October 24, 2009

Michigan city to vote on moving legal notices out of newspapers

Michigan city officials decided not to wait for more newspapers to switch publishing schemes before seeking an alternative to posting legal newspapers in print products.

Voters in Trenton, Michigan, will vote Nov. 3 on a proposal to allow legal notices of meetings, zoning changes and other matters to go on the city web site or the city-operated cable channel instead of a newspaper.

The News-Herald talked to a representative of the Michigan Press Association and city officials in a pre-election article.

I suspect we'll see more elections like this. What I worry about is how well and often city websites will be updated.

October 23, 2009

Goodbye to All That [*updated, unfortunately]

I meant to share this earlier, but by waiting we get an updated version from a writer in Oregon who is grateful there's a non-journalist/person interested in making a living without words we get more. Read Goodbye to All That [*updated, unfortunately]: "

"And yet, I am wistful. I love being a journalist, a long-form journalist who goes off, sometimes for weeks, months, looking for and bringing back the stories."

More then enough links, explaining and good writing to make a click worthwhile.

Oregon reddit is different, better starting today | Idaho's Portugal - – OregonLive.com

Reddit changed and OregonLive has adapted its presentation and use of a tool that can highlight interesting links in/about Oregon. See Oregon reddit is different, better starting today It's in Idaho's Portugal over on OregonLive.com

(and hey, isn't Idaho's Portual, the title of a blog based in Oregon a wonderful description. There's even a link to why.)

New York Observer explains "The Si Way'

The New York Observer takes a long look at what changed in the Newhouse company to make magazines gold in the The Si Way |

It's a decent big picture overview in light of the layoffs, closures and buyouts in Advance Publications, Advance Internet, Conde Nast and other entites under the Newhouse umbrella.

October 22, 2009

Update on Ann Arbor citizen journalism forum, workshop

A commitment made months ago kept me away from the Citizen Journalism workshop in Ann Arbor but I found some coverage. First, Arbor Update had a post before the event and comments tell you about a low turnout.

Shawn Smith, who taught (led?) a session,  shared a self-promo toolkit via a Tweet. 
Read, Listen, Watch.
Penolope Trunk’s Brazen Careerist
Gary Vaynerchuk’s Keynotes
Freelance Switch (+Podcast)
Seth Godin
 Two Tweets from @TonyDearing:
At Poynter forum on community news needs. Welcome to the world of traditional, social, partisan and passive news consumers.

Among the ways the Fifth Estate differs: it sees opinion as more important and values crowd wisdom.

AnnArbor.com put up a video showcasing Kelly McBride of Poynter Institute talking (see below)..

Lost in clutter? Or a Renaissance woman?

Am I filling my days with the crack of good writing scrapped from the Internet so that I don't have to face my own to-do lists or figure out the passion I should pursue aggressively in blogging? Did reading the wisdom of others replace racing through romantic novels or living in Cheers/ER/MASH?  Is all of this just a mask hiding what it is that I'm going to do tomorrow?

Or is my collection of linking, reflecting, sharing something more valuable that I tarnish by refusing to focus or promote or ... Goodness, why haven't I bumped the link blog out of the blog space on any of my many domains since I know the value of an online reputation and an easy URL. Whose permission am I waiting for to move to the next level?

Yes, I'm still thinking about Louis Gray's Why And Where We Share: Distributing Quality With Impact, Intent

Perhaps it is the timeliness of his post while I'm still saturated with the new ways Girl Scouts: Leading with purpose. The Girl Scout saturation comes from reading through the two newest national documents, Volunteer Essentials and Troop Module, and my local council's adaptations, while working to create a two-hour introduction to Girl Scouts in southeastern Michigan. New lingo - check-in, group agreements, purposeful leadership, etc. - becomes engraved after leading the class five times in three weeks.

It comes from being waist-deep in studying research to help the local council's board of directors decide what to do with its properties to further its purpose of developing courageous girls capable of leading with confidence today and tomorrow. What can we learn from the Ten Emerging Truths or the research that led to creating six pathways through Girl Scouts or other studies that will help others decide how to use buildings and grounds wisely, efficiently and respectfully.

The hue is deepened as I try to finish pulling together first-five-meeting outlines for new Daisy, Brownie and Junior leaders by seeing what other councils and woman have pulled together, reviewing Volunteer Essentials and Troop Module, and reading again two sets of Journeys for each level. (Journeys are books/programs designed to deliver the richness of Girl Scouts in a fun, consistent way.)

I come back time and time again to the desired outcome of Girls Scouts: leadership.  That's why we camped, sold cookies, made crafts, learned first aid and mastered other subjects years ago. We learned what was comfortable and uncomfortable, growing until we could share what we knew without thinking.

Check out how many female elected officials or CEOs once were Girl Scouts, pulling in the values and skills of good leaders unknowingly. Then check how many sent their daughters into gymnastics, soccer and volleyball or after-school choir, cheerleading and confidence-building programs led by newer organizations.

All of that is a reminder that if you don't know where you are going, nowhere is where you go. Or perhaps, the reminder is to stop putting the lit candle under a bushel basket.

In my comment over on Gray's post on sharing, I thanked him for another explanation that is a thought-provoker. Days later, I see my comment as a plea to understand the randomness of what I share:
"Even though you do share more then the "average" person, I think you could occasionally share some of your non-tech finds. A post that had exceptionally "good writing, reporting and quality" in your baseball, humor, politics or food entries might expand our horizons. If we are intrigued enough we can subscribe ourselves."
Followed later by:
And in that vein of honesty you inspire, I end up feeling so worried about my feed when I go off on a tangent - Girl Scouts, perhaps - I start new Twitter and Google Reader personalities.
 Maybe it is time for a new blog.

October 21, 2009

You can die any day in mid-Michigan as TV offers obituary services

Obituary from Michigan's WNEM television station

 OK, I know death is serious but if I got a quarter every time a Flint-area person joked about not dying on a Sunday, Monday, or Tuesday I could stop worrying about the health of my pension fund.

Wish I had remembered this when a bunch of people with Flint-area ties got together recently. Fortunately, a comment over on the Free From Editors blog reminded me that Michigan television stations are taking advantage of local newspapers' decisions to limit the frequency of publication by offering daily obituaries. The success of the venture may mean televised obits are coming to your town.

The Free From Editors comment  directed readers to an Advertising Age article: Local TV Garners Revenue From Obituaries From WNEM:
For $100, the station will run the deceased's name and photo on-air and publish a full-length obituary on ObitMichigan.com. Full-screen graphics listing names of people who have passed away are broadcast during the local station's morning and noon shows Monday through Friday, as well as on weekend morning shows. Viewers are pushed to the website for more information about the deceased as well as funeral-services information.
The article was about the CBS affiliate in Michiga, but the local ABC station also offers obituaries online and onair. Here's a sample online listing:

ABC12's obituary listing
 Three of the local newspapers, which publish Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays offer obituaries by phone on the other days. For instance, if you call  (810) 835-4444.you hear the name, age, city and funeral home for the most recent deaths in the Flint Journal area. That service was launched in June.  Executive editor John Hiner talked about the service. in a radio interview

Eight publications affliated with mlive.com deliver a daily email of death notices to those who sign up. and publish the obituaries online.

So, see, it doesn't matter what day you die. The notice can be published in multiple ways.

More awards: SNPA says yes to two Birmingham News photos

A photographer at The Birmingham News in Alabama won two photography awards from the Southern Newspapers Publishers  Association. Click on the thumbnails and you'll see why.

Bernard Troncale, a staff photographer for the Birmingham News,which  is part of the Advance Publications group, won second place in sports and honorable mention in the spot news category.  The new web features on al.com make it easy to see many of Troncale's photos. He also has his own web site

Bernard Troncale's second-place photo shows Fred Funk reacting to a missed putt in the first round of the Regions Charity Classic in Birmingham. Judges said:
“The strong horizontal lines of the golfer’s unusual gesture lead the viewer’s eye through the composition of this image, while the hint of a grimacing expression adds an element of emotion. It¹s the golfer’s body language that makes this image rise above sometimes passive golf photos, while the photographer added a feeling of anticipation to the image by placing the teetering ball near the edge of the frame.   The clean background and horizontal crop of this photograph also helps in leading the eye to the golfer’s partially shadowed face.”
The spot news photo    is part of package on Slain soldier Army Spc. Charles D. Dusty Parrish coming home.
Judges said: “This image is both sad and endearing. The pain of the soldier’s death is obvious in the emotional gestures of the adults, but the young son’s attempting to be stoic while he salutes is perhaps more powerful. While the photographer was covering a scene that is somewhat commonplace in recent years, the emotional layers of this image tell not just of a soldier’s death, but also of the legacy left behind.
Mac Thrower, editorial writer with the Mobile Press-Register was awarded first prize for eidtorials on a grocery tax in SNPA's 2009 Carmage Walls Commentary Prize competition at the SNPA News Industry Summit in Naples, Fla.

Judges said:
"Thrower's analysis of the need for reform of Alabama's antiquated tax system was exhaustive and convincing.  His excellent writing made compelling a subject that in less skilled hands could have been dry and lifeless.  The Press-Register, through its editorial page, provided excellent leadership on an issue that is critical to all who live in Alabama."

Read the entry  to see why the series of editorials seeks reform. For instance:
Poor families in Alabama are a little better off than they were two years ago, when the Legislature and Gov. Bob Riley agreed on raising the income tax threshold for a family of four from an obscenely low $4,600 a year to the slightly less repugnant level of $12,600. But, according to a new study, Alabama still levies the nation's highest income taxes on poor families.
I like that the contest links to the originals and/or entries.

I wrote earlier about some printing awards for four newspapers in the private Advance Publications group. I've written about the Birminham News and the Press Register.

October 20, 2009

Lineup changes at ONA workshop in Ann Arbor

Jim Brady, a consultant for the Guardian and former executive editor of the Washington Post, will lead a session Going Mobile at the Online News Association's parachute training in Ann Arbor.

Cory Haik, assistant manager editor of  seattletimes.com  is off the schedule.

The schedule and details about the speakers are in this post.

Launch time: California site ready for an audience

Collaboration is key in California where  Oakland Local, a news and community site for Oakland focusing on social justice issues, launched Monday. This is the grant-funded hyperlocal site headed up by Susan Mernit
that I said I'd be watching. I especially like that it launched just as a "Report on the Reconstruction of Journalism" began circulating.

The report's authors published some findings in the Washington Post, including recommendations such as:
  • Permit local news organizations to operate as nonprofit or low-profit entities able to receive tax-deductible donation. (Actually, a Harvard University study - Can NonProfits Save Journalism - also just released says this already is possible.)
  • Encourage philanthropists and foundations to increased support for local news reporting
  •  Require public radio and television stations to provide local news reporting.
  • Encourage universities and colleges to "become institutional sources of local, state and accountability news reporting, following the lead of pioneering journalism schools whose faculty and student journalists staff community news and investigative reporting Web sites"
  • Make the Federal Communications Commission use some of its fees to create a national fund for local, innovative news reporting.  
  • Increase access to and usefulness of public information collected by federal, state and local government  
You can download the report, although I suspect it will become a hot topic on many blogs if you just want to wait.

Meanwhile, head through the Internet to check out the OaklandLocal site.

From the about page:
"Centered on topics including environmental justice, food distribution, transportation, development & housing, arts & education, and gender & identity, Oakland Local aggregates information and news from local non-profits and community organizations working on these topics within a range of Oakland neighborhoods.
"We seek to create a unique local forum for sharing information, building community, speaking truth to power and working together for positive social change. We are committed to diverse voices, reader engagement, deep issue coverage and local commentary."
The Twitter tag of "talking to the people" doesn't seem to reflect the spirit of a site that described itself as "launching in partnership with 35 local nonprofit, neighborhood and community organizations."

Perhaps I'm oversensitive to the wording as the site' mood is one of the people instead of talking to anyone. There are forums, a directory of 320 local nonprofits and a blog directory. You'll also find a link to Get Satisfaction, plus plenty of email addresses to share feedback.

Also contributing are Spot.us, Newsdesk.org, The Center for Investigative Reporting, New America Media, Endless Canvas, Youth Rising, Youth Radio and Youth Outlook.

The site offers plenty to like - clear navigation, writer bios/links, a Daily Brief that is a roundup of articles from other news sources..

The site's seed money comes from a New Voices grant from J-Lab, funded by The Knight Foundation.

'Encore fellows' to look for next opportunity via CJR

How did I miss this "encore opportunity?" Most fellowships for journalists are offered for those midcareer. But Columbia Journalism Review just appointed four 'down-sized  journalists not ready for retirement yet "Encore Fellows."

The journalists, ages 47 to 59 and with as much as 30 years experience, will write for the magazine and spend time figuring out what's next. over the next nine months.
“CJR is thrilled to be able to play a critical role not only in assisting these distinguished journalists, but our hope is that they will inspire downsized journalists across the county, who will benefit from the examples set by this inaugural class of fellows in developing their encore careers,” said Victor Navasky, chairman of the Columbia Journalism Review.
Some estimate 16,000 journalists lost their jobs in 2008.

'Adman' tells tale of newpaper's death

Most blogs and articles about the end of newspapers are by those who once filled or are filling the newsroom. But in Arkansas, the "Gazette Adman" wants to tell the battle of how the Arkansas Gazette lost the battle. Start with The Arkansas Newspaper War: 1. Seeds of defeat. and go on to see how many times you nod your head.
"Ever tried to get into your vehicle, see lots of clients and work up ad programs while chained to your desk? Neat trick. Try it sometime."
It's timely as The Morning News and Arkansas seek approval of a merger from the U.S. Department of Justice. Catch up with that story (and more history) courtesy of the Fayetteville Flyer. Besides telling us that the blog’s author appears to have worked in classified, retail and management  from 1970 to the closing of the doors in 1991, the Flyer leads us to links of other employees' memories.

October 19, 2009

'Parade' appoints new publisher

Editor & Publisher reported today that Brett Wilson is now publisher of Parade magazine. He'll focus on advertising sales and marketing efforts.

Parade also created a new position - vice president of integrated sales - this month and appointed Kristen Fairback.

Parade is part of the Advance group.

The releases:

New York, October 19, 2009 -- Brett Wilson has been named publisher of PARADE, the largest circulation magazine in the U.S., it was announced today by Parade Publications CEO Jack Haire. Wilson will be responsible for all advertising sales and marketing efforts.

Wilson comes to PARADE from USA TODAY, where he was senior vice president of advertising sales. Prior to that, he spent more than 20 years at Time, Inc., where he was most recently publisher of Money magazine. He held various other positions, including associate publisher and advertising director for TIME, advertising director for Sports Illustrated, and advertising manager for Southern Living magazine. He started his career as regional marketing manager for Southern Living in 1987.

"Brett's leadership skills and proven experience in both the newspaper and magazine industries make him uniquely qualified to assume the responsibilities of publisher of PARADE," says Haire. "We believe he will help grow our business across key categories, in print and digitally. He is a really great person, and we are delighted to have him on our team." Wilson will report to PARADE President Randy Siegel.

Brett and his wife, Patricia, live in Connecticut with their two children, Taylor, 16, and Sara, 14. Please join us in welcoming him to PARADE.


October 7, 2009 -- Kristen Fairback has joined Parade in the newly created position of Vice President, Integrated Sales, it was announced today by Randy Siegel, Parade's President & Publisher.
Fairback will play a leading role in integrating the company's print and digital sales efforts.

"As our digital presence continues to grow, it's more important than ever to provide our customers with a wide array of integrated sales solutions," says Siegel. "Kristen has proven experience in the field, and we're delighted to have her on board."

Kristen comes to PARADE from Entertainment Weekly and EW.com where most recently she was Associate Publisher. Prior to that, she was the Eastern Advertising Director for LIFE magazine.

Four Advance Publications newspapers get printing awards

The Southern Newspapers Publishers Association honored four Newhouse newspapers for their printing quality.

The Grand Rapids Press and The Oregonian earned first place awards in their categories.

The Michigan Muskegon Chronicle and the Alabama Birmingham News earned second place awards.

The SNPA site says the "Judges evaluated entries only for those quality attributes that can be objectively measured: black ink density and uniformity, color ink density and uniformity, color register, page alignment, litho defects and other defects."

One more Advance tie - Randy O'Neill of the Times-Picayune in New Orleans was one of the judges.

Online News Association offers 'Parachute Training' in Ann Arbor (updated)

Two Three former Advance Internet employees are among the instructors who will lead sessions on video and blogging skills at ONA Parachute Training this week in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The training for independent, community, non-profit and displaced journalists and bloggers is Thursday, Oct. 22, at the Campus Inn and sponsored by the Online News Association. It is part of the organization's Parachute Training Initiative, supported by a $50,000 seed grant from the Gannett Foundation. I wrote about this when the group sought feedback on skills needed.

There are two tracks - beginner and intermediate - covering multimedia, blogging, mobile, legal and business issues, marketing through social networks and finding your niche on the Web. There also will be two half-day video sessions, limited to 25 participants on a first-come, first-served basis (on-site), and a session on legal issues.

It's a great price - $10 to cover food.

See my other post about a Community Conversation taking place on Wednesday.  Here's more about the Thursday lineup, which I'm picking up from the ONA site: (OK, I added the links and some details about folks since I wanted to know who they were. I especially wanted to see the blogs of people teaching blogging.).

8 a.m.: Registration

Video Session 1: 9 a.m.-Noon (limited to 25 participants)

The Fundamentals of Shooting, Editing and Posting Video: We’ll discuss why and when video is needed as a storytelling tool. This is a hands-on tutorial with an experienced videographer, intended for beginners who should bring their own cameras. Professional-quality equipment is not necessary. (An inexpensive Flip video camcorder, for example, will work just fine.)
Trainers: Tiffany Campbell, Producer for Enterprise, and Cory Haik, Assistant Managing Editor, seattletimes.com
Tiffany led a video workshop at the recent ONA convention, where the program description included this: Lately, she's been developing Web video and a growing multimedia team, while heading up special projects, interactives and enterprise development for seattletimes.com.

Campbell began her journalism career at CNN. She held several positions during her years there, including video journalist and broadcast writer. She switched to Web journalism in late 2004 when she relocated back to the Pacific Northwest to work for the Seattle Times.

In addition to her journalism career, Campbell teaches at the university level and at regional and national journalism conferences.She lives with her husband, Curt Woodward of the Associated Press, in Tacoma, Wash.
Cory (who was eliminated from the schedule sometime Monday at the registration site) was part of a "Four Cool New Web Tools for Journalists" session at ONA. The bio description included:
"she is an online journalist who has spent her last decade managing the disruption of Web media — which she likes. From running operations and development to reporting, editing and
production, Haik has her hands in most things that make online journalism work. She sits on the Board of Directors for the Online News Association and is currently the Assistant Managing Editor at seattletimes.com
 She spent many years following the storms of the Gulf Coast at NOLA.com, site of the Times-Picayune in New Orleans, where she was the Managing Editor. She shared in two Pulitzer Prizes for covering Hurricane Katrina. Haik holds a master's degree in communication theory from the University of New Orleans."

Session 1: 9-10:25 a.m.
Track 1
Finding Your Niche: How individual journalists can take advantage of the unique attributes of the Web to identify and deliver the news and information that folks need and want. We’ll first take a look at how you define your niche in a crowded media landscape. Then we’ll discuss immediacy, aggregation, interactivity, multimedia, database utility and social networking.
Trainers: Ken Sands, ONA Board member and self-employed digital media strategist, and Kelly McBride, Poynter Faculty and ethics group leader

Ken has worked for Congressional Quarterly and spokesman.com and currently is self employed, according to a bio posted on Poynter. He is a contributor to Poynter's E-Media Tidbits, with his latest article a look at how news organzations are using social media and improving site design.   He's also written about how tools to ease sharing of online finds can affect the user's experience.

I found a story that tells how a fake headline that made it into the newspaper led to Kelly's post as ethics group leader at Poynter. She was a reporter at the Spokesman-Review and blogged for awhile as The Imperfect Parent. Today, the blogging focus is Everyday Ethics. and other pieces for Poynter.

Track 2
Reporting with the Web: How reporters can use social media/aggregators/RSS/Web tools to be better reporters and how editors can use them to distribute their content. You’ll learn the skill of reporting with the Web, using sourcing and crowding-sourcing and engaging with users who are working alongside you. Learn how to uncover stories that only exist because of the Web, and gain more depth and context from the Web for your traditional content.

Trainers: T.J. Ortenzi, Associate News Editor, The Huffington Post; and Cory Haik, Assistant Managing Editor, seattletimes.com (Both are former Advance Internet employees, including a stint in New Orleans at NOLA.com. Haik was as managing editor during Katrina, Ortenzi a web producer.)

Ortenzi did a session called "Enterprising with Twitter" at the ONA convention. The bio for that included:

"Ortenzi , associate news editor editor, is responsible for the homepage of The Huffington Post. Before joining the staff in August of 2009, Ortenzi was an Associate News Producer at seattletimes.com and a homepage producer at NOLA.com, the Web site of The Times- Picayune in New Orleans.

At seattletimes.com, Ortenzi scanned the wires, wrote headlines and summaries, and ultimately acted as a journalistic liaison between the newsroom and readers. He also managed The Seattle Times' Twitter account.
Ortenzi honed his news judgment in the wake of Hurricane Katrina as a homepage producer for NOLA.com. He is a graduate of Loyola University in New Orleans, where he received a BA in Communications and French. Ortenzi lives in New York City with his fiancee and is a proud native of Hershey, Pa."

Session 2: 10:35 a.m.-Noon
Track 1
Blogging Effectively: We’ll narrow our focus in this second session, discussing blog software, frequency of posting, interacting with readers, a corrections policy, how blog writing is different and turning your life over to the blog.
Trainer: Ken Sands, ONA Board member, and Kelly McBride, Poynter Faculty

Track 2 Jim Brady, U.S. Consulting Editor, The Guardian
Going Mobile: Up to 70 percent of all mobile Web browsing is done on an iPhone. What does that mean for news providers? When will folks monetize mobile? What phone should a journalist have? When is it a good idea to develop an app on the side? Should you blog/take video or live-stream from your phone? What is the percentage of mobile readers vs. computer-based readers?
Trainer: Cory Haik, Assistant Managing Editor, seattletimes.com Jim Brady, U.S. consulting editor for the Guardian was substituted sometime Monday on the registration site.  Columbia Journalism Review interviewed the former Washington Post executive editor on why he left the Post and now is consuling for the Guardian as well as branding, web innovation and building audiences in September.

 Noon-1:30 p.m. Lunch and networking:

Video Session 2: 1:30-4:30 p.m. (limited to 25 participants)
 Production Values: From the 30 seconds of the burning house to a produced tier three that gives you context, b-roll and true narrative, this class will arm every journalist with good Web video production values. We’ll also talk about the technical side — editing programs, camera choices and production/hosting solutions.Trainer: Tiffany Campbell, Producer for Enterprise, seattletimes.com

Session 3: 1:30-2:55 p.m.

Tracks 1 and 2
Legal Issues: Jon Hart, a founding member and ONA counsel, will focus on basic issues involving aggregation, plagiarism, libel, comments and group insurance for bloggers. When can you be liable for content that your readers post? Are you better off policing user postings or remaining hands-off? Can other sites really post your headlines without your permission? What can you “borrow” from other sites? Why do Web sites display privacy policies and visitor agreements? Where can you find affordable libel insurance?
Trainer: Jon Hart, Dow Lohnes PLLC in Washington, D.C. (via Skype)
Hart was part of the legal panel at the 2009 ONA convention. His bio for that included he practices in the Media and Information Technologies group. He specializes in the representation of media and technology companies on a broad range of commercial, transactional, operational and content matters. Hart is the author of "Internet Law: A Field Guide" (BNA Books, 6th Edition, 2008). He's been on the faculty of the Stanford Professional Publishing Courses since 1994, and serves as general counsel to the Online News Association. He clerked for U.S. Circuit Judge Jerome Farris and U.S. District Judge Almeric Christian. Hart is a graduate of Middlebury College and Stanford Law School.
Session 4: 3:05-4:30 p.m.
Track 1

Self Promotion: How do you market yourself through social networking and find pay for your work? How do you connect with an audience on Twitter and Facebook and grow traffic to your blog? This session will focus on developing recognition for your blog by branding, or developing a distinctive voice, as well as managing your online reputation/personal brand.
Trainer: Shawn Smith, Optimal Webworks and New Media Bytes blogger. 
The Michigan State University graduate also was an Advance Internet employee, working his way up to senior producer mlive.com He describes himself on LinkedIn as an Internet marketer with journalism roots.  He also participated in ReThink News at Michigan State University, where he suggested news organizations need to look at a variety of content and test at niche products.
Track 2
How to Turn Your Blog Into a Business: At a time when staff and dollars are stretched and venture capital is scarce, a good business plan is essential to getting the resources you need or attracting the investors you want. This session poses the questions you must answer and how you should organize a business plan that will clearly lay out the elements of your project, along with strategies for growth and success, including change management.
Trainer: Neil Chase, Federated Media

Neil is vice president of author services for Federated Media, which is described on LinkedIn as providing "online marketing services for creators, audiences, and marketers. The company operates a network of author-driven Websites, including Digg, Boing Boing, and Dooce. Its federations include sports, technology, automotive, business & marketing, media & entertainment, momentum, travel and leisure, and parenting."

Neil also has worked for The Arizona Republic, San Francisco Examiner, and the New York Times. He's familiar with Ann Arbor, having spent four years at the University of Michigan and worked for the student newspaper the Michigan Daily. He launched the new media program at Northwestern University, according to a Knight Digital Media Center biography.

Poynter to host Community Conversation in Ann Arbor

What does Ann Arbor, Michigan, think it wants in media? Poynter Institute is hosting a Community Conversation the night before ONA Parachute Training

The Online News Association describes this part of the event as a bonus, "an evening of conversation to unearth the news and information needs of the local community" on Oct. 21,

The Poynter Institute's conversation is set for 7 to 9 p.m. and described as:
"What Now?: What’s working in other communities not served by a newspaper? What are the immediate and long-term remedies in Ann Arbor? Where can other organizations step in and serve the community?"

There's a reception at 6 p.m, which follows a workshop for citizen journalism.

Update: I was told Monday morning there is no charge and an update with more details coming.

All events will be held at the Campus Inn in Ann Arbor.

October 18, 2009

Faith watching: Newsrom to pulpit plus under the eyes

It's Sunday so let's use some of this day once reserved strictly for God to reflect on journalists who preach - in churches, in newspapers and online.

The Associated Press wrote about Steve Scott, who used a buyout from the St. Paul Pioneer Press to move from religion reporter to his own pulpit in Wisconsin. I reacted much like Amanda Greene, who blogs as the Divine Diva for the Wilmington Star News: This is not a man bites dog story. Just as some reporters who once covered politics become politicians and former education beat reporters move to the front of the classroom, some with enough interest in religion go to the seminary.

The writer of Religion reporter to pastor — not an uncommon path says she knows at least five religion reporters who have either gotten into newspapers after the ministry or entered the ministry after newspapers. She did not name them.

Let's see, in Michigan I think the latest to exchange the paper for the pulpit is Mike Wendland. The former Detroit Free Press technology columnist started a weekly broadcast "Get Real: A Christian Take on Current Events," a combination of a talk show, live band and Bible study. PCMike now is the communications pastor for Woodside Bible Church in Troy. Most of his career was in the media but since "becoming a Christian in 1989" he has become more active in the church. He joined the Woodside Bible Church staff in 2004.

Michigan also had an editor who left to preach: D. Gunnar Carlson, who retired from the Muskegon Chronicle in January 2006 (he also was editor of the Saginaw News) He became pastor of Grass Lake United Methodist Church on 7/1/07. He joined the Chronicle in 1972,and expected to retire from there. But he left at age 58 to pursue a new career.
“God often has something quite different in store for us than we expect, and that’s what’s happened here” Carlson told Clayton Hardiman for a Dec. 20, 2005 article in the newspaper where he had been a reporter, features editor, metro editor as well as editor.
Not quite the pulpit but close is what David Crumm, another former Detroit Free Press staff person, is doing. There's  David Crumm Media LLC, a multi-media publishing company focusing on religion and spirituality that is headed by partners Crumm and John Hile. I especially like  www.ReadTheSpirit.com that Crumm describes as an online home for readers who believe that diverse spiritual connections between people of faith build stronger communities. The online magazine includes inspirational stories, fresh voices, reviews of books and films—and much more.
Robert Herguth, who worked for the Chicago Sun Times , Daily Herald and briefly at the Business Journal in Milwaukee before a buyout, pulled together ChicagoCatholicNews.com Get some of the background on why and how in this post.  (Herguth also is behind Chicago Wildlife News  and a site about organized labor, Chicago Union News.)

While out looking for these names, I ran across a few other blog posts about journalists and religion. I started with another take on Steve Scott on GetReligion.org

But it was Journalism, Jesus and (Tim) Tebow that kept my attention. I didn't know about this Florida Gator who was using that empty space under his eyes to promote a religious theme. Nor did I know how that upsets some sports columnists and that Tebow's words and actions prompt journalism issues. Terry Mattingly looks at:
"increased mainstream media coverage of (a) the content of Florida Gator superstar Tim Tebow’s faith, (b) the impact of that faith on how people (including reporters) perceive him and (c) the impact of that perception on, oh, his chances to receive another Heisman Trophy?"
GetReligon.org, by the way, is designed to critique mainstream media's coverage of religion.

Do read Patrick Condon's Associated Press story Steve Scott story that led to this post. I found some posts of Scott's posts over on MinnPost, written while he was on his way to the pulpit.

Here's Mike Wendland's first broadcast. That was followed by "Is America a Christian Nation?." The latest one was "Is Marriage Meant to Last Forever?" Keep up with them online.

GetReal - Episode 1 - A Christian Take on Current Events from Woodside Bible on Vimeo.