An independent journal about the Gannett Co. and the news industry's digital transition
Let's hope the vibe the rest of the week improves. This place can't be that fucked up. Can it?
It's early morning on the East Coast: Tuesday, the day of the N.H. primary that may well determine the lead in the GOP presidential race.Excluding the opinion section, USA Today has exactly two links to campaign stories on its entire homepage -- and neither of them is above the digital fold.
Anyone know when 2011 Financial Reports come out?
Jim, how silly of you. We're not an elitist paper. When we talk about polls, we'd rather find out what brand of coffee you prefer.
A blogger takes the Cincinnati Enquirer to task for running a Columbus Dispatch story about natural gas fracking 200 miles away in Youngstown and ignoring government reports about a spike in gas drilling-produced bromide in the Ohio River.The blog states: "What is most disconcerting is that a good chunk of this "fracking" story actually is in the Enquirer's front yard, and it has failed to notice. Insiders say the Enquirer's staff has been stripped so clean by the newspaper's out-of-town corporate parent, Gannett Co. Inc., that it can barely fill its pages. The insiders report there is a growing dependence on news releases, and less legwork by staff reporters. Thus, short-shrift of complex or complicated issues. Or nothing at all. "Public Radio in Pennsylvania has been on top of the bromide story, and has published the reports from recent scientific conferences on its Website (PDF). The U.S. EPA has a major laboratory in Cincinnati adjacent to the University of Cincinnati campus. Much of that lab's work is about drinking water safety. This Ohio River story is easily in reach if only the local media would take notice. Maybe that's too much to ask in an era of downsized newsrooms and absentee owners who overwhelmingly focus on the bottom line rather than content and community service."http://tinyurl.com/7fr82kl
Tuesday- Florida Today is 12 pages full- for $1Piece of nothing. But I did need to wrap some fragiles up, so that was worth a $1 I guess!
2:07-surely you must be referring to your Gannett workplace.
1/10/2012 10:16 AM What do you expect? The Enquirer has been cut to the bone. The person who would normally do that story, Peggy O'Farrell, was laid off in June. They have no one left. I'm sure their new managing editor's husband, the storyteller, will get right on it when he arrives from Arizona.
I noticed posts asking about the current status of USAT production in McLean's HQ... Nobody seems to be giving any updates. I'm wondering myself If any staffers in USAT HQ Production (McLean) remain?
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Any information on the rumors of layoffs this month?
Four dayside and four nightside staffers remain in USAT prod. HQ dept.
"We" in the media rale against nepotism in government all the time, pointing out when some local yokal hires his or wife or cousin in some do-nothing public job.Yet, places like Cincy has an ME whose spouse will be working there as a writer? Really? Really?I see this at newspapers all the time and it drives me crazy.... These people are immune to any criticism, disipline or direction...they are "mini" versions of their spouse and drive the people in the workplace crazy with their "He's my husband" or "She's my wife" arrogance!...keep relatives out of your workplace, please!Someone else needs a job!
2:25, Are those remaining staffers reporting to their former supervisors or has the chain of command also changed?
Had a couple husband/wife newsroom scenarios in my former Gannett sweatshop. Created lots if dissension. In one, the writer/husband was mostly MIA and wrote very little. But no worry, his wife was a bigshot manager.
11:41...what did you think of Sunday's edition? Almost embarrassing to know we're going to ask readers to pay $3.00 for them come next month. And also, the lead story on top of the front page was about Tebow...from the USA Today...not local.Just the fact people are still paying a dollar for paper airplane stock should tell the know it alls people still want a newspaper. Why is the industry, let alone our own company, turning their back on those who made them what they are....or used to be?
Who else is on Gannett's retiree health plan at full retail price? Plan was switched at the first of the year without notice, id cards have not gone out to many people and the new insurer has no record of many who are supposed to be covered. Which means, despite Gannett's claims to the contrary, we have been without coverage since the first of the year. They are claiming no refunds are required or justified. I think otherwise. Class-action, anyone?
Nepotism is a serious issue. In order to help "curb" the potential for family-to-family scenarios... The power to "hire" should be taken away from middle management. The hiring, for all positions, should be done through a corporate personnel dept. The job description and requirements list should be submitted (electronically) to a centralized corporate personell dept. The centralized personnel department would then work with multiple agencies to screen (run background checks) and find appropriate canidates. This type of solution is greatly needed. I have seen too many people abuse their power to hire, and this type of abuse can significantly weaken the company.
New positions announced in Usat Travel today.
@4:05, not a bad suggestion, but then you wind up with a bunch of people that fit "corporate" or whatever. I always liked to get to know the person as well, not just their abilities, and would they be a good fit to the team, etc. A "group" such as you suggest wouldn't work. There just needs to be a nepotism policy. I came from another media company who had a strong anti-nepotism policy and it was enforced; however, at the Gannett property I worked at we were honestly encouraged to hire family, etc. That seems to be something that comes with the younger generation, and it's totally accepted and expected. Weird.
4:16 What are those new USAT travel jobs? Are those for Rudd Davis' group?I searched Gannett's careers page for USA Today travel jobs, but nothing popped up. Have they been posted somewhere else?
Three VPs and a SVP announced by Mr. Ruddman. One of the VPs already had a VP title.It is so great that Mr. Ruddman is in charge of this newspaper. It assures that USAT will go down sooner rather than later. He loathes the print product and makes no secret of it. He refers to it as an environmental problem.What great leadership Mr. Hunke had given USAT.Ms. Martore, are you paying attention?
2:42 p.m. -- Don't expect objections from the top about newsroom nepotism. Kate Marymont's husband worked in her newsrooms until she got high enough on the corporate ladder that he could afford to "retire."
It seems as though no one wants to write about the impending financials which are do later this month or the possible layoffs that usually accompany bad reports.Is this another case of let's ignore it and keep our heads in the sand approach?
@4:40 is correct.VP of product sales for USAT Travel Media Group.VP of advertising sales for group.VP of business development for group.DME for content in the group gets to keep her job.SVP/GM for group.The Rudder Man says, "The team is proactively going to market with a new product portfolio that meets the needs of our three core constituencies: consumers, partners and advertisers.''This should solve things.
This blog is so inane sometimes.
@4:45 were these all internal promotions or were outside people brought in for these Travel Media jobs?
At banks everyone seems to be a vice president. Is it just title inflation?
Promotions, it appears from his letter, @4:48.
4:40 and 4:45 No! So, is that a net two new VP jobs and a new SVP job? In other words, in total, how many new positions are being created here?Have all four of these jobs been filed?4:45 writes: "DME for content in the group gets to keep her job." Does that deputy managing editor continue to report up through editorial to Susan Weiss? Or is the DME now reporting to the SVP/GM and Davis?Is any of this disclosed in an e-mail sent to staff?Which reminds me. My e-mail address, just in case anyone ever wants to forward/send me an e-mail (ahem) is jimhopkins[at]gmail[dot-com]
This is from the relevant Nov. 30 news release:Rudd Davis has been named to the newly created position of president of USA TODAY Travel Media Group. Davis will direct the overall strategy and implementation of business tactics with USA TODAY’s travel partners, offering the on-the-go audience a broader array of information, products and services as USA TODAY diversifies its business focus. He will be based in Los Angeles. The announcement was made today by USA TODAY executive vice president and general manager Susie Ellwood.“USA TODAY has a long, rich history of serving customers in the travel industry and as we expand into new platforms to give travelers a better customer experience, we’re announcing the formation of the USA TODAY Travel Media Group. In the last year, Rudd has been focused on developing concepts to transform the way we engage with the traveling and away-from-home audience. He is a highly creative entrepreneur and we know he will lead this division
Yes, regarding Ms. Ellwood's announcement that you reference, Davis came up with a proposal to the hotels for a digital/iPad USA Today product that also provided hotel services including check in and room service orders. Why Marriott or Hilton or Motel 6 would want USA Today and Gannett to serve as their middleman for such services was a question Davis was unable to answer. Looks like the hotels all passed.
+++Looks like the hotels all passed. +++Again, this information is plain wrong. So much of the blog, whatever it's good intentions and clearinghouse aspects, is full of similar wrong-headed or disinformation.The hotel project is very much alive. Everyone should just stay tuned.
4:41, I'm going to stick up for Kate Marymont's husband, Mark. I worked with him at the Arkansas Gazette, where he was the music critic -- and an excellent one. He could have worked at any paper I worked at. I worked at 7 newspapers in my career, and every single one had multiple married couples. It stands to reason that people in a demanding, somewhat oddball career will find a kinship with others in that line of work. And if you're a newspaper person, there's most often only one newspaper in a city -- so is one spouse supposed to give up their career every time the other spouse gets a job offer? It's not like two married lawyers, where if one gets a job in a new city the other has dozens of firms where they could possibly land a spot.
5:42 is correct about incorrect/incomplete/speculative information sometimes appearing on this blog.But that happens when Corporate and Gannett's operating units operate in the shadows, creating an information vacuum.This site wouldn't exist if GCI's internal and external communications weren't so bad.
GCI closed at $14.33 today!!!!!
@5:42pm, We've been waiting quite a while already.
Speculation rampant at Florida Today about possible cuts based upon 2nd half 2011 revenue. When Q4 turns out to be 1/3 of Q3, layoffs will be inevitable.
And it sure doesn't bode well when your publisher jumps ship.
Jim,Why do you allow someone to say "Fucked Up" and the comment is not removed but when I say "Crotchfelt Bitches" the comment is removed?
7:22 - The publisher is a smart man. Everyone ought to follow suit.
7:16 - I believe Q4 from what I've heard was better than expected.
8:18 I remove comments that make fun of or otherwise degrade someone's name. I'm leaving your comment up just this one time, so people can see what I'm talking about.Plus: Your repeated use of that phrase has zero useful content -- particularly when its posted over and over and over.
Who are the four staffers that are left in USAT HQ Production? (initials only, please)
Jim, your comment at 6:02 is exactly the kind of mindless defense we've come to know and ridicule from you in the last couple of years.8:18, seriously? But, of course, Jim bought into it and responded. No surprise there.
11:45. Jim at 6:02 is absolutely correct, and you're, no doubt, part of management that's absolutely clueless about how much you're loathed and ridiculed.
1:23, you must be one of the "Two wrongs make a right!!!!" crowd that offers lame justification for all the bogus rumors and incorrect statements that appear here.Wise up, please. And get some new material. The corporate accusations are 2008-ish.
Jim says: "Proceed with caution; this is a free-for-all comment zone. I try to correct or clarify incorrect information. But I can't catch everything. Please keep your posts focused on Gannett and media-related subjects. Note that I occasionally review comments in advance, to reject inappropriate ones. And I ignore hostile posters, and recommend you do, too."
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