The [Tuesday] Papers
By Steve Rhodes
Ugh. I did something around 2 a.m. that I should not have done. I'm not even sure exactly what my mistake was, except in general terms. It had something to do with some ampersands in the coding of our People, Places & Things section that do not play well with our upgraded version of Movable Type. And guess what? Somehow I made the entire section disappear. Working on getting it back; shouldn't be too complicated once I get someone who actually knows the code, like my art director, to bail me out. Sorry.
On to the news.
1. Is ShamPow taken?
Actually, not funny at all.
2. The Sun-Times has lost sports columnist Greg Couch to AOL - which already has former S-T'er Jay Mariotti in its growing stable.
"They're hiring a big staff," Couch told the Trib's Phil Rosenthal. "They're scouring the country to find the right people. It's just a different attitude right now."
BREAKING 7:24 A.M.: Sun-Times Files For Bankruptcy.
3. "Editor Nancy Barnes says the Strib wants to let print customers know that they're getting something that others aren't; thus, investigative projects, deeply reported nonbreaking news stories, and 'beautifully written feature stories' won't be rushed to the web."
Investigative reporting isn't a commodity - unlike the rest of the crap you surround it with.
And is Barnes suggesting that some stories will appear in print first? (And as if stories haven't been rushed to print; those of us who have worked in newsrooms know this happens all the time.)
4. Is the Tribune "stealing" content from the Sun-Times?
5. "Jay Rosen, who will be senior adviser to the [Huffington Post] investigative unit, writes: 'You might say the operating principle is: 'report once, run anywhere' because work the Fund produces will be available for any publication or Web site to publish at the same time it is posted on The Huffington Post."
It's a new world, folks.
6. "Internet advertising rose in 2008, according to a report released Monday, but the growth is starting to flatten," the New York Times reports.
"'The economy has had a significant impact on the short-term growth of the Internet advertising market,' David Silverman, a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, which contributed to the report, said in a conference call.
"Internet advertising in the United States grew to $23.4 billion in 2008, an increase of 10.6 percent from 2007, according to the Internet Advertising Revenue Report from the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a trade group representing online advertisers, as well as PricewaterhouseCoopers.
"That was the only category of advertising spending that grew in 2008 other than cable television, which rose 7.8 percent, according to Nielsen figures supplied for the report."
It's important to separate out the effects of the current financial crisis on all kinds of businesses from the future in a recovered economy in which trendlines like those we've seen in online advertising are likely to pick back up.
7. Congratulations to Erica Christoffer and Becky Schlikerman for being Lisagor finalists in Best Online Investigative/Public Service Reporting for their two-part city council investigation, "Out Of Order" and "Off The Record." Congratulations, too, to the Beachwood Reporter, which helped conceive of and advise on the project (along with Jay Stewart and the Better Government Association) and published the results.
8. "Not every online sector is getting crushed in the economy. Health sites continues to thrive, even in the midst of the larger drop in online ad sales. In a report this morning on WebMD (NSDQ: WBMD), Citi Analyst Mark Mahaney notes that 'we believe the online health category should be poised for double-digit revenue growth in '09'," paidContent reports.
Good! One of my site ideas for The Beachwood Media Company is in the health space; two, actually, if you count a project a pal and professional acquaintance has proposed partnering on.
9. Rick Wagoner is a nice start, but we have a few other folks in mind for whom the president should fire.
10. "Should protesters picket City Hall during the International Olympic Committee visit? 63.7% YES."
"Did protesters stack the vote by clicking a lot? 100% YES."
Not that we disagree. Just sayin'.
11. Rescuing The Lab Rat. A Chicago group wants the poor creatures spared.
12. Stimulating O'Hare. How we suspect the money may be spent.
13. Alexi: Funny Money Man. How he'll raise cash.
14. Welcome to Chicago.
The Beachwood Tip Line: Stimulated.
Posted on March 31, 2009
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