Last fall, The New Yorker editor David Remnick told Fast Company that baseball writer Roger Angell had adapted to the Web “with as much energy as a 25-year-old blogger.” Albeit a blogger with the rare privilege of posting if and when they see fit.
At press time, Angell’s most recent New Yorker blog post was dated Nov. 5, 2015. And in fact, not long after that youthful praise, Angell told Remnick on an episode of New Yorker Radio that he was contemplating “stopping blogging,” because he felt his online items were not up to the level of his print pieces.
Coincidentally, another bit 95-25 Angell juxtaposition was shared this month by Tim Wendel, the original editor of USA Today’s Baseball Weekly. The weekly magazine, launched April 11, 1991, changed its name to USA Weekly Sports Weekly in 2002 as it expanded to cover NFL Football and, occasionally, other sports. From Wendel’s essay:
Copies of Baseball Weekly showed up in movies such as Summer Catch and Shallow Hal and in episodes of Eastbound & Down and Family Guy. White remembers Bob Dylan photographed reading Baseball Weekly in a convenience store.
My favorite “a-ha moment” came sometime during the playoffs after that first  season. I was often seated next to Roger Angell of The New Yorker, another who would be enshrined in Cooperstown, in the auxiliary press box. During a game, he told me, “You guys put out a great magazine. I read it every week.”
For what began as a roll of the dice, there are were no sweeter words.
Indeed. All that’s left this year, in print or on the Web, is for Angell to memorialize the final season of Vin Scully. What Scully is to baseball broadcasting, as many have noted, Angell is to baseball writing.
The final episode of Grantland podcast Do You Like Prince Movies? posted Oct. 1, 2015. This month, in the immediate aftermath of Prince’s death, Alex Pappademas, now with MTV News, and Wesley Morris, over at The New York Times, reconnected via telephone to discuss the musician’s legacy on Dearly Beloved: MTV News Remembers Prince, part of the first wave of offerings from MTV News’ new Podcast Network.
Here’s Morris, from that conversation:
“Once I figured out that Prince was for me, he was really for me. And he was for me because he did have this sort of wide-ranging sensibility. He did like rock and funk and jazz. He made all the connections… He was obviously Jimi Hendrix, he was also George Clinton, he was also to some extent Bill Withers, Bette Davis. All those things are in the music, they’re all synthesized through him. I wasn’t lost as a kid, in any particular way, but I definitely felt found through him.”
Morris goes on to recall his favorite “dirty Prince” (hint: it’s a portion of “Little Red Corvette”). In Part 2 of Dearly Beloved, posted this past week, there are some brief recollections from Tom Garneau, a recording engineer who worked with Prince at Paisley Park from 1989 through 1996.
Meanwhile, in Episode 1 of The Stakes, a loosely-themed politics podcast, MTV senior political correspondent Ana Marie Cox chats with MTV political reporter Jane Coaston about the latter’s April 21 MTV News essay “Prince Made Me Free: For Queer People Like Me, Prince Was a Road Map.” There are also interviews with Soraya Chemaly, co-author of The Verge’s recent examination of Internet comments moderation history, and Axel Alonso, editor in chief of Marvel Comics.
Keep an eye on the evolving MTV Podcast Network here.
Brad Elders comes to Time Inc. as group publisher of the Sports Illustrated Group, which includes SI, Golf, SI Kids, FanSided and 120 Sports. He had been general manager of Partner Studio by AOL and was previously a senior vp of sales at the Internet company. “As the SI Group continues to aggressively develop its brands, products and services across the multimedia and multi-platform landscape, Brad is the perfect person to lead our sales and marketing efforts during these dynamic times,” Rich Battista, president of Time Inc.’s video, and entertainment and sports group, wrote in a memo…
Harris Publications closes its doors, which means 85 employees will lose their jobs. Its titles included hip hop magazine XXL, Naturally, Danny Seo and Mopar Action. Chairman Stanley Harris said the decision was prompted by the struggle to drive newsstand sales… Departures hires Candy Pratts as contributing editor. She’s held many positions in the past, including creative director of Vogue.com and Ralph Lauren, executive fashion director at Style.com and fashion director at Harper’s Bazaar… Leslie Pariseau is the new special projects editor at Saveur. She had been founding editor at Punch and has written for outlets that include New York, Vanity Fair, GQ and The New York Times… And there are changes at Slate, Inc. and more…
The set visit took place in Weymouth, Mass. Sept. 10, 2015, the same day the New England Patriots opened their season at home in Foxboro against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The embargo lifted yesterday, April 28, and from an inside-entertainment-journalism POV, the report to read is the one posted by The Verge entertainment editor Emily Yoshida.
Overall, Yoshida was underwhelmed by her set visit experience. She makes clear at the beginning that her outlet declined an offer for complimentary accommodation, and later gives a pretty good description of what it feels like to be a part of roundtable interview sessions:
The roundtable interview format is strangely dehumanizing. Rather than establishing a rapport with your subject, the Q&A is reduced to a bunch of Type-As of varying aptitude fighting for time to impress an authority figure. Your questions are not only for the subject, they are for the flock of peers around you, to prove that you can ask more meaningful and effective questions than they can. The subject, meanwhile, will never see you as more than an intrusive leech interrupting their workday with some studio-mandated hullaballoo.
Yoshida goes on to compare the roundtable vibe to the “kiddy table at Thanksgiving” and later deems the media pen at the converted South Weymouth Naval Air Station to be “our weird little losers corner.” We’ve done our fair share of roundtable interviews and it’s definitely a trip to be at the mercy of the personalities and professional approaches of the other participants. Add to that, occasionally, the very unhappy mood of an A-lister or two.
The Verge wound up getting an exclusive on a Ghostbusters trailer, but Yoshida writes she would have preferred some follow-up one-on-one time with either Paul Feig or screenwriter Katie Dippold.
Previously on FishbowlNY:
A Tempest in the Hollywood Junket Teapot
Johnny Depp Stays in Character for Pirates Press Junket
Here’s a look at the posts that made the most buzz the past seven days.The Daily Dot Grabs Staffers From Newsweek, Rolling Stone and PBS Katherine Heigl Recalls How She Became Shoehorned by the Media Hearst Magazines Names Exec Creative Director for ‘Blend Line’ Ken Li Named Managing Editor of Newsweek At Garry Shandling’s Memorial, Some Startling Family History
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Twenty years ago today, The Wall Street Journal launched its site, wsj.com. The web has changed just slightly since then.
While the Journal made waves for charging readers to access online content (what a concept!), for the first few months after wsj.com made its 1996 debut, the site was entirely free. That was an intentional move, explained Journal editor for specialized news products and events Dave Pettit.
“It was always the case that the Journal was going to charge for its online edition,” Pettit told Nieman Lab. “We launched in April and in August they launched the subscription. The trial period was free—the earlier prototype was also free—but there was always the expectation that business news content, in particular Journal content, would be behind a subscriber paywall.”
Edward Schumacher-Matos has enjoyed a spectacular journalism career. Prior to serving as NPR ombudsman from 2011 to 2015, he oversaw New York Times bureaus in Buenos Aires and Madrid and served as associate publisher of Spanish and Portuguese editions of the Wall Street Journal Americas.
Schumacher-Matos is now applying that same kind of worldly view as director of the Edward R. Murrow Center for a Digital World at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. From a profile of the Class of 1972 graduate’s efforts by Laura Ferguson for TuftsNow:
This summer, the center and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars are hosting a roundtable discussion in Bogotá, Colombia, that will bring together digital rights experts to design model Internet laws in Latin America. “Digital rights are starting to become seen as a human rights issue,” says Schumacher-Matos. It’s a highly relevant conversation for Latin America, says Schumacher-Matos, as “laws that give people the right to Internet access are viewed by many as essential to economic development…”
Schumacher-Matos wants to put the Murrow Center smack in the thick of this digital revolution. Working with media outlet partners in India and China, the center is developing an online interactive news platform that will “bring together different points of view from different parts of the world in a way that is compelling.”
Earlier this month, in between visits by Anderson Cooper and 60 Minutes executive producer Jeff Fager, the Fletcher School hosted its Second Annual Ideas Exchange, a series of Ted Talks-style speeches. Videos from April 14 are not up yet, but those from last year, including the one below featuring Schumacher-Matos, give a good idea of what is going on here.
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Patrick J. Sloyan is visiting Iowa’s Grinnell College today, to meet with and speak to students. No doubt one of the topics will be his 2015 book The Politics of Deception: JFK’s Secret Decisions on Vietnam, Civil Rights, and Cuba.
Sloyan listened to hundreds of hours of Kennedy audio recordings while researching the book. As he told Megan Tcheng, a writer with Grinnell’s student newspaper The Scarlet and Black, ahead of today’s visit, his view of Kennedy changed greatly as a result of what he discovered:
“ As I got in to it, certain tape recordings leapt out at me. There was one conversation, [about the execution of a coup South Vietnam,] where JFK approved bribing a Vietnamese general. The general took the bribe, led the coup, assassinated the president of South Vietnam, destroyed the government stability in Saigon, destroyed the military in Saigon — and Kennedy was assassinated three weeks later. Lyndon Johnson went to his grave blaming Kennedy for that overthrow. That was the most startling thing I uncovered in my book.
Sloyan won the Pulitzer Prize in 1992 for International Reporting, for a series of articles on “friendly fire” incidents and other American battlefield tactics during the Gulf War.
And because we have been guilty of this kind of brain-freeze name switch ourselves, more than once, we noted that Tcheng mistakenly in her headline and intro paragraph refers to her interview subject as Robert Sloyan, perhaps thinking of JFK’s brother while writing. We’ve let her know.
Photo via: Facebook
Michael Regan, who has guided 21st Century Fox’s legislative and regulatory moves in D.C. for more than a decade, is stepping down.
Regan most recently served as 21st Century Fox’s executive vp of global public policy. He joined News Corp. in 2001 as senior vp of government affairs. Regan was promoted to executive vp in 2004.
“Our senior management has counted on, and valued, Mike’s thoughtful leadership on so many complex regulatory and legislative issues over his distinguished tenure,” said 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch, in a statement. “We are grateful for his guidance and many contributions during a dynamic period of global growth for our company.”
The New Yorker is getting into the tech conference game with the launch of TechFest.
The day-long event will feature New Yorker editor David Remnick and other New Yorker staffers in conversation with important techies like Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, Tinder CEO Sean Rad and more.
A day pass for TechFest—October 7 at Cedar Lake—includes meals, snacks, cocktails and access to all the main stage programming. The ticket also comes with a one-year subscription to the New Yorker. Current subscribers will have their subscriptions extended a year.
Sounds like a lot, right? Well, a ticket to TechFest is $1,500. Yes, we’re serious.
If you have that kind of cash, tickets are available here.
Vogue has launched a new iPhone app featuring curated content, video and the latest fashion news.
As you can see from the above video, Vogue editor Anna Wintour even (allegedly) used it and approved.
The app will also provide instant updates on the May 2 Met Gala, because it’s important to immediately know which celebrities dressed like your grandma’s couch.
Notified on Thursday that Harris Publications is shutting down, employees have until 6 p.m. tonight to clear out their desks. The family-owned publisher, located at 1115 Broadway, had been in business for over 35 years.
Per Keith J. Kelly, chairman Stanley Harris is blaming a familiar terrible twosome: the rise of digital media and the decline of newsstand sales. From Kelly’s item:
Said Danny Seo: “There were signs… They were slowly folding titles every week, including Rides, Small Business Magazine, Juicy, the beauty titles.”
Seo said his own magazine was turning a profit, “but one magazine can’t lift one company, and I’m saddened to hear about their closure.”
Other publications affected besides Naturally, Danny Seo include Real Gardens, Paint It, XXL and Celebrity Hairstyles. Harris Publications should not be confused with Harris Publishing, another niche magazine publisher based in Idaho.
The New York Times CEO Mark Thompson and CRO Meredith Kopit Levien have been sued for allegedly creating “an environment rife with discrimination.”
The lawsuit, filed by former Times staffers Ernestine Grant and Marjorie Walker, claimed that under Thompson and Levien, “age, sex and race discrimination became the modus operandi at the Times.”
“Unbeknownst to the world at large, not only does the Times have an ideal customer (young, white, wealthy), but also an ideal staffer (young, white, unencumbered with a family) to draw that purported ideal customer,” the lawsuit states.
In a statement to The Guardian, Times communications head Eileen Murphy dismissed the lawsuit.
“This lawsuit contains a series of recycled, scurrilous and unjustified attacks on both Mark Thompson and Meredith Levien,” said Murphy. “It also completely distorts the realities of the work environment at the New York Times. We strongly disagree with any claim that The Times, Mr. Thompson or Ms. Levien have discriminated against any individual or group of employees. The suit is entirely without merit and we intend to fight it vigorously in court.”
Woven Digital, which recently acquired HitFix, has named Eileen Carty its first chief revenue officer. Carty comes to the company from PopSugar, where she most recently served as executive vp of brand partnerships.
Prior to her time at PopSugar, Carty worked for Glam Media and MySpace.
In a memo obtained by AdAge, Woven Digital CEO Colin Digiaro said Carty “has a long history of building revenue organizations and strategies from the ground-up.”
Perhaps the best thing about the illustrious newspaper career of William Forrest “Blackie” Sherrod, which began in 1946 at the Texas Telegram and went on to encompass the Fort Worth Press, Dallas Times Herald and Dallas Morning News, is that it came to an end before the full implosion of the print media world. Sherrod, retired since 2003, passed away today at age 96.
From an op-ed in the Morning News:
By the time The Dallas Morning News hired him in 1985, he had long been the gold standard for Texas sportswriting. He would write sports columns for another decade before cutting back to his popular “Scattershooting” column on Sundays and a weekly piece for the editorial pages… No writer would be so imitated over the decades or inspire more careers in this business.
“He was different from the other guys,” said Roger Staubach, the former Cowboys quarterback. “You’d sit down and know you’re gonna read Blackie’s column. He definitely had a following.”
Golfer Don January called him “the best writer I ever read.” The late University of Texas football coach Darrell Royal, with whom Sherrod wrote one of the only two books he ever finished, once said he always enjoyed being interviewed by him.
“He’s different and clever,” Royal said. “I was never bored, talking to him or reading him.”
Carroll moved from the U.S. to Toronto after working in theater production and found his greatest success as a CBC-TV series actor. More recently, he had moved to Huntsville, Ontario to be near his daughter. From Edmiston’s piece:
Carroll fell in with the town’s fledgling community radio station.
In 2010, he signed on just to do the afternoon show, but soon became a driving force — taking on other shows and helping Hunters Bay Radio grow from an online operation in the basement of a house into a 60-person FM radio station covering much of Ontario’s Muskoka cottage country.
Carroll, who battled cancer, was listening to Hunters Bay Radio during his final moments at a local hospice. The sequence of on-air events that sent him off is both sad and perfect. There’s a nice video tribute in the Post piece, as well. Carroll was 60. RIP.
H/T: Rick Wharton