor of the old Milwaukee Journal, and in three years became editor of the merged Journal Sentinel.

Editor stepping down to spare layoffs Bob Unger, the award-winning editor of The Standard-

Times of New Bedford, Massachusetts, says he’s stepping down early next year to spare the newspaper additional layoffs. Unger said he decided to resign primarily because the newspaper is facing a challenging revenue situation.

AP names Peter Prengaman Southern Cone news editor Peter Prengaman, a cross-format journalist and news manager who has reported from a dozen countries for The Associated Press, has been named news editor for the Southern Cone countries of Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay. He will be based in Buenos Aires.

AP names San Antonio correspondent Seth Robbins, who has reported in Central America,

Europe and the United States, has been named San Antonio correspondent for The Associated Press, covering central and south Texas. Robbins has been a freelance reporter in Honduras and El Salvador since 2013.

Ellyson named Telegram editor The interim editor has been named editor of the Columbus (Neb.) Telegram. Tyler Ellyson has been interim

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editor since former editor and publisher James Dean left the Telegram in August. John DiMambro has replaced Dean as publisher. The 29-year-old Ellyson has been with the newspaper for four years.

Van Anglen promoted to AP’s Deep South editor Jim Van Anglen, news editor for The Associated Press in Georgia and Alabama, has been promoted to the newly created position of Deep South Editor. Van Anglen will oversee coverage in Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, with an emphasis on enterprise, accountability and investigative journalism.

AP names Carlo Piovano as Europe Business Editor Carlo Piovano, who joined the AP’s business desk in London as an editor at the height of the global financial crisis, has been promoted to AP's Europe Business Editor. Piovano, 36, will oversee breaking news and enterprise business coverage throughout Europe, coordinating between business staffers in London, Frankfurt and Moscow and general news reporters all over the continent.

Gannett names Alan English president/publisher in Shreveport Gannett Co. Inc. named Alan English president and publisher of The Times in Shreveport, Louisiana. English was general manager and executive editor of The Times. English, a former APME board member, also will oversee The News-Star in Monroe, Louisiana. English has been publisher of the Log Cabin Democrat in Conway, Arkansas, and executive editor for the Augusta (Georgia) Chronicle.

Larson names AP’s West Africa bureau chief Krista Larson, who has covered the Ebola outbreak and the deadly conflict in Central African Republic for The Associated Press, has been named bureau chief for West Africa for the news cooperative. Larson has worked in Africa >> Continued on next page


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since 2008, first as a supervisory editor at the AP’s Africa regional desk in Johannesburg. In 2012, she became a correspondent based in Dakar, Senegal.

Autumn Phillips named new editor-in-chief at The Southern Illinoisian Award-winning editor Autumn Phillips, a passionate proponent of in-depth reporting and digital news delivery, in November took the helm of The Southern Illinoisan’s new editor-in-chief. Phillips, an APME board member, leaves a post at the TimesNews in Twin Falls, Idaho, where she also PHILLIPS served as editor-in-chief. Lee Enterprises, the Iowa-based owner of 46 daily newspapers nationwide, owns both publications. The Southern’s publisher, John Pfeifer, worked alongside Phillips at the Times-News when he served as that paper’s publisher.

George Rodrique joins The Plain Dealer George Rodrigue, an award-winning

newspaper journalist and the assistant news director at WFAA-TV, the ABC affiliate in Dallas, will be the next editor of The Plain Dealer. His appointment was announced Jan. 5 by Advance Publications, The Plain Dealer's New York-based owner. Rodrigue, 58, an APME board member RODRIGUE replaces Debra Adams Simmons, APME’s immediate past president, who left the newsroom last April to accept a corporate position with Advance. Before jumping to television in September, Rodrigue was the long-time managing editor of The Dallas Morning News and a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter.

Mintz promoted to editor of The Facts Yvonne Mintz has been named editor of The Facts news-

paper of Cliute, Texas, after serving as managing editor for more than a decade. Michael Morris has been named managing editor, succeeding Mintz. The Facts is part of Houston-based Southern Newspapers Inc.

AP names Federman chief of burean for Israel and Palestinian territories The Associated Press has named Josef Federman, a veteran Middle East correspondent, as its chief of bureau for Israel and the Palestinian territories. Federman, 46, joined the AP as an editor on the international desk in New York in 1993. He was named news editor in 2006.

AP names news editor for Kentucky, Tennessee bureaus The Associated Press has named Scott Stroud as its news editor for Kentucky and Tennessee. Stroud formerly served as politics and government editor for The Tennessean in Nashville and was a reporter for the Lexington HeraldLeader in Kentucky. He will be based in AP’s Nashville bureau.

Kristin Bender to join AP in San Francisco Kristin J. Bender, a veteran Bay Area reporter who has chronicled many of the region’s biggest news stories for the largest local newspaper chain, is joining the San Francisco bureau of The Associated Press. Bender will be a breaking news staffer, reporting on Northern California spot news as it develops.

De Pury named AP’s director of Russia, CIS The Associated Press has named Kate de Pury, an awardwinning journalist with more than 15 years experience in video newsgathering, as its news director for Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States. De Pury, who has spent many years working in Russia, will lead AP’s video, text and photo report across one-seventh of the earth's surface, stretching from the Baltics to Central Asia.

AP names Berland as weekend global news manager Evan Berland, a senior Associated Press editor and manager, has been appointed AP’s global news manager for weekends. Berland will oversee AP weekend operations in all formats. He will be based at the news cooperative's Nerve Center in New York.

New York Times promotes editors in change of leadership structure The executive editor of The New York Times announced broad changes to the newspaper’s leadership, replacing titles that had been used for decades and promoting several senior editors. The editor, Dean Baquet, will retire the job of managing editor, traditionally the second-most senior newsroom position at The Times, and a job he once held, and promote four senior editors — Susan BAQUET Chira, Janet Elder, Matt Purdy and Ian Fisher — to the new title of deputy executive editor, he wrote in a memo to the staff. A fifth editor, Tom Bodkin, will be given the title of creative director, a position equal to the four deputy executive editors. >> Continued on next page

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The Selma Times-Journal names new editor An Alabama newspaper executive has been named editor of The Selma Times-Journal. The newspaper reports that Justin Averette comes to the position from The Demopolis Times, where he was publisher. The Selma and Demopolis newspapers are both affiliated with Boone Newspapers Inc. of Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Gazlay named AP Director of Top Stories Kristin Gazlay, an editor who has held major leadership positions at The Associated Press over a career extending more than three decades, has been appointed the news service's director of top stories. Gazlay, 55, joined the AP in Dallas in 1980 after her graduation from Southern Methodist University.

Lynne O’Donnell named AP chief of bureau in Kabul Lynne O'Donnell, a foreign correspondent who has covered major stories throughout the Middle East and Asia for

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two decades, has been named Kabul bureau chief for The Associated Press. O'Donnell succeeds Patrick Quinn, who is now based in Cairo as a supervisor.

AP names Maya Alleruzzo Middle East regional photo editor Maya Alleruzzo, a photographer who has covered wars in Iraq and Afghanistan during a 12-year stint in the region, has been named regional photo editor for the Middle East by The Associated Press.

Michael Catalini named AP New Jersey statehouse reporter Michael Catalini, an enterprising political journalist covering the U.S. Senate, has been named the New Jersey statehouse reporter for The Associated Press. Catalini joins the AP from the National Journal Daily. In New Jersey, he will focus on accountability and breaking news coverage as the lead reporter on state government, including the Legislature, state agencies and the budget. n


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member

showcase

APME recognizes contributions to the AP photo report through the Showcase Photo of the Month Award. The competition is judged by AP and member photo editors. The monthly winners are displayed at the annual conference and a Showcase Photo of the Year Award is presented.

AUGUST AP Photo/ The Press-Enterprise

David Bauman An official of Forest Home Christian Conference Center in Forest Falls, Calif., inspects damage on the property following thunderstorms on Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014. About 1,500 residents of Oak Glen, and another 1,000 residents of Forest Falls in the San Bernardino Mountains were unable to get out because the roads were covered with mud, rock and debris, authorities said.

SEPTEMBER

OCTOBER

AP Photo/Anderson Independent Mail

AP Photo/The Mountain Press

Nathan Gray

Curt Habraken

Jim Clements, president of Clemson University, leads a moment of silence during a vigil for Tucker Hipps as people use their cell phones to illuminate Bowman Field in Clemson, S.C., one day after Hipps fatally fell from a bridge after a run with his fraternity brothers.

Pigeon Forge (Tennessee) City firefighter Pete Griffioen, wearing a protective suit, walks in front of a projection of the Ebola virus during a training slideshow at the fire department in Pigeon Forge.

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AP Stylebook minute Pronoun errors may result from carelessness, casual usage

W

hat’s amiss in these sentences? n Everyone raised their hands when the teacher asked the question. n If anybody calls, tell them I’m at work. n Nobody joins the military because they want a safe life. Answer: the subject pronouns - everyone, anybody, nobody - are singular and require singular pronouns or rephrasing for grammatical agreement. Yet the follow-up pronouns in each example their, them, they - are plural forms and glaringly out of sync with their antecedents. n Everyone raised a hand when the teacher asked the question. n If anybody calls, tell her I’m at work. n Nobody joins the military because he wants a safe life. In writing or conversation, pronoun errors may result from carelessness, disregarding rules of grammar or resorting to casual usage to sidestep a gender dilemma. In the three examples, everyone, anybody or nobody could be either masculine or feminine subjects. But using genderless plural pronouns - their, them, they - to avoid the all-purpose “he” or awkward “he or she” violates agreement. A query to Ask the Editor, the online Stylebook’s help site, asked for alternatives: “In speaking, people frequently use a plural pronoun with a singular subject. In writing, is it ever acceptable to do this? For example: ‘When talking with a donor, remember to get their contact information.’ “If there’s a whole paragraph of these types of sentences, using ‘his or her’ can get extremely redundant. I know the easiest fix is to make the subject plural, but sometimes that isn’t possible.” My response: Agreement is essential for proper grammar. A singular noun takes a singular pronoun. Alternatively,

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simplify the sentence: “When talking to a donor, remember to get contact information.” Dropping “their” also saves a word and makes the sentence clearer. Grammatical dissonance may also result from well-meant efforts to broaden a topic. An AP lead on the assisted suicide of a young woman reported that her “last days started a national conversation about whether it’s OK for a terminally ill person to end their own life.” Substituting “her” for the faulty “their” would not have diminished an otherwise well-crafted lead. To reinforce correct usage of “their,” the AP Stylebook added this guidance to the “their, there, they’re” entry: Their is a plural possessive pronoun and must agree in number with the antecedent. Wrong: Everyone raised their hands. Right: They raised their hands. See “every one, everyone” for the pronoun that takes singular verbs and pronouns. n


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2015

APME BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Officers

Directors

n President: Alan D. Miller, The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch n Vice President: Teri Hayt, The (Canton, Ohio) Repository n Secretary: Laura Sellers-Earl, The Daily Astorian, Astoria, Ore. n Journalism Studies Chair: Bill Church, Herald-Tribune Media Group, Sarasota, Fla. n Treasurer: Dennis Anderson, Peoria (Ill.) Journal Star

(Terms expiring in 2015) n Dennis Anderson, Peoria (Ill.) Journal Star n Mark Baldwin, Rockford (Ill.) Register Star n Chris Cobler, Victoria (Texas) Advocate n Angie Muhs, State Journal-Register, Springfield, IL n Jim Simon, The Seattle Times

Executive Committee (officers above plus) n Past President: Debra Adams Simmons, Advance Publications n AP Senior Vice President/Executive Editor: Kathleen Carroll, New York n AP Vice President/Senior Managing Editor: Mike Oreskes, New York n Marketing Chairwoman: Angie Muhs, State Journal-Register, Springfield, IL n APME News Editor: Andrew Oppmann, Middle Tennessee State University n Conference Program: Jim Simon, Seattle Times; Joe Hight, Oklahoma City

(Terms expiring in 2016) n David Arkin, GateHouse Media n Sonny Albarado, Arkansas Democrat Gazette n Jack Lail, Knoxville News Sentinel n Autumn Phillips, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, IL n Thomas Koetting, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel n Russ Mitchell, WKYC-TV, Cleveland n Cate Barron, Patriot-News, Harrisburg, Pa. (Terms expiring in 2017) n Gary Graham, The Spokesman-Review, Spokane, Wash. n Joe Hight, Oklahoma City n Eric Ludgood, Fox 5 News, Atlanta n Kelly Dyer Fry, The Oklahoman n Chris Quinn, Northeast Ohio Media Group n George Rodrigue, The Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio n Ray Rivera, Santa Fe New Mexican

Our communication vehicles n apme.com n http://www.facebook.com/APMEnews n https://twitter.com/APME n http://apmeblog.blogspot.com/ n http://www.facebook.com/NewsTrain n https://twitter.com/NewsTrain and, APME Update: n http://www.apme.com/?page=Newsletters

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January 2015 APME News  
January 2015 APME News  

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