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“I became a journalist to come as close as possible to the heart of the world.” — Henry Luce
Congratulations to this year’s 25 Under 35 Because of your persistence, perseverance and passion, the beat goes on.
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CLEANING UP THE WEB
Solutions, Success Stories and New Ideas
Factmata is on a mission against disinformation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 8
Should newspapers stop publishing their articles on Facebook due to the new algorithm change? . . . . . . . . . p. 15
‘PARTNERSHIPS, NOT PARACHUTES’
2018 Mega-Conference highlights ‘stronger and smarter’ future for newspaper industry . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 32
Media organization hopes to create more collaboration with database . . p. 9
Transforming the Industry
150 YEARS AND COUNTING
2018 America East conference focuses on new changes in print and digitalp. 34
Trust in media, platforms that offer the highest digital ad spending ROI, change in New York Times revenue . . . . . . p. 18
The tale of one family’s ownership of an ever-evolving newspaper . . . . . . . . . . p. 10
A New Perception
Augmented reality is changing how newspapers (and readers) are seeing things . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 36
Why running regularly scheduled press tests is crucial to your equipment’s health . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 26
25 Under 35
Meet the future generation of newspaper leaders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 44
New hires, promotions and relocations across the industry . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 66
Associated Press’ new marijuana beat team aims to cover from all angles p. 12
FROM HARDSHIP TO VICTORY How one reporter’s mission brought attention to the suicide epidemic among farm workers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 14
SHOPTALK One decision doomed a vital paper p. 74
PHOTO OF THE MONTH Tim Tai/Philadelphia Media Network . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 16
Columns INDUSTRY INSIGHT
BUSINESS OF NEWS
How a new breed of billionaire owners is shaping the newspaper business . . p. 20
Taking a look at what’s in store for publishing trends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 22
After years of tinkering with paywalls, publishers are finding the right formula for online subscribers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . p. 24
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hen 17 people were killed in a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. on Feb. 14, it was the eighth school shooting so far in 2018, according to CNN. The media once again set up camp outside a school to interview teachers, students and parents about the tragic event. I was prepared to hear the same news bites from TV anchors whenever a national tragedy like this occurs, but as we listened to the high school students who had survived the shooting recount what had happened to them, there was definitely a narrative shift in the air. For the first time, it seemed like the public was learning more about the victims and survivors rather than the killer. Students like David Hogg, Cameron Kasky, Emma González, and Sarah Chadwick were making their names and faces known by appearing in television interviews, and even on talk shows with Bill Maher and Ellen DeGeneres. Hogg, who is a student journalist, was one of the first students to appear on national news broadcasts calling for tougher gun control. What’s even more incredible is how these students took to social media, putting politicians (and even the president) on notice, and creating the Never Again Movement and organizing gun control rallies around the country. In Parkland, we are seeing a generation that is plugged in to social media and their phones using these platforms in order to call attention to their voices Over the last few years we’ve seen movements like Never Again, Black Lives Matter, Me Too, and Time’s Up create conversations on topics that otherwise would have been silenced if not for social media. And while the last presidential election saw a rise of disinformation and hate speech on these platforms, the students in Parkland are using Twitter to fearlessly push back against conspiracy theories and false information. In a USA Today article published a week after the Parkland shooting (usat. 4 |
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ly/2ouaRV5), Marshall Ganz, a senior lecturer of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, said that “public narrative” helped explain why the Parkland students were connecting with Americans in ways that politicians and advocacy groups could not. “Human beings communicate through stories,” Ganz said in the article. “It’s how parents teach children, it’s how societies teach their moral content. These kids are articulate as hell. Their capacity to tell their story is amazing.” The article pointed out that their youth was also one of their advantage points. When you are 17 or 18 years old, you still have a sense of hopefulness; you believe you can make a difference in the world. After losing friends and teachers, these students in Parkland are using their stories to make sure no one else has to go through the same horrifying ordeal as they did. In this month’s issue, we also highlight young people—25 of them to be precise. These men and women working in newsrooms around the world are also filled with hope (and for our industry, hope is a very important attribute to bring to the newsroom). They want to make a difference; they want to see changes; and they all believe in the success of newspapers. We should all be excited about the young men and women working and creating movement at our newspapers, many of them creating bold ideas and filling our products with fresh energy and new enthusiasm. Recently, the Pew Research Center released a report defining millennials as anyone born between 1981 and 1996 (pewrsr. ch/2CQR87r)—that includes the majority of those on our 25 Under 35 list. Like the Parkland students, this is also a generation that is shaping our news coverage and telling us what the future of news will look like for years to come. Not too long ago, the biggest concern for newspapers was how they were going to keep their millennial readers. I say, the biggest task now is how they are going keep their millennial employees. –NY
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News-O-Matic Already Used Internationally Many students already use this content in China. (“Teaching the Next Generation,” February 2018) The editors are aware of the sensitivities involved and tend to err on the side of safety when it comes to the diplomatic approach. As a result, there are now entire schools in China (including some in Shenzhen) that have adopted News-O-Matic’s texts into their literacy curriculum. And News-O-Matic may be adding Mandarin to its platform before long. RUSSELL KAHN News-O-Matic editor-in-chief
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Media Should Pay More Attention to Tech Giants Power of Local Media Can’t Be Matched As a recently retired publisher, I can only add “Amen, brother.” (“Business of News: Unbroken Bond,” February 2018) That’s what local media have to sell that Facebook and all their internet behemoths cannot match—true local involvement, understanding and honesty. The middle one is perhaps most important. Nobody who does hit-and-run coverage at most of your community will know how to connect the dots and get to the real story—and that’s what people want. Many hunger for much greater detail that an initial local internet story offers, so local newspapers need to use their websites and Facebook pages to drive people to the print edition for all the details. As big box stores lose touch with their local customers, those readers are the same ones who will remain loyal to local businesses, which generally recognize the value of being a part of the newspaper. And yes, it also means we sometimes have to charge for things that once were free, but there’s nothing wrong with an occasional spread on the editorial page about 6 |
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what happens to a community that loses its newspaper. It is called educating the public—and making certain we fill our pages with a variety of stories some of which aim at every demographic group from the post-millennials to the remainder of the Greatest Generation. And as one famed community publisher once said, every issue needs at least one “Hey Maude”—a story so fascinating that one family member carries the paper to another and says, “Hey, Maude, did you see this in the Gazette today?” JOHN WYLIE
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Kids Daily Newspaper is a Great Idea for Students I would love to have this for EFL students. (“Teaching the Next Generation,” February 2018) However, the content for countries like China must avoid particular politics and use a very diplomatic approach to world news and religion. This would be much more interesting content for my students. I create a lot of news content for
The federal government is worried about the damage imported Canadian newsprint may be doing to a single hedge-fund owned mill in the northeast. (“Shoptalk: Facebook Ad Targeting is Incredible—and Scary,” February 2018) Meanwhile, Facebook, Apple, Google and others are acquiring potential monopoly power undreamed of by the Robber Barons of the 20th century. Equally concerning is the growing possibility companies such as these will control everything we know, need or want if not constrained. The Justice Department and Congress are doing little to even consider such a dire prospect. Unfortunately, it is also attracting little attention from the media. ROY BODE
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Subscribe to Life, Read a Newspaper
Newspapers give you more than just information. They offer an in-depth, panoramic perspective of events, delivering a weird and wonderful diversity of arts, culture, sports, hobbies, and both local and world news. Newspapers don’t tell you what you want to know; they turn you on to the stories and topics you should know. They inspire you to think deeper, see further and dream bigger — newspapers are where knowledge comes to life.
Newspapers strive to ensure the free exchange of information that is accurate, fair and thorough. We fear no one. E&P is a staunch supporter of the newspaper industry and is dedicated to promoting its success and well-being in the years to come. From time to time, we will print full-page ads such as this, to inspire advertising and marketing ideas — touting the importance of ethical journalism and its value to democracy.
the A section VOLUME 151
FOR THE MONTH OF APRIL 2018
> Look Ahead
Cleaning Up the Web Factmata is on a mission against disinformation By Jesus A. Ruiz
eeding through the thicket of news online can take a while. Deciding what’s real and what’s fake can take even longer. One company is working to speed up the process with the help of artificial intelligence and some big name investors: Factmata, a news platform assisted by AI that verifies statements made online in articles and social media. “Our aim is to be able to provide a real time quality and credibility score to any piece of content on the web, and help advertisers get clarity on the potential hate speech, extreme politicized and fake content they may be putting their ads onto,” said Dhruv Ghulati, Factmata CEO and research scientist. Ghulati, who started the company out of his bedroom, said the free platform works like a “social media” community and “developed from a desire to drive change and be part of the solution for fake news.” During its beta testing phase, the platform was open to journalists, researchers and fact checkers with an alpha phase launch set for sometime this spring. He hopes the platform can aid in the newsgathering process as well as serve news enthusiasts.
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“For news organizations and publishers, our use cases include helping with better quality newsgathering (not picking up poor quality hoaxes to report on), helping sanity and fact check articles for facts and bias, helping clean out article comments, help analyze bias in inventory, and more,” Ghulati said. To help in his crusade against disinformation, Ghulati } Dhruv Ghulati, Factmata CEO and has attracted investments from research scientist the likes of Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone, and Craigslist founder Craig Newark. (Stone and Newark most recently invested.) “This new funding allows us to expand the Factmata team and bring together leading thinkers from machine learning, online community building and journalism,” Ghulati said. “It also enables us to focus on bringing our product to market in time to solve some major upcoming problems on the internet—reducing online misinformation, screening questionable content and providing more context on what is already out there.” Factmata arrives at a time where the pressure for news organizations to be factually accurate is at its breaking point, and where online campaigns of disinformation run rampant and the spread of fake news has been given an ever-increasing reach. For Ghulati, helping out society with this problem is why he created Factmata in the first place. “Most of all we want to make the internet a better place for people to learn and grow from,” he said. For more information, visit factmata.com. editorandpublisher.com
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the A section
‘Partnerships, Not Parachutes’ Media organization hopes to create more collaboration with database
“This is new territory for many journalists, and it helps to get an understanding of how others are structuring their projects.”
ollaboration in journalism now has a home with the introduction of a new database.
The Center for Cooperative Media has created a Collaborative Journalism Database, which launched this year and is a collection of collaborative projects from around the world. Find the database at collaborativejournalism.org. “We want to help be a hub for catalyzing and sharing knowledge about impactful, meaningful journalism produced by collaborations around the world,” said Stefanie Murray, the Center’s director. The database was created after Murray saw that many lists and articles about collaborations in journalism had been published before but there wasn’t a cohesive list that people could find. “We had gathered so much information about collaborative projects and thought that launching a database would be a great way to share all that information in a way that could be kept ongoing in the future,” she said. The database (as of press time) currently lists 153 projects, more than 800 organizations and more than 150 individuals. The list is constantly growing. Murray hopes the list can stir more information sharing and better journalism. She also said the database is a valuable tool for journalists looking for information about an ongoing story or for inspiring story ideas. “We strongly believe that excellent journalism in the } Stefanie Murray, Center for future will require journalists and news organizations to Cooperative Media director
collaborate much more with each other and with their communities,” she said. “We hope that our building and promotion of the database, our upcoming 2018 Collaborative Journalism Summit, and additional upcoming research and case studies around great projects will help spur even greater projects.” Murray said the database is not only for those who are involved in projects or those who want to get involved, but it’s also a tool for those who don’t know much about how these projects work. “This is new territory for many journalists, and it helps to get an understanding of how others are structuring their projects,” she said. The Center’s upcoming Collaborative Journalism Summit May 10-11 is another opportunity for those interested to learn more about the project. The summit will be held at Montclair State University in New Jersey. If you have a collaborative project that you’d like to share, let the Center know by emailing email@example.com. Murray said the Center will keep sharing and keep pushing for collaboration in journalism in the future. “We are continuing to beat the drum about ‘partnerships, not parachutes,’ at the Center.”—JR
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the A section From the Archive OF THE MONTH As a Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute fellow, Connor Sheets spent a year develop Connor Sheets ing a program to help ease reporters of the pressure of needing to be in multiple places at once. Called the Deputy Program, it’s a simple, cost-effective way to enlist residents to be the eyes and ears in a community, according to Sheets. For newsrooms that “don’t have huge amount of money to hire people and buy engagement tools,” this program is a way to tackle the problem, he said. The program is free and works like a text messaging network through a service called GroundSource. Residents can join by texting a number provided by the newsroom, which then signs them up. Residents are trained with the basics of how to source information and how to text whenever they have something to share. Recently implemented at AL.com, part of the Alabama Media Group, a control group of 45 people initially signed up, and since then, dozens of ideas have come to the newsrooms. “If you can get one extra story a month out of it, that’s a success for me,” Sheets said. To learn more about the program, visit thedeputyprogram. com.—JR
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The Los Angeles Times’ circulation service center, with terminals for online access to subscriber files, has been expanded from 23 clerical positions to 120 as a result of the Times’ new system for home delivery service. This photo originally appeared in the Jan. 31, 1976 issue of E&P.
LEGAL BRIEFS Doctor Accuses Maine, National Newspapers of Defamation
According to the Forecaster, two Rhode Island newspapers are facing accusations of defamation by a podiatrist who previously worked at a veterans hospital in the state. Thomas Franchini claims the Portland Press Herald, Bangor Daily News, as well as USA Today and Investors Business Daily, wrongly accused him of malpractice in reports published about him. Also named in the suit are staff writers Edward D. Murphy of the Press Herald and Meg Haskell of the Daily News. The suit is based on stories that claim Franchini was forced to leave the hospital because he “botched” surgical procedures and provided substandard and negligent care for several patients. Franchini claims the reports published about him last October were libelous and damaging, resulting in a loss of employment and future earnings estimated to exceed $3.4 million. Cliff Schechtman, executive editor of the Press Herald, said the reporting is accurate based on federal court records and documents from the Veteran Affairs Maine Healthcare System.
Vermont Newspaper Drops Legal Suit Against Competitor
As reported in the Burlington Free Press, the Caledonian Record of St. Johnsbury has dropped its case against the Newport Daily Express but might re-file some claims. The biggest claim—racketeering—cannot be refilled due to how the case was dismissed. Two other claims that can be transferred to the Vermont court system are unfair competition and conversion. The original suit arose after the Record alleged that the Daily Express swiped its password to the Associated Press news service and used the Record’s account for years to download photos excluded from the Daily Express’ account. The Daily Express argued it did nothing wrong and even if the allegations were true the conduct did no harm. The lawsuit also alleged that Daily Express employees provided potential advertisers with inflated circulation figures, enticing businesses to sign on with the Newport publication instead of the Record. editorandpublisher.com
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the A section > Wise Advice
“Given the state of today’s media landscape, what is the importance of having an opinion editor for newspapers?” The opinion section is where readers go to have their thinking challenged, expanded or sharpened. While the news division rigorously reports, the opinion editor can create space for elevated dialogue to happen—even if that dialogue only occurs in the mind of the reader. Editors have the opportunity, through their own words and by the voices they promote, to shape crucial conversations around kitchen tables, corporate break-rooms and in communities. At a time when divisive people with websites can drive national conversations, opinion editors must foster an inviting space where readers can engage, present differing views and promote civil discourse.
The price paid to purchase the Los Angeles Times and the San Diego Union-Tribune by billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong. That’s more than all the newspaper dealings in 2017 combined, which totaled $347.97 million, according to Dirks, Van Essen and Murray.
Boyd Matheson is opinion editor and head of strategic reach for the Deseret News in Salt Lake City, Utah. editorandpublisher.com
APRIL 2018 | E & P
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the A section
150 Years and Counting The tale of one family’s ownership of an ever-evolving newspaper S u n day , J A N u A Ry 2 8 , 2 0 1 8
c o m m e m o r a t i v e
s e c t i o N
150th anniversary of serving our readers
Pressmen gather for a photograph in front of the Reading Eagle press circa 1900.
At a point in its 150-year history, the Eagle had 22 linotypes in the composing room.
Jesse Hawley: architect of his own fortune
Reading Eagle employees in 1869 in front of the newspaper building at Sixth and Penn streets.
or the last 150 years, the Reading (Pa.) Eagle has been passed down one family’s lineage since the newspaper was first printed on Jan. 28, 1868. Serving Reading and Berks County regions, the Eagle has spanned eight generations of Peter Barbey’s family, who currently serves as president and chief executive officer. The daily paper (which Barbey describes as a part of the “family DNA”) was founded by Jessie Hawley, Barbey’s great-greatgrandfather, who partnered with William Ritter, the owner of a Germanlanguage newspaper called the Reading Adler, founded in 1796. The paper celebrated the momentous anniversary with a 48-page special section, which in Peter Barbey, Reading cluded historical Eagle president and CEO 12 |
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Reading Eagle history
photos, stories of the first 150 years and a comic strip (bit.ly/2EFaaiz) detailing Hawley’s early days leading the Eagle. In total, more than 50,000 copies were distributed and the section took 10 months to produce. “It was a combination of vision and talent,” Barbey said. “I think everyone had fun with it.” As a leader, Barbey has made bold decisions to ensure that the historic Eagle keeps up with the digital age. For example, in 2012, he implemented a paywall on the newspaper’s website. It was an unpopular decision, he said, but in the long run it resulted in retaining subscription income to a “great degree” and the paper’s circulation holding up. Part of what sustained subscriptions is paying attention to the content, said Barbey. As he looks ahead to the next 150 years, Barbey said, “I’ve learned that the print edition is still important because of the permanence that it has. So much of what we do digitally disappears…We have to figure out how to develop the same permanence in the digital age.”
paper takes flight at sixth and penn
Jesse Hawley and Williams S. Ritter launch the newspaper on Jan. 28, 1868. 2
History in pictures
MeMorable events froM our past
Images bring a story to life. See some of the most influential pictures that have appeared in the paper. 6
Courtesy of Berks History Center
The story of the founder of Reading Eagle Company
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illustrated story of Jesse hawley
Artist Craig Schaffer takes readers on a trip through the founder’s life from 1839 to 1903. 8
Jesse Hawley was born to parents Esther Trimble Meredith and Jesse Hawley on Aug. 8, 1839, in a farm in Pughtown, Chester County.
the editors who shaped the paper
As a boy, Jesse helped run a machine that
Legacy of leadership
ground tree bark into Nine men have taken thewhich reins powder, wasof the used to tan leather newsroom during the paper’s histoon the family farm. ry. Meet each of them. 10
peter barbey’s link all in the faMily
The CEO is a direct descendant of one of the Eagle founders and a great-great-nephew of the other. 23
In school, he was taught by his uncle James. He attended Greenwood Dell Boarding School and Millersville State Normal School (Millersville University), then graduated from National Law School in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
He relocated to Berks County and taught in Amity Township until 1859, when he moved to Reading. Hawley passed the bar exam a year later and quickly became known as an expert lawyer. His personality and friendship were well-known.
The Eagle published a 48-page special section to commemorate its 150-year anniversary. He volunteered and served briefly as a private in the Berks County cavalry during the Civil War. The experience shifted his political views and launched his interest in newspapers.
In 1868, they started Reading Daily Eagle and bought the Reading Gazette and Democrat. Six years later, they dissolved their partnership. Ritter kept Readinger Adler, and Hawley the Reading Daily Eagle, Gazette, bookstore and printing shop. Hawley announced the split to the newsroom:
Barbey also learned about the need to keep the newspaper a family business because it arises a sense of social responsibility like that of his ancestors. “It was never about the money the paper produced,” he said. “It’s very much about the role that publishing a newspaper has in a community. It’s quite a privilege to own a newspaper and it has to be treated as such.” Barbey intends to keep the Eagle in the family for future generations but that’s not to say offers haven’t come his way. “Sure, they called,” he said, referring to other media companies. “But our family has decided to keep it…we’ve always had a tradition of family succession. The most important thing is that the newspaper survives. We want to make sure the community is being served in the best way possible.”—JR In 1863, he married Katherine E. Ritter and had a son, Louis, who died of scarlet fever. Kate later gave birth to Edith (Hawley) Seyfert and Helen (Hawley) Quier.
A year later, he partnered with his wife’s cousin William S. Ritter, publisher of Readinger Adler, a German weekly, since 1797. They formed Ritter & Co. Jesse edited, and Katherine balanced ledgers.
In the newsroom, he wrote standing up at a tall desk.
“Gentlemen, I have an unchangeable faith in the people that they will support the Daily Eagle to a paying basis. Now, let us increase our energies and more and more deserve the success I hope for.”
Each day at 3 p.m., Hawley sat at the head of a 20-foot conference table and listened to story ideas from his staff.
“Have any of you people anything to suggest for the good of the paper?”
Hanging from his desk was a large black pair of scissors. He also kept a rusty broken revolver, which was given to him as a gift.
He paid close attention to detail, bookkeeping and cleanliness and directly encouraged his staff to work for success.
3/16/18 1:09 PM
the A section
Weed Watch Associated Press’ new marijuana beat team aims to cover from all angles
iving readers a clear picture of marijuana legislation and its effects takes more than one angle, said Frank Baker, who’s leading the Associated Press’ new marijuana beat team.
“Marijuana intersects with life in so many areas: government regulation and taxation, law enforcement, politics, science and health, agriculture, business,” he said. “You simply can’t tell the full story Frank Baker from a single vantage point.” The new beat team, which was announced in January, is the “brainchild” of AP’s news director for U.S. West Anna Johnson, who saw the
growing amount of attention the subject is receiving. “Whether they love, hate or are ambivalent about marijuana, people want to read about it,” Baker said. “Anna saw all that and the staying power the subject has and suggested a team and me as the leader.” One thing his team will have to overcome he said is the need to stay on top of other breaking news stories. “AP lives on breaking news and there’s a lot of it these days,” Baker said. “Everyone on this team knows that coverage trumps everything else so my job will be finding that sweet spot so they can pursue marijuana stories while still delivering breaking news when it happens in their areas.”—JR
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the A section
From Hardship to Victory How one reporter’s mission brought attention to the suicide epidemic among farm workers
suicide epidemic amongst farmers in America was a subject almost no one had heard of before Debbie Weingarten wrote her story. Knowledge of the alarming amount of suicides that occur in rural America wasn’t even fathomable unless you were from those areas. Now, a legislative bill improving mental health services for farm workers is on its way to realization—thanks to the power of Weingarten’s reporting. Weingarten didn’t do it all on her own though. She had the backing of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project (economichardship.org), its editors as well as an editor at the Guardian. What she did bring all on her own was a first-hand experience to the suicide epidemic—she’d lived through it. For years she struggled with the economic pressures of owning a farm and having nowhere to turn to for help. “We couldn’t afford to buy the very food we were growing, let alone pay to see a counselor or go to the doctor or take a vacation,” Weingarten said. “I felt extremely stressed and isolated, and I didn’t know who to call for help. I remember googling ‘free counseling resources for farmers’ and literally finding nothing.” Years later Weingarten would leave her farm life, but what she couldn’t shake was the thought of farmer suicide and the lacking amount of mental health services. So she went digging and found that the high rate of suicides for farmers was underreported. She set out to bring light to the issue and sought a platform. After being turned down by multiple publications, Weingarten came in contact with the EHRP. “It was an easy decision to greenlight Debbie’s piece. EHRP is
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} Debbie Weingarten, reporter
} David Wallis, Economic Hardship Reporting Project managing director
always on the hunt for surprising, under“The story also serves to remind reported stories like this one,” said David us that journalism can actually Wallis, EHRP’s manwork. We do this because we aging director. hope to create a modicum of The report, “Why change.” are America’s farmers killing themselves in record numbers?,” became a part of EHRP’s On the Ground series that ran in the Des Moines Register as well as the Guardian. Weingarten, along with photographer Audra Mulkern, traveled and interviewed farmers for months. After they finished, the results were more than they’d hoped for. “…The piece took off and I received messages and phone calls from people all over the world, as did Audra, as did the people profiled in it,” said Weingarten. In the U.S., the article (bit.ly/2AdJuaC) caught the attention of J.T. Wilcox, a Washington State Representative and fourth generation farmer, who introduced a farmworker suicide prevention bill because of the piece. “The story also serves to remind us that journalism can actually work,” said Wallis. “We do this because we hope to create a modicum of change. The heartening reaction to Debbie’s story proves that our work truly matters.”—JR editorandpublisher.com
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J-school students and industry vets tackle the tough questions
“Brazil’s biggest newspaper recently announced it would stop publishing its articles on Facebook because of the algorithm change. Should other newspapers do the same?”
A Facebook without credible, professional news being pumped into newsfeeds in some capacity is a platform that does a disservice to its users. Newsrooms can’t control algorithms, but the anecdote to fake news requires far more than going dark on social media. For some readers, pulling a newspaper’s voice from an echo Alexa Díaz, 21 senior, Syracuse University chamber like Facebook—be it because (Syracuse, N.Y.) of increased conspiracy posts or low traffic—is the equivalent of cutting Díaz is the editor-in-chief of the independent, student-run their doorstep news delivery service. newspaper, The Daily Orange. These readers may not take the time She has written for the paper to input a web address regularly or since 2014. fact-check suspicious posts that creep up on their feeds. We know that. Out of screen, out of mind, out of consciousness. Fake news existed long before internet propagandists could stitch together videos spinning national news stories to drown out accurate reporting and accounts from those directly affected. Fake news doesn’t end with social media when it began spreading through print and by word of mouth before the dot-com boom. Digital media is another channel, however more powerful. But it is one newsrooms can use to make sure online users and readers alike know reporting with integrity doesn’t go quiet when false reports are blaring. Taking ownership in the power of social media to resonate with distinct communities and grow readership is an opportunity to support news literacy by providing accessible, relevant and reliable news. This is why we see the power of audience development and engagement teams in newsrooms. Be it for power or profit, Facebook sees value in news. In late January, Mark Zuckerberg made clear the platform’s intent to emphasize “quality, trusted news” for users. Zuckerberg highlighted what newsrooms know well: Local news contextualizes daily life on and offline. With fine-tuned engagement practices and strategic coverage, national media can resonate with readers in a similar way. Newsrooms have adapted to changing industries and technologies to best serve readers. Algorithms are no different. editorandpublisher.com
Short answer: No. Longer answer: Facebook is a significant source of readership for most newspapers. Never was it more clear to those of us in Las Vegas as when we used Facebook live to get word out to the community about the Oct. 1 mass shooting Keith Moyer, 65 at the Mandalay Bay Resort. Faceeditor-in-chief and senior VP/content, Las Vegas (Nev.) book’s algorithm changes might seem Review-Journal arbitrary and anti-publisher to some. Moyer has led the ReviewBut, really, they aren’t. The changes are Journal newsroom since pro-Facebook to be sure, somewhat by February 2016. necessity, as the company instituted its January Facebook algorithm change with the aim of directing more “friends and family” into users’ feeds. It was an attempt to lessen the amount of fake news any one user might encounter. That change softens newspaper traffic levels, making publishers’ attempts to grow via Facebook more challenging—but certainly not impossible. Facebook is well aware of how valuable its audience is to publishers. And as Facebook works out its credibility and user-verification issues, newspapers can continue to benefit, even if not at the same robust rate. For instance, publishers are paying to boost posts now, something they didn’t do as much of before. Facebook has known all along that if it reduces news in the feed, publishers will pay more to be in the feed—to a point. And we haven’t reached the point where using Facebook as an overall-reach builder is financially unfeasible. Can newspaper publishers say they were 100 percent sure before January that everything users read there was adequately vetted? Of course not. Ditto for any number of other social media streams used by newspapers. One way to ensure that fewer fake news stories find their way to Facebook is to accept that an even greater responsibility will be necessary by those of us using Facebook to ensure fact-based information is presented in transparent ways. Our Facebook followers, readers, etc. will continue to turn to us if they can trust information provided under our individual nameplates and banners on Facebook streams. That obligation falls to each publishing entity whether posting news or broadcasting live on Facebook. So, with full acknowledgment that Facebook will never be the perfect social media solution for newspapers, it still makes no sense to walk away from a serious source for eyeballs during a time when digital growth is an absolute must. APRIL 2018 | E & P
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Send us your photos! E&P welcomes reader submissions for our Photo of the Month. firstname.lastname@example.org.
A WIN FOR PHILLY ď ˝ Tim Tai/Philadelphia Media Network Smoke from fireworks color the air as crowds gather for the Philadelphia Eaglesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Super Bowl parade and celebration near the Washington Monument at Eakins Oval in Philadelphia on Feb. 8, 2018.
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data page Newspapers are More Credible Sources than Other News Outlets Percentage based on a random sample of 19,196 U.S. adults, aged 18 and older. Figures based on those who have “a lot” or “a fair amount” of confidence in each source.
Your Local Newspaper
National Network News
Major National Newspapers
Internet-Only News Websites *Apps or websites that gather and show news from many different news organizations.
Source: “American Views: Trust, Media and Democracy” report, Gallup/Knight Foundation Survey
Trust in the Media Percentage based on sample of 1,150 respondents from each country
. U. K
ce Fr an
2018 Source: 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Global Report
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Platforms That Offer Highest Digital Ad Spending ROI
Publications with the Most to Lose From Facebookâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Algorithm Changes
Percentages based on sample of 50 U.S. senior ad buyers in various industries with average ad spending of $298 million, surveyed Dec. 4-11, 2017
Share of publications web traffic that came from Facebook in December 2017
Source: SimilarWeb; Recode
Change in New York Times revenue, 2016-2017
Digital continues to outperform print edition Digital
Ad Exchanges/ Networks
YouTube Twitter Other
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Source: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ad Buyer Survey VI: Look for Digital Advertising to Grow its Lead Over TV/Offline Advertising in 2018, Cowen and Company, Jan. 4, 2018; eMarketer.com editorandpublisher.com
Source: New York Times Co.; Recode APRIL 2018 | E & P
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Deep Pockets How a new breed of billionaire owners is shaping the newspaper business By Matt DeRienzo
oping a random billionaire buys your local newspaper and makes everything great again is probably not a solid plan for saving journalism in most of America. But examples of just that in Boston and Washington, D.C., are providing room for experimentation that could help the rest of the industry figure out new business models. That’s partly the conclusion of a new book by Northeastern University journalism professor and Boston media critic Dan Kennedy. “The Return of the Moguls: How Jeff Bezos and John Henry are Remaking Newspapers for the 21st Century” explores turnarounds at the Washington Post and Boston Globe, failed attempts elsewhere, and the overall limits and pitfalls of the “billionaire savior” model. Along the way, Kennedy offers concise 20 |
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histories of the Boston Globe, Washington Post and Orange County Register, and goes in-depth on the drama around the sale of each, as well as the Philadelphia Inquirer, Worcester Telegram & Gazette and Maine’s Portland Press Herald. Jeff Bezos, the billionaire founder of Amazon, bought the Washington Post from the Graham family for $250 million in 2013, after its newsroom staff had been cut by almost half its peak of 1,000 employees. That same year, the New York Times Co. sold the Boston Globe to billionaire investor and Red Sox owner John Henry for $70 million, after having purchased it for $1.1 billion 20 years earlier. This happened as U.S. newspaper print advertising revenue declined from $47.4 billion in 2005 to $16.4 billion in 2014, while overall newspaper ad revenue, with digital included, dropped from $49.4 bil-
lion to $19.9 billion. Kennedy explores Bezos’ investment in the newsroom (adding more than 100 new jobs), technological innovation, strategy to become a national digital news powerhouse, and emergence as a major player in accountability journalism in the Trump era. Meanwhile, Henry has focused on getting readers to pay substantial digital subscription rates and supported the development of niche media enterprises that leverage, but are separate from the Globe’s core business, such as life sciences site Stat. In Philadelphia, Gerry Lenfest has created a unique nonprofit ownership model after purchasing the Inquirer and the Daily News, and is using the Lenfest Institute to explore the “table stakes” that journalism businesses need to have to be successful in a world disrupted by digital. editorandpublisher.com
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And while the jury is far from out for the Patrick Soon-Shiong era at the Los Angeles Times, the trend continues. The billionaire doctor’s recent purchase of the paper from Tronc came after Kennedy’s book went to press. A significant part of Kennedy’s book explores ownership situations and experiments that didn’t work—chiefly, Aaron Kushner’s ill-fated purchase of the Orange County Register, heavy spending on newsroom expansion, and focus on print. The short answer on that one: He didn’t have the deep pockets of a billionaire, but did have too much confidence in his own vision and abilities. So be careful what you wish for, Kennedy advises. Instead of a Jeff Bezos, you could end up with a Sam Zell, whose leadership of Tribune newspapers was disastrous, or a Warren Buffett, who has taken a hands-off, wind-down-the-business approach similar to the most-criticized corporate newspaper chains. Billionaires can also get bored or have competing priorities, as seen in the book’s depiction of Donald Sussman’s promising, but brief ownership of the Portland Press Herald, and the more recent example, in the local online news world, of Joe Ricketts’ abrupt decision to shut down DNAInfo and Gothamist. But beyond how much a renaissance at the Globe and Post means for Boston and Washington (and national political reporting in the case of the latter), Bezos and Henry offer something important to journalism at-large. The newspaper business is consolidating into the hands of a small group of big corporate chains that aren’t built for experimenting or investment in the future. Do we expect new business models and best practices to emerge from GateHouse Media or Digital First Media when their hedge fund owners are cutting their way to the maximization of declining profits? Or from Gannett, Tronc, McClatchy, or even Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, when all are managing to quarterly profits and shareholder return in a challenging industry? Even though it was controlled by the Grahams—legendary for investing and standing up for strong journalism—Kennedy points out that the Post’s pre-Bezos troubles were bound to happen after the family sold stock. Bezos and Henry “have the freedom to spend in ways that were lost to the Grahams once they’d made the decision to go public.” If nothing else, the deep pockets of publishers such as Bezos and Henry offer a runway for experimentation and growth that others in the industry are unable or unwilling to provide.
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business of news
The Trend on Trends Taking a look at what’s in store for publishing By Tim Gallagher
have long thought that no industry does more navel-gazing than the newspaper business. In years past, we did studies on why we were losing readers, why readers did not trust us, why readers preferred TV news, etc. In the digital age, those studies have multiplied. And as a diligent columnist for E&P, I am obliged to read most of these. But you aren’t. So let me synthesize the big trends in all our studies and reviews. But first, read some broad studies that capture a lot of the trends. There are so many reports, you need to let others research these findings. The Tow Center recently synthesized dozens of reports and hundreds of interviews to tell newspapers how to engage their readers to drive both 22 |
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profit and loyalty. It’s a deep and rich report that has more rabbit holes than a West Texas mesa, but the research is essential before you plan any moves. Here are the rest of the big picture trends and advice: Treat your website and app visitors like customers and not “traffic.” The implication is profound. Traffic implies commodity. Customer denotes relationship. Putting up a paywall means they should pay for what you are already doing. Perhaps that is true. But isn’t it better to ask what product or service can you offer that is worth paying for? The new CEO at Piano, Trevor Kaufman, talked about this in an interview with the Nieman Lab. I love how The Atlantic is putting the
best comments from its readers in a prominent position—almost as prominent as the article itself. This saves readers from wading through ridiculous comments to read only the best. (However, I still think there is room for reporter interaction with readers on these sites.) The Boston Globe editorial pages tries to engage its readers, not lecture to them, by being transparent about its objectives Small news websites started by journalists are profitable as long as they keep costs low, create unique and interesting content and have a reliable stream of revenue. Block Club Chicago raised money for its neighborhood news content through Kickstarter and had $116,047 from 2,000 editorandpublisher.com
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backers. And $5 subscriptions. Hoodline in San Francisco morphed from a hyper-local neighborhood news site to one that gathers and crunches (often with help from partners) huge sets of public data to tell interesting stories, such as why one neighborhood had a lot more empty storefronts than the city average. Linda Solomon Wood moved to Canada and launched a website she planned at her dining room table. Social media is not your friend. Facebook drained your readers and gave you little back. Facebook misleads us. It changes its mind every few months and all the work we did getting ready for the last big thing has nothing to do with Facebook’s next big thing. Don’t be the tail of the dog. Wag the dog. They want to be the place you go for local news. Don’t allow that. Follow Josh Constine @joshconstine if you want to be informed and steer clear of this foe.
Romancing the readers is more crucial than ever but no one has it quite all figured out yet. One thing we know. You have to tell your story. My paper in Ventura County, Calif. has started a “6 reasons why you need our digital subscription;”started a “storytellers” program with journalists and people from the community and is dropping a new podcast on crimes in the county’s past every Wednesday. No one buys your paper because they got a tote bag for free. They engage with you because the newspaper makes it impossible to ignore them. Always review new tools that are inexpensive (or free) and uncomplicated. E&P recently wrote about TimelineJS, which makes storytelling in a multi-media interactive timeline a relative cinch. And it looks good too. Or find a partner. NBC News is working
with a company called Left Field to tell stories using virtual reality technology. (And if you think VR is a passing fad, just think about how quaint the first apps for your phone were in 2005. It’s coming, baby.) And the biggest trend of all you must pay attention to: Produce compelling, can’t-get-it-anywhere-else stories about your local community.
Tim Gallagher is president of The 20/20 Network, a public relations and strategic communications firm. He is a former Pulitzer Prizewinning editor and publisher at The Albuquerque Tribune and the Ventura County Star newspapers. Reach him at email@example.com.
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Digital Funnel After years of tinkering with paywalls, publishers are finding the right formula for online subscribers
By Rob Tornoe
ust 10 percent of your readers could make or break your company’s digital future. That’s the opinion of Ken Doctor, the media analyst who has been breaking down the “Newsonomics” of our industry for years. Doctor is referring to the fact that a small number of digital news readers—between 2 and 12 percent—drive 50 percent of the traffic at every major media website. Consider that your news organization’s core audience, the readers that come back to your company’s journalism day after day. Which brings me to paywalls. It’s a subject everyone in journalism has probably had some experience with over the 24 |
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last few years, and for good reason. As print revenues continue their constant decline and digital advertising rates stagnate, more and more newsrooms are shunning the free internet and returning to the idea of paywalls as a way to generate sustainable digital revenue to support their newsroom operations. In the last few months, the Denver Post and the New York Daily News are among the latest to put up a metered paywall that forces digital readers to purchase a subscription once they read a certain number of articles. So has the tech magazine Wired, something that was on the top of editor-inchief Nick Thompson’s to-do list when he
took over after seven years as editor for the paywalled NewYorker.com. “We don’t know exactly how the web will develop, which platforms will become big, but we do know that having a direct monetary relationship with you readers is one way to insure that you have a stable financial future,” Thompson told Nieman Lab. Thompson’s point is important, considering newsrooms relying on digital ads exclusively have largely been at the mercy of Facebook’s changing priorities and Google’s shifting search algorithm. Having to rely on two tech giants with their own money-making initiatives isn’t a great place to be if the goal is to find a sustainable way to fund an organization’s news gathering capabilities. It’s no secret to anyone working in journalism that the most successful newspaper company to implement a paywall has been the New York Times. Erected in 2011, the Times online subscription business stands at more than 2.2 million paying readers, with an additional 400,000 or so paying for the newspaper’s standalone crossword and cooking apps. Combined with online ad sales, the company’s digital revenue grew 30 percent to $578 million last year, which according to Times chief executive Mark Thompson accounts for 60 percent of the company’s overall revenues. Both the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post have also had tremendous success selling digital subscriptions, both clearing the 1 million digital subscription hurdle. As far as regional newspapers, the Los Angeles Times leads the way with over 100,000 digital subscriptions sold, followed by the Boston Globe and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. And according to the Media Insight Project, 37 percent of young adults between the ages of 18 and 34 are among those paying to subscribe to one or more news source. It’s important to note that there are significant differences from one paywall to the next. Some companies, such as Tronc, have a company-wide policy that applies to all its newspapers. Others, like Gannett and Berkshire Hathaway, favor a more individualized approach based on the market. The factor for the particular mix of any metered paywall is determined by what has editorandpublisher.com
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become known as the funnel. Basically, at the top, where the funnel is the widest, you have all the digital readers that visit your website and look at free articles. At the bottom of the funnel are the individuals who have ponied up the money to purchase a digital subscription. So the goal of what the Economist dubbed a “funnel mathematician” is to get more readers into the funnel to convert them into paying customers. In essence, it’s the art of getting as many of those core users Doctor mentioned above to pay for your journalism. In a piece written for Traffic, the magazine of paywall provider Piano Media, Doctor estimates that just a little less than 2 percent of the New York Times’ 100 million or so monthly U.S. unique visitors are actually paying for digital subscriptions. At the Post, it’s about 1 percent. At the Los Angeles Times, it’s just a third of a percentage point. Obviously, there are a number of factors media companies can tinker with to enable the maximum number of subscriptions. How many free articles do you give away before making a reader pay? Do you allow a so-called “side-door” to be open to traffic from Google and social media websites? Do you ask for the subscription to kick in if readers return to the same columnist or appear to follow a particular writer’s byline? At the Miami Herald, readers are allowed to view six free articles before hitting the paywall, but there are exceptions for users who reach the site through search or click through on social media websites like Facebook or Twitter. But at the Boston Globe, the paywall has no unlimited exceptions, meaning regardless how an individual found a story, non-subscribers can only read two metered articles per month before having to pony up for a subscriptions. “We have to figure out our own path,” Peter Doucette, the Globe’s chief consumer revenue officer, recently told the Columbia Journalism Review. “We might not be able to apply the same model as the national and international publishers, because we don’t have the scale.” So how much are publishers pulling in on average from digital subscriptions? $2.31 per week ($10 per month), according to a new report from the American Press Instieditorandpublisher.com
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tute. That’s actually a slight decline from a 2016 API report that found the average price for a digital newspaper subscription was $3.11 per week, though it was higher than a 2012 report published the Reynolds Journalism Institute that pegged the media cost at $1.05 per week. There were certainly some outliers. The Boston Globe earns as much as $27.72 a month, second in cost to only the Wall Street Journal. The Globe’s funnel works like this— get readers to sign up for a $0.99 a month introductory rate before raising the price to about $0.60 a day. Then, after a full year, raise the price to $0.99 a day. There’s little rhyme or reason to pricing, other than most publishers cited market testing as the most important factor in determining their digital-only subscription cost structure. But one interesting finding in the API report is that companies charging a special introductory rate were more successful in pushing readers down the funnel into full paying subscribers than organizations that offered a free test period. Another interesting finding across all media companies appears to be the importance of newsletters, which act to boost engagement and help move news readers through the funnel into paying customers. According to Doucette, at least 77 percent of the newspaper’s digital subscribers receive at least one newsletter. The key is understanding who your organization’s core readers are, and what the proper mix of content and paywall tinkering is most likely to move them through the funnel and into paying digital subscribers. It’s that 10 percent your company needs to know, should have emails for and need to keep happy. Your future jobs depend on it.
Rob Tornoe is a cartoonist and columnist for Editor and Publisher, where he writes about trends in digital media. He is also a digital editor for Philly.com. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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QUALITY AND INSPECTION Why running regularly scheduled press tests is crucial to your equipment’s health 26 |
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Presses are complex machines requiring constant maintenance and testing to keep printing in balance. Structured maintenance and testing procedures should be a part of every press schedule.
Photos courtesy of Jerry Simpkins
e have a responsibility to our customers, both internal and outside commercial accounts, to provide the best possible reproduction and top quality printing. It’s a competitive market, and unless we stay at the top of our game, we’re jeopardizing revenue, customer satisfaction, and our advertising and commercial base. Running regularly scheduled press tests to ensure we are operating as efficiently as possible and maintaining the mechanical integrity of our equipment is essential. In many of my articles, I refer to contacting supply vendors for specific testing and evaluation related to their products on-press. I still believe this is one of the most productive manners in which to maintain quality standards and encourage you that if you have a reproduction issue (rooted in a commodity such as ink, paper, fountain solution, blankets, plates, etc.) that your best option is to contact the vendor and have them assist you in testing/analyzing. Outside of the more serious problems with consumables, it remains the responsibility of your press experts, management and crew to conduct regular press tests to maintain press conditions and ensure your equipment is operating at its peak. Equipment wears out; we change vendors and vendors change formulas; we switch paper mills; often experiment willy-nilly with different blankets; and about once a month, I’m approached to test out a “new and improved fountain solution” from a vendor. My advice on most of this is that the printing process has been around for a very long time, and while there are “new and improved” products being introduced daily, be careful not to experiment with too many innovative products at the same time—you’ll soon be chasing your tail. I’m absolutely not saying don’t look into new products, but simply saying don’t take a shotgun approach when it comes to experimenting. When you find something that works well on your press and produces optimal quality, appreciate that fact and stick with it until you’re absolutely positive that what’s being advertised is going to improve things and favorably interact with other vendor supplies and your press.
Maintaining Optimum Quality There are tried and true tests that we can
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} Test devices, like this conductivity meter to monitor fountain solution performance, remain one of the necessary tools to maintain quality. Fountain solution has several functions in the printing process, reducing plate wear and plate life, maintaining the working properties of ink and reducing piling on the blanket, just to name a few.
conduct without calling in vendors. Anyone who’s been in the printing business has most likely either heard of or done these tests sometime in their career. They provide a fairly simple and defining measure of how we’re printing at a given point in time. How often you conduct these tests can depend on several different things: how often your press wanders out of spec, how often you change vendors or supplies and how committed you are to quality. I’ll apologize in advance for any confusion I may cause in my explanations throughout this feature. You will find me jumping between testing and maintenance often. I believe they are inseparable and dependent on each other to maintain print quality. I’ve worked in shops where the press runs like a fine Swiss watch. In these shops, printing was predictable; we didn’t have a lot of reasons to change. We’d set iron to iron once in a blue moon, stick with 28 |
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the same suppliers because their products worked well and the press simply kept on producing a well printed sheet. On the other side of the coin, I’ve also worked shops that mechanical tolerances mysteriously wander from their settings one day printing perfect and the next it seems like you have a totally different press. These are the presses that are going to need more T.L.C. and you’ll have to obviously gear your testing schedule to your specific needs of your operation to preserve quality. Before you start any testing, make sure that your press is set-up as it should be. It’s important to realize that the testing is the easy part; preparing for the test can be the most difficult task. Never test a press with old beat-down blankets, uncertain mechanical tolerances, etc. Get your press set-up the closest you can to original manufacturer’s specs. Check/reset iron to iron, and then reset ink and micrometric rollers on all units
that you are going to test. Once iron is set correctly, it normally needs to only be checked on an annual basis unless a serious wrap or apparent impression issue occurs. Setting iron to iron alone should allow operators to cut back on ink and get a more even ink laydown for testing. Ink and lint should be cleaned off all rollers and they should be checked for hardness and surface damage. Any rollers that are above acceptable hardness specs (40 durometer or whatever your vendor recommends) should be replaced. A hard roller can be abrasive to copper roller surfaces and will affect your overall ability to maintain print standards, skewing test results. To prepare for testing, blankets should be thoroughly cleaned of all ink and paper dust (lint) and blanket heights should be double checked. Check with your manufacturer for their recommendations and also look up recommendations in your press manual. Blanket heights of .083 are common on an Urbanite/plus or minus .001 to maintain print quality. Replace worn blankets if necessary. Cleaning blankets at the end of each shift is also recommended to prevent glazing and/or becoming prematurely hard. Make sure your folder is ready as well. It will make any testing easier if you’re not jamming your folder during the test and if your test is running wrinkle free. Check for wear and slop in the folder. There may not be a lot you can do about wear once it’s occurred, but don’t encourage premature wear by running the folder dry. Your folding and cutting cylinder pin timing gears and cam should be lubed at least once a shift along with the cam followers to prevent premature wear and future pin timing issues. Press testing isn’t rocket science. There are only a couple of in-house tests that I know of that can provide quick feedback and let you know how your equipment is performing with very little effort. Poor registration can be the result of an endless list of issues: poor or inconsistent impression from unit to unit, iron to iron issues, roller settings, inadequate ink and water balance, lack of general mainte-
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nance, plate lock-ups problems, CTP issues, paper challenges…the list goes on. About the best you can do is establish a base and then follow a maintenance plan that keeps your equipment and processes at that base point—otherwise known as predictability. I have found that when it seems that quality appears to be spinning out of control, getting back to the basics of printing, the nuts and bolts of pressmanship often is all that is needed.
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Registration Problems and Solutions A grid test is my go-to test for registration problems. I’ve mentioned this test in a previous E&P article (bit.ly/2ENZceV) and feel it deserves repeating with a bit more detail. It is the core test to establish and maintain accurate color registration on any press. First, have your prepress area output four plates with the exact same image. You’ll need a full page image with vertical and horizontal thin (one-point) lines every inch. You may also use registration targets within these squares. This will allow you to measure your registration side to side (sidelay) as well as up and down comps. I also like to print four solid bars within the test sheet to help establish ink density and ink/water balance. When you lock-up your plates across the four-high or webbed CMYK units, be sure to check your plate gaps for debris (clean if necessary) and carefully mount plates. Plate lock-ups can be a major contributor to registration issues and it’s important to make sure you’ve taken any haphazard locking up out of the mix. This is important so that if you do have a problem with lock-ups it will end up being a measurable and consistent issue that you can address by shimming if necessary. Make sure to zero all your units and run your press up to speed slowly. It’s important that once you get the press up to speed and warm you establish an acceptable ink and water balance. Too much water on the sheet will contribute to fan-out and poor registration on the edge of your sheet. If you see your grid from unit to unit lining up on top of one another in the center but misaligned as you go out to the edge of the sheet, and you’ve ensured that your mechanical settings are spot on, water can possibly be the culprit, skewing your test results. Of course, the benefits of this test are in the end result. If you’ve set your press correctly, i.e. establishing and following all mechanical settings, blanket heights, ink/water balance, etc. and still have an issue with registration, you need to start troubleshooting. In order to “chase” any problems, you may have to run the test multiple times to be certain that you’re seeing the same thing, making multiple small adjustments to eliminate the issue. Unfortunately, while I often refer to the basics being key, presses are complicated and many things can contribute to poor registration on a daily basis. In no particular order, these are some commons problems I see with registration after running a grid test: Cleaning debris out of the plate gaps can often correct slight
How can clients benefit from working with Software Consulting Services, LLC? Our clients range from small papers that employ three to five employees all the way up to some of the largest metros in the United States. Lately, we’ve been focusing on the community papers and the way that we help them is by providing not only software but also manage services along with that. So basically it’s not just a tool that you install and you don’t ever hear from us again—we are involved in every step of the application of the process: from installing it, setting it up and then the ongoing maintenance. We monitor everything 24/7, 365 days a year. If anything goes wrong we find out before you do. We fix it before you do. We let you know before anything is going to happen that is going to impact your customers. That’s the advantage that we bring to the table. A lot of our competitors in the field don’t do that. They will hand off the software or they will charge you for a phone call after the fact. Our stuff is all included with our package. It’s subscription based, and the software is priced based on the size of the newspaper circulation and unlimited amount of users. So for smaller newspapers it works out great because it’s affordable and it’s a full service. Phil Curtolo is the director of sales at Software Consulting Services, LLC and has worked with the company since 2002.
registration challenges. It is important to be certain plates are fully falling into the lock-up and should be checked on a regular basis. Checking the torque on bolts in the bars is one of the first things to review before moving on to shimming. Worn or bent plate lock-up bars. Often lock-ups get worn and even bent slightly and will need to be shimmed to correct registration. This is a process of hit and miss and can take multiple run-ups on press to realign. It’s a tedious process but a necessary evil. Proper torque of the blanket bars is critical upon installation
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} Properly aligned plates are critical to achieve proper registration on press. Maintenance and monitoring of vision benders on the front-end can eliminate issues further down the line.
and it’s equally important to re-torque bars after running a few thousands impressions. I’ve seen a pressman tear a bar right off a blanket by over-torqueing. How accurate do you think that blanket height would have been? zz Mixing blankets can also create problems when it comes to registration. As bizarre as it might sound, many pressrooms end up with mixed blanket brands on press. Maintaining blanket heights and changing out four-high towers of all blankets completely may be expensive, but not doing so can cause serious problems with registration. zz As previously detailed, ink and water balance is a key to registration. Additionally the right fountain solution and conductivity can contribute to ink laydown, stripping, picking and a variety of issues, while also keeping the sheet as dry as possible by improving registration. Another simple press test for quality is measuring gain. All presses have dot gain/ spread no matter how we try to minimize 30 |
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it. Dot gain is an inherent part of the printing process. Typical offset press gains range from 15 to 30 percent. Presses that are not maintained to specs can run well beyond this, creating mottled images and poor reproduction of halftones. Too much press gain will grow your highlight dot, creating a lack of contrast between highlight areas and low/midtones. I find midtone dots to be most affected by dot gain, causing photos to look flat and again lacking contrast. With excessive press gain, shadow dots will plug and create a major problem with the overall look of the photo. Since it can’t be avoided, understanding how press gain affects the printed product is instrumental in controlling the end result. The degree of dot gain on each particular press must be established in order to correct and adjust for it. Once you’ve established that the press is printing with the minimal amount of gain possible, the correction must take place on the frontend (prepress) to compensate for that gain. Following a similar path to registra-
tion, ink/water balance often is the biggest contributor to dot gain on press, followed by paper. Most of us don’t adjust between press runs on 27.6# news and 50# alternative offset, and then we’re surprised when we have excessive press gain on a heavier sheet. The best test to measure press gain is to obtain a test file (usually a PDF) from your ink vendor and run it up on press (hopefully when your vendor can be on-site to help analyze the results). This test (made up of several color targets, halftones and solids) will give you an accurate evaluation of press gain and a solid target to compensate for it on the front end. Since you’ll often have different gain from unit to unit coordination with your prepress area to apply curves to compensate for, dot gain can occur to produce crisp, brighter, sharper colors with clean highlights and open midtones/shadows. It’s important that you have a proper working densitometer available and that the unit is zeroed to the paper. While setting the densitometer to the high and low of the plate provided with the unit, you must also take into account the shade of the paper and adjust for the cast of the newsprint. I’ve barely scratched the surface on press testing procedures for quality reproduction. It’s a topic someone could write a book on and still not address all the challenges. The tests themselves are fairly simple, but interpretation of the results can be very complex. When carefully followed through on, the basic tests mentioned in this column can produce significant improvements in print quality and reliable reproduction. It comes down to proper and consistent preventative maintenance and scheduled press tests to ensure that print quality remains the very best your equipment is capable of producing. Jerry Simpkins is vice president of the West Texas Printing Center, LLC in Lubbock, Texas. Contact him on LinkedIn.com or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Stronger the Press, Stronger the People Newspapers strive to ensure the free exchange of information that is accurate, fair and thorough. We fear no one.
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(From left) Luzy Tozer, Andy Copsey and Ben Edwards of PageSuite
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser won this year’s Mega-Innovation Award for their work in creating a Digital Billboard Network. Pictured with the award is David Kennedy, chief revenue officer.
Mitch McKinnon of Nielsen Scarborough
Solutions, Success Stories and New Ideas 2018 Mega-Conference highlights ‘stronger and smarter’ future for newspaper industry By Jesus A. Ruiz
ewspaper industry leaders from around the world flocked to San Diego Feb. 26-28 for one of the biggest Mega-Conferences in years. More than 700 newspaper executives and exhibitors attended the show in order to get the scoop on the latest industry technology, the state of newspapers, and how to forge a way into the future. This year’s Mega-Conference was hosted by the Inland Press Association, Local Media Association, the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association, the News Media Alliance, and in association with the California News Publishers Association. “This year’s Key Executives Mega-Conference smashed our previous attendance records, and was met with resounding approval from both newspaper executives and our sponsors and exhibitors,” said Jay Horton, the show’s executive producer. Kicking off the event was keynote speaker Ken Doctor, whose presentation titled “Destination 2020: How We Get There Stronger and Smarter” set the tone with details of what bigger newspapers are doing right and what it takes for smaller publications to garner the same success. Innovation could be felt buzzing throughout the session room and spilling across the tradeshow floor. The conference also crowned the winner of its Innovation Award. The recipient, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, won for its creation and successful execution of a Digital Billboard Network, which reaped $1 million in revenue in its first year. The other finalists for the award included Block Communications, Shaw Media, and WEHCO Media. Out on the exhibition floor, companies showcased new technology and prowess as digital and print media innovators. Attendees pe32 |
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rused the more than 70 booths, searching for inspiration or the next big thing that could catapult their publication to the next level. Back inside the sessions, innovation continued to brew with topics like “Investing in Newspapers in 2018,” where top newspaper executives discussed strategies to maximize investments with a focus on digital subscriptions. A session with Facebook’s director of news products Alex Hardiman broke down the effects of the company’s new algorithm change and how her team was now prioritizing local news. In total, more than 40 presentations were made at Mega-Conference, each providing a window into fresh, new, and bold ideas. “We were delighted to come together with SNPA, Inland and LMA this year on Mega-Conference. We were very happy with the turnout and with the program quality, providing outstanding insights and ideas to our members throughout the meeting,” said News Media Alliance president and CEO David Chavern. “The new research presented by the American Press Institute (API) on paths to subscription was really insightful and arguably the most valuable content that members could take away from the meeting and use in their subscription efforts. Another highlight was seeing print and digital teams sharing ideas and discussing what works on both platforms, particularly in terms of revenue growth. Print is still a vital part of the news delivery mix, and it was good to see that point being driven home throughout the conference.” The 2019 Mega-Conference is scheduled to be in Las Vegas, Nev. Feb 25-27 at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel. For more information, visit mega-conference.com.
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The “Investing in Newspapers in 2018” panel included (from left): Mark Adams, CEO of Adams Publishing Group; Jeremy Halbreich, chairman and CEO of AIM Media Management; Mark Aldam, executive vice president and COO of Hearst; and Jim Moroney, chairman, president and CEO, A.H. Belo Corp.
(From left) Darryl Kern, Michelle Gullia, Pete Lewis and Markus Feldenkirchen of Lineup Systems
Carina Wingel (left) and Rachel Cook of Content That Works
Matthew Griffin (left) and Tom Dressler of DART
Joe Matthews of City Spark
Katerina French (left) and Jessica Pun of Flipp
Steven Ratajczyk and Ellie Kuhn of GateHouse Live
Eric Hansen (left) and Edward Hubbard of Miles 33
Dana Bascom of Newzware
Mike Monter (left) and Rick Shafranek of ProImage America
Kevin Collins of WeHaa
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Transforming the Industry
2018 America East conference focuses on new changes in print and digital By Nu Yang
hose who attended this year’s America East Media Business and Technology Conference in Hershey, Pa. March 12 to 14 were sure to walk away with new revenue ideas and successful strategies that can be applied to the newsroom, advertising department and production side, no matter what the paper’s circulation. With more than 20 sessions on the agenda, this year’s theme of transformation in the industry was on the mind of every speaker and attendee. Minneapolis Star-Tribune publisher and CEO and News Media Alliance chairman Michael Klingensmith opened the conference with a keynote speech about the state of the industry. Along with Altoona (Pa.) Mirror publisher Ray Eckenrode, The Republican (Springfield, Mass.) publisher and CEO George Arwady, and The News and Observer (Raleigh, N.C.) president and publisher Sara Glines, Klingensmith led a thoughtful discussion about unusual revenue streams, the importance of local journalism, and how they overcame challenges in their markets. The program featured a wide range of topics that benefited every news leader. Among them were best practices in digital design, engaging audiences and bringing in new revenue through events and the state of online subscriptions. On the exhibit floor, nearly 50 companies were on hand to display
} The “Being Small Equals Large Opportunities: Solutions for Small Newspapers” panel included (from left) Al Cross, Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues Director, University of Kentucky; Lucy Corwin, VP and director of news, Observer Publishing Co., Washington, Pa.; John Newby, CEO/ executive director, Main Street Muskogee Inc. and founder, Uniquely USA; Jason Sethre, president, Sethre Media Group; and Tim Timmons, CEO, Sagamore News Media.
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the latest in print and digital technologies able to aid newspapers in their search for creative opportunities—from ticketing services to augmented reality. A redesigned show floor also helped create more opportunities for attendees and suppliers to network. “Feedback from the attendees was upbeat and positive about our speakers and agenda topics. I think we struck the right mix of ideas for newspapers that could be quickly implemented after they arrived home. Also, our tracks regarding topics about pivoting for the long run were well-received,” said Mark Cohen, president of the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association, the group that organizes the show every year. “I found more optimism in Hershey at our conference as attendees felt some revenue categories were on the uptick and many had action plans to accelerate digital, social and database marketing. Certainly we all have challenges but conferences like ours and others along with vendors who can help us are of great value.” PNA vice president of association services Tricia Greyshock added, “We were pleased to be able to offer another year of networking, educational content and a showcase of solutions for those engaged in this important industry. We look forward to continuing to serve this audience, now and in the future.” The next America East conference is scheduled for April 1 to 3, 2019 in Hershey. For more information, visit america-east.com.
} Visiting the Siebold Co. booth on the exhibit floor (from left): Benjamin Dorman, Impressions Worldwide; Devin Graham, GeoTix; Chris Lunt, Siebold Co.; Bruce Barna, Siebold Co.; Christopher Miles, Siebold Co.; Richard Palmer, Siebold Co.; and Tom Loesch, Impressions Worldwide.
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} Greg Booras of The Newspaper Manager
} Devin Graham of GeoTix
} Tom Dressler (left) and Peter Eglitis of PCF/Dart
} Tom Dempsey (left) and Jack Rotolo of Vision Data
} (From left) John Ialacci, Rick Shafranek and Mike Monter of ProImage America
} Amy Arnold and Adrian Edgerson of Gannett Imaging and Ad Design Center
} The keynote presentation featured Minneapolis Star-Tribune publisher and CEO and News Media Alliance chairman Michael Klingensmith (far right) delivering a “State of the Industry” report in addition to leading a conversation with panelists (from left) Altoona (Pa.) Mirror publisher Ray Eckenrode, The Republican (Springfield, Mass.) publisher and CEO George Arwady, and The News and Observer (Raleigh, N.C.) president and publisher Sara Glines.
} The “Working with Frenemies” panel discussed the pros and cons of working with digital giants like Facebook and Google. Pictured are (from left) Stefanie Murray, director for cooperative media at Montclair State University; Neil Chase, executive editor, Bay Area News Group; and Jason Kint, CEO, Digital Content Next. editorandpublisher.com
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} Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association president Mark Cohen welcomes attendees to this year’s America East conference.
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Augmented reality is changing how newspapers (and readers) are seeing things By Peter Suciu
he eyes of the world may have been on the recent winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, South Korea, but it wasn’t just the round-the-clock televised coverage or even social media exposure that delivered the games to viewers like never before. The newspaper coverage from the New York Times and Washington Post provided an augmented reality (AR) presentation that enabled video, animation and even interactive content that practically jumped off the page.
This coverage melded the real world with the augmented via the use of a mobile smartphone or tablet. The respective devices’ camera and screen bridged the physical and digital world like never before—and unlike with true virtual reality (VR) this augmented reality requires no special hardware. “AR technology is actually baked into a phone or tablet rather than requiring the bulky VR headsets,” said Jitesh Ubrani, senior research analyst for virtual and augmented reality at International Data Corp. “This is starting to roll out to consumers already and it is far more accessible than VR because it works with devices they already have.” While tech giants (including Apple and Google) are each starting to support AR apps on their respective handsets and tablet devices, the most successful use of AR to date was in the hugely popular video game Pokémon Go, which was launched nearly two years ago. It earned more than $1.2 billion in total worldwide revenue and more than 750 million downloads worldwide as of last summer. The free-to-play, location-based game was designed not for a living room console system or even a Nintendo handheld gaming device but rather for Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android based handsets. The game utilized the players’ mobile device’s GPS ability to locate various Pokémon characters, which could be seen on the screen but actually overlaid on the actual world—thus creating the augmented reality. AR’s potential could go way beyond gaming however. Apple has clearly seen the potential for this technology as it recently introduced an ARCore and ARKit to encourage the development of apps supporting AR interactions on its iPhone and iPad devices. The recent Olympic Games were also just the latest attempts by media companies to capitalize on what AR can bring to the readers. editorandpublisher.com
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Bringing Stories to Life Newspapers around the world have already been creating similar experiences where a users’ screen displays a scene that is a mix of the real world with one that is partially virtual. To access it users must have a supported device—typically again a smartphone or tablet—and access a special code that is printed on the page of the newspaper. While much of the content to date has been a video, the AR content could be anything that overlays the real world. For the recent Olympics, the New York Times launched its own iOS-based AR experience that featured a visualization of four Olympic athletes including figure skater Nathan Chen, speed skater J.R. Celski, hockey player Alex Rigsby and snowboarder Anna Gasser. Each of these Olympians could be overlaid on the real world. The Washington Post offered its own AR experience for the games that was also available on iOS devices. This included an AR game that allowed readers to watch athletes from different disciplines race one another and predict an outcome. The paper has been steadily using AR to complement its coverage of high profile events such as the Olympics. “For the past two years, (the Post) has been refining the augmented reality experience for readers, experimenting with new ways to use this technology to immerse them in a place or subject,” said Jeremy Gilbert, director of strategic initiatives. “From taking readers inside some of the world’s most iconic buildings to offering them a game-like experience around the 2018 Winter Olympics, AR allows us to bring stories to life in a near-frictionless way. These advancements combined with the storytelling form’s unlimited potential mean you’ll be seeing much more AR from the Post this year.”
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The New York Times iOS-based AR experience featured a visualization of four Olympic athletes including figure skater Nathan Chen, speed skater J.R. Celski, hockey player Alex Rigsby and snowboarder Anna Gasser.
Not Quite Real Yet Despite the roll out of high profile AR offerings for the games, the technology is still more at the proof-of-concept stage than for daily usage, and while Pokémon Go may have been all the rage nearly two years ago other attempts to bring this technology to the masses have been less successful. “Pokémon Go is probably the best example of widespread use, but we’re still in the infancy of the medium,” said Todd Richmond, director at University of Southern California’s Mixed Reality Lab. In fact, the primary uses of AR have been mostly promotional in nature and have included a marketing campaign by the UK’s Sky to promote its Q TV service, and in this allowed consumers to interact with virtual versions of TV characters. On this side of the pond, AMC created a video game to promote its hit TV series The Walking Dead, where zombies were overlaid on the screen’s camera views of the real world. 38 |
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Newspapers may need to watch how AR is being done right in other industries and be a follower rather than a leader. One recent success story highlights the technology’s potential to sell products. Swedish furniture retailer IKEA developed an AR app to help potential buyers make product buying decisions. The IKEA Place app was created as a way to allow consumers to fix 3D furniture objects within their homes and view the results on a handset’s screen. The lessons from other industries could also actually help newspapers determine what might—and more importantly what might not—work when using AR to en-
hance the experience. “There are some uses in industrial settings: manufacturing, field servicing of equipment, but beyond that it remains mostly a curiosity,” Richmond said. “We’re still in experimentation mode. If people are looking for AR ‘solutions’ they aren’t going to find them. If, however, the newspaper industry wants to experiment with this new medium—and I think it is critical that they do, as not every AR solution will generalize across content/context areas—then the time is now as we’re still early.” editorandpublisher.com
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However, others suggest a “wait and see” approach to determine how AR can best be used to engage with an audience. “I haven’t seen anyone doing AR really well yet,” noted Rob Enderle, technology industry analyst at the Enderle Group. “Apart from Pokémon Go, this hasn’t really been all that compelling in what it has to offer, but the potential is there. We just have to determine how best to use it.”
A More Emotional Experience One of the issues to resolve with AR is that to date it has been very gimmicky, but at the same time not as simple to use as it could be. Even experienced users of today’s gizmos and gadgets expect things to be plug-and-play, and AR often needs some tweaking. Even when it is as simple as a point-andclick with a phone to engage with AR, the issue is that not everyone has their handset or tablet permanently affixed in their editorandpublisher.com
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hands. “While QR codes never quite got the traction that was expected, that may have been a timing issue—not enough people were used to using their phone for everything in their life, not enough implementation into existing apps,” Richmond said. “It is a challenge to get users to learn/do new things, so the tech needs to be seamless and ideally integrated into things they are already using.” As with other new technologies, newspapers may need to watch how AR is being done right in other industries and be a follower rather than a leader. “There is a lot that newspapers can learn from and leverage in the AR industry,” said Erik Murphy-Chutorian, CEO and founder of AR development studio 8th Wall. “The main obstacle to adoption of AR in the news industry now might be that it is still early in the days of AR innovation, and as other industries like retail and gaming APRIL 2018 | E & P
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Jitesh Ubrani, International Data Corp. senior research analyst for virtual and augmented reality
Graham Roberts, New York Times director of immersive platforms storytelling
Jeremy Gilbert, Washington Post director of strategic initiatives
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“AR’s unique ability to address audiences directly with rendered content provides a more personal and dynamic experience which will expand audiences further.” figure out how to best apply AR for their audience. Newspaper companies will have more use cases to look to and build from.” Much as video brought value to traditional print journalists, AR could provide a way to make the storytelling richer. AR can be a storytelling mechanism that utilizes the environment around an audience so that they can see content and stories quite literally from all angles. “In this sense, AR can provide a more emotional medium as viewers can see more of what’s happening through this technology, stories and news pieces will become more experiential,” said Murphy-Chutorian. “Imagine using AR to drive characters or narrators of a scene to engage with viewers directly. Since video is static, it can’t do this yet. AR’s unique ability to address audiences directly with rendered content provides a more personal and dynamic experience which will expand audiences further.” However, as with photos and even video, it must too be remembered that AR is just a tool that newspapers can use, not a replacement for how news can be reported or even really a medium on to itself. According to Graham Roberts, New York Times director of immersive platforms
The Washington Post’s Olympic Games app offered readers the ability to watching races on a 3D track and compared the speeds of athletes from nine events.
storytelling and co-director of the VR program for NYTVR, “We are exploring if AR can be a serious tool for journalism and storytelling. Can AR bring an inherent value that will amplify our report in ways that are obvious in comparison to other ways the news has been presented? AR can definitely be used as part of a daily news experience. Anything that is better understood in three-dimensions, and especially better understand with the context of your surroundings for scale can benefit from the medium.” For this reason, Roberts has already helped purposefully design an experience for AR where it is a fluid part of the New York Times articles and doesn’t detract from the reading flow of the story. “That way AR doesn’t need to be an overly complicated production each time, and can instead be seen as valuable moments in context,” he said. Special coverage could be where AR is editorandpublisher.com
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Erik Murphy-Chutorian, 8th Wall CEO and founder
Rob Enderle, Enderle Group technology industry analyst
best used, at least in the near future. “A museum would be a good example of how a newspaper could offer exclusive content that can only be seen via AR,” said IDC’s Ubrani. “There are similar opportu-
nities out there.” Due to the time that it takes to prepare the AR content, the use cases could be limited to key moments as well. “Where AR will probably be used next is
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Todd Richmond, University of Southern California’s Mixed Reality Lab director
in sporting events, a parade or other special event,” Enderle said. “For daily news, it isn’t there yet.” Continued on page 43
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You could compare it to the mouse in the early 80s,” he explained. “Eventually, nobody needed to have the value of the mouse explained to them, nor the way to use it, but it didn’t begin that way.” It could take a while for AR to reach the point where it is as common as a computer mouse, but even the software used to engage with AR remains an issue. “Right now, phone apps are somewhat clunky and certainly aren’t immersive,” said USC’s Richmond. “Consumers don’t like to change, so AR needs to be easy and cheap. We still haven’t solved the issues around how to craft an AR experience that has low friction, easy to use and high efficacy that accomplishes a goal. Information overload and cognitive tunneling are two issues that AR struggles with, and user experience design will be key and an ongoing effort.” For it to provide a truly immersing experience may require a move beyond an intermediate device such as phone/tablet, but that is likely to increase the costs. “Once AR glasses (such as Google Glass) go through a couple of iterations, and the content experience/user experiences become better understood, we’ll see widespread adoption,” Richmond predicted. “Figure five years plus or minus.”
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The Washington Post’s AR series provided readers with a first-hand look inside some of the world’s most iconic billion dollar buildings. It provided 3D visuals and audio narration from the Post’s art and architecture critic Philip Kennicott.
Engaging the Reader The biggest trick may still be convincing readers that this isn’t a gimmick, but also convincing them it is worth the effort to utilize a phone or tablet when reading the paper. “So far, however, it has added this extra step where you need your phone and the newspaper and that only offers an initial ‘Oh, wow’ moment,” Enderle said. “In some ways, this is a problem of trying to use it with an actual newspaper, which just reminds us that we should be jumping to digital—like a tablet—in the first place.” Reader feedback to AR has been across the spectrum, Roberts said. “There are some hurdles of course when introducing a new medium that asks for readers to consider a new form of interaction. editorandpublisher.com
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25 35 under
Meet the future generation of newspaper leaders By Nu Yang and Jesus A. Ruiz
The young men and women on this year’s list work in different markets and serve in different roles, but they have one thing in common: they love their jobs. Working in today’s newspaper industry has its share of ups and downs, but the 25 young professionals featured here believe in the future of journalism. Whether they’re working in digital, circulation, the newsroom or with advertising, these are the leaders moving our industry forward. (in alphabetical order by last name)
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Tyler Buchanan is pictured covering the infamous Athens Halloween Block Party in 2015. He is the one not wearing a horse head mask, though some sources argue otherwise.
Tyler Buchanan, 26 Editor, Athens Messenger and Vinton County Courier Athens, Ohio Education: Bowling Green State University, bachelor of science, journalism
Tyler Buchanan is a true wunderkind of the newspaper industry. At 23, he became the editor of the Vinton County Courier; three years later, he was named editor of the Athens Messenger. Under his watch, the publications have won multiple press awards—including five Associated Press awards of his own. Buchanan began editing the Courier in 2015 and since then, the publication has earned 21 Hooper awards through the Ohio News Media Association’s competition for weekly newspapers. He also helped the Courier win the Community Awareness award twice, once in 2015 and again in 2017. Through the AP Media Editors Contest, Buchanan snagged three awards for his feature writing, one for column writing and another for explanatory writing. Since starting as the only full time journalist at the Courier, Buchanan has grown the operation to a point where another journalist could be hired on full time, as well as hiring a handful of regular freelancers. Buchanan also employed out-of-the box thinking to garner robust sports coverage without a sports reporter. By working with aspiring sports journalists at Ohio University, the Courier has managed to beat out larger publications for Hooper Awards for its sports coverage. “I am proud to say we have done our best to bring in fresh voices and perspeceditorandpublisher.com
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tives to the local journalism scene,” Buchanan said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? For those just starting out: the best thing you can do is write a lot and gain experience, obviously, but don’t underestimate the value of simply spending time in a professional newsroom and observing. I see so many college students who complete an internship remotely, without ever spending quality time in the office. It’s important to see how the news gathering process works and how journalists manage their time. Plus, a positive attitude and familiar face might eventually land you a job. Another important trait is to be willing to develop many different skills. Journalists will develop specialties and expertise over time, but it helps to establish a base of knowledge and experience in a wide variety of reporting topics.
For a small town paper, how do you measure success?
In Vinton County, the least-populated county in Ohio, I sometimes joke our newspaper follows the “Mama Renie’s Standard.” That’s our local diner in town. Our weekly newspaper prints on Wednesdays, and I would often get lunch there the following Monday after the local government meetings. If there were no more papers for sale there by Monday, that’s a sign people are reading our news and we’re on the right track. For better or worse, journalism in small communities can be a very personal thing. For every compliment or complaint, I’ve tried to keep the perspective that readers truly care about their local paper—especially when the paper makes an effort to care about them. editorandpublisher.com
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Leslie Carberry, 24 Prepress manager, Sequoyah County Times Sallisaw, Okla. Education: Bokoshe High School
Leslie Carberry’s newspaper career already spans 10 years, an impressive feat for someone her age. Since her humble beginnings at the newspaper working part time as a typist while in high school, Carberry has worked her way up the ranks at the Sequoyah County Times. These days around the office she’s known as the “Pre-Press Princess.” Carberry wears the many hats of her job well. She juggles multiple projects efficiently, often times building pages for multiple publications and special sections while troubleshooting problems for her coworkers. What makes her special is that she learned the ins and outs of not only her job but the entire production cycle. She manages the servers and keeps them updated, manages social media platforms for the publication, plates the newspaper and even handles plating for the company’s commercial client work. “Her diverse skill set and overall knowledge of the business make her wise and valuable well beyond her years,” said Carrie Carberry, advertising manager at the Times’ parent company, Cookson Hills Publishers, Inc.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Always ask questions and continue learning by watching and paying attention to any available opportunities to expand on your work. Opportunities are not always obvious. Your ideas and opinions are important—don’t be afraid to express them. Your age doesn’t have to define you, but the quality of your work and work ethic will. Never be afraid to ask for help, but also be willing to offer help on anything, even if it’s something you’re not comfortable with. Your input, energy and ideas are the future of our business, so give it your absolute best and have fun.
Where do you see the future of print heading? I see the future of print balancing with technology. Technology has given the print industry tools to evolve and enable a smoother production cycle. As long as we embrace our heritage of credible reporting, fact checking and accuracy I believe the print industry will remain a viable media. Our responsibility to our communities is to provide local information, stories and advertisements that are specific to the areas we cover. I believe that we can embrace technology, and couple it with our printed expertise and traditions to provide this service and create a balanced future for our industry. APRIL 2018 | E & P
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Lucretia Cardenas, 35 Editorial director, KPC Media Group Inc. Kendallville/Fort Wayne, Ind. Education: University of Houston, master of business administration with concentration in business modeling and decision making; Indiana University, bachelor of arts, journalism and history
Lucretia Cardenas has a talent for strengthening the bond between a newspaper and the community it covers. For example, when she became the editor of the Greater Fort Wayne Business Weekly, she led the effort to form an editorial advisory board, which included community business and professional leaders. That effort led to an immediate boost of the paper’s presence in the business community. Cardenas’ efforts at the Business Weekly paid off in 2017 as the publication walked away with numerous awards at the Hoosier State Press Association’s best newspaper contest. Cardenas even walked away with one herself for best editorial writing. Following the awards, she was rewarded with more responsibility, including four monthly community newspapers in Allen County and two paid weeklies. Cardenas also spearheaded the launch of a new weekly community publication and a fifth monthly. This year, Cardenas was named the editorial director for the KPC Media Group, parent company to the Business Weekly, and is
Lucretia Cardenas and her daughter, Alessandra, read a newspaper together as often as possible.
Kayla Gagnet Castille, 35 Senior vice president of content and digital operations, CNHI New Orleans, La. Education: University of Missouri-Columbia, master of arts, journalism; Louisiana State University, bachelor of arts, mass communication
A journalist first and foremost, Kayla Castille always brings the highest of level of journalistic integrity into each newsroom she oversees. And she has quite a few under her watch. In her role, Castille is in charge of leading content initiatives for 120 newsrooms across the country. Her approach to the job, a mix of old school and new school methods, is what makes her stand out amongst the crowd. Castille maintains the highest journalistic standards with a belief for a need of “boots on the ground” coupled with an approach to content with analytics in mind. Where some may work on one without the other, she believes “that quality journalism and great content will drive the analytics,” said Jim Zachary, deputy national 46 |
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currently leading a redesign of websites and reorganizing departments. “She coaches her team with the goal to put hyperlocal, community journalism first and foremost with a goal of reengaging residents with their communities through storytelling,” said Violette Wysong, general counsel for KPC Media Group.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Be curious, get out of your comfort zone and learn how to live on a budget. The industry isn’t as romantic as novels and films like to portray but, if news is in your blood, it sure is a lot of fun and worth the odd hours. At the end of the day, the newspaper industry is like any other—the people who succeed are passionate problem solvers who know how to communicate effectively.
If you could take a weeklong dream vacation, where would you go and why?
Understanding the business model doesn’t mean giving up on our core journalistic values. It helps us focus our energy and limited resources where we can be most effective.
What’s your approach to teaching digital leadership in the newsroom? It’s important for editors to lead by example. That doesn’t mean that newsroom leaders have to be experts in everything from data analytics to video editing. But it does mean that they should be endlessly curious about new ways to tell stories and reach audiences. They should share that curiosity with their team, and empower others in the newsroom to learn and experiment. Give structure to a culture of experimentation by setting goals and measuring results. Encourage friendly competition, and reward your team’s successes. Don’t be afraid to talk about what isn’t working, or when it’s time to change your approach. We may work in a challenging industry, but our passion for good journalism should energize everything we do.
My husband, Jaer, and I are in the process of planning this dream vacation to celebrate our 10-year wedding anniversary late this summer. We will be heading to Barcelona to take in Picasso and Gaudi, spend too much on a fabulous piece of art, bathe in the Mediterranean sun, gorge on Iberian ham, drink one too many glasses of wine, hang out at an underground jazz club, see Barca win a game and, one night, dance at a discotheque until the sun rises. Since we are two, full-time working parents, staying up past midnight will be the most difficult task on the list to complete.
editor at CNHI. Castille leads by example. She often helps reporters ask the right questions and maintain attention to detail. “She is a born leader who blends accountability leadership with inspiration and motivation,” Zachary said. “She is a media innovator preparing her company through use of a design thinking process for its next steps in finding audiences where they are and meeting their wants and needs.”
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry?
Zoe Cooper, 20
Learn how your news organization makes money, and how the work you do contributes to the overall business model. When I started my career as a reporter, I was hyper-focused on the importance of the work and thought it was someone else’s job to figure out how to pay for it. But I think everyone across our organizations has a role to play in creating a financially sustainable future for journalism. We have access to so much data to help us understand how our stories are performing, how we’re reaching audiences, and how our communities are engaging with us on social media. But often we’re setting goals for ourselves without any understanding of how those goals contribute to the financial success of our organizations.
Special projects, Casa Grande Valley Newspapers Inc./ PinalCentral.com Casa Grande, Ariz. Education: Currently a junior at the University of Arizona studying general studies with an emphasis in arts, media and entertainment
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Zoe Cooper is the fourth generation of a newspaper family. Both her great-grandfather and her grandfather were newspaper publishers. Today, her grandmother, mother, uncle and cousin are active in APRIL 2018 | E & P
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day-to-day operations of Casa Grande Valley Newspapers Inc. and White Mountain Publishing LLC in Arizona, where she’s in charge of special projects. In grade school, she started working in the classifieds department. She won her first advertising award at age 13 through the Arizona Newspapers Association and won five last fall. Currently a junior at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Cooper commutes back and forth to Casa Grande, spending much of her week working there. She is also one of the anchors of the paper’s 90-second “News in 90” newscast posted ever weekday morning on PinalCentral.com to promote the print and website. She also created a popular, quarterly magazine featuring long-time, family-owned businesses in the county. “She is well-rounded and understands that in this day and age we have to be looking everywhere for revenue,” said Kara Cooper, co-publisher and advertising director. “The newspaper business offers so many opportunities for her to use her skills. I’m just thankful she has chosen to make our family business stronger for her future.”
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? I believe that it is essential for young professionals to get to know all aspects of the newspaper industry. Advertising, editorial, production and circulation departments all play an important role in this industry. Each department relies on one another to get the day’s newspaper out to its subscribers and readers. If one department is not doing its job, it affects the other departments and hurts the newspaper’s acceptance and profitability. I also think it is important for young professionals not to abandon their company’s print product just yet. For most news agencies, the print newspaper still has the highest revenue stream and has the most dedicated fan base.
If you could create a college course based on what you’ve learned so far working in newspapers, what would the name of your college course be called? I would create a college course titled, “The Art of Newspapering.” Newspaper companies have been perfecting their craft for decades and generations. Each newspaper that is printed is perfected down to a science and each company has their own way of producing their products. 48 |
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James Drzewiecki, 32 Managing editor, Bristol Press Bristol, Conn. Education: Central State University, bachelor of arts, English
James Drzewiecki began his career in journalism as a copy clerk at the Bristol Press 15 years ago. Since then, he has risen through the ranks of the newspaper as it changed hands from the Journal Register Co. to Central Connecticut Communications, which now owns the paper and its sister publication the New Britain Herald. His many duties as managing editor and special sections editor include story assignments, layout and design and the pre-production of a monthly publication as well as tabs for both the Bristol Press and the New Britain Herald. “He is a dedicated local newsman who continues to push reporters and editors to grow while still focusing on covering the local community in his hometown,” said Bianca Pavoncello, New Britain Herald managing editor.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Learn. Learn. Learn. I entered our industry as an editorial clerk, organizing archives in a basement. I went to work with eyes and ears open, absorbing the production process from all angles. Reporters and editors soon became colleagues and I, an eager student. The organization’s impact on my home community was powerful. As this became clear, so did the direction of my future. I worked my way up from the bottom by taking on any task I could, especially those others strayed from. All the while, I’ve never stopped learning.
As someone who “worked his way up” to managing editor, what has been the most rewarding part of your career so far? Giving people a voice, who otherwise wouldn’t have one. Our impact is immediate and tangible.
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Angelia JaKaye Garth, 24 Classified advertising/customer service manager, Commonwealth Journal Somerset, Ky. Education: Morehead State University, bachelor of arts, strategic communication
Angelia JaKaye Garth joined the Commonwealth Journal in January 2015 as a circulation clerk, where she had to send out tear sheets to advertisers who requested them. After a couple of months, Garth realized there was a more sufficient way to do her work by converting the physical sorting, filing and mailing system to electronic by contacting each business that requested a tear sheet and getting their email address, then creating a system where they could download a PDF copy of the ad from their website and simply email them a copy of the ad. As a result of this move, the company saved about $800 in postage/month. In March 2017, she was promoted to the classified advertising manager position. Within two weeks, she learned how to place ads, build the daily classified pages on Quark Express, and size and
schedule help wanted and legal advertising. She also utilized the paper’s partnership with Monster.com to create bundles of print and web advertising which increased their help wanted and Monster. com advertising percentage. She also takes care of all the end of the month reports and statements for the classified department.
Saluting one of our best and brightest The Southern California News Group proudly congratulates one of our bright young colleagues for being featured among E&P’s Publishing Leaders—25 Under 35.
Samantha Melbourneweaver The Southern California News Group proudly congratulates one of our colleagues for being chosen as one of E&P’s Publishing Leaders—25 Under 35. As Social Media Director, Samantha oversees social media content for 11 Southern California news properties. Whether it’s training journalists on how to connect with readers or writing shareable articles and newsletters, her vast knowledge and experience make her an indispensable resource and a vital part of our management team.
Los Angeles Daily News n The Orange County Register n The Press-Enterprise n Press-Telegram (Long Beach) n Daily Breeze (Torrance) n Pasadena Star-News San Gabriel Valley Tribune n Whittier Daily News n Inland Valley Daily Bulletin n The Sun (San Bernardino) n The Facts (Redlands)
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What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Two qualities I would advise other young professionals in the industry to possess are flexibility and adaptability. This is an everchanging industry where no two days are the same; therefore, it is important to have fresh, creative ideas in mind when an unexpected assignment comes through and to quickly adapt to the way the business changes with the changes in time and technology. Another important quality I have been able to strengthen during my time in the industry in versatility. I always like to say don’t put all your eggs in one basket, there are many different departments in the industry so being knowledgeable about the ins and outs of each department will always put you at an advantage.
Sarah Gove, 29 Editor, Claxton Enterprise Claxton, Ga. Education: Mercer University, bachelors of arts, journalism and English
Since joining the staff of the Claxton Enterprise five years ago, Sarah Gove’s leadership has helped increased single copy sales and advertising, according to publisher Mitchell Peace. That’s due to Gove’s “exceptional journalistic skills in all areas of reporting, writing, and photography…Simply stated, our telephones rings more often, on a positive note, now than they did before she joined our company.” Peace also praised her work habits. “She understands very well the commitment that is necessary to meet deadlines, while producing news and feature copy that is both accurate and interesting to read. She is punctual, courteous, sincere, and her presence in our operation has been an asset that has decidedly improved the public’s appreciation and respect for our community newspaper.” He continued, “During my more than 40 years of publishing our newspaper, Sarah is the first editor I have known to achieve such a high level of expertise and professionalism in such a short time. Our readers, local business leaders, and officials have welcomed her and frequently express confidence in her as a journalist and a community leader.”
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Even though you didn’t plan to have a career working in newspapers, what are some things you have learned about the industry so far? The main thing I’ve learned during my time in the business is the career path I want to pursue. The past couple of years working in this industry has allowed me to utilize my strongest skills and reminded me of my childhood dream to become a fashion magazine editor. This business keeps me on my toes and gives me the chance to learn something new every day. I am excited to take my experiences in the field and use them to accomplish a lifelong goal of becoming a future editor or publisher.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? In a world of instant information provided through online news sites, ever evolving social media and a plethora of smartphone apps, we constantly battle for relevance in the realm of print. It’s easy to feel frustrated and trapped by your print deadlines and limited column inch space. But, I’ve learned in recent months that time can be to your advantage. While online news media and TV stations may battle to break the story first, you have the time to dig deep, conduct more in depth research and brainstorm alternative perspectives to the issue at hand. Take an historical look at the Sarah Gove speaks with South Georgia school adminstory perhaps, or gather community input that wasn’t tapped into when the istrator, Justin Jury, about local school safety protocols and drills in the aftermath of a recent school shooting at story initially broke. Continue to follow Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. stories of peak reader interest to their ultimate conclusion whereas online media ments, I make it a priority to also give my or TV stations may drop the story when the staff writers assignments they have pitched initial excitement wears off. In summary, let or of which I know they have a significant your “I’m behind the eight ball” frustrations interest. drive you to create a better, more informaWhen editing the work of new staff tive product. writers, I don’t correct their AP style errors or reformat their lead statements without providing detailed notes of what they did How do you motivate your wrong and instruction on how not to make newsroom? the same mistake again. I don’t consider Writers and photographers alike are myself to be a harsh editor, but I do expect eager to complete their assignments and my writers to learn from their mistakes and present their best work when they are pasnot repeat them. My editorial notes are a sionate about the subject matter. While we way of ensuring they do so. all must take on those nitty-gritty assigneditorandpublisher.com
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Sara Grant, 31
tion. Fast forward four years, she is now a year into spearheading The Know, a mini publishing venture of the Post. Through her leadership there, readership has grown beyond expectations, and she’s already launched two spin offs for the new site and is still strategizing for more. “One of the most important contributions Sara makes is her ability to bring stragglers on board to embrace a digitalcentric newsroom,” Colacioppo said. “She is a wonderful teacher and follows through with data to prove that small changes can make a huge difference.”
Creator and editor of The Know (The Denver Post’s entertainment site) Denver, Colo. Education: University of Connecticut, bachelor of arts, journalism
Sara Grant understands what her readers want. She’s done such a great job of it that the Denver Post tapped her to lead audience development for the paper. “We originally hired Sara to bring her strategic thinking to our social channels, but quickly learned that her expertise on audience development hit many other areas, including breaking news, video, features and more,” said editor Lee Ann Colacioppo. Since her hiring in 2014, Grant has been a leader in the Post’s digital transforma-
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Say “yes” to new challenges and things outside your comfort zone. I always knew I wanted to write, be a print journalist and focus on entertainment and features. But
Central Connecticut Communications congratulates JAMES DRZEWIECKI as one of E&P’s 25 Under 35
We’re proud of you, James!
Great people make great newspapers.
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being open to all kinds of beats and mediums really got me to where I am today. A few years into my career at the Hartford Courant, we merged with a local TV station and they asked me to do some on-camera work, and eventually shoot and edit my own news packages. I had never seen myself going into broadcast (and I had never edited video before), but saying yes to that challenge brought me places I never could have imagined (like my first Super Bowl), and it really laid the groundwork for the multi-platform journalism we see in so many newsrooms today.
What do you like to do for fun in the Denver
and Colorado area? I love any and all sports (Yes, I am a Patriots fan in Denver), so I find myself at a lot of sporting events. It’s wonderful being in a city where they are all so accessible. Play your cards right and you can get into a Rockies game on a beautiful summer night for $4, the sunsets from the stadium are not to be missed. It’s safe to say most of my money goes to dining out. Denver has a really cool food hall scene that you don’t get a lot of other places (think, grown-up cafeteria with booze) with places like The Source, Denver Central Market and Avanti, and the city has more patios than we know what to do with. Believe it or not, there are plenty of places to get an awesome craft cocktail in beer-soaked Denver, too.
“Michael gives his employees, the paper he works for and those around him a sense of stability that I have never witnessed before. He leads us, directs us and educates us daily about the industry that he knows and loves and then lends support, his personal time, his life to delivering the best paper money can buy and in return ensures the success of everyone he employs,” she said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Every industry has its problems and nothing is ever perfect. Times are tough, things are difficult but this is a fun industry to work in. Not only is every day different but our core business model is changing. You have an opportunity to influence an industry that is a really important part of our society. That’s exciting to me. The chance to have an impact on something that effects such a large part of our country doesn’t come along every day and isn’t something you’ll find in most jobs. Keep working towards change and don’t ever be afraid to fail.
What circulation strategies are working for you right now?
Mike Hrycko, 35 Corporate circulation director, Western Communications Bend, Ore. Education: Ombudsman High School
Circulation sales manager Bonny Tuller calls Michael Hrycko “the breath of fresh air the newspaper industry has longed for.” When Hrycko decided to leave his former post at The World in Coos Bay for The Bulletin in June 2017, Tuller, who also worked alongside him there, said she “jumped at a chance to follow him and his leadership.” 52 |
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I tell my team that circulation doesn’t sell subscriptions. Our job is to put the paper into people’s hands, both subscribers and nonsubscribers, and it should sell itself. To that end, you need a product that is worth purchasing at a price that makes sense for the community. I’m lucky to work for a company in Western Communications that is family-owned and believes in investing in local journalism. We still have a robust news department as well as an advertising staff that provides our paper with that thud factor when it hits your porch. Couple that with the job our production team does every night in producing a product that looks amazing and it really makes my job easy. We can talk about acquisition strategies and customer life cycles all day long but it’s really simple—produce a product that people want and they will purchase it. When companies start investing in their product again, I think you’ll see a rebound in our industry. editorandpublisher.com
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Dustin Leed, 31
In “Pete Eats Lancaster,” host Pete Andrelczyk answers the call from readers of LancasterOnline who want to know where to find the best pizza, cheesesteaks, hamburgers, pulled pork, doughnuts and wings Lancaster County. The series has been a proven success and has attracted paid sponsors to support it. “In carrying out these three major endeavors, Dustin has proven himself to be a digital news innovator not only in our media market but all of Pennsylvania,” Murse said.
Digital editor, LNP | LancasterOnline Lancaster, Pa. Education: Cocalico High School
LNP managing editor Tom Murse credited Dustin Leed’s innovation and leadership for creating a substantially more engaged audience on LancasterOnline’s digital platforms. The audience-power journalism project, “We the People,” gives readers more control over the stories covered by the newsroom. “We The People” allows readers to submit story ideas in the form of questions about Lancaster County and their communities. The journalism produced by the project has generated about 120,000 pageviews. Leed also oversaw special coverage by LNP + Lancaster Online timed to coincide
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What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? } Dustin Leed with his son, Judah
with the release of a highly anticipated documentary film about the Vietnam War by filmmaker Ken Burns.
The most important first step is working for an organization committed to creating great journalism every day. Then, establishing a good working relationship with superiors is essential. It allows you to grow confidence in yourself and, in turn,
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gives you freedom to fail. Lots of ideas will fail, but trial and error enables you to grow the most and progress in your professional career. Don’t let age, lack of experience or shortage of credentials hold you back in this industry. Be bold, fearless and constantly push the envelope forward while staying respectful. If you’re a young newspaper industry professional, don’t buy in to the narrative that “newspapers are dying”— there are endless opportunities for innovation within the evolving and changing publishing business. This industry needs more go-getting creative-thinkers. Be a difference-maker.
What digital trends should newspapers keep an eye on this year? The most important digital trend is determining where your audience is, and not getting too far out ahead of them. There are endless trends that could be mentioned, but each newspaper needs to focus on its own audience and analytics to find the most valuable. Enhancing our community engagement offerings is the digital trend we’re most focused on right now. Everything starts with the audience and establishing a relationship with those readers leads to success that lasts.
and immersive journalism have quickly become seminal pieces for news organizations and academic institutions interested in implementing digital transformation,” said AP director of marketing Jessica Saller.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Embrace a culture of collaboration: help build an environment where editorial, technology and business colleagues work together to identify new opportunities and address existing challenges. Look beyond the newspaper industry to innovate: identify best practices from other sectors that can help your team better understand audiences, new technologies and behavioral shifts.
What will the media industry look like in 10 years?
Francesco Marconi, 31 R&D chief and head of editorial lab, Wall Street Journal New York City Education: University of Missouri, master in business administration, business and journalism; University of Coimbra—Portugal, bachelor of science, financial economics
Before joining the Wall Street Journal in March, Francesco Marconi served as the artificial intelligence lead for the Associated Press, where he helped design and implement strategies that enabled the AP to streamline workflows, generate 12 times as many automated stories and reduce the 54 |
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number of hours reporters spend doing repetitive tasks such as transcription, editing and adding metadata. Marconi also enabled a culture of experimentation across AP and the industry at large. In 2017, he answered questions related to how all of these emerging technologies work together, how they alter the day-to-day jobs and skills required of journalists, and most importantly, how the news industry can anticipate future disruption driven by the growth of AI. This year, he also serves as an affiliate researcher at the MIT Media Lab and a Tow Fellow at the Columbia Journalism School to offer the news industry and journalism schools a practical step-by-step approach to implementing artificial intelligence and automation across the newsroom. “Francesco’s presentations, workshops and industry guides on artificial intelligence
The rise of artificial intelligence will have impacted all value-points of our industry—from newsgathering, to packaging and distribution. As AI becomes commonplace across newsrooms, journalists will leverage it to mine insights from analyzing large datasets, but they will also use algorithms for content creation at scale. This includes AI-powered tools that pull together text, video, photos and audio into automated story packages. A successful implementation of AI will require new skills, tools and workflows. News organizations will likely adapt and become culturally equipped to embrace the disruptive changes AI will bring to journalism. News professionals will also play a crucial role beyond their own newsrooms as algorithms spread to other parts of our lives. In a world where institutions—including banks, schools, governments and more—rely on AI to make judgments, journalists will be the ones holding these algorithms accountable by reporting on their transparency. After all, machines are programmed by humans, and humans make mistakes. In other words, bias can be transferred to algorithms and that’s a future challenge the industry will have to pay attention to. When artificial intelligence becomes more important, the role of the people in newsrooms will also become more crucial. editorandpublisher.com
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Ross McDuffie, 33 Georgia regional vice president, advertising, The McClatchy Co. Columbus, Ga. Education: Berry College, bachelor of arts, communication
According to Rodney Mahone, McClatchy’s Georgia region president and publisher, Ross McDuffie is “always strategizing, and always looking for ways to make our industry and our region stronger.” McDuffie has established himself as innovator and has helped form strong partnerships with local businesses across communities in his region. A prime example is a current project he is leading called Together Columbus. The multi-year effort brings together 20 local CEO and presidents for a marketing campaign highlighting the region’s best assets and to coordinate community improvement projects. McDuffie’s leadership has helped sales operate more efficiently and has led to increase in revenue but it is his commitment to
promoting the community that makes him stand out as an allaround industry professional.
Sara, we think that you’re out of this world. Congratulations. Your work helps remind our audience that good journalism makes for good business.
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Sara rubin Editor, Monterey County Weekly
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percent. Her vision and knowledge of untapped audiences also earned her a spot on the company’s interdepartmental audience development team where she led the development of their first Alexa flash briefings.
Because of him, more than $340,000 in new community projects in Chattahoochee Valley has come to realization such as free lending libraries as well as the enhancement of a pedestrian bridge.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry?
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Don’t make assumptions about your career trajectory. Remain flexible and open to new ideas and embrace new ways of thinking and problem-solving. Lean into the projects you’re tasked with and use what you learn from each one to help make yourself and the team around you stronger. In the transformational environment of our industry, that perfect position for you and your skillset might not exist yet—be patient and allow yourself to be energized by change.
What are some of the biggest advertising opportunities available for newspapers today? Content marketing is the next big wave that’s reshaping our industry. Consumers are increasingly interested in being entertained, educated or enlightened by the content they interact with online. Product, price and promotion are taking a back seat as brands seek to tell stories that create an emotional connection with their audience—a connection that simultaneously aligns the brand’s values and expertise with the content that audiences find most valuable. Content marketing already accounts for a third of total marketing budgets in the U.S. and there are no signs of that slowing down anytime soon. McClatchy’s Creative Lab is doing incredible work in this space; our markets are now able to connect local brands with seasoned storytellers to create incredible relationships between those brands and their audiences. It’s exhilarating to witness this resurgence of storytelling in digital media, and we’re just at the starting line of what’s possible.
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Samantha Melbourneweaver, 26 Social media director, Southern California News Group Los Angeles, Calif. Education: Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, bachelor of arts, journalism
Samantha Melbourneweaver was promoted to social media director in October 2016, quickly writing and executing an ambitious social media strategy including both organic and paid initiatives. She recruited and now oversees a team of social media producers and develops training and social media prowess for more than 300 staffers in SCNG’s 11 newsrooms. According to managing editor of digital Toni Sciacqua, Melbourneweaver led the company’s first efforts on Snapchat and Instagram and developed best practices for Facebook Live reporting and social video. Since Melbourneweaver took on her leadership role, social media sessions have increased 45 percent and Facebook followers on all branded accounts are up 70
Don’t pigeonhole yourself. I see a lot of young journalists thinking they’ll just be a reporter or that they are only a photographer. In truth, you’re a storyteller and your job is not to just write or shoot video or tweet, it’s to tell the story in the way that will impact your audience. Learn to be flexible, adapt new technologies to your needs and don’t shy away from trying something completely crazy. A good journalist will try out anything new that comes along, learn from what it has to offer and take those findings along with them when the next new, hot technology comes out.
If you could only use one social media platform for the rest of your life, which one would you pick? I hesitate to pick one social media platform to commit to for even the rest of the year. Part of what makes social media and the news industry so exciting right now is the lack of a clear path forward when it comes to platform, story format and, for a lot of organizations, revenue. It’s scary, but it also gives us room to invent. Social media platforms especially are in a constant state of flux. The only thing I think has any staying power is quality content. With that said, I am very much into the “stories” format that Snapchat pioneered and Instagram copied, and I encourage journalists and editors to try it out and learn to report using those tools. I think Twitter is having a bit of a resurgence thanks to its expanded character count and thread composer, but it still seems to be a bit of an echo-chamber for journalists. Facebook seems to continue to improve by swallowing everything in its path, but I can see its “fake news” problem taking it down quickly. editorandpublisher.com
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Ryan Nesbitt, 34 Publisher, Crossroads This Week and South Mountain Press Shoal Lake, Manitoba, Canada Education: Winnipeg Technical College, new media and electronic publishing
Ryan Nesbitt was named publisher in 2017 after his father (the previous owner) retired. His take on the role was not to try and compete with social media or the daily newspapers but instead focus on the niche Crossroads This Week and the South Mountain Press informs. “He breathed new life into both publications,” said Marcia Harrison, an editor at parent company Nesbitt Publishing Ltd. “He did this by reinforcing to staff what we do well and giving us flexible work hours to allow us to tap into our creativity and allow us to work when we are feeling productive.” Nesbitt didn’t succumb to the faulty “cut your way to growth” ideology and instead of demanding more from the two writers on staff, he invested in the newsroom and hired more freelance writers, which provided quality, local content. So far his strategy has +Congratulations Ross 25 under 35 Ad:Layout 1 3/13/18 1:41 PM Page 1
paid off. With less pressure, his two staff writers are more productive and his leadership has opened the door for his newspapers to grow unlike its competitors. “(Ryan) is a trendsetter in terms of his collaborative management
CONGRATULATIONS Ross McDuffie! Georgia Regional Vice President, Advertising
We pride ourselves on being an innovative, forward-thinking, and hardworking company. As a member of the McClatchy team, Ross exemplifies everything our company stands for and we’re especially proud of his selection as one of Editor & Publisher’s 2018 25 Under 35 recipients.
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Amy Shioji, one of USA TODAY NETWORK’s rising stars, listening to our customers and finding new ways to delight them every step of the way. Congratulations on this outstanding honor.
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style, (with) his ability to inspire the best from his staff, his dedication to producing the best possible product, and his willingness to try something new,” Harrison said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? My two pieces of advice go hand in hand: create a strong work/personal life balance and then fill that personal time with things that make you happy. I believe creating separation between work and personal life drastically improves my performance and productivity on the job. I try to treat work as a light switch, it is either on or off, and I think this allows me to always be present and ultra focused on whatever is in front of me at any given time. I think people, especially my generation, are starting to see why balance is important for our mental health and how it greatly affects job performance in a positive way. The other key to strong work performance is finding happiness and identity outside of it. By pursuing other passions, which has for me been filmmaking and creating art, I have grown as a person through new challenges and perspectives. The happiness that my hobbies bring me follows me into the office every day and rubs off on my work.
What was it like taking over the role of publisher after your father? Did he give you any advice? It was a big honor. My father has been the President of the Canadian Community Newspapers Association so I was stepping into some big shoes. I have tremendous respect for what my father accomplished in his 40 years in the newspaper business, but I knew that when I took over, I had to be my own man. The blueprint was certainly there for me to follow, but I tried to bring my own ideas, philosophies and management style to the table right from the start. The industry is ever-evolving and fresh approaches are needed if we are going to grow and offer our readers something new every week. 58 |
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Justin Niles with his wife, Jennifer, and their children, Savannah and Logan
Justin Niles, 27 Audience development director, Mankato Free Press Mankato, Minn. Education: Denison High School
Justin Niles’ newspaper career started nearly a decade ago in Scottsbluff, Neb. working for the Star-Herald as a district sales manager and assistant circulation director. In 2014, he moved into the circulation director position for the Dickinson (N.D.) Press. His next stop was in Bakersfield Californian as the audience development director before moving back closer to family into his current role as the audience development director for the Mankato Free Press. Along the way, he restructured many things at each of his stops to improve productivity and helped identify extreme savings at each of his locations. At two of them, he helped save hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in circulation expenses.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Find a good mentor in the industry. I would encourage everyone to gather up and take in as much knowledge as possible from this person. Having a person you can trust, ask for advice, and bounce ideas off of goes a long way. Constantly question why things are done the way they are done and refuse to accept an answer of “Because that’s how we have always done it” I have been in many locations since my career began and made many changes from the “way things have always been done.” These changes have made us more efficient, more productive, and have led to many cost savings along with additional revenue being generated in my departments. Don’t lose the personal face-to-face time with your employees. As a society nowadays, and especially with our generation, we tend to become introverts barely leaving our offices and relying on our smartphones or email to communicate with many of our employees. Do not get sucked into the “hole” that is your computer. Try to take time each day to spend time out editorandpublisher.com
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on the floor with your employees and get to know each and every one of them on a personal level.
You’ve worked in large and small markets. What kind of audience and circulation solutions did you have to come up with for both? Many of the challenges that I experienced were very similar in the larger markets compared to the smaller markets. Some of those challenges include the constant battle with declining single copy sales. Some of the ways I have found to overcome this is giving the customer their “money back” right away with a coupon in the paper guaranteed to be higher than the value they paid for it. The other
key thing is remembering that regardless of what is in your paper, a single copy purchase is typically an impulse buy. Location is key. Another challenge that differed a bit from market to market was the ability to attract new customers. When I was in a Bakersfield, with a county population of just under 900,000, it was much easier to attract new customers with kiosk sales and other methods simply because not everybody had already been solicited with offers available so a simple one piece offer was able to be presented “as a one size fits all.” While in smaller markets, not only are you trying to attract the same customers over and over, but you are trying to piece together exactly what their interests are and what sort of offer needs to be presented in order to get them to subscribe to the publication.
team of reporters, comprised of different ages and levels of experience, because she welcomes challenges and celebrates victories.” Petty has a lot to celebrate. Since leading the transition to digital in 2017, pageviews grew by 87 percent over 2016. The biggest increase parent company Lee Enterprises has seen, according to Coates.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry?
Allison Petty, 30 Managing editor of digital, Herald & Review Decatur, Ill. Education: University of Illinois Springfield, master of arts, public affairs reporting; Southern Illinois University Carbondale, bachelor of science, journalism
Allison Petty is a reporter at heart. Even as the digital managing editor of the Herald & Review, Petty still finds the time wade through meeting minutes and documents in search of nuggets of information that could be the newspaper’s next big story. “(Allison) finds time to review agendas and correspondence because she is an extraordinary journalist first, able to sense a good story from far away,” said Chris Coates, Herald & Review executive editor. Her dedication to her craft as well as her approach to leadership has reaped great rewards in readership numbers and in production from the team she manages. “In an industry filled with big egos, Petty takes the opposite approach to great impact—she listens, she encourages, she helps, she adapts. She invests time and energy into her staff. And she’s incredibly driven to make a difference,” Coates said. “Allison inspires her
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Always take the extra step. Call one more source than you think you need; spend half an hour longer on a project; promote one more story on your social media accounts. If your boss assigns something that seems boring or trivial, make a special effort to knock it out of the park. Be a gracious coworker. Learn about the jobs of other people in the newsroom—and look for ways you can make those jobs easier. Notice others’ successes and celebrate them. Carve out time, even just a little, to pursue a project about which you feel passionate. Talk about big journalism and new ideas. Don’t let day-to-day stress crowd your mind so much that you forget why you fell in love with journalism in the first place—and what an incredible gift it is to be part of this industry.
What’s your approach to digital transformation in the newsroom? A focus on digital should empower reporters and editors. We now have wide-ranging opportunities to influence how people interact with our work—reaching readers through social media or push alerts; adding extra photos, videos or maps for a richer experience; linking to past stories to show that we’ve done our homework. With so many free storytelling tools available, we are only limited by our own time and creativity. Of course, new digital expectations can feel scary or overwhelming. Some might see them as a burden at first. But ultimately, almost everyone in any newsroom has one thing in common: We are all proud of the work we’re doing, and we want lots of people to see it. Our industry is changing. If we take an active role, we can shape the face of that change and help to develop the next phase.
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Dana Rieck, 26
out more experienced reporters and editors in your organization as mentors. I think younger people might see having a mentor as an antiquated concept, but having someone willing to put up a fight for you and your work in the newsroom is invaluable—and will most likely lead to career advancement.
Breaking news editor, Belleville NewsDemocrat Belleville, Ill. Education: Colorado State University, bachelor of arts, journalism/media communication and communication studies
As breaking news editor, Dana Rieck is a go-getter and finds the most complete report she can all in the name of providing readers with the best possible information. She’s a leader in the newsroom and out in the field. And despite only working for the Belleville News-Democrat for just a year, she was promoted to her current position, said Jason Koch, news, social media, and search editor. “This is because she is a phenomenal reporter, but also because she is an impressive leader and one of the most impressive journalists I have ever had the chance to work with,” he said. Rieck has a tenacity to chase down stories both big and small no matter where they are happening. Most recently, Rieck covered two major breaking news events on location: When a man from Belleville shot a U.S. congressman in Washington, D.C., she was there coordinating coverage; and when a police officer was found not guilty in the death of a black man, Rieck was in the middle of the protests in St. Louis, Mo. Through it all, she provides instant updates, shooting insightful video and even giving context to stories via Facebook Live. “Dana is a truly impressive journalist who, I firmly believe, will become a nationally known reporter in the next few years,” Koch said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? There’s no way around it, this industry is tough. I’ve spoken to a lot of young reporters who feel overwhelmed or like they aren’t “doing enough,” especially when compared to all the impressive journal60 |
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What’s your favorite thing about being a breaking news reporter?
ism they are surrounded by daily. I remind them—and myself—to breathe and that they’re just starting out. As a young journalist, it’s important to keep in mind that while everything you work on might not be your award-winning, career-making piece, it is a small step toward your career goals. Another piece of advice I’d offer is to seek
Sara Rubin, 33 Editor, Monterey County Weekly Seaside, Calif. Education: Colorado College, bachelor of arts, comparative literature
Breaking news keeps me on my toes— every day is something different. It takes real skill to cover breaking stories well, skills that translate to better reporting in other areas of journalism. I think breakingnews journalists become well-versed and knowledgeable in a range of subjects that they would never know about otherwise— whether it’s understanding a state’s criminal code or learning the social acceptance of “jorts” (go ahead, I’ll wait while you search it on Urban Dictionary). The other thing I love about breaking news is that while it’s invigorating to write in the moment, it also spurs some serious investigative and enterprise work later that may have never happened without the initial story.
Sara Rubin started with the Monterey County Weekly in 2010 and since then, she has risen up the ranks to editor in 2017. Along the way, she’s been prolific in her news writing and developed “a very good reputation both for her doggedness and her fairness,” said publisher Erik Cushman. Since she started with company, Rubin has displayed excellence in reporting and storytelling day in and day out. “She cranked out stories that would have otherwise gone untold,” Cushman said. Her tireless efforts have not gone unnoticed. In 2016, Rubin’s work, along with that of the Weekly’s former editor, earned editorandpublisher.com
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the publication the FAC Free Speech and Open Government Award for an investigation in a Diocese’s attempts to keep its interactions with a defrocked priest sealed. Rubin also led coverage in the newspaper that resulted in the prosecution of a city manager, the resignation of another as well as a police chief in a third city. She is just the sort of talent the newspaper industry needs to survive. “As a representative of young leaders in the industry, Sara gives great promise that the future of newspapering is in good shape,” Cushman said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? The most invigorating thing about this line of work is the constant learning, which is also a great lesson in humility. Check your own expectations about what you think you know, and then let your reporting guide the story. If you are willing to be surprised, you will have richer interviews and source relationships and really access the nuance and contradictions in your stories. Remember you’re there to listen, and the fun thing about being a journalist is meeting and listening to people you might never meet outside of your work. For young professionals in the newspaper industry in general, the business model is clearly in a time of crisis. It’s easy for me and our newsroom to keep morale up, because our paper is thriving. Whether or not that’s the fortunate situation you’re in, focus on the work you can do with the resources available.
Why is investigative reporting/watchdog role important to a newspaper’s success? Readers want information that’s relevant to their lives and that makes an impact in their community. I believe that local news is what gives readers the ability to get informed about their own communities, and then influence decision-makers on a level that can have a real impact; you can send 100 postcards to President Trump and he won’t notice, but you can call your mayor and meet them for coffee. I’ve digressed— editorandpublisher.com
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you asked about the role of watchdog reporting, not the value specifically of local news coverage, but they go hand in hand: the numerous local government entities we cover have a profound impact on our read-
ers’ lives, and they rely on our newspaper to keep them informed. We’ve watched our coverage have a real, discernible impact on the community.
Chris Segal, 31 Executive editor, Sun Journal (New Bern, N.C.), Free Press (Kinston, N.C.) and managing editor, Daily News (Jacksonville, N.C.) New Bern, N.C. Education: University of Mount Olive, master of business administration; Pepperdine University, bachelor of arts, journalism
Chris Segal has been a key person in stabilizing the two newsrooms and moving both into a stronger digital place. According to Pam Sander, GateHouse Media Coastal Carolina Group’s regional editor, “He’s put processes in place, rolled out goals to the staffs and collaborated with sister newspapers across the region and state for the best journalism. His commitment to our industry is inspiring.” In 2016, he took an assignment to be the editor of the Kinston Free Press, just before Hurricane Matthew put the entire region under water with historic flooding.
“Apparently, baptism by fire had become a way of life for him, as he worked with ease with the Kinston staff and others coming in from sister papers to help,” Sander said. “For those great efforts, his staff won multiple state press association awards.” As editor, Segal has embedded himself in the communities of his newspapers—
u t l a a r t g i ons n o C Justin Niles!
Named one of E & P’s Top 25 under 35. This recognition is well deserved. From your friends at
The Free Press MEDIA
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attending events, meeting with elected officials, challenging rulings and public records denials, and assuming a leadership role typically reserved for someone much older. “We laughingly say he’s a 60-year-old in a 30-year-old body, a compliment to his dedication to his job and his good judgment regarding journalism and the news industry overall,” Sander said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Now is an exciting time to be in the newspaper industry. The changes in our business are taking place at breakneck speeds. Young professionals working in media need to remember to share our success stories. Local newsrooms are growing their audience and reaching an increasing number of readers with community journalism. Take every opportunity when you are networking with people to talk about your passion and the work being done by your team. Be a problem solver, do your research, find out what went wrong and find solutions. Educate everyone you talk to about why we make the decisions in print and online and solicit feedback and new ideas. Get to know your harshest critics internally and externally, have an ongoing dialogue with them and try to turn those critics into your most prominent advocates.
What lessons did you learn while reporting during Hurricane Matthew? The Kinston Free Press newsroom was the hub of activity for nearly a week during the worst of the flooding that cut the county in half and stranded people on one side or the other. Our local staff directed the coverage and told the story of what was happening daily. The knowledge, experience, and professionalism of the team, even including those who worked in other departments, helped create a framework for adding additional reporting resources to enhance and improve what ultimately was our award-winning coverage. Through the leadership of our regional vice-president Lucy Talley, regional publisher Mike Distelhorst and regional executive editor Pam Sander, GateHouse newsrooms were able to mobilize and send reporting and photography resources to Kinston to help provide manpower. The hard-working journalists already on the ground were joined and reinforced by their peers. The Free Press newsroom comprised of six journalists before the flood, once the rising waters overtook local roadways, there were 12 more journalists activated and dispatched to assist. It was rewarding professionally to see the amount and quality of the coverage those 18 journalists produced during a dangerous weather event. Personally, it was gratifying to see the friendships develop over the days before and after the flood and to see the support the GateHouse newspapers provided the Free Press.
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Amy Shioji, 35 Vice president, customer experience and insights, USA TODAY NETWORK McLean, Va. Education: Mary Washington College, bachelor of arts, international affairs
Amy Shioji has served as an effective catalyst in the organization, driving the USA TODAY NETWORK to view everything through the lens of customer experience. She led the way for establishment of a formalized Voice of the Customer program and a Customer Promise to customers that act as the foundation for tangible improvements throughout the organization. Through new tools that allow the company to analyze customer feedback and sentiment related to our service, content, and product experience, these insights are helping to drive actionable improvements to the customer experience both online and offline—and have helped activate the NETWORK’s consumer strategy from a strategic, operational, and cultural perspective throughout the organization. Her team includes membership and customer loyalty, data science, campaign management and insights, and email strategy and operations. “Under her strategic guidance, these teams have become more adept at focusing on digital growth and new audience initiatives designed to drive customer engagement and reduce churn,” said Heather Perez, director of campaign management.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Embrace change and stay curious. Working in an industry that’s facing disruption, it’s important to stay nimble, be open to change, and to bring new ideas to the table. It’s an exciting time to work in this industry as it requires all of us to elevate our thinking and move fast—and allows you to see the best in your peers and your organization. I’ve worked for very large, stable companies and seen how hard it is to affect change in a company or an industry that’s comfortable. editorandpublisher.com
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Take any opportunity you can to learn from your peers, learn a new part of the business, take an outside-in approach to problem solving, and be a data-driven and savvy storyteller of your work and influence.
Is the customer always right? Like most things, it’s always a balance. We are very focused on the needs of our consumers and business-
es, who, of course, drive the success of our company. At the same time, employee engagement is a key driver of overall customer satisfaction so our focus is also on how to empower, engage, and support employees and to understand the value of each customer segment. While the customer may not always be right, it doesn’t mean you can’t learn from them. Each customer interaction is an opportunity to learn, improve, and to optimize for the future.
Riley Swinford, 26 General manager, Marion (Ill.) Star, Herrin (Ill.) Independent and Carterville (Ill.) Courier Marion, Ill. Education: Southern Illinois University—Carbondale, bachelor of science, journalism with minors in radio/television, history and political science
Riley Swinford was 22 when he founded the Marion Star newspaper in 2014. He brought the idea to publisher Jerry Reppert (his company, Reppert Publications, already produced 18 weekly newspapers in southern Illinois). “In a time where newspapers are shuttering their doors, Riley had the foresight and guts to go against the tide and start his own publication,” Reppert said. “He came to me with his idea and I provided the network, funding and structure to help him execute it.” Swinford served as founder/editor of his new weekly for two years, and after seeing how he established a subscriber base of about 1,000 weekly mail subscribers and established a strong advertising base, Reppert promoted him to general manager of the Marion Star, Herrin Independent and Carterville Courier newspapers in 2016. He oversees the roughly 10,000 circulation group, a staff of about 15 to 20 freelancers, reporters, stringers, photographers, support staff and advertising reps and the business operation on a day-to-day basis. He writes stories, covers sports, produces countless stories for print/online and paginates more than 50 pages of newsprint weekly, while also managing the sales and distribution. He also oversees several niche publications. Recently, one of them brought in nearly $20,000 in revenue. “He is truly a do-it-all journalist with the ability to do the tasks that would normally take four to five people to do,” Reppert said.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Learn as many different skills as possible. The days of being just a reporter, or just a photographer, or just a copy editor are gone, especially for smaller publications like the ones I manage. In journalism school, I learned the value of being a “backpack journalist” who can do it all. The more skills you have, the more valuable and more employable you become. Also, I’ve found that having so editorandpublisher.com
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} Riley Swinford with his wife, Katie
many different skills makes the job even more enjoyable. One day, I’m designing pages. Another day, I’m covering city council meetings. The next day, I’m shooting pictures at a high school sporting event or conducting sales calls. It adds variety to a job that could otherwise get boring or mundane if you aren’t careful.
What made you want to start a newspaper at 22? Marion already had a long-standing regional daily newspaper and a daily paper when I decided to launch the Marion Star with Jerry Reppert and my dad Bill Swinford in the fall of 2014, months out of journalism school. I had actually worked nights at the longstanding daily newspaper while in college. During my time there, I heard complaints from the community about the lack of local news as the paper had transitioned to a lot of national and wire stories. I felt like a purely local publication with news about the town’s schools, city government, sports teams, community events, clubs, churches and organizations would be popular, and I was right. The response has greatly exceeded my expectations and it has proven that there is still a place for good products in this day in age, even as some newspapers (especially in this area) are shutting their doors. In a lot of ways, we have reintroduced the concept of community newspapers to this market and our competitors have had to adjust. I’m really proud of what we’ve been able to do in the first four years of the publication and I’m really excited to see what the future holds. APRIL 2018 | E & P
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Millie Tran, 29 Global growth editor, New York Times New York City Education: University of California, Los Angeles, bachelor of arts, global studies, minor in geography
Before joining the New York Times as its first-ever global growth editor in June 2017, Millie Tran served as BuzzFeed’s director of global adaptation, where she helped launched BuzzFeed’s news app and newsletter. As global growth editor, Tran works closely with the newsroom’s social team and coverage leaders across desks to build growth plans for priority markets and audience segments. At the American Press Institute, Tran wrote and produced a daily newsletter on media trends and authored a report on building audiences for single-subject news products. “(Tran) is obsessed with news and how people get their news. She has been thinking about and tackling the hard questions in journalism for years,” said Liz Worthington, API director of content strategy. “She is not afraid of challenges and actually runs toward them. She likes figuring things out, building new products and growing audiences. She always has the reader in mind.”
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Being in news or digital media in general right now is so tough—the industry is and has been going through a period of incredible change. However, I’m hopeful that through this, we’ll continue to double down on fundamental values of journalism and continue to adapt and learn because this pace of change won’t stop anytime soon. My best advice is to keep learning from those more experienced than you, those less experienced than you, and most importantly, from your peers. Those are the people you’ll grow up with in this industry and I can’t state how “very cool” it is to see 64 |
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your old friends and colleagues in big exciting jobs. No one is going to solve this alone, so be generous however you can be.
In what ways is working at BuzzFeed and the New York Times similar? In what ways are they different? This is a hard question! The differences are shallow: one is a startup digital media company, the other is a legacy news company. One is younger, one is older. When you look deeper, they are similar in that they are two organizations that are the best at what they’re doing. BuzzFeed is the best at identifying interesting problems and trying to solve them before anyone else even knows there’s a problem to be solved. And the New York Times, when it wants to go big, it goes BIG. But it all comes down to the people. The people are what make the two organizations so special in similar ways and in totally different ways. I feel so lucky to have been able to solve those interesting problems at BuzzFeed and now try to solve them in a big way, in a totally different context—all while working with some of the best in the industry.
Adam Trumble, 35 Editorial director, Sierra Nevada Media Group, and editor of the Nevada Appeal Carson City, Nev. Education: Central Michigan University, bachelor of arts, journalism
Adam Trumble is what you would call a “master planner.” He stands out from the pack due to his ability to manage 13 deadlines a week across four platforms. That’s mindboggling just to think about but as the editorial director for the Sierra Nevada group, Trumble can do it all. “When it comes to running a strong newsroom, no one does it better—or with more vision, problem solving perspective, and resourcefulness,” Brooke Warner, Nevada Media Group general manager, said. Currently, Trumble is in editorandpublisher.com
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charge of a six-day newspaper, a three-times a week publication and a two-times a week publication as well as niche weeklies. Not only has he managed to stay afloat, he’s grown readership across all platforms by 15 percent since 2014; 20 percent in 2016 alone for the Nevada Appeal. “He’s a relentless champion of better storytelling through multimedia journalism, and he puts the focus where it should be: on the readers,” Warner said. “Adam works tirelessly to keep community journalism alive while honoring a tradition of integrity, accuracy and wellsourced content.”
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Learn the entire operation. Even if you only want to be a reporter, learn what the editor does, the ad side, the process of how readers receive their news. Also, learn how to create content for different platforms. Storytelling is an art; use the different “canvases” to your advantage. And lastly, be passionate about your work. Your work has impact.
What’s your strategy behind increasing audiences on social media and other digital platforms? Simply put, you have to listen and meet the needs of readers. The world is too fast-paced for us to sit back and wait for readers to come to us. We develop products and use technology to meet their needs. But you have to deliver engaging, meaningful content to the community. They tell us what they want; we just have to listen.
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Catherine Wynn, 33 Managing editor, Salem News and Phelps County Focus Salem, Mo. Education: University of Missouri, bachelor of science, hotel and restaurant management
Catherine Wynn has come a long way since working for the Salem Publishing Co. while in high school. She returned to the organization after earning her degree from the University of Missouri and a brief stint in Colorado. Now she handles the bulk of the responsibilities as managing editor and does so in an award-winning fashion. } Catherine Wynn with her husband, Andrew, and their daughWynn is the modern day Swiss army ters, Eavie and Sadie knife of journalism. She edits, designs pages, writes stories, takes photos, oversees circulation, and manages websites and social media. “She not only performs all of these tasks in award-winning form, as our website and print product have won numerous awards, but she does so with a dedication, fervor and vested interest that have earned the respect of her peers,” said Donald Dodd, Salem Publishing Co. president. Wynn’s next-level dedication to her craft runs deep and is why she is a leader in our industry. She is also highly involved in the community, serving as the area’s Chamber of Commerce president and with the local elementary school’s PTO.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in the newspaper industry? Coming from a newspaper family (my grandmother and father were in the business), I swore I would never write or take part in the long hours and sometimes difficult nature of this industry. As the old adage goes, never say never. Fast forward eight years, and I am the managing editor of two small newspapers alongside a staff that has a combined total of more than 200 years in the newspaper industry. Who better to learn from? I say all of this to remind young professionals to learn from those who came before you. While some may be on their way to retirement, their past experiences are relevant to you as a young person in a historic industry. There is no teacher like that of hands-on experience. And don’t beat yourself up over typos, everyone makes them—ours just get read by more people.
What value does volunteering and serving in the community offer to your role as managing editor? No matter your career choice, I strongly believe that volunteering and serving in your community paves the way to long-lasting personal and professional relationships. Being from a small town in rural Missouri, this is even more important. Our community depends on volunteer organizations in many aspects of our lives. As past president of the Salem Area Chamber of Commerce board, Dent County Museum board member, as well as other committees I have served on, I feel it is our duty to strap up our boots and be involved with the community we write about each day. To find the real issues, you cannot be afraid to dive in, head first and talk to people. APRIL 2018 | E & P
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By Jesus Ruiz email@example.com
Jeffrey Johnson has been named president of Hearst Newspapers. Johnson replaces Mark E. Aldam, who was promoted to Hearst’s chief operating officer. Previously, Johnson served as publisher of the San Francisco Chronicle. Before he became publisher in 2013, Johnson worked for 25 years in the publishing industry. He served as CEO of the Los Angeles Times and worked in private equity at the Yucaipa Cos. In 2017, E&P named him Publisher of the Year.
Nicole Carroll has been named editor-in-chief of USA TODAY. Prior to her new role, Carroll served as vice president of news and editor of the Arizona Republic and azcentral. com since 2015. She joined the Republic in 1999. During her career there, Carroll held various jobs including city editor, planning editor, managing editor and executive editor, which she earned in 2008. Mike Dalton has been named president of the Minnesota Newspaper Association. Dalton is currently the publisher of the Cannon Falls (Minn.) Beacon, which has been in his family since 1880. He replaces Chris Schultz of the Herald Journal. CNHI has announced several editorial appointments. Dennis Lyons, editor of the Sunbury (Pa.) Daily Item, is now national editor and teams up with nine regional editors, who will work with the CNHI’s local editors. James Zachary, editor of the Valdosta (Ga.) Daily Times, will become the deputy national editor. He will also serve as regional editor for CNHI papers in North Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Texas. Other regional appointments include: Scott Underwood, editor of the Herald (Ind.) Bulletin: Indiana and Illinois; Carol Stark, editor of the Joplin (Mo.) Globe: Missouri and Eastern Oklahoma; Rob Collins, editor of the Enid (Okla.) News & Eagle: Western Oklahoma; Chip Minemyer, editor of the Tribune-Democrat (Pa.): Pennsylvania, Maryland and Ohio; David Joyner, editor of the Eagle-Tribune (Mass.): Massachusetts, New Hampshire and New York; Damon Cain, editor of the Register-Herald 66 |
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(W.Va.): West Virginia; Nathan Payne, editor of the Traverse City (Mich.) RecordEagle: Michigan, Minnesota and Iowa; and Susan Duncan, editor of the News and Tribune (Ind.): Kentucky and Tennessee. Kim Murphy has been named enterprise editor at the New York Times national desk. Most recently, Murphy worked at the Los Angeles Times as an assistant managing editor for national and foreign news. She previously served as a correspondent before taking on a national editor role. She began her newspaper career at The North Biloxian in Mississippi and the Minot (N.D.) Daily News. Boyd Matheson has been named opinion editor and head of strategic reach for the Deseret News in Salt Lake City, Utah. Matheson formerly worked as the chief of staff for Sen. Mike Lee and as the head for the Sutherland Institute in Salt Lake City. He replaces former opinion editor Hal Boyd.
Prisco Digital has announced two regional level appointments. Clay Mizelle will now manage all digital activities in the Ohio Valley/Southeast Regions. Prior to joining Prisco, Mizell worked at Scitex Vision before the acquisition by HP (now known as HP Scitex), and he spent 23 years with Kodak and Agfa in the commercial printing industry. Bill McCluskey is now managing all digital activities for the Central Sales Region. McCluskey’s responsibilities encompass the Midwest region and Southwest regions. McCluskey brings 25 years of experience and his past employers include HP, Ricoh, Canon and Kodak. Jim Morgan has retired as general manager of Colorado Mountain News Media. CMNM is the largest operating unit of Swift Communications. In his four-decade career, Morgan has edited and published newspapers in six states, and prior to joining Swift in 2003, he had been a long-time group executive and publisher with Boone Newspapers. Jeffry Couch has been named editor and general manager of the Bellville (Ill.) News-Democrat. Prior to his promotion, Couch led the News-Democrat newsroom for 14 years. He succeeds Jay Tebbe. Couch’s career at the News-Democrat began in 2004 as an executive editor. Prior to that, he was the managing editor of the Sun News in Myrtle Beach, S.C. for four years, and
Kathleen Diamantakis has been named managing director of strategy at T Brand, which is owned by the New York Times Co. Her responsibilities will include the T Brand Studio, the experience designs agency Fake Love and the influence marketing agency HelloSociety. Diamantakis was previously the chief strategy development officer at Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal, an advertising company, since 2017. Prior to that, she served as co-chief strategy officer and executive director of brand strategy. Before joining Kirshenbaum, Diamantakis spent seven years at Ogilvy & Maher.
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NewsPeople ACQUISITIONS Lee Enterprises has completed the sale of its newspaper and digital media operations in Maysville, Ky., the Ledger Independent and maysville-online.com, to Champion Media LLC. The sale price was not disclosed. The Independent is published six days a week with a print circulation of 3,465 daily. Maysville-online.com reaches more than 6,300 unique visitors a month. Champion Media owns four daily newspapers and 18 weeklies in North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio and Minnesota. Paxton Media Group has purchased the Roanoke Rapids (N.C.) Daily Herald from Wick Communications. The sale price was not disclosed. Paxton Media is a family-owned company and owns more than 35 daily newspapers, a television station and numerous weekly publications across Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina and Tennessee. Digital First Media won the bankruptcy auction for the Boston Herald. An $11.9 million bid package in cash and assumed liabiliworked as a reporter and editor for 15 years at the Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer. Miles Reed has been promoted to editor of the Daily Gazette in Schenectady, N.Y. He succeeds Judy Patrick, who has worked at the paper for 35 years. Reed joined the Gazette in 1995 as a reporter and worked his way up earning promotions to copy editor, assistant Sunday editor, assistant features editor, day city editor and city editor. Most recently, Reed served as managing editor. Kyle Stephens has been named publisher of the Rocky Mount (N.C.) Telegram in addition to his role as group publisher for Cooke Communication’s North Carolina’s Southern Group. Stephens replaces Mark Wilson who retired earlier this year after a 14-year career at the Telegram. Stephens began working in the newspaper industry in 2003 as an advertising representative for the Times-Leader in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., the Farmville (N.C.) Enterprise and the Standard (N.C.) Laconic in Snow Hill, N.C. In 2011, Stephens was promoted to publisher and then in 2015 he was named group publisher for Cooke. editorandpublisher.com
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ties totaled the bid price for Digital First. Other bidders in the auction were GateHouse Media and Revolution Capital Group. Digital First is based out of Denver and is owned by New York investment firm Alden Global Capital. They own two other Massachusetts daily newspapers, the Lowell Sun and the Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise as well as newspaper across the country including the Denver Post, the Orange County Register and the San Jose Mercury News. Tronc has completed the sale of the Los Angeles Times to billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong, who is a Los Angeles-area physician and a major Tronc shareholder. The sale price was $500 million and as part of the deal, the San Diego Union-Tribune was also sold. Soon-Shiong is founder and chief executive of NantHealth, based in Culver City, Calif. The Binkley Co., which owns the Anchorage Daily News, has completed the purchase of two weeklies, the Alaska Journal of Commerce and Chugiak-Eagle River Star, as well as the monthly Alaskan Equipment Trader, from Morris Communications. The purchase price was not disclosed.
Judd Slivka has been named director of aerial journalism at the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism. The aerial journalism program is newly-created and explores drones and other journalism opportunities in the sky. Slivka also currently teaches mobile journalism and serves on the school’s graduate faculty. Robert Granfeldt has been named group publisher for the Amarillo (Texas) Globe-News and the Lubbock AvalancheJournal. Grandfeldt previously held leadership roles with Morris Communications, NewsBank and Southern Community Newspapers Inc. His most recent role was general manager of 360 West Magazine in Forth Worth, Texas. Grandfeldt also previously worked for the Avalanche-Journal, which is where he got his start in the newspaper industry in the circulation and marketing department in 1984.
Jake Mienk is now the publisher of the Huntsville (Texas) Item and the Jacksonville (Texas) Progress in addition to the Palestine (Texas) Herald-Press and the Corsicana (Texas) Daily Sun. Mienk began his newspaper career in 2005 as advertising account executive at the Tyler Morning Telegraph. Seven years later, he joined CNHI as a regional advertising director. In 2014, he was named publisher of the Herald-Press and a year later publisher of the Daily Sun. Dream Local Digital has announced several appointments. Sierra Hayes is now a senior project manager. Hayes joined the company in 2015 and has worked as both office coordinator and project manager. Kasey Ahlquist is now a client strategy and brand manager. Ahlquist joined the company in 2012 as a marketing strategist. In her new role, Ahlquist will manage the marketing strategists and be responsible for content quality. Kimberly Grindle is now a senior marketing strategist. Grindle joined the company in 2016 as a marketing strategist. She writes social media content for a variety of clients. APRIL 2018 | E & P
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NewsPeople Ed Dawson has retired as editor and publisher for The Herald-Dispatch in Huntington, W.Va. Managing editor Les Smith will succeed Dawson. Controller Georgetta Thevenin, advertising director Chuck Jessup and circulation-production director Dave Hamilton will assume Dawson’s other duties. Dawson joined the Herald-Dispatch in 2001 and served in other leadership roles at newspapers in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Brent Murray has been named national account manager, newspapers at Agfa Graphics. He previously was the regional sales manager at Southern Lithoplate. Prior to that, Murray was the director of strategic client development at Konica Minolta. Melissa Galbraith is now the executive editor for the Spectrum & Daily News in Saint George, Utah. Previously, Galbraith spent 12 years running various operations of the Arizona Republic and she has more than 20 years of experience in an editing role. Galbraith replaces Steve Kiggins, who resigned in December. Dale Bohren is now the publisher of the Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune. He previously served as the paper’s publisher for 17 years before becoming the executive editor of the Star-Tribune in 2015. Jeffrey Bernhardt has been named regional sales manager at Southern Lithoplate. 68 |
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Patrick Dorsey has been named the president of the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association. Dorsey succeeds Les Simpson, who stepped down from the position after leaving the Amarillo (Texas) Globe-News earlier this year. Dorsey is regional vice president for the Coastal Group of GateHouse Media and publisher of the Herald-Tribune Media Group. He was previously the SNPA’s treasurer.
Bernhardt brings 24 years of experience to his new role. Most recently, he was the major accounts manager for Presteligence. David Ledford has retired as executive editor and vice president of news at the News Journal in Wilmington, Del., after serving for 14 years. Ledford’s career spans four decades and includes works at newspapers in Washington, Utah, South Dakota and Missouri. Kimberly Phillips has been named editor of the Journal Inquirer in Manchester, Conn. She succeeds managing editor Chris Powell, who has retired. Prior to her new role, Phillips was an associate editor. In addition, Daniel Hatch has been named production editor, and Kym Soper is now associate editor.
Kimberly Phillips Daniel Hatch Kym Soper
Julia Beizer has joined Bloomberg Media as global chief product officer of digital and media distribution. In the newly-created position, she will lead the digital
product portfolio and digital strategy. Her most recent position was with Oath, where she served as vice president of product in the media division. Beizer formerly worked for the Washington Post and HuffPost. Tim Holt has been named chief operating officer for Cooke Communications North Carolina. Holt previously served as director of sales and marketing for the Daily Reflector, group advertising director for Cox North Carolina, general manager of the Daily Reflector and Cox North Carolina Central production facility, and his most recent role was general manager of Cooke Communications North Carolina. Holt began his career with the group in 1998. Lamar Smitherman has retired as publisher of the Morganton (N.C.) News Herald and the Marion (N.C.) McDowell News. Smitherman leaves behind a 40-year newspaper career. He started in the newspaper industry after graduating college in 1972 in Prattville, Ala. Later he would move to an independent newspaper in Mississippi before returning to Prattville in 1989 to open the Autauga Times. He later sold the Times and became publisher of the Prattville Progress. Smitherman would later go on to be director of special products with Gannett Corp. Before being publisher of the News Herald and the McDowell News, Smitherman was the retail sales manager of the Opelika Auburn News in Alabama. editorandpublisher.com
3/16/18 3:19 PM
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ADVERTISING/MARKETING DIRECTOR: The Cortland Standard is a 6,000 circulation independent, family-owned daily newspaper (Mon-Sat. p.m.) with a 150 year history and weekly TMC product in Cortland, N.Y., at the gateway to the Finger Lakes in Central New York. With the impending retirement of its longtime advertising director, the Cortland Standard is seeking a manager of print and digital advertising sales to pursue new revenue opportunities such as community events and market the company in innovative ways. Cortland is the county seat at the crossroads between Syracuse, Ithaca and Binghamton, home to a state university, a not-for-proﬁt hospital, manufacturers and four ski resorts within a short drive. The picturesque area oﬀers a variety of outdoor pursuits, and a vibrant cultural scene centered on a historic downtown that has seen tens of millions of dollars of investment recently. See more at this link: http://bit.ly/2E722XO Salary is commensurate with experience. The Cortland Standard oﬀers several health insurance options, life insurance and a 401(k) plan in addition to salary. Send resume, cover letter and references to: Cortland Standard, attn: Evan Geibel, Publisher, P.O Box 5548, Cortland, NY 13045 or email firstname.lastname@example.org ADVERTISING DIRECTOR: Privately held Hagadone Newspapers, North Idaho properties, is searching for a candidate to lead advertising sales for the Coeur d’Alene Press. Work with the best while living in the desirable Paciﬁc Northwest. Coeur d’Alene, Idaho…a Lake City known for its Resort community, beautiful mountainous terrain, expansive lakes and an abundance of four-seasons outdoor activity. In this exciting role you will drive top-line revenue while leading an established sales team of Multimedia Account Executives and Facilitators. Reporting to the publisher and separate from heavy corporate oversight, you will demonstrate a history of driving sustainable results within a positive team atmosphere and with an ability to work independently while thinking and acting strategically. Lead in sales, lead in the community. As a senior executive, you will also spend quality time representing the newspaper while engaging with advertisers, community leaders, organizations and events. Qualiﬁcations: Experience introducing best-practices and creating a highly motivated sales team will be a top priority. Authentic ability to inspire and lead inside and outside sales teams. Proven success in newspaper-media sales leadership with +5 years’ experience and track record of developing budgets and growing revenue. Meaningful expertise leading digital sales preferred. Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in marketing, advertising or related ﬁeld. Strong skills in integrating analytics, market insights, strategies, account planning and other best practices to create and execute successful sales growth. Send cover letter and resume to email@example.com. Only applicants meeting the strict criteria outlined above will be contacted as part of the shortlisting process.
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EDITOR: The Award Winning Antelope Valley Press in Palmdale, California is looking for an experienced Editor. The qualiﬁed candidate should have 2-5 years of experience managing a newsroom. We are looking for someone with strong editing, writing and photography skills. You will manage a 12 person staﬀ to create a daily paper with a focus on community issues, along with State, National and International coverage. The Editor must be forward thinking and innovative with a focus on creating content that attracts readers in the analog and digital space. The Antelope Valley Press is a daily publication with 9,747 Circ. Daily and 15,735 on Sunday. In addition to the paper and website, we publish a monthly magazine called Lifestyle, with a circulation of 19,210. This position oﬀers a competitive salary and beneﬁts package. To apply, send resume & cover letter to Publisher Mike McMullin at email@example.com.
EDITOR: The editor for the Daily Hampshire Gazette will be a forward thinking editor with a passion for local news, community leadership, and the competitive spirit to grow audience with a mix of daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly print and digital products in Western Massachusetts. This is the top editorial leadership position at the Gazette and requires strong writing and editing skills as well as a strong working knowledge of how to drive the development of content for our audiences across multiple platforms including our websites, mobile apps, social media channels, and our print products. We have a team of editors, reporters and photographers that produces award-winning products and has a strong commitment to community journalism. The Daily Hampshire Gazette, our largest newspaper in Massachusetts, was named Newspaper of the Year in two of the last three years by the New England Newspaper and Press Association. RESPONSIBILITIES • Lead, coach and develop newsroom team to achieve subscription growth across digital and print platforms. • Serve as a key member of the editorial board and help shape the editorial voice of the newspaper • Ensure the maintenance of high journalistic standards on a daily basis. • Manage newsroom budget for maximum eﬃciency and strongest results. • Serve as the newspaper’s public face in our communities. • Work with leaders across departments to develop new products that grow our audiences and reach in the market. • Use of web analytics tools to grow site traﬃc as well as in development of stories. • Application of SEO research and best practices to stories, sections and projects. • Work collaboratively on projects ranging from podcasts to video to enterprise stories. • Managing and growing media brand social media audiences on Facebook and Twitter as well as exploring other platforms including LinkedIn, Instagram, etc. SKILLS & REQUIREMENTS • Five or more years editorial management experience. • Strong writing, editing organizational and interpersonal skills. • Working knowledge of video and audio platforms. • Proven success using Google Analytics or other enterprise analytics solutions to drive content decisions. • Demonstrated experience using Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms for professional purposes. • Understanding of and experiencing applying SEO best practices to web content. • Rabid enthusiasm for learning new skills and technologies. • Understanding of digital and print workﬂows and deadline requirements. • A strong understanding of communications law. • Bachelor’s degree. The ideal candidate will have experience in the best ways to present news on all platforms – a digital leader with unique ideas for our print products. This position requires an eﬀective leader with a history of attracting and retaining the best talent, while challenging existing staﬀ. It is important that the editor have an excellent record of producing strong community journalism. The position requires a journalism or related degree, 5+ years of experience in newsroom management, exceptional editing skills, and knowledge of newsroom budgeting. This is an excellent opportunity for an experienced journalism executive who seeks new challenges where skills and abilities will be utilized to their fullest. The Daily Hampshire Gazette is owned by Newspapers of New England, a family-owned Company with a commitment to serious community journalism. We oﬀer competitive pay, paid vacation and personal days and beneﬁts including optional health insurance, dental coverage and 401K retirement plan. We are an equal opportunity employer. Send resume and coverletter to firstname.lastname@example.org.
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: The Chicago Reporter, an independent award-winning investigative news outlet, seeks a visionary editor-in-chief with proven hands-on editing skills to lead our newsroom in producing impactful journalism on race and poverty. The Reporter is a one-of-a-kind nonproﬁt media organization with a 45-year legacy of combining data analysis and narrative storytelling to shed light on racial inequities in one of the most segregated cities in the nation. The editor-in-chief will shape and direct editorial strategy and coverage, manage investigative projects, and serve as the public face of the organization. We are looking for someone with at least 15 years of experience in digital and print journalism to continue our growth as an authority on issues of race and class and to advance partnerships with local and national news entities. For a full list of duties and desired qualiﬁcations, see: http://www.chicagoreporter.com/editor-in-chief We oﬀer a competitive salary and excellent beneﬁts. The Chicago Reporter is an independent program of the faith-based Community Renewal Society. Applicants should send a cover letter and resume to Jessica Hollie, HR Administrator at: email@example.com NEWS EDITOR: Prescott Newspapers, Inc., home of the award winning Daily Courier, Prescott Valley Tribune and Chino Valley Review is looking for a qualiﬁed news editor. This position works closely with the news content director, community, sports and photo editors in producing quality content that accurately and fairly depicts the lives of our quad-city area. Primary duties include oversight of the editorial process on a daily basis, timely production of the newspapers print and digital editions, special sections and magazines. Executing our social media strategies along with writing editorials and representing the newspaper at public venues. Coaching reporters to produce strong content-ﬁlled reports creating a culture of valuing innovation, solution-based journalism and great storytelling. Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in journalism, mass communications or other related ﬁelds along with two years of news management experience. Web and social media experience is a plus. Excellent beneﬁt package, 401k and PTO. EEOE, NSE. Send resume to: firstname.lastname@example.org PRESS OPERATORS: The Berksire Eagle, a locally owned newspaper group in Western Massachusetts is seeking experienced press operators. Our current equipment includes a 13-unit Goss Urbanite and 12-unit Goss Community. We require pre-employment drug screen. EOE. To apply, please visit www.berkshireeagle.com, email email@example.com or call 413-496-6140 for more information. PUBLISHER NEEDED: We are looking for a community minded leader with the ability to drive proﬁtable revenue. The Branson (MO) Tri-Lakes News is a twiceweekly paid community newspaper in the Live Entertainment Capital of the World, Branson, Missouri. This individual must be an innovator who is ready to take this multi-media operation to the next level, realizing the opportunity we have through print, digital, and a growing commercial print operation. The new publisher would report directly to the owners of the company, a family-owned community media group with 18 companies in seven states. This family has owned community newspapers since the 1960s, and is ﬁrmly focused on the future. Operations are in the states of Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Texas, Missouri, Iowa and Arkansas. World-famous Branson, Mo., built its reputation in the 1990s with its star-ﬁlled music shows, and continues that tradition today. The town has a population of only 10,000, but sees more than 8 million tourists annually. In addition to the newspaper, we also publish a variety of shoppers, a free weekly entertainment publication, a free monthly visitor publication, a monthly real estate publication, an assortment of special sections and a full array of digital options for our advertisers. We also have our own glossy sheet-fed printing operation which opens up many other possibilities for advertising solutions for our customers. The new publisher will earn a competitive salary with a very generous bonus tied directly to operating proﬁt. Other beneﬁts such as free family health insurance, vehicle allowance, vacation, life insurance, etc. are all in the employment package. The owners wish to ﬁll this important position quickly. Please apply online to John Lancaster, Vice President, Lancaster Management, Inc., at firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include your resume, references, salary requirements and your goals for the future.
To place a classiﬁed ad, call Jon at 800-887-1615 APRIL 2018 | E & P
3/16/18 3:34 PM
shoptalk /commentary One Decision Doomed a Vital Paper By James A. Haught
e at West Virginia’s largest newspaper, the Charleston Gazette-Mail, have learned how a single unlucky decision can destroy a dynamic paper. In 2003, the conservative Ogden chain offered $55 million to buy the afternoon Charleston Daily Mail, longtime partner of our Charleston Gazette in a joint operating agreement. Rather than let Ogden take over, Gazette owners—mostly the Chilton family—borrowed $31 million and dipped into reserves to match the Ogden bid. The step triggered a death spiral that finally put the combined Gazette-Mail in bankruptcy—and left Ogden, ironically, poised to acquire both Charleston papers for a mere $11 million. However, bidding on March 8 gave the combined Charleston paper to owners of the Huntington Herald-Dispatch. After the 2004 Daily Mail purchase, the U.S. Justice Department sued, claiming that the Gazette paid $55 million for the smaller afternoon paper in a plot to extinguish it and divert all local print advertising to the Gazette. Three years of expensive litigation ensued. Next, the relentless collapse of print advertising left the paper unable to meet payments on the heavy debt incurred in the Daily Mail acquisition. An additional $6 million was borrowed. Owners defaulted on staff pensions, letting the federal Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. assume them. In 2015, Gazette and Daily Mail newsrooms were combined to produce a single Charleston paper, the GazetteMail. Eventually, Monday print publication was halted. And the staff was downsized. Despite all cutbacks, loss of ad revenue wiped out the paper’s ability to meet debt payments. The red ink worsened when the former Daily Mail owner, MediaNews Group, won a court judgment for unpaid management fees and $1.5 million for sale of the Daily Mail’s website address to the
London Daily Mail. Buffeted from all sides, the Gazette-Mail filed for Chapter 11 reorganization on Jan. 30. This disaster wouldn’t have occurred if the Gazette hadn’t plunged deeply in debt in 2004 to match Ogden’s $55 million offer for the Daily Mail. Last year, the Gazette-Mail earned $1.5 million more than its basic operating costs— yet it couldn’t meet its backbreaking debt payments. This is a dismal demise for a heroic, century-old, Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper. On the day after the bankruptcy filing, I wrote a lookback column saying: A newspaper is a living thing—and it’s tragic for the Charleston Gazette-Mail to fall victim to ruthless economic troubles that are ravaging print journalism. I’ve been here 67 years, chiefly at the Gazette, while the paper waged endless struggles to keep government clean and improve life for West Virginians. During the corrupt Barron administration, the paper revealed that Barron insiders created a network of phony corporations— merely mailboxes—in several states. Federal prosecutors proved that the maildrops received bribes for state contracts. During the corrupt Moore administration, the Gazette revealed an array of shady dealings. Gov. Arch Moore went to prison, like Gov. W.W. Barron. After fiery W.E. “Ned” Chilton III became publisher, he hammered what he called “sustained outrage” to achieve reforms. Back in the 1960s, he championed racial integration to wipe out Jim Crow segregation. The Gazette fought constant battles. For example, when a 14-year-old boy took a pistol to school and killed a classmate, state law forbade anyone to reveal the juvenile killer’s name. Chilton defied the law and printed the name. The county prosecutor, a petty politico who had been exposed by the Ga-
zette, indicted Chilton and two staffers. But the newspaper fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court and won the right to name juvenile murderers. In the past, the old “commissioner of accounts” system let well-connected lawyers take cuts from estates of dead people. Chilton fought for years until the “ghoul system” was abolished. He decided that the Kanawha Valley needed a 911 emergency calling center for fast dispatch of police, firefighters and ambulances. He pounded the plan so often that reporters in the newsroom chanted “9-11.” He won, and today’s Kanawha County call center is named for him. The Gazette filed lawsuits that forced the State Bar to reveal ethics complaints against lawyers—and the state Board of Medicine to disclose malpractice complaints against doctors—and all public agencies to reveal lawsuit settlements caused by officeholder wrongdoing. Chilton sent reporters to dig into abuses by stock promoters, charity executives, evangelists, roofers, termite exterminators, house siding salesmen, insurers and car dealers. The latter temporarily canceled $100,000 worth of newspaper ads in retaliation. On and on it went. After Chilton died in 1987, the paper continued his hard-driving strategy—winning many national awards until Statehouse reporter Eric Eyre won a Pulitzer Prize last year for exposing outrageous flooding of West Virginia with deadly opioids by pharmaceutical firms. Ned’s wife Betty and their daughter Susan struggled intensely to keep the paper solvent as ad revenue disappeared—but in the end, it wasn’t possible. James A. Haught is editor emeritus of the Charleston Gazette-Mail. During his six decades working in newspapers, he has been a police reporter, religion columnist, feature writer, night city editor, investigative reporter, associate editor, and editor. He continues to work full-time at age 86.
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