Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tuesday Afternoon in the Blogosphere

Pressmen Ed Santos, Marcos Rodriguez, and Ramon Delmendo

Philly Guild reacts to news of execs' bonuses

From: GuildBulletin
Sent: Mon 3/30/2009 08:56
Subject: Phila Newspapers Execs turn your $25 raise into their Christmas bonuses

Dear Guild member,

Three months after Philadelphia Newspapers pressured the Guild and its other unions to postpone a $25 raise, its three most senior executives received a total of $650,000 in bonuses, Philadelphia magazine reported over the weekend. In December, Brian Tierney, Philadelphia Media Holdings CEO, received a holiday bonus of $350,000, while Daily News Publisher Mark Frisby and Richard Thayer, vice president of finance, both received payments of $150,000 the magazine reports. PMH Chairman Bruce Toll confirmed the bonuses for the magazine. The Guild has learned that other senior managers also received year-end bonuses and is working to uncover more information.

Surely by December PMH knew the company would soon declare bankruptcy, as it did last month, so the year-end cash rewards are shocking.

Last summer your Guild officers stood before the membership and encouraged members to vote to delay a $25 raise we had bargained in 2006. The company laid out a dire financial picture which painted any savings as vital to the future of the organization. We asked you to sacrifice what you had earned in the belief that it was for the good of the company. Clearly we were more concerned about the company than the senior management who rewarded themselves with increases totaling more than $400,000 (The three agreed last month in bankruptcy court to roll their salaries back) and as we have now learned, cash bonuses of at least $650,000.

Please remember that unlike many of the other unions under contract with PMH, the Guild did not forgo the $25 increase last August, rather voted to delay the increase until August 1, 2009. In light of those raises, and this weekend's Philadelphia magazine report, we regret having encouraged members to postpone your increase.

As our contract is up on August 31, 2009, we expect to sit down with the company in bargaining toward the end of April. Just as the company is fighting for its survival in bankruptcy court, we need Guild members to stand up for our survival. We will work hard to preserve, protect and better our jobs, wages and our working conditions. But it can't be done without the commitment and dedication of the entire membership. When better a time to unite then in the face of the company's shameful behavior?

For those who have not yet read the story, here is a link.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact,

Bill Ross
Administrative Officer

Dan Gross

SOURCE: Jim Romenesko

Newspapers Stop The Presses

Monday, March 30, 2009

Monday Afternoon in the Blogosphere

Union Rally at the Los Angeles Times - Pictures here

Farewell Party for Los Angeles Times Mailers

The employees of the Los Angeles Times Olympic Mailroom will be holding a farewell party for their colleagues leaving the company in the continuing downsizing of the newspaper. Everyone is welcome to attend and bid the former Times employee’s good luck in his or her life after the newspaper.

The party will be held this Saturday April 4th at El Tepeyac Restaurant at 1:00 pm.

812 N. Evergreen Ave.
Los Angeles, CA. 90033

Union Rally Today at Times Mirror Square

Union Rally
Monday March 30, 2009
11:30 am
1st & Spring St. Downtown L.A.

Tribune to Merge Newspaper and TV Operations

Tribune to Merge Newspaper and TV Operations in Hartford

Courant, WTIC-TV and WTXX-TV Join Forces in Connecticut’s Largest Newsroom

Richard Graziano Appointed as Courant’s Publisher

CHICAGO, March 30, 2009 -- Tribune Company today announced that it will bring the operations of the Hartford Courant and those of WTIC-TV and WTXX-TV together under one roof later this year, creating the largest print/broadcast news-gathering operation in Connecticut. The combined entities will be led by Richard Graziano, senior vice president/general manager of the two television stations, who has been named publisher of Courant effective immediately.

"This is the future of media," said Randy Michaels, Tribune’s chief operating officer. "Whether in print, over the air, or online -- the delivery mechanism isn’t as important as the unique, rich nature of the content provided. Bringing these media properties together will enable us to bring more resources to our news coverage, improving and expanding what we can offer readers, viewers and advertisers in the area."

Following the move, WTIC-TV and WTXX-TV will begin broadcasting news from a state-of-the-art, high-definition studio located in the Courant’s newsroom. Construction of the studio is expected to begin later this summer. WTIC-TV also plans to expand its news offerings by adding two half-hour broadcasts, one at noon and another at 6 p.m. Between them, the two stations currently provide 33 hours of news each week to viewers in Hartford.

Graziano has overseen Tribune’s Hartford television stations since 2005, and last July was promoted to senior vice president/general manager, assuming additional oversight responsibility for the company’s stations in Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. He is a veteran broadcast executive with a proven track record of success in Connecticut. WTIC-TV has grown market share consistently over the last four years, and its 10 p.m. news is #1 with viewers.

"We are focused on serving Hartford and Connecticut and Rich is the best person to lead our efforts," said Ed Wilson, president of Tribune Broadcasting. "He’s talented, experienced, and has great leadership skills. But most importantly, Rich knows the market better than anyone."

The Courant reaches more than 800,000 consumers in print and online each week and is the oldest continuously published newspaper in the United States. WTIC-TV and WTXX-TV are the only television stations remaining in Hartford that originate local news from the city, an important distinction for Graziano.

"This move is a demonstration of our commitment to news and to downtown Hartford," said Graziano. "The people who live and work in this area have been through a lot recently and the local economy is tough, but the folks here are resilient and dedicated to making things better for themselves and their communities. So are we."

Bringing the Courant and the television stations together will also benefit advertisers, creating a more efficient one-stop operation for print, broadcast and online ad sales.

Steve Carver, who has served as the Courant’s publisher since November 2006, will leave the company following a short transition period.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Friday Night in the Blogosphere

Statue donning a union hat at the Olympic Facility

Photo credit Michael Bassett

We The People Stimulus Package

h/t Charles Laird

Workshop: Making Twitter Work for You

Please join the Press Club for a hands-on intro to Twitter, the micro-blogging platform that is rapidly becoming a part of the daily news world.

Mark Briggs, social media expert and author of the book "Journalism 2.0," will show how journalists and news organizations can use Twitter to shape a new kind of storytelling. The workshop will take place at the Press Club on Thursday, April 16, from 6 pm to 9 pm.

Memo on New York Times Co. Cuts

Dear Colleagues:

As you know, the global economic crisis is taking its toll on a broad range of businesses and sectors, here in the U.S. and around the world. We have reported in our own newspapers and on our own Web sites that the economy is likely to continue struggling throughout this year and possibly longer.

Given this economic outlook and the changes occurring in the media business, we, regrettably, must take even more steps to lower costs. We have been, and continue to, reorganize and reduce our staff, which means we are saying goodbye to many of our close colleagues. Now, in addition, we are lowering salaries through the end of this year for all remaining nonunion employees and, in exchange, providing additional time off. We plan to approach the Newspaper Guild in New York to ask for its participation in the program and to continue working with our unions in Boston and our other locations on lowering our costs, including wage reductions.

The salaries of all employees at The New York Times Media Group (with the exception of the IHT, which is working on other cost reduction measures), The Boston Globe, Boston.com and Corporate in New York will be rolled back by 5%, starting this April, and these employees will receive 10 additional days off to use before the end of the year.

At the About Group, Baseline, Globe Direct, International Media Concepts, Regional Media Group, Shared Services Center and Worcester Telegram & Gazette, the approach is similar, with salaries being rolled back by 2.5% with five additional days off. We made the distinction between the two groups by taking into account location and other factors. Next year, we plan to return salaries to their current levels. Of course, such a decision depends on the state of our business.

Many of you will have questions about these actions. Your manager or department head has been briefed with more details and is your best source of information.

This was a very difficult decision to make. The environment we are in is the toughest we have seen in our years in business. Across our Company, you and your colleagues have worked hard to introduce innovative products and services, reduce expenses and improve productivity. We are deeply grateful for your efforts and proud of your achievements. As we take these painful steps together, we remain confident that our great Company will keep moving forward to better times.


Arthur & Janet

SOURCE: Romenesko

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Thursday Night in the Blogosphere

Intro To Free Papers

Here is a video that was created in 1994 showing where the Free Community Paper industry was heading. It's interesting to see how far we've come. The fashions have changed but the dynamic industry has only improved with age.

Who's Next?

By Keith Denson

Hello Brothers and Sisters,

Has any one noticed how the company has allowed division to be prevalent from one plant to the other, a divide and conquer system for many years? We have two plants with two totally different management styles. We all know it and it has worked to some degree. How do we feel that our friends for many years are being laid off with nothing? I bet a lot of you are just glad it was not you. But, can someone please tell me what's so good about this place since the Tribune and now Zell have taken over the paper? You guys who are still on the fence, were you one of the companies special pressmen that they wanted to protect in negotiations? We know we have lost a lot of good people over the last two layoffs. As good as some were, this paper has yet to miss a delivery when they or your good ass was gone, vacation, sick, or whatever. Most of us grew up in the 60's and 70's, where brothers helping brothers. We all pulled together to get the job done. We are still our brothers keeper...I still think so. Right now, this country has lost it way. We no longer think as we, but, me. Really, can you honestly tell me or anyone what this new regime has brought to you. We have newspapers failing all around us but, we could not pickup one or two products. Maybe if they concentrated more on that verse eliminating jobs or fighting to get the union out, they could. You sit comfey because of your seniority number and don't want to get involved but, we are all involved...up to our neck. That security you are afforded by this contact, as weak as it is one reason why. This regime has taken us for granted. All the many years of sacrifices we have all made, missing, holidays, kids games, family get togethers, and sickness. Some people think we are paid too much but, they are not here on those missed days with our families. And yes, we have been paid well but, so have they. The current situation at this company was not brought on by the union. We just wanted the slashing to stop to get some type of security. We are fighting the corporate greedy giants all over this great country. This company has been poorly managed over the years. All that money spent on road shows, private meetings with supervision all to stop us from having a right given to all in this America. That my friends was not even needed if in fact the company was treating us so well.

Yes, some people are thinking of their own gain. But, how does that effect you and me? I put in an honest days work for a customer who I can neither see nor talk to and this does afford my family the necessities of life. Don't lose your integrity. We all need to pull together. This union is here now, and I hope to stay for at least two and a half years hopefully more. Let's all make the best out of this situation, you might like it down the road. United we stand divided we will fall. Recognize who is on your side...your fellow workers as neighbors are. The tactics this company has used, have misfired thus far but they have devastated a once grand paper and our friends lives. Who's next? We must stand together and support our brothers and sisters as ourselves.

Be at the Rally!!! March 30, 2009 at 11:30am. I will!

Your Brother in solidarity
Keith Denson

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Wednesday Night in the Blogosphere

Los Angeles Times Mailers Kevin and J.R.

Union Rally at the Los Angeles Times

Union Rally
Monday March 30, 2009
11:30 am
1st & Spring St. Downtown L.A.

We said we’d be back and we will be due to the company’s decision to lay off 63 long term pressroom employees without a severance package for organizing with the Graphic Communications/International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Support your former colleagues and your Union to insure this won’t happen again when they come knocking on the pressroom doors for more money and more jobs are lost.

LOTS of Change Here...Read On...

From: O'Loughlin, John
Sent: Wednesday, March 25, 2009 2:46 PM
To: zzTrbAllHandsLAT
Subject: LOTS of Change Here...Read On...

We’re at an unfamiliar crossroads, with our state, our economy and our industry all under siege -- and change being the only constant. However, our mission to be the #1 source of news and information in Southern California has not changed, nor has our need to produce and distribute a portfolio of multimedia news and information products for the diverse needs of Southern California to accomplish this mission.

Going forward, it is clear that an even more keenly targeted approach is key to future success and, beginning next week and continuing throughout April, we will be undertaking a strategic evolution of each of our targeted product offerings – to better anticipate our readers’ and our clients’ needs, and to weather the challenges posed by today’s economy.

First, Metromix will be phased-out of print distribution, and replaced with a more expansive, truly multimedia lifestyle product, called BRAND X (thisisbrandx.com). As part of this transition, the editorial content will move under the direction of the LAT newsroom, lead by Dean Kuipers. Brand X will build upon the strong readership base that embraced Metromix over the past year, and now reflect the market’s need for a broader and more interactive content offering. It will reach beyond just entertainment to curate next-generation ideas on culture, tech, food, events, social networking, volunteering, style, the outdoors and beyond. A key part of the company’s overall audience strategy, Brand X is designed to be conversational and geared toward the growing segment of influential young digital adults who are not regular consumers of the LA Times in print or online. And because Brand X is produced by the Los Angeles Times, this new property will draw from every newsdesk, and offer all the listings users expect from the staffs of Metromix.com and latimes.com.

In regards to our Hispanic media offerings, Hoy will move from daily to weekly distribution, debuting with a crisp, new design and content plan. As part of this change, Vivelohoy.com will join Hoy and reverse-publish content as branded entertainment pages in each week’s edition, as well as introduce new video content to the site in the process. We’ll also be adding local service guides for heath, beauty, entertainment and immigration, to mention just a few. Saturday’s Fin De Semana weekend product will introduce zoning for the first time in its 500,000 copy home-delivery footprint, allowing us to better compete for local retail advertising. With these moves, we are smartly recognizing that these are the days most important to our readers and advertisers and, in publishing twice a week, we can produce Hoy more efficiently and continue offering it to readers free of charge. LATMG/KTLA reaches 52% of the LA Hispanic market every week (2.7 million adults 18+) and Hoy’s multimedia expansion brings a more diverse generational range, allowing our advertisers to now connect with the LA Hispanic population through multiple touch points.

Our TCN (Times Community News) brands in Orange County , namely The Daily Pilot serving Newport Beach and Cost Mesa, the Huntington Beach Independent and the Coastline Pilot in Laguna Beach will each unveil new designs in mid-April, replete with new coverage of surf, new cues to interactive elements, skyboxes, and user-generated-content (UGC). In conjunction with this, we will host an open house preview for civic leaders, readers and advertisers. In regards to our TCN North titles (Glendale News Press, Burbank Leader, LaCanada Valley Sun and Crescenta Valley Sun), we are pleased to welcome Dan Evans as new Director of Editorial. A resident of Burbank, Dan is an accomplished journalist, started his career in TCN, and most recently was the director of online content for the Hollywood Reporter. Immediate focus will be on improving our digital presence and proficiencies, including web to print and UGC in those communities. A big part of these aforementioned changes is Scott Pompe being named VP/GM of TCN. He will assume full responsibility for all TCN daily operations and, with that deeper focus, he will relinquish his sales role in both Hoy and Metromix, as does Hector Cabral who will now focus solely on TCN North advertising. Scott is an accomplished executive and has been instrumental in establishing new TCN competencies and dependencies with the flagship LAT, and continues as VP/GM of Tribune Direct as well.

Finally, LA, Los Angeles Times Magazine is making two bold moves. First, we will take a more focused audience approach for the monthly flagship publication through a new targeted distribution model that will add it to single copy sales of the LA Times, but tighten the overall footprint to focus on select zip codes. This will take affect with the upcoming April 5th edition and should yield improved response for clients and increased efficiency for us. Plans are being finalized for introducing a themed weekly edition to run on alternate weeks, with debut as early as April 19th. Tentatively named LAetcetera, it will also have a controlled distribution model, is expected to run 16-24 pages with more great writers and columns, can now cover the social scene on a weekly basis and will provide magazine advertisers looking for greater frequency to reach their best prospects - currently not an option we offer them.

All of these moves are designed to better embrace our company’s audience strategy by further aligning our product offerings with each segment’s needs, interests, and wants. In doing so, we anticipate greater consumer engagement, greater opportunity for revenue growth, and greater loyalty over the long term. More product specifics, rates and collateral are all nearing completion and will be available to the key stakeholders in the advertising dept in the coming days.

Thanks for your continued support. JTO

John T. O'Loughlin
EVP and CMO/Targeted Media and Marketing
Los Angeles Times Media Group
202 W. 1st St - Suite 500 /Times South
Los Angeles, CA 90012
213-237-2975 - Office
213-237-5317 - Fax

The Definitive Media Choice for Southern California with over 5M readers and online users each week

Los Angeles Times New product launch

From: Stanton, Russ
Sent: Wednesday, March 25, 2009 3:07 PM
To: zzTrbAllHandsLAT
Subject: New product launch: Brand X


As the media landscape continues to shift, we are seizing the opportunity to expand The Times to a different audience with a new multimedia editorial product called Brand X (thisisbrandx.com).

In a few weeks, the street boxes currently occupied by Metromix will offer a new weekly tabloid created by the combined efforts of the former Metromix staff, latimes.com and our newsroom. Online, BrandX will take blog form and will evolve and exist apart from latimes.com with its own identity and voice.

Brand X is designed to be a community, aimed at younger, social-networking readers who are interested in culture, technology, entertainment, food, events, volunteering, style and the outdoors. Reader input and participation will be part of the mix, as will features, quick-hit items, reviews and listings.

Brand X will include Times coverage of must-see concerts, exhibitions and events in Southern California. We'll reverse-publish many of our latimes.com blog posts, use Times-generated articles and photos, and create original content that can go back into the main paper. It's content sharing on an extremely local level and will bring our great work to an audience that does not currently see it.

Metromix editor Deborah Vankin, formerly of L.A. Weekly and Variety, will be the editor of Brand X, and report to Dean Kuipers, who counts the launch of The Guide in his 19-plus years in journalism. Their combined staffs -- which soon will be together on the second floor -- will continue to maintain the LA Metromix website, as well as fuel latimes.com’s listings, daily print contributions and numerous blogs. The photo, design and copy desks will assume production duties for the tab.

Brand X's success relies on the talents of our newsroom, and I’m looking forward to seeing where we can take this, with your continued supply of smart ideas and execution.

Russ Stanton
Los Angeles Times
202 W. 1st St.
Los Angeles CA 90012

Ph: (213) 237-6728
E-mail: russ.stanton@latimes.com

Mr. Lopez Meets Mr. Ayers - Complete Show

Nathaniel Ayers, a mentally ill musical virtuoso, was discovered living on the streets by Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez. Morley Safer reports on the unbreakable bond between them.

Newspapers could get nonprofit status

We need to contact our representative's and tell them, we need to pass this bill.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tuesday Night in the Blogosphere

Los Angeles Times Presswoman Paula Henley

What News Anchors Do During Commercial Breaks

WGN News anchors Robert Jordan and Jackie Bange have been together for many years. This whole thing started out really small and simple. And then along came the internet, and a video camera, and you tube, and here we are with the funniest dance routine since that scene in Big. It's the original, What News Anchors Do During Commercial Breaks. This one has the nat sound, not cheesy music.

h/t TJ Sullivan via Twitter

L.A. Times, Chicago Tribune to unify overseas coverage

Below is the memo from Editor Russ Stanton and Foreign Editor Bruce Wallace on the change.

The Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune are unifying their foreign reporting operations to provide Tribune papers and websites with the enterprising overseas coverage that has brought such distinction to both news organizations.

Both have great traditions of reporting from abroad. The Chicago Tribune began sending correspondents into the field at the turn of the 20th century, and has been home to such fabled correspondents as Wilfred Barber and William Shirer. Under publisher Otis Chandler, the Los Angeles Times built a network of foreign correspondents that was at the forefront of the paper’s commitment to excellence, producing talented reporters from David Lamb and Michael Parks.

The new Tribune foreign operation will uphold that great legacy.

The joint operation will be run from Los Angeles, where the bulk of the editing staff is currently based, in consultation with editors in Chicago and across the Tribune family. The staff will be consist of LA Times and Chicago Tribune correspondents, strategically based around the world, who will emphasize original reporting, delivered in a unique voice for both print and online audiences. Their mix of daily news and features will meet our readers’ expectations for sophisticated reporting and writing from the outside the United States.

The foreign report will continue to be distributed on the LA Times-Washington Post News Service and to the Tribune family of papers and websites in a daily, ready-to-publish World and Nation report produced in Chicago. Our stories and reports will reach millions more digitally, be it online, via mobile devices or eEdition delivery.

We are proud of the many brave and talented correspondents upon whose shoulders we stand. Several generations of foreign correspondents from both the Times and Tribune have covered wars and upheaval, from Africa in the 1930s to Vietnam and the horrors of 21st century Baghdad. They have reported through global economic depressions and have chronicled political and social changes from the capitals of Europe to villages in Asia. The current global turmoil demands that we continue to provide lively journalism that explains, enlightens and entertains existing readers and new audiences alike. The new Tribune foreign operation will meet that challenge.

Russ Stanton

Bruce Wallace
Foreign Editor

SOURCE: Readers' Representative Journal

Response to Brian Quintana Article

The following message arrived this morning regarding the article by Harriet Ryan, which was published on Sunday March 22nd, 2009 on the front page of the Los Angeles Times regarding Brian Quintana. This message was also sent to the Los Angeles Times letters section.

Hollywood A-Lister

Shame on the LAT for the hatchet job you did on producer Brian Quintana last Sunday (3/22/09). As a native of East LA who has emerged as one of the ranking Latinos in Hollywood, Brian serves as a role model to countless Latinos and young people from lower socio-economic backgrounds like me. Prior to his current lawsuit against Jon Peters, Brian has sued exactly one person, and that was in small claims Court in 1995. You failed to mention that he has never been sued until the current counter claim by Peters. That's not bad in the entertainment industry. As for his prior arrests, you fail to mention that they were both misdemeanors in 1998. He has no new arrest since 1998 and has never been convicted of a felony. Further, he has been clean and sober for over seven years, and is quite public about his background when he speaks to inner-city youth. That is probably why I relate to him. Your article will not break him. He is bigger than that, and thanks to him so am I.

Michael Dean
Los Angeles, CA

Save Our Trade: Agency Fee Payer Information

The following documents were mailed to everyones home to provide information regarding non-member dues and the process to become a "financial core member" The letter explains the member advantages that are forfeited when full membership is not desired by the employee.

The dollar amount of monthly dues for an "Agency Fee Payer" member is $48.04. The formula is based on $60.00 per month that a full member pays which includes the International per capita at the chargeable amount rate of 80.06%. This amount is deductable through "dues check-off" by completing and submitting a dues check off authorization form.

Dues may also be mailed to Secretary Treasurer, Linard Williams using the following information:

Secretary Treasurer
Linard Williams
24009 Pasala Ct
Valencia, Ca. 91355

Dues deducted from members currently facing layoff on April 6th will be refunded after that time.

{{Continue reading here}}

Monday, March 23, 2009

Press Club Screening of new Cuba documentary

Monday, March 23, 2009
For Immediate Release
Contact – Edward Headington , Publicist
(323) 669-8081 or Edward@LAPressClub.org

Press Club Screening of new Cuba documentary “The Women in White” Tonight!

KNBC’s Ana Garcia will moderate the Q&A following the screening with Andy Garcia and Gry Winther

Hollywood, CA. The Los Angeles Press Club invites you to a special screening of a new documentary by Press Club member, Gry Winther. Narrated by Andy Garcia, the fifty-five minute documentary, "The Women in White," tells the story of Cuban women trying to free their imprisoned sons, husbands and fathers.

WHO – Moderated Q&A with KNBC’s Ana Garcia; Q&A with filmmaker Gry Winther and actor Andy Garcia

WHAT – L.A. Press Club screening of new Cuba documentary “The Women in White”

WHEN – Monday, March 23, 2009, 7 p.m.

WHERE – The Steve Allen Theater at the LA Press Club; 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, 90027; Plenty of free parking behind the building (enter off of Berendo Street); Click here for a map; Metro: Red line, Sunset/Vermont station

WHY – Mr. Garcia and Ms. Winther will be on hand to discuss life in Cuba , the difficulties of filming in the country, and other topics, in a conversation moderated by KNBC's Ana Garcia.

FYI: Free to press club members (R.S.V.P. here). All others: $10 prepaid or $20 at the door. Students $5. Includes all drinks and appetizers.

The Los Angeles Press Club stands as an organization devoted to improving the spirit of journalism and journalists, raising the industry’s standards, strengthening its integrity and improving its reputation all for the benefit of the community at large. Serving the Southland since 1913, it is the only Southern California journalism group that speaks for all journalists working for daily and weekly newspapers, radio & TV, magazines, documentary films and online. For more information, go to www.LAPressclub.org and/or www.myspace.com/lapressclub.

Headington Media Group is a boutique com munications firm dedicated to promoting public affairs in Southern California , specializing in image management, branding, messaging and public relations. For more information, go to www.HeadingtonMedia.com and/or visit www.HeadingtonMediaCenter.org.

Monday Afternoon in the Blogosphere

Pressmen Jesus Medina, Edward, Bill Conover, and Jim Hathaway

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Mr. Ayers And Mr. Lopez

Discovered living on the streets by Los Angeles Times newspaper columnist Steve Lopez, mentally ill musician Nathaniel Ayers has become the subject of a book by Lopez and now a Hollywood film. The entire segment to air on CBS 60 minutes tonight.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Save Our Trade: Union Update

March E-Board Meeting

The e-Board met last week to discuss myriad of topics concerning our shops, grievances filed with the company and board charges filed with the N.L.R.B. as well as our new Local's Constitution and By-Laws. The Board was in favor of having another Rally at the Downtown L.A. Times Headquarters in response to the company's decision to withhold severance for 63 pressroom employees. The company's decision to lay off 63 long time employees without any severance is a blatant act of retaliation for exercising our right to form a Union.

March 30, 2009 Rally

We said we'd be back at the conclusion of the February 23rd Rally and as a result of the company's unwillingness to offer severance to 63 soon to be former pressroom employees. We have multiple Board charges filed with the N.L.R.B. regarding the company's "Bad Faith Bargaining over severance. We hope to have a decision soon.

We will once again meet on the corner of 1st and Spring at 11:30 am on Monday March 30th. If you are one of the 63 employees being sent away without any severance, come and make your voice heard. Our contributions over the decades will not be ignored simply because we fought to prevent these same types of mistreatment from our soon to be former employer.

{Continue reading here}

Friday, March 20, 2009


Bought the popular Flat-screen tv today. Set it up, turned it on, worked fine. Revisited the bedroom, turned it on, worked fine. Kept it on, watched a while, it went off. Pushed the power button, NOTHING! Called the 800 #, told to unplug it and re-plug. Unplugged it, re-plugged it...same thing! PISSED OFF! Told to allow company to repair. Oh HELL NO! Then advised to take back to vendor for replacement tomorrow.



UPDATE: Took it back. Got a new one. Works GREAT! Happy Camper!

Robert Bagwell Taking Some Time Off

Bob Bagwell (pictured at the right) with former Los Angeles Times Publisher David Hiller, will celebrate sixty-one years working at the Los Angeles Times this August. This is a record length of employment at the newspaper that will most likely never be matched by anyone again.

Bob began his newspaper career at the Times in 1948 as an apprentice pressman, and earned his way to pressroom crew supervisor before deciding on a career change some twenty years ago. Bob works in edition planning now and has no plans on taking a buyout or retiring anytime soon.

Known to his friends in the pressroom as Baggy, he is an icon at the newspaper and has witnessed future shock firsthand in his sixty years of continuous service to the company.

Bob will be missed at the Times as he takes five or six weeks off for health reasons, lets wish him a speedy recovery and rapid return to the newspaper he calls home.

Andy Rooney - Era Of The Newspaper

Andy Rooney discusses the once-dominant era of the newspaper and his worry of newspapers going out of business.

Friday Afternoon in the Blogosphere

Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

Last year I was a volunteer driver for the authors at the Festival of Books, appears my services are no longer needed or wanted as only non-hourly Los Angeles Times Employees are welcome to volunteer this year. A friend at Times Mirror Square forwarded the memo below to me, as I do not have access to inner office mail at the newspaper. I am saddened by this decision, but will still enjoy the festival nonetheless.


It’s that time of year again to start accepting volunteers to drive author escort golf carts at the Festival of Books. Many of you have already expressed an interest, so if you’re free for either Saturday, April 25 or Sunday, April 26 please email Nathan Osadchey (nathan.osadchey@latimes.com) your preferred day to drive and we will slot you in.

For those that haven’t driven before, this is one of the coolest jobs at the Festival of Books. If you love books and authors, this is an opportunity to meet some of the best authors in the country and even internationally. It’s also an opportunity to work on the inside of the largest book festival in the country and be a direct part of its success. It’s important that we only use LA Times employees for these spots, for both liability reasons and to make sure that we are representing ourselves in the best way possible to our outstanding line up of authors.

Here’s a short list of who we have so far,
Eric Carle, Chef Jeff Henderson (Food Network), Curtis Stone (TLC's Take Home Chef) Arianna Huffington, Kate DiCamillo, David Baldacci, Tori Spelling, Tom Bergeron, Cloris Leachman Danica McKellar, Marlee Matlin, Mary Higgins Clark, Michael J. Fox, Larry Wilmore (The Daily Show), T.C. Boyle, Sandra Tsing Loh, Peter Guber; Clive Barker, Bob Barker, Maureen McCormick

The details:

  • The job is entirely voluntary and not related to your normal work duties

  • Volunteers must be exempt (non-hourly) employees of The Times

  • We ask for a one-day commitment, either 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Saturday, April 25, or 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sunday, April 26

  • If you have not driven before we ask that you attend one of two training sessions at UCLA on either Sunday, April 19 from 2-4pm or Wednesday, April 22 from 6-8pm. The training consists of 1-hour of general training followed by a 1-hour tour of the Festival grounds.

  • We provide a 6-passenger covered golf cart, a walkie-talkie radio, a staff shirt, lunch, parking, maps and instructions. We provide parking for the training session as well.

  • The job entails driving authors around the festival, e.g. from the author greenroom to their panels and stages, from the panels and stages to the signing areas, from the signing areas back to the greenroom, and sometimes to and from the parking lots for the more elderly authors.

  • We require that you be a good driver and are friendly and personable. This is all about catering to the authors to make sure they have the time of their lives.

How to sign up:

Email or call Nathan Osadchey at x76542 by Friday, March 27th. Nathan will need your extension, cell number, the day you want to drive and your shirt size. Then we will send you a logistics packet in mid April.

I hope to see you at the Festival of Books.

135 Years of Service with no Severance

Joe Gordon, Larry Franco, Richard Armenta, and Keith Reh
Hi Ed, Ronnie

I've attached a picture for the blog taken in OC on our next to last day of work Sunday March 2nd just prior to all of us getting our phone calls not to bother to come back to work,all being kicked out in April.

All very honorable hard working family men who have given 135 years of service.

From left to right ..Joe Gordon started in 1972..37 yrs,next Larry Franco..'74 with 35yrs, Richard Armenta..'76 with 33 years.. and myself Keith Reh '79.. 30 yrs.

1972..Nixon was president, minimum wage was $1.60,and the Lakers were champs.

I would like to follow with a picture and my final words and thoughts if I may in a couple days.

Thank you Keith Reh

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The last Press run for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer

The final press run for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer at the Seattle Times' NorthCreek Plant, March 16-17, 2009.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Critical Need Pressman Jobs

Dear Colleague,

Big update! We've just finished adding a large number of quality jobs to our 'Critical Need Jobs' page. These are only the most urgent openings (jobs that need to be filled today).

This page, and these jobs, represent your best chance of getting hired right now.

Check them out here: http://www.getpressmanjobs.com/critical-need-pressman-jobs.php

**An important point about this page:

==> The "Critical Need" page updates in REAL TIME. That means you may see no jobs, or ten jobs, depending on what we find. Check back as often as you like but remember this page will change frequently.

**Important. You'll notice a bookmark link at the upper right corner and bottom of the page. Use this to bookmark the 'Critical Need Jobs' page so you can check back regularly to see what jobs need to be filled above all others.

We hope you find this page useful and as always we welcome your feedback here: http://www.getpressmanjobs.com/story.php

Also, if you know of anyone looking for work please send them this email...you could help them find their next job.

Thanks for being part of our community.

Warm regards,

Jacob Peebles Get Pressman Jobs http://www.getpressmanjobs.com

Member, IAEWS http://www.employmentwebsites.org/ ***

Get Job Updates on Twitter http://twitter.com/GetPressmanJobs ***

Browse Jobs http://www.getpressmanjobs.com/job-seekers/job-search.php ***

Tell us what you think of our community: http://www.getpressmanjobs.com/story.php

Financial Planning for LA Times People

1993 retiree Clara Benesch sent this over to aid her former colleagues at the newspaper, and I thought this very kind of her to remember everyone with her kind jesture.

Hi, Ed:

I'm a retired employee of The Times (Marketing Research). I read your Pressman's 20 Year Club regularly and the thought occurred to me that you might be interested in passing on the name of my financial planner to people who need help in planning their financial future. With conditions the way they are at The Times, I would think this might be a good idea!

Mitchell Kauffman
Certified Financial Planner
140 S. Lake Ave., Suite 217
Pasadena 91101

550 Periwinkle Lane
Santa Barbara 93108

And perhaps people would be interested in the one-night classes he teaches, along with Joanne Moran, a clinical psychologist. They are through Pasadena City College and are given at San Marino High School. Cost is $29 each. 6:30pm-8:30pm.

April 30 - 5 Strategies for Surviving the Economic Downturn
May 7 - When Can You Afford to Retire
May 14 - How Can Your Savings Last Through Retirement?

Hat Tip to Ms. Clara Benesch

Bill Plaschke does Madness

In honor of the NCAA finals, we're working on getting the perfect look of "madness" out of our sports columnist, Bill Plaschke. It's a lot of work fine-tuning it, but we strive to get madness just right.

Wednesday Afternoon in the Blogosphere

Denise and Chris Egnozzi, Chris will be leaving the Los Angeles Times in April

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Canopy comes down

This darling little wine shop is one that I have visited on a few occasions. Small lovely place in a quaint little area of San Dimas where friends gather to enjoy good conversation and a variety of tasty wines without having to venture to the Napa Valley or Temecula.

My visits were always during the Spring and Summer months. I always had a lovely time. However, during the Fall and Winter months, the weather is not always accommodating for those patrons who enjoy sitting on the cozy patio. Jerry and Heidi Daniels (father and daughter) are owners who recognized this and opted to keep their patrons welcomed by installing a canopy to ward off the elements to those who enjoyed the outside.

"What's the harm?", you ask? The canopy is unpermitted. The canopy has come down because city officials have threatened to take the landlord to court, and Ms. Daniels has taken ownership of the spat with City Hall, opting not to bring the landlord into the equation.

It seems the canopy is in violation of city zoning codes, and in an effort to maintain clientele, Ms. Daniels previously refused to take the canopy down. The Planning Commission is well aware that the code is in need of amendments, but is adamant in their quest for prosecution.

Read the story by clicking on the subject above.

Los Angeles Times Pressmen to Gather for Dinner

The pressmen and women will be gathering for another dinner on Tuesday, March 31st, 2009 at El Patio Bar & Grill in El Monte. Easy access to the restaurant from the 10 Freeway (exit North Peck Road), or from the 605 Freeway (exit at Ramona) and proceed to 11672 East Ramona Blvd. Click here for map.

Featuring a full bar, plan to arrive at 5:00 pm for drinks with dinner served at 6:00 pm, and let me know if you are planning to attend and if you would like a dish of beef, chicken, or fish.

Cost is $25.00 per person and everyone is welcome to attend from any department at the Los Angeles Times.

Checks can be sent to:
Pressmen’s Twenty-Year Club
928 Alleghany Circle
San Dimas, CA. 91773-1581

Phone Edward at: 909.230.2061
Email: edpadgett1@verizon.net

El Patio was featured in the Whittier Daily News as Chef Enrique prepares an eye appealing display of his culinary talents with every individually prepared dish.

Hope to see you there.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Hearst Corporation Press Release


NEW YORK, March 16, 2009— Hearst Corporation announced today that the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (P-I) will become the nation’s largest daily newspaper to shift to an entirely digital news product. The announcement was made by Frank A. Bennack, Jr., vice chairman and chief executive officer, Hearst Corporation, and Steven R. Swartz, president of Hearst Newspapers. The final print issue of the newspaper will appear tomorrow.

“The P-I has a rich 146-year history of service to the people of the Northwest, which makes the decision to stop publishing the newspaper an extraordinarily difficult one,” Bennack said. “We extend our profound gratitude and admiration to our P-I colleagues who have done such an exemplary job under extremely difficult circumstances over the past several years. Our goal now is to turn seattlepi.com into the leading news and information portal in the region.”

“Seattlepi.com isn't a newspaper online—it’s an effort to craft a new type of digital business with a robust, community news and information Web site at its core,” said Swartz. “It will feature the breaking news reporting of Chris Grygiel and others covering City Hall; Levi Pulkkinen reporting on the court system; popular staff blogs like Seattle 911 with Casey McNerthney and the Big Blog by Monica Guzman; columnists like Joel Connelly, Art Thiel and Jim Moore; and of course, the cartooning and commentary of two-time Pulitzer Prize winner David Horsey. The Web is first and foremost a community platform, so we'll be featuring new columns from prominent Seattle residents; more than 150 reader blogs, community data bases and photo galleries. We'll also be linking to the great work of other Web sites and blogs in the community."

“On the business side, we are assembling a staff to form a local digital agency that will sell local businesses advertising on seattlepi.com as well as the digital advertising products of our partners: Yahoo! for display advertising, Kaango for general marketplaces and Google, Yahoo!, MSN and Ask.com for search engine marketing,” Swartz said. “The site will also feature a digital yellow pages directory powered by Hearst's yellow pages unit, White Directory Publishers.”

On January 9, Hearst announced that it was offering for sale the P-I and its interest in the Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) under which the P-I and The Seattle Times are published. No buyers emerged, resulting in the decision to move to an all-digital news model. Additionally, the JOA is being terminated. The P-I was founded in 1863 as the Seattle Gazette.

Seattlepi.com will be led editorially by Michelle Nicolosi, executive producer, who has headed the site since 2005. Nicolosi was previously an investigative reporter at the Seattle P-I. She was also previously the editor of Online Journalism Review (www.ojr.org) and taught journalism at the University of Southern California. Prior to that, Nicolosi was a reporter at the Orange County Register, where she was a lead reporter on the Pulitzer Prize-winning Fertility Fraud series.

In January, Nielsen ranked seattlepi.com among the top 30 newspaper Web sites with 1.8 million unique users. The site has an average of 4 million unique monthly visitors, according to internal Hearst tracking.

Hearst Corporation (www.hearst.com) is one of the nation’s largest diversified media companies. Its major interests include ownership of 15 daily and 49 weekly newspapers, including the Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle and Albany Times Union; as well as interests in an additional 43 daily and 72 non-daily newspapers owned by MediaNews Group, which include the Denver Post and Salt Lake Tribune; nearly 200 magazines around the world, including Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan and O, The Oprah Magazine; 29 television stations through Hearst-Argyle Television (NYSE:HTV) which reach a combined 18% of U.S. viewers; ownership in leading cable networks, including Lifetime, A&E, History and ESPN; as well as business publishing, including a minority joint venture interest in Fitch Ratings; Internet businesses, television production, newspaper features distribution and real estate.

Monday Morning in the Blogosphere

Pressman David Rascon Let Go after 19 Years at the Los Angeles Times

Sunday, March 15, 2009

"Hard Times" :20s LA Times Commercial

This 20 second ad about our LA Times recession coverage ran this week on KTLA-- I created it with Photoshop and After Effects... written by Graham McCann, VO by Brandon Smith.

213 and Counting at the Los Angeles Times

The Human Resources Department lost Jay Scott a few days ago, with only a handful of employees remaining at the LA Times H.R.'s. No word from the Orange County Facility on the head count for the Advertising Department. With street sales consolidated into home delivery, some employees may be affected, yet no word from the Circulation Department as of this moment on possible layoffs within their department.

The breakdown is as follows:

63 pressmen and presswomen from Orange County and Olympic
11 machinists at the Olympic Facility
2 pressroom supervisors Olympic and Orange County
1 pressroom clerk from Olympic
3 electro-techs from Olympic
75 editorial employees
4 electro-techs Orange County
4 machinists Orange County
21 mailroom Olympic (4 full time and 17 part time employees)
19 mailroom Orange County (9 full time and 10 part time employees)
2 Security guards
7 Plate makers (5 at Olympic and 2 at Orange County)
1 Human Resources

Will update as information slowly flows in.

R.I.P. Stevie Hara Los Angeles Times Operations

Sad news from the Los Angeles Times Orange County Production Facility, Stevie Hara passed away Friday night. Stevie started off as a facilities guy, moved up to the central plant, and then to the OC electric shop.

According to an Orange County colleague: "A machinist friend of mine called to tell me that Stevie Hara died last night. I'm really thunderstruck by the news. He was a friend of mine.

I spoke to Stevie's mother, and she stated that Steve died after falling into a diabetic coma. He had been snowboarding all day locally and probably had not eaten properly. Later, after leaving the slopes, paramedics were called by his friends when they found him unconscious and breathing erratically at his condo in Running Springs. Unfortunately, none of his companions or the paramedics knew that he was diabetic. He was 49."

This photo of Stevie and Ed McLaughlin was taken in 2007 after they installed a new backflow valve at an OC MAO.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Eli Broad on Philanthropy and Media at the 92nd Street Y

Philanthropist and entrepreneur Eli Broad spoke to an audience at the 92Y on Monday evening about the prospects of newspapers in the current economic climate. Comments he made expressing his foundations interest in purchasing the LA Times have been widely reported on.

He also spoke about at length on the challenging business models facing newspapers today, telling moderator Matthew Bishop, “You cant afford to lose newspaper journalism, you can’t afford to lose all the investigative reporting...so newspapers ought to be owned by foundations or wealthy families not looking for any real great economic return.”

Bishop then brought up the subject of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s recent investment in the New York Times and asked Eli if it bothered him that the New York Times might fall into the hands of the Carlos Slim. “Would it worry me if Carlos Slim owned the New York Times?” Eli repeated, continuing, “From what I know he’s a decent fellow, he’s been involved in some charitable activities, not only in Mexico but a little bit in the United States. Including maybe helping the Broad Institute, so...”

Expounding further on the topic of philanthropic ownership of newspapers, Eli suggested that having several foundations own a newspaper, as opposed to just one, could have beneficial effects on preserving journalistic freedoms—depending on which families were involved. Asked what families should not be charge of newspapers, Eli answered, “the Madoff Family.”

h/t Paolo Mastrangelo