3 Comments · Wednesday, March 5, 2014
This is my last article as a staff writer at CityBeat.
At the end of the week, I will be leaving Cincinnati for Washington,
D.C., to join a new journalistic venture.
0 Comments · Wednesday, January 29, 2014
The media does a terrible job explaining
public policies, and one of the major causes is reporters’ reliance on
“he says, she says.”
0 Comments · Wednesday, January 8, 2014
The media is far from perfect, and 2013 provided good evidence of that.
0 Comments · Wednesday, November 13, 2013
NKY Republican: Paul’s Plagiarism Is Liberal Media’s Fault: Those of us who thought the term “liberal
media” died sometime around the time Sarah Palin quit her job as a
politician to write books and say crazy stuff on TV were happy to
learn today that a Northern Kentucky Republican is still blaming those
bastards (wait, is that us?).
0 Comments · Wednesday, November 6, 2013
The student paper’s
volunteer adviser, Emily Grannis, who also is a Reporter’s Committee for
Freedom of the Press fellow, talked with student editor John Vodrey on
the phone while he was in the station. That helped Vodrey cite
appropriate state statute and legal language to ask for an incident
by German Lopez
Posted In: News
at 01:08 PM | Permalink
Numbers down more than 10 percent over the past year
Many of Ohio’s major newspapers, including The Cincinnati Enquirer,
lost thousands of readers in the past year, but some managed to beat
trends and gain in certain categories, according to a circulation audit
from the Alliance for Audited Media.
The audit found The Enquirer’s average daily
circulation, which excludes Saturday and Sunday, down to 117,754 from
132,076 between September 2012 and September 2013. Sunday circulation
fell to 235,515 from 262,876. The numbers represent a 10.8 percent decline in average daily circulation and 10.4 percent on Sundays.The Akron Beacon Journal and Youngstown Vindicator also saw negative trends, with average daily and Sunday circulation dropping.
Cleveland’s The Plain Dealer lost some of its
Sunday circulation, but comparable statistics weren’t available for
average daily circulation because the newspaper transitioned from daily
delivery to three-times-a-week delivery earlier in the year.
But The Toledo Blade and Dayton Daily News actually increased their average daily and Sunday circulation.
The Columbus Dispatch also upped its average daily circulation, but Sunday circulation fell.For newspapers, dropping circulation coincides with more readers getting their news from the Internet and alternative
sources over the past few years. The alternatives have cost newspapers around the country
readers and advertising revenue, and many have responded with cutbacks in staff and
overall news coverage.
In August, The Enquirer moved and laid off staff from its Kentucky and West Chester offices. The layoffs came as parent company Gannett dismissed more than 400 workers around the country, according to estimates from Gannett Blog.Other media outlets appear to be taking advantage of the new vacancy. The Business Courier reported on Monday that Cox Media’s Journal-News is increasing its presence in Butler and Warren counties to compete with The Enquirer. The move follows Cox Media’s decision to merge its Hamilton and Middletown newspapers into a single entity that covers both cities and counties.
by German Lopez
Posted In: News
at 02:18 PM | Permalink
Parent company Gannett lays off 400-plus around nation
Although it’s moving staff out of its offices in Kentucky, The Cincinnati Enquirer intends to continue publishing a daily Kentucky edition with unique content for Northern Kentucky.
Editor Steve Wilson was among those laid off from The Kentucky Enquirer yesterday. He will remain at the newspaper for four weeks, along with several colleagues who were also laid off.
Wilson told CityBeat that The Enquirer isn’t backing away from its commitment to northern Kentucky, but acknowledges problems posed by the layoffs.
“Clearly, all things being equal, you want to have
reporters based in the area they’re covering. That just makes sense.
Everybody would agree with that,” Wilson says. “But in this case, they
apparently had their reasons that made sense to them.”
Wilson won’t speculate on the reasons, but he cites cost
concerns as an ongoing problem. “Gannett, like most companies, is very
bottom-line-driven, and they had to do something to reduce expenses,” he
says, pointing to the continuing trend of downsizing in the news industry.
Following the demise of The Cincinnati Post in 2007, The Cincinnati Enquirer
and its Kentucky edition made strides to appeal to northern Kentucky
readers. One example: The newspaper stopped referring to the region as
“Greater Cincinnati,” instead adopting “Greater Cincinnati and northern
Kentucky” — a lede-unfriendly moniker that was meant to show The Enquirer was serious about reaching out.But a source close to The Enquirer who asked to remain anonymous questioned the success of those efforts, given yesterday’s layoffs.
Gannett Blog claims 23 people were laid off at Enquirer
offices, but it’s difficult to confirm the report because of Gannett’s
secrecy with staffing issues. More than 400 people lost their jobs at
Gannett newspapers around the nation, according to the blog.
Based on information gathered so far, the local layoffs span through the Cincinnati and Kentucky versions of The Enquirer, Community Press and Community Recorder.
A source close to the situation told CityBeat
that eight reporters, two editors and one photographer are moving from
the Kentucky offices to downtown Cincinnati, with the
remaining Kentucky staff members laid off. Staff members were also moved from the newspaper’s West Chester
office, which covered Butler and Warren counties.Original reports claimed the Kentucky and West Chester offices were closing, but they will apparently remain open for reporters in a limited capacity.
The source gave the names of five people who were laid
off: Wilson; Bill Cieslewicz, a mid-level editor; Jackie Demaline,
theatre critic and arts writer; Paul McKibben, breaking news reporter;
and Ealer Wadlington, listing coordinator.
When asked about the layoffs, Gannett spokesperson Jeremy Gaines told journalism industry blogger Jim Romenesko, “Some USCP (U.S. Community Publishing) sites are making cuts to align their business plans with local market conditions.”
The nationwide layoffs come a couple weeks after Gannett CEO Gracia Martore proudly claimed on July 22, “We are accelerating our transformation into the ‘New Gannett’ every day.”Updated on Nov. 4 at 12:03 p.m.: Added final layoff numbers from Gannett Blog.Updated on Aug. 6 at 11:13 a.m.: Added the latest layoff numbers from Gannett Blog.Updated on Aug. 6 at 10:47 a.m.: Reports now say that The Enquirer will keep its Kentucky and West Chester offices open in a limited capacity. The story was updated to reflect the latest news.
0 Comments · Wednesday, October 30, 2013
I still object to shield laws. They are a de facto
form of licensing reporters. You are your sources are unprotected if
you’re not included in the definition of “journalist” or your work isn’t
by German Lopez
Yvette Simpson says man quoted in WCPO story harassed her with racist remarks
Councilwoman Yvette Simpson is questioning why WCPO used
a man named Jim Kiefer as a source for a story after he harassed her on social media with racist insults.
WCPO’s Kevin Osborne
quoted Kiefer in a story, identifying him as a supporter for John Cranley’s mayoral
campaign. (Full disclosure: Osborne formerly worked for CityBeat.) When Simpson saw the story with Kiefer as a source, she says she immediately recognized him as someone who has repeatedly harassed her with racist remarks on Facebook. Kiefer's Facebook page was publicly viewable prior to Simpson calling him out on Twitter yesterday, but it has since been made private. On Oct. 20, the day before WCPO's story was published, Kiefer posted a message on his Facebook
wall that said, “For my pick as worst councilperson in cincinnati
(sic).... Evette (sic) getto (sic) Simpson!” Although the post included
various grammatical and spelling errors, Kiefer then attached an image
that said, “No you may not ‘Axe’ me a question. I don't speak Walmart.”Several of Simpson’s colleagues, including Councilman Chris Seelbach and City
Council candidate Mike Moroski, have come
to Simpson’s defense after she posted the image. The issue for Simpson is whether a media outlet should be
using Kiefer as a source, considering his images and posts were publicly viewable on Facebook. Simpson says Osborne never responded to
her email asking whether he or WCPO is aware of Kiefer’s history. Osborne is Facebook friends with Kiefer.CityBeat contacted WCPO News Director Alex Bongiorno by phone and email to ask about WCPO’s policy for vetting and identifying sources, but no response was given prior to the publishing of this story.WCPO’s story detailed criticisms from Cranley
supporters against opponent Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls, who Simpson supports. Specifically, the
story questioned why Qualls allegedly never sought an opinion from the
Ohio Board of Ethics over whether her work as a realtor presents a
potential conflict of interest with her support for the streetcar
project, which could increase property values — and perhaps Qualls’ compensation as a realtor — along its route.It turns out Qualls had asked for a professional opinion on the ethical issue at least two times before,
but the city solicitor deemed the connection
between Qualls’ work and the streetcar project too indirect and
speculative to present a conflict of interest, according to an email
from City Solicitor John Curp copied to CityBeat and other media outlets.Kiefer called CityBeat after people on social media discussed CityBeat’s various calls for comment for this story. Kiefer said the images were supposed to be jokes. “You have to have a sense of humor,” he said. The Cranley campaign says it has and wants nothing to do with Kiefer.“John (Cranley) wouldn’t know Jim Kiefer if he walked past him in
the street right now. It’s not someone that he’s ever met. It’s not
someone that he’s ever dealt with. It’s not someone that the campaign
has ever dealt with,” says Jay Kincaid, Cranley’s campaign director.
“Whatever his views are don’t reflect those of John.”Kincaid also points out that Cranley’s record goes against
some of the bigotry perpetuated by Kiefer's posts. While on City Council, Cranley
championed and helped pass an anti-racial profiling ordinance and LGBT
protections in local hate crime laws.Simpson’s history with Kiefer goes back to at least June,
when Simpson says Kiefer went on a racist tirade against her on Facebook
in the middle of an online discussion over the city’s parking plan. The
discussion has been deleted since then, but Simpson says
Kiefer told her to never return to the West Side of Cincinnati.This is not the first time Kiefer touted images with bigoted connotations on
his Facebook wall. In one instance, he “liked” an image of President
Barack Obama in tribal regalia. In another, he posted an image of
Barney Frank that mocked the former congressman’s homosexuality.
1 Comment · Wednesday, October 16, 2013
I’ll be the odd man out for now. If I
have to write about Manning, I’ll probably refer to him as Bradley and
explain why he now calls himself Chelsea.