Thursday, January 31, 2019

Richmond Times-Dispatch launches Virginia Video Network

The Richmond Times-Dispatch has launched the Virginia Video Network (VVN), a location-based video advertising solution delivered through standalone periodical racks and video displays. Through this new platform, advertisers can market directly to consumers at the point of purchase in high-traffic retail locations, according to the paper.
Virginia Video Network is Virginia’s first digital-out-of-home video marketing solution that combines data and technology together to deliver relevant advertising messages to targeted customers, the paper claims.
With this technology, advertisers are able to target VVN racks in desirable locations based on demographic data. More than 20 display screens are active in retail locations across the Richmond area. GPM Investments and their fas mart convenience stores have partnered with The Times-Dispatch to place 10 screens in their top locations, the paper says.

Local newspaper stays off the internet to avoid competition

Layoffs at Buzzfeed, Gannett and HuffPost

Layoffs hit staffers at a number of major media companies last week.
Buzzfeed is laying off some 15 percent of its staff, according to CNN and other sources.
BuzzFeed had a staff of around 1450.
The cut included everyone on the national news team, according to a tweet from Marisa Carroll, who was deputy national editor with BuzzFeed. “After 4 years at BuzzFeed News, today I was laid off along with the rest of the national team and many more brilliant reporters and editors. I'm so proud of what we've done here, the tweet said.
Verizon Media said it will cut around seven percent of its employees, meaning about 750 people, according to HuffPost. Verizon owns Yahoo, HuffPost, AOL. HuffPost reported that it had lost some 20 staffers in the U.S. and one in Canada. HuffPost said it wasn’t clear where all the layoffs would land in the end.
Meanwhile, Gannett, owner of USA Today and the nation’s biggest newspaper chain, cuts jobs at papers around the country. “The cuts were not minor,” Poynter reported. The Arizona Republic and the Indianapolis Star were among those affected, KJZZ Radio and Fox 59 reported. Gannett Co. got an unsolicited offer to buy the company from MNG Enterprises, known as Digital First Media, USA Today reported Jan. 13.

Thursday Morning in the Blogosphere

Severe cold, winter weather could delay delivery of newspapers

How to Future-Proof Your Print Magazines - Folio

Yes professor, the newspaper is relevant - Folsom Telegraph

Why We Mourn the Loss of a Printed 'Forward' - The Nation

On front pages across the Midwest today: Deep freeze - Poynter

Loss of newspapers contributes to political polarization - WMNF

Advertiser's owner to buy three newspapers - Moulton Advertiser

Carbondale newspaper to be printed by the Post-Dispatch - STLtoday

Study Provides Resources for Teaching Entrepreneurial Journalism - IJNET

Glasgow tech expert bringing newspapers to life with augmented reality app - The Scottish Sun

GateHouse Scoops Up 20 Local Newspapers In $30M Schurz Communications Deal - MediaPost

Want to Get Away With Posting Fake News on Facebook? Just Change Website Domain - Poynter

United for News launches programs to aid gender diversity in news reporting

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Jan. 23, United for News, a global coalition of media, private industry, and NGOs, announced pilot programs in Canada, Iraq and Ukraine to address an “unacceptable” lack of gender diversity in news reporting.
Globally, 24 percent of people heard, seen or read about in newspaper, television, and radio news are women and 19 percent of experts sourced in news stories are women, according to the Global Media Monitoring Project 2015 report.
“Changing this deficit will help build trust in the news media, by making news more reflective of the communities it serves,” says a press release on the effort.  
United for News is led by the international non-profit Internews, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum. Coalition members advising this work include WAN-IFRA, Bloomberg, Edelman, the BBC’s 50:50 Project and the Global Forum for Media Development.

Today in Labor History

Ida M Fuller
12,000 pecan shellers in San Antonio, Texas, walked off their jobs at 400 factories in what would become a three-month strike against wage cuts. The pecan-shelling industry was among the lowest paid in the country; workers made between $2-$3 a week. – 1938
Ida M. Fuller was the first retiree to receive an old-age monthly benefit check under the new Social Security lawCLICK TO TWEET. She paid in $24.75 between 1937 and 1939 on an income of $2,484; her first check was for $22.54. – 1940
After scoring successes with representation elections conducted under the protective oversight of the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board, the United Farm Workers of America officially ended its historic table grape, lettuce and wine boycotts. – 1978
160 gravediggers represented by SEIU Local 106 were locked out after they went on strike against the Cemeteries Association of Greater Chicago over wages and benefits. They reached a contract agreement after 43 days. – 1992
Union and student pressure forced Harvard University to adopt new labor policies raising wages for the lowest-paid workers. – 2002
Five months after Hurricane Katrina, the New Orleans school board fired every teacher in the district in what the United Teachers of New Orleans saw as an effort to break the union and privatize the school system. – 2005

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Fujifilm gets aluminum tariff tax exclusions

Fujifilm North America Corporation, Graphic Systems Division has received tariff tax exclusions on aluminum offset printing plates, currently making it the only major printing plate manufacturer in the U.S. to earn exclusion, the company says.
The U.S. Commerce Department's Section 232 tariffs on imported aluminum remain in effect. The Fujifilm division received exclusions on the majority of the 147 exclusion requests it filed several months ago.
“Our resolve to challenge these tariffs has led to this outcome for our valued customers,” said Todd Zimmerman, division president. “I sincerely appreciate our customers’ patience and understanding as we worked through this difficult situation. We will provide updates on this process as soon as we receive further information from our contacts in the Commerce Department.”
In an updating statement, Southern Lithoplate said it had filed exclusion requests more than six months ago. Progress was slowed when the government shut down, the company said. The company is in direct contact with the Commerce Department and Sec. Wilbur Ross's staff, and "we eagerly await further information," the update said. 

Wednesday Morning in the Blogosphere

Los Angeles City Hall under construction 1927

Editorial: Mic Goes Bust(le) - Editor and Publisher

Email’s Next Act: It’s Still About ‘The List’ - Folio

Newspapers are still the modern approach - Estevan Mercury

How Facebook went from friend to frenemy - The Conversation

Media's Fatal Flaw: Ignoring the Mistakes of Newspapers - Wired

“We’re trying to grab people by the collar everyday”: Axios - Vanity Fair

Engaging Digital Non-Subscribers With Micropayments, Metrics - INMA

Wilson Times Co. purchases Wake Weekly newspapers - The Wilson Times

Local newspaper stays off the internet to avoid competition - News 12 New Jersey

Historic newspapers found in Norway attic returned to Rumford - Lewiston Sun Journal

Milwaukee Journal stopped putting every story on social media and tripled its following - Poynter

WSJ: Conde Nast titles to go behind paywall

Condé Nast plans to place all its magazines behind paywalls by year’s end, The Wall Street Journal reported. Glamour, Vogue, GQ, and Bon Appetit are among the titles that will see paywalls. The New Yorker, Vanity Fair and Wired are behind payrolls already. Those titles let readers access four articles a month without subscribing.
“When you put a price tag on something, that must mean you have confidence in the product,” said Pamela Drucker Mann, Conde Nast’s chief revenue and marketing officer, according to WSJ.
New York-based Advance Publications owns Conde Nast. Conde Nast lost $120 million in 2017, but is looking to go back to profitability by 2020, WSJ reports.
In November Conde Nast said that CEO Bob Sauerberg will step down. The company is looking for a new CEO, WSJ said.

Today in Labor History

Organizer Saul Alinsky was born on this date in Chicago, Illinois. – 1909
The Paris Peace Conference established the Commission on International Labour Legislation to draft the constitution of a permanent international labor organization, founding the International Labour Organization (ILO).  Today, as part of the United Nations, the ILO is charged with drafting and overseeing international labor standards. – 1919

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Rasmussen: 36 percent of Americans buy local newspapers

Thirty-six percent of American adults purchase their local newspaper, and 15 percent buy their paper every day or almost every day, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey.
The survey finds that 63 percent of American Adults rarely or never buy a print version of their local newspaper, rising from 57 percent in May and from 30 percent who rarely or never did a decade back.

Breslin and Hamill: Deadline Artists (2019) | Official Trailer | HBO

Breslin and Hamill: Deadline Artists explores the famed writers' intersecting lives and careers while celebrating New York’s grit and charm during the last great era of print journalism.

CIL chooses ABB for retrofit

Centre d’Impression Lausanne, a print center of the Tamedia group in Switzerland, is turning to ABB for a press control retrofit of its Wifag evolution 371 press.
CIL prints various Tamedia products for the French-speaking part of Switzerland including well-known titles such as 24 heures.
The Wifag press consists of five printing towers, two folders and six reelstands. The scope of the order includes the replacement of the control systems on two printing towers and two reelstands and also new section control systems.
The new systems supplied by Switzerland-based ABB are based on its AC500 PLC and will be commissioned without taking the press out of production. The commissioning is scheduled to begin in October of this year.

Tuesday Morning in the Blogosphere

With the L.A. Times favorite tour guide, Darrell Kunitomi, and only remaining tour guide

BuzzFeed reverses course after PTO backlash - Axios

Snow could delay delivery of newspapers - The Oakland Press

Suspected potassium cyanide sent to Japanese newspapers - Reuters

Student Newspapers Are Split On Whether To Stay In Print - WMUK

GOP candidates take page from Trump playbook in bashing media - Poynter

Mexico Officials Make Arrest in Slaying of Radio Journalist - Associated Press

Lee Enterprises, Inc. Acquires Daily Kenosha News and Companion Weekly - EP

GateHouse Media Buys South Bend Tribune, Other Newspapers - South Bend Tribune

We demand BuzzFeed pay out earned paid time off to its recently laid-off employees - Medium

Breslin and Hamill’s brilliant, honest and courageous writing defined NY City journalism - HBO

Newspapers cost more than twice as much today as they did a decade ago - Nieman Journalism Lab

Facebook launches Privacy and Data Use Business Hub

Facebook has launched a new Privacy and Data Use Business Hub The hub centralizes resources that businesses can use to understand how they can protect people’s information when using Facebook, according to the social media giant. The new hub contains information on topics such as Facebook ads, privacy principles and how data is used in our ad products, and guidance to help companies understand rules such as GDPR, Facebook says.
“This year we’ll do more to explain how Facebook uses people’s data and provide people with more transparency and control,” Facebook said in its announcement on the hub. “For example, in the coming months we will launch Clear History, a new control to let you see the information we get about your activity on other apps and websites, and disconnect that information from your account.”
Companies can find the hub at

Today in Labor History

9 to 5, the Movie
Chesapeake and Ohio Canal workers rioted on this date, prompting President Jackson to send in troops. This was the first time American troops were used to suppress a domestic labor dispute. Workers were rebelling because of terrible working conditions and low pay. The canal project had been designed by George Washington and was intended to facilitate transportation of goods from the Chesapeake Bay to the Ohio River Valley. Construction teams were made up mostly of Irish, German, Dutch and black workers who toiled long hours for low wages in dangerous conditions. The use of federal troops set a dangerous precedent that gave business leaders the confidence that they could count on the federal government to quash labor unrest in the future. – 1834
6,000 railway workers struck to demand union recognition and an end to 18-hour workdays. Police and militia busted the strike. – 1889
After Firestone Tire & Rubber in Akron, Ohio arbitrarily fired a worker, workers staged a fifty-five-hour sit-down occupation of the plant.CLICK TO TWEETIt was one of three occupations of the largest tire companies that happened in January.  The companies refused to recognize the United Rubber Workers of America union and ignored demands for fair work rules. – 1936
American Train Dispatchers Department were granted a charter by the AFL-CIO. – 1957
Dolly Parton hit number one on the record charts with the song 9 to 5, her anthem to the daily grind. – 1981
The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 was the first bill signed into law by President Barack Obama, restoring the protection against pay discrimination that was stripped away by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. The gender wage gap continued. – 2009

Western Communications files for bankruptcy

Oregon-based Western Communications has filed for bankruptcy, The Bulletin of Bend, Oregon, reported.
Western Communications owns The Bulletin as well as five papers in Oregon and two in California.
“This is the only way we can preserve our creditors’ investments and our owners’ interests in valuable community assets,” said Betsy McCool, Western Communications. Chairwoman. “Common to our industry, we will put great energy into creating a new future for our media company.”
Western Communications gauges that its debts total more than $10 million owed to more than 1,000 creditors, a court filing says. The company possesses assets of $10 million to $50 million, the court filing says. Its biggest unsecured creditor is newsprint buying association Page Cooperative of King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, which is owed more than $940,000, according to The Bulletin.
Western Communications also filed for Chapter 11 protection in 2011. The company came out of bankruptcy 11 protection in April 2012.

Monday, January 28, 2019

The Early Days of Newspapers

Today in Labor History

The first national coal miners’ union, the American Miners’ Association, was formed. – 1861
The first U.S. unemployment compensation law was enacted in Wisconsin. – 1932CLICK TO TWEET

Monday Morning in the Blogosphere

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Today in Labor History

New York City maids organized to improve working conditions. – 1734
A mine explosion in Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania Left more than 100 dead. – 1891
In Adair v. United States, the United States Supreme Court upheld employers’ “yellow-dog” contracts, which forbade workers from joining a union as a condition of their employment. They were finally outlawed in 1932 in the U.S. under the Norris-LaGuardia Act.- 1908
The first meeting of the International Labor Organization (ILO) was held on this date. – 1920
Kansas miners stuck against compulsory arbitration. – 1920
A 3-cent postage stamp was issued, honoring AFL (American Federation of Labor) founder Samuel Gompers. – 1950
A group of Detroit African-American auto workers known as the Eldon Avenue Axle Plant Revolutionary Union Movement led a wildcat strike against racism and bad working conditions. They were critical of both automakers and the UAW (United Automobile Workers), condemning the seniority system and grievance procedures as racist. – 1969
Hormel workers were locked out for honoring an Ottumwa, Iowa picket line. – 1986
Folk singer and songwriter Pete Seeger died on this date at the age of 94.CLICK TO TWEETSeeger was active in progressive causes his entire life, using music to champion labor, civil rights, women’s rights, peace, and the environmental movement. “I call them all love songs”, he said of his music. – 2014

Sunday Morning in the Blogosphere

Saturday, January 26, 2019

How It Works: Internet of Things

The Internet of Things gives us access to the data from millions of devices. But how does it work, and what can we do with all that data? Find out in this animated tutorial from IBM's Think Academy. For more information on IBM and the Internet of Things, please visit:

Today in Labor History

In what could be considered the first workers’ compensation agreement in America, pirate Henry Morgan pledged his underlings 600 pieces of eight or six slaves to compensate for a lost arm or leg. Also part of the pirate’s code, reports longtime labor and community activist Roger Newell: shares of the booty were equal regardless of race or sex, and shipboard decisions were made collectively. – 1695
The Amalgamated Meat Cutters and Butcher Workmen of North America received a charter from the American Federation of Labor to organize “every wage earner from the man who takes the bullock at the house until it goes into the hands of the consumer”. The union merged with the Retail Clerks International Union in 1979 to form the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union. – 1987
In response to management’s firing of two of boiler room engineers for union activity, Transport Workers Union members, supported by their non-union co-workers, at the Brooklyn-Manhattan Transit Corporation’s Kent Avenue power plant in Brooklyn locked themselves inside and announced that if the men were not reinstated, they would shut down the city’s subway lines. The two men were quickly reinstated unconditionally. – 1937
A handful of American companies announced nearly 60,000 layoffs today, as the recession that began during the George W. Bush presidency charged full-tilt toward what has become known as the Great Recession. – 2009

Friday, January 25, 2019

Dr. Tomorrow warned publishers; they didn’t listen

By Marc Wilson
For many years, one of the top speakers at press association meetings —especially in Canada — was Frank Ogden, a futurist who billed himself as “Dr. Tomorrow.”
He was among the very first to forewarn publishers — and leaders in other industries — about the potential disruptions that would be caused by the intenet.
“It’s a whole new ballgame out there,” he told audiences as early as 1990 (even before the World Wide Web began). “Either you embrace the technological changes, or you’ll be left behind.”
More dramatically, he warned, “Either get on the steamroller of change, or become part of the road.”
Too few listened
Some even tried to assault him. In fact, he was proud to proclaim that, by his own estimates, more than 2,000 people had walked out on his speeches.
“I’ve had seven coffee cups and one chair thrown at me,” he noted publicly and proudly. “Three people even vomited.”
Many challenged his credentials (and even his sanity).
He conceded, “I have no academic qualifications whatsoever. That’s my biggest asset. Instead of a Ph.D., I have an LSD.”
He’d worked as a counselor for years in a Canadian psychiatric clinic that successfully — he claimed — used the mind-altering drug LSD for treatments. He sampled the drug, he said, claiming “LSD opened my mind. It allowed me to think in new ways, to see the world differently.”
He warned us to alter our thinking, too, with or without the aid of chemicals.
I was on the same program with him in Canada, in 2000 or 2001. In the makeshift green room we shared he told me privately, “I’m nearly 80 years old. I don’t make any prediction that isn’t at least 20 years out so I won’t be around to be held accountable.” (He died in Vancouver at age 92 in 2013. Many of his predictions HAVE come true.)
Unlike Dr. Tomorrow, many speakers at newspaper association meetings since then have offered less-than-stellar advice.
At one international journalism conference held in Paris in the mid-1990s, industry leaders generally agreed that the best course of action would be to put all newspaper content on the World Wide Web without charge. The theory was that advertising would follow the eyeballs. Many in the newspaper industry have been trying to put that genie back in the bottle ever since.
Then there were those who advised raising circulation rates to make up for circulation declines. Offer less, charge more, and ignore the competitive landscape. Offer less in an ever-increasing competitive environment.
Much advice was offered that the industry needed to cut its way to profitability. That resulted in fewer and smaller pages, and smaller newsrooms.
And there those who said, “Let’s do everything we can to protect print. Maybe the internet will go away.”
Another theory often ballyhooed at conventions was that the newspapers needed to do everything possible to enhance search engine (and social media) optimization so Google, Facebook and others could distribute the locally produced content.
That theory worked — for Google and Facebook!
Since Google was founded in 1998, its value has climbed to almost one trillion dollars. Facebook, founded in 2004, now has some 2.2 billion monthly visitors and a net worth of some $150 billion.
In the meantime, newspapers have fared not so well.
Pew Research says newspaper newsroom employees dropped by 45 percent from 2008 to 2017, from about 71,000 workers in 2008 to 39,000 in 2017. And since 2017, at least a third of all large newspapers have had major layoffs.
Pew Research also notes that total weekday circulation for U.S. daily newspapers — both print and digital — fell 8 percent in 2016, marking the 28th consecutive year of declines.
“If you are not aboard the steamroller of change,” Dr. Tomorrow warned, “you stand a good chance of being part of the road.”
Instead of listening to Dr. Tomorrow, folks threw chairs and coffee cups at him. They walked out of his speeches and vomited when they should have been taking notes and taking action.
He told them. They should have gotten aboard the steamroller.