Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Feds helped pay for survey of journalists

SF Public Press, the nonprofit newsgathering organization, disclosed today that some of the research it commissioned for its series on layoffs in the Bay Area news industry was funded in part with a subcontract from the U.S. Department of Labor.

However, Public Press in an unbylined statement said none of the federal money went to pay journalists.

Public Press today posted the following:
    The Public Press won a subcontract on a federal Department of Labor study of displacement of journalists in the San Francisco Bay Area during the last decade, in collaboration with Natelson Dale Group in Yorba Linda, California. 
    The contractor on the “Research Study of Workforce Dislocation Among San Francisco Bay Area Journalists” was the North Valley Job Training Consortium, or NOVA, whose aim was to provide the legions of jobless journalists opportunities to improve their skills or transition to other kinds of work. 
    The Public Press was paid to hire and manage a team of researchers early this year to track down thousands of current and former Bay Area journalists, of whom more than 700 completed a detailed online survey called the San Francisco Bay Area Journalist Census. Visit journalistcensus.org to read the full report. 
    We used the expertise we acquired through that research to launch a more targeted explanatory project about the state of the local news media. The Department of Labor contract was not, however used to pay journalists.
Funding also came from Spot.us, a website that allows the public to contribute toward reporting projects.

KTVU-KICU GM McVay promoted to Atlanta post

Tim McVay, KTVU-KICU vice president and general manager since 2004, is moving to Atlanta to take the same position at WSB-TV, according to a statement from the owner of the stations, Cox Broadcasting.
McVay has spent his entire 32-year television career with Cox. Before arriving in Oakland, he was at Cox stations in Dayton, Pittsburgh and WSB Atlanta. The Cox chain is based in Atlanta, where its major newspaper property, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, is located. Even though Atlanta is a smaller market, McVay will be heading up the chain’s flagship station. No replacement has been announced.

Chronicle introduces iPad app

The two giants in the Bay Area newspaper business are taking different approaches to their iPad apps.

Last week, the Bay Area News Group came out with its "Bay Area News" app. It's free and brings together the content of all the BANG papers, such as the Mercury News, Contra Costa Times and Oakland Tribune.

Today the Chronicle released an app that allows readers to read an edition of the paper that has been designed specifically for the iPad screen for $5.99 a month or $59.99 a year. For the month of June, the app is free.

The big difference is that the BANG app is free while the Chron intends to charge starting in July. Another difference is that the content of the BANG app is the same as the websites of BANG papers, while the Chron is redesigning its pages for the iPad and providing additional content.

In addition to stories from the print edition, the Chron iPad app will include breaking news, videos and traffic reports, the Chron said in its announcement this morning. In fact, the Chron said content will be pushed to the app before it is posted on SFGate. The Chron iPad edition will also include “interactive advertising” from GM, Chase, Verizon and Union Pacific.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

KPIX promotes longtime weekend weatherman

Karnow and Martin  
KPIX has promoted longtime weekend weathercaster Lawrence Karnow to weekdays. He’ll be on the morning and noon newscasts.

Erika Martin, formerly with KCRA Sacramento, has replaced him on weekends.

Karnow, who grew up in Salinas, began his career at KSBW and joined KPIX in 1997.

“We have been very fortunate to have an individual of such expertise as Lawrence hold down the weather fort on weekends for many years.  Now, it is especially gratifying to move our ‘home grown’ meteorologist into this significantly larger role within the news organization” said President and General Manager Ron Longinotti, in announcing the move.

Karnow's wife, Sharon Chin is a freelance reporter at CBS 5.

Frequent litigant sues newspaper

The SF Weekly has an interesting story about what happens to a newspaper that runs a series of stories about a woman accused of improperly using the courts to her advantage. Of course, the answer is, she sues the newspaper. The newspaper is the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, and gist of the stories was that the woman, Gwendolyn Smith, repeatedly moved into dwellings and then used her expertise as a paralegal to attempt to live rent-free. She’s suing in U.S. District Court for $2.5 million, claiming she was defamed by being placed in a false light. The SF Weekly called the woman and tried to pin down what exactly the PD got wrong. “Smith wouldn’t specify which facts the paper got wrong, saying ‘the specific facts will be developed in litigation.’” PD managing editor Bob Swofford responded to the SF Weekly, saying "Our story accurately portrayed the litigation that Ms. Smith was involved in, and we intend to move to dismiss the case.”

Thursday, May 26, 2011

ABC names new general manager for KGO-TV

ABC has named its owned stations digital chief, William Burton, as the new president and GM of KGO-TV, according to B&C and TV Spy. Burton replaces Valari Dobson Staab, who is moving on to head NBC's owned stations group.

Burton has headed the ABC O&O's digital media initiatives since 2006. From 1994 to 2006, he was vice president of programming and director of creative services at KABC in LA. He's also worked at KUSA Denver and WPVI Philadelphia.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Kessler's move to NBC Bay Area being "reassessed"

Former KPIX morning anchor John Kessler says on his
Facebook page
that he jumped the gun when announcing he had a new job at KNTV NBC Bay Area. His announcement "caused a real ruckus" in the KNTV newsroom, and Kessler said his new gig is being reassessed by management.
    While posting on LinkedIn, I left my position as "anchor." That, understandabl[y], didn't sit well with the NBC Bay Area anchors. My mistake. My apologies to them. Noted both here and on LinkedIn, I wasn't sure what I'd be doing... It was a freelance position. Because of the turmoil I caused, my going to NBC Bay Area will be "reassessed" in a few weeks. I apologize to my colleagues at 11.. and to you.

Media blogger Rich Lieberman, who has been following Kessler's moves closely, defended the veteran anchor:
    If you're going to castigate a new hire, don't mess with Kess. He's a good guy and he has a huge following. Women like him — men too. That usually adds up to bigger numbers and better demos — can you relate to that? So, the other anchors were pissed? They haven't earned the right. Again, its not as if the numbers are great. Hell, that's the reason you went after Kessler and Wang to begin with, take that chip off your shoulder. You're a major-market station acting like a CW affiliate in Tulsa. Get a life, for god's sake. And don't renege on the Kessler deal.

Former Merc editor Ceppos to head LSU j-school

Jerry Ceppos, former executive editor of the Mercury News and more recently dean of the j-school at the University of Nevada, Reno, is moving on to a similar post at Louisiana State University. Ceppos has been appointed dean of the Manship School of Mass Communications at LSU in Baton Rouge effective July 1. Ceppos headed the Merc's newsroom from 1995 to 1999. From 1999 to 2005 was vice president of news for Knight Ridder, then the Merc's owner.

KGO's Ed Baxter retires, Jon Bristow promoted

 Baxter       Bristow         Schaub
Longtime KGO morning anchor Ed Baxter is retiring after 35 years at the station, and Jon Bristow has been named as his replacement. Bristow will team up with current co-anchor Jennifer Jones Lee for the weekday 5-9 shift.

Baxter has spent the last 11 years as co-anchor of the morning news. "The schedule of early morning hours has taken a toll and I'm looking forward to sleeping in," Baxter said in a statement from the station.

"We're looking forward to the fresh new sound of the KGO Morning News with Jon and Jennifer," said General Manager Deidra Lieberman said in the same statement. "Jon is known and loved by the KGO audience, and I know he'll be an outstanding fit." Bristow has been with the station as a reporter/anchor for more than 20 years.

In a related note, former KPIX reporter Jeffrey Schaub has joined KGO-AM. His title is reporter/anchor. He was a 19-year veteran of KPIX.

Three nominated for Reporter of the Year

Rita Williams of KTVU, Julie Watts of KPIX and John Lobertini, a former PIXer now at KTXL Fox 40 in Sacramento, are vying for the AP Television and Radio Association's Chris Harris Reporter of the Year Award. The winner will be announced at the association's 64th annual Mark Twain Awards gala June 4 at Disneyland's Paradise Pier Hotel in Anaheim.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

2011 Greater Bay Area Journalism award winners

FOSTER CITY — Bay Area print and online journalists, photographers, radio and television personnel and public relations professionals were presented with 204 awards of excellence in nine divisions and 37 categories at the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club's 34th annual Greater Bay Area Journalism Awards dinner tonight.

The San Francisco Peninsula Press Club's annual Professional Journalism Awards Competition dinner was held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Foster City.

The winners were selected from 523 entries from media professionals in the 11 Greater Bay Area counties. Awards honored work done in 2010. Entries were judged by the Press Clubs of Bakersfield, Florida, Houston, New Orleans, San Diego and Southeast Texas. The Print Photography division was judged by press photographers of the News Journal, Wilmington, Del., and was coordinated by Paul Sakuma of the Associated Press.

The big winner for the first time was Patch.com with 19 awards. The San Mateo Daily Journal followed with 15 and the San Jose Mercury News with 14. Cromwell Schubarth, Multi Meida/Research Editor of the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, received seven plaques.

The guest speaker for the event was Mike Sugerman, reporter, KPIX CBS 5 and KCBS Radio.

Two $1,500 scholarships in the name of the late San Francisco Chronicle columnist Herb Caen were awarded. The high school recipient was Steven Lau, California High School, San Ramon. The collegiate scholarship was presented to Kayla Figard, College of San Mateo.

Special recognition was given to the General Excellence winner of the Press Club’s High School Journalism Contest, The Campanile, Palo Alto High School. The Paly adviser, Esther Wojcicki, accepted a plaque.

The complete list of journalism award winners follows:


Overall Excellence

    First Place, San Jose Mercury News, San Jose Mercury News, San Jose Mercury News Staff
    Second Place, The Press Democrat, The Press Democrat, Santa Rosa, The Press Democrat Staff
    Third Place, San Francisco Examiner, San Francisco Examiner, San Francisco Examiner Staff
    First Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Emphasis should be on facts, not fear, Jon Mays 
    Second Place, The Daily Post, Secret group dictates city policy, Dave Price 
    Third Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, San Francisco should drop toll proposal, Jon Mays
    First Place, The Press Democrat, Columns by Paul Gullixson, Paul Gullixson 
    Second Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Columns by Michelle Durand, Michelle Durand 
    Third Place, The Daily Post, Columns by Diana Diamond, Diana Diamond
    First Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Off the Beat, Michelle Durand 
    Second Place, The Daily News, Columns by LJ Anderson, LJ Anderson 
    Third Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Columns by Jon Mays, Jon Mays
    First Place, San Jose Mercury News, Columns by Mark Purdy, Mark Purdy 
    Second Place, The Press Democrat, Columns by Bob Padecky, Bob Padecky 
    Third Place, San Francisco Examiner, Columns by Glenn Dickey, Glenn Dickey
Breaking News
    First Place, San Francisco Chronicle, Inferno, San Francisco Chronicle Staff 
    Second Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Scene of horror - evacuees flee homes, Jon Mays, Bill Silverfarb, Heather Murtagh 
    Third Place, The Daily Post, Explosion, inferno guts neighborhood, David DeBolt, Ryan Riddle
News Story
    First Place, The Daily Post, Hidden police DUI revealed, David DeBolt 
    Second Place, The Daily Post, Jobs demanded return of iPhone, Ryan Thomas Riddle, Jamie Morrow 
    Third Place, San Francisco Examiner, Patients endure dialysis shortage, Katie Worth
Continuing Coverage
    First Place, San Jose Mercury News, California governor's race, Ken McLaughlin 
    Second Place, The Press Democrat, Foreclosure frustration, Nathan Halverson 
    Third Place, San Mateo County Times, Dangerous water in Pescadero, Julia Scott
    First Place, San Mateo County Times, Bay Area transit in trouble: Running on empty, Mike Rosenberg 
    Second Place, Contra Costa Times, A journey from conflict, Matt O'Brien, Jane Tyska 
    Third Place, San Jose Mercury News, Beautiful friendship, Bruce Newman
Feature Story of a Light Nature
    First Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Recipe for success, Michelle Durand 
    Second Place, San Jose Mercury News, Apple's forgotten founder, Bruce Newman 
    Third Place, Contra Costa Times, A love story, Theresa Harrington, Dan Rosenstrauch
Feature Story of a Serious Nature
    First Place, Sacramento Bee, Ceremony to mark 75th anniversary of China Clipper debut, Jeff Mitchell 
    Second Place, The Press Democrat, Among friends, Meg McConahey 
    Third Place, San Jose Mercury News, Torn apart, Dai Sugano, Ken McLaughlin
    First Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, The Glenview Incident, Bill Silverfarb 
    Second Place, San Jose Mercury News, Broken promise, Lisa Krieger 
    Third Place, San Mateo County Times, Near-perfect, Neil Gonzales
Business/Technology Story
    First Place, San Jose Mercury News, The Diversity Decline, Mike Swift 
    Second Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Creating cash from trash, Heather Murtagh 
    Third Place, The Daily News, Out from Zuckerberg's shadow, Will Oremus
    First Place, The Daily News, Ovations for 'Ovo', Kevin Kelly 
    Second Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Money is taking you to paradise, Heather Murtagh 
    Third Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Lady Gaga brings the 'wow,' Julio Lara
Specialty Story
    First Place, The Daily Post, New Belmont distillery has Old World roots, Jamie Morrow
Sports Story
    First Place, The Press Democrat, A new life on the court, Bob Padecky 
    Second Place, The Daily News, Movies are made like this, Vytas Mazeika 
    Third Place, The Daily News, Fore!!!, Vytas Mazeika

Sports Game Story
    First Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, One hit enough for Hillsdale, Nathan Mollat 
    Second Place, San Jose Mercury News, Giants take care of Rangers, wrap up title in five games, Andrew Baggarly 
    Third Place, The Daily News, Vikings blast off, Vytas Mazeika
    First Place, The Daily Post, Red-light cams may yield green, Dave Price 
    Second Place, The Daily Post, Hi Panda, Bye Duck, Dave Price 
    Third Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Gift thieves wrap up jail deal, Michelle Durand
Graphic Design
    First Place, San Jose Mercury News, An airport befitting Silicon Valley, Paiching Wei 
    Second Place, The Daily News, Football: Big Wooly Style, Greg Frazier 
    Third Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, The wait is over — World Cup 2010, Julio Lara
Page Design
    First Place, San Jose Mercury News, HP ditches Hurd for misconduct, San Jose Mercury News Staff 
    Second Place, The Daily News, Sports 4/3, Greg Frazier 
    Third Place, San Francisco Examiner, Forewarned, Ming Vong


    Overall Excellence

      First Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, San Francisco Bay Guardian, SF Bay Guardian Editorial 
      Staff Second Place, San Francisco Business Times, San Francisco Business Times, San Francisco Business Times Staff 
      Third Place, Central City Extra, Central City Extra, Geoffrey Link, Central City Extra Staff
      First Place, East Bay Express, Be cool, Stephen Buel 
      Second Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, Clear vision needs to be outlined on county's hospital, Cromwell Schubarth 
      Third Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Fix the BART police force - or disband it, Tim Redmond
      First Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Columns by Tim Redmond, Tim Redmond 
      Second Place, San Francisco Weekly, Columns by Matt Smith, Matt Smith 
      Third Place, Bay Area Reporter, Political Notebook, Matthew S. Bajko

      First Place, San Francisco Business Times, Columns by Steve Symanovich, Steve Symanovich
      Second Place, San Francisco Weekly, Bouncer, Katy St. Clair
      Third Place, Los Gatos Weekly Times, Columns by Dick Sparrer, Dick Sparrer

    Breaking News
      First Place, San Francisco Business Times, Salesforce plants stake in Mission Bay, Patrick Hoge, Ron Leuty, J.K. Dineen 
      Second Place, Palo Alto Weekly, Powerless Palo Alto, Palo Alto Weekly Staff 
      Third Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Beyond the rage, Rebecca Bowe, Alex Emslie

    News Story
      First Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Buying power, Rebecca Bowe, Steven T. Jones 
      Second Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Mysteries of the death-drug scramble, Tim Redmond, Rula Al-Nasrawi 
      Third Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, Big appetite for better burgers, David Goll

    Continuing Coverage
      First Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, The future is here, Katherine Conrad, David Goll, Mary Duan, Eli Segall, Cromwell Schubarth, Moryt Milo 
      Second Place, San Francisco Business Times, Genentech breast cancer drug on trial, Ron Leuty 
      Third Place, Palo Alto Weekly, High-speed rail, Gennady Sheyner

      First Place, Central City Extra, Mid-Market/Living on the street, Marjorie Beggs, Jonathan Newman, Geoffrey Link 
      Second Place, India-West, End of life - India's poor recycle world's E-waste into wealth, Som Sharma, Sunita Sohrabji, Kainaz Amaria 
      Third Place, Palo Alto Weekly, Out of Bounds? Terri Lobdell

    Feature Story of a Light Nature
      First Place, Los Gatos Weekly Times, Antarctica adventure, Marianne L. Hamilton 
       Second Place, Central City Extra, Lunchtime for seniors in the central city, Tom Carter 
       Third Place, Pacifica Tribune, Kitty conundrum, Jane Northrop

    Feature Story of a Serious Nature
      First Place, East Bay Express, Oakland Invades the Desert, Nate Seltenrich 
      Second Place, India-West, The 'Nani' Diaries - immigrant granny nannies face exploitation, Sunita Sohrabji 
      Third Place, Central City Extra, Home Sweet SRO, Tom Carter, Marjorie Beggs, Johan Vardup, Conor Gallagher
      First Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, The end of the line, David Goll, Eli Segall, Mary Duan, Katherine Conrad, Cromwell Schubarth, Moryt Milo 
      Second Place, San Francisco Weekly, Let It Bleed, Joe Eskenazi, Benjamin Wachs 
      Third Place, Central City Extra, Tenderloin Gusher, Jonathan Newman, Marjorie Beggs
    Business/Technology Story
      First Place, San Francisco Business Times, Initial Private Offering; Facebook, Zynga, Twitter on sale — early, Mark Calvey 
      Second Place, Palo Alto Weekly, Palo Alto's Clean Tech Revolution, Gennady Sheyner 
      Third Place, Central City Extra, World Series Parade, Tom Carter
      First Place, Palo Alto Weekly, Bravo to 'Boulevard', Karla Kane 
      Second Place, Palo Alto Weekly, The White Ribbon, Susan Tavernetti 
      Third Place, Palo Alto Weekly, The King's Speech, Susan Tavernetti
    Specialty Story
      First Place, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Marijuana goes mainstream, Steven T. Jones 
      Second Place, East County Times, Carrying son's sword, Hannah Dreier 
      Third Place, San Francisco Weekly, The Muni Death Spiral, Joe Eskenazi, Greg Dewar
    Sports Story
      First Place, Pacifica Tribune, Cycling turns life around, Horace Hinshaw 
      Second Place, Pacifica Tribune, Escaping from Alcatraz, Horace Hinshaw 
      Third Place, San Francisco Weekly, Head case, Peter Jamison
    Sports Game Story
      First Place, Saratoga News, Lugo keeps Promise; Falcons top Cats, Dick Sparrer 
      Second Place, Willow Glen Resident, Perfect Storm, Dick Sparrer
      First Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, @First starts to fill up @last, with retailers, Cromwell Schubarth 
      Second Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, Brewery hopes to boost aleing downtown, Cromwell Schubarth 
      Third Place, San Francisco Business Times, Meat of the Matter: Steakhouses sizzling, Steve Symanovich
    Graphic Design
      First Place, San Francisco Business Times, National attraction, Craig Blanchard 
      Second Place, San Francisco Business Times, Biofuel conundrum / The race is on, Craig Blanchard
    Page Design
      First Place, East Bay Express, Be Cool, Stephen Buel 
      Second Place, Central City Extra, Candidates for supervisor of District 6, Lenny Limjoco 
      Third Place, San Francisco Business Times, East Bay Book of Lists, Craig Blanchard

    Overall Excellence
      First Place, Traditions Magazine, Traditions, Antonia Ehlers, Michelle Wilkinson
    Feature Story of a Light Nature
      First Place, Smart Business Network, Cooking with Passion, Kristy J. O'Hara 
      Second Place, Traditions Magazine, Living His Dream in the Pacific Northwest, Antonia Ehlers, Michelle Wilkinson
      Third Place, Flying Adventures Magazine, On Safari on the Wing, Michelle Carter
    Feature Story of a Serious Nature
      First Place, San Francisco Magazine, The Merchant of Vengeance, Charles Russo 
      Second Place, Smart Business Network, Long-term deals, Kristy J. O'Hara


    Editorial Cartoons
      First Place, The Daily News, Obama Visits Palo Alto, Steve Curl 
      Second Place, Central City Extra, District 6, Lance Jackson 
      Third Place, The Daily News, Reducing Canada Geese, Steve Curl

    Spot News
      First Place, Associated Press, Gas Explosion in San Bruno, Paul Sakuma 
      Second Place, San Mateo Daily Journal, Scene of Horror, Bill Silverfarb 
      Third Place, Associated Press, Break-in after murder verdict, Paul Sakuma
    General News
      First Place, Oakland Tribune, Oscar Grant supporters react, Jane Tyska 
      Second Place, The Press Democrat, Game changer for Ft. Ross, Christopher Chung 
      Third Place, San Mateo County Times, Remembering David Lews, John Green
      First Place, The Press Democrat, Chess Challenge, Kent Porter 
      Second Place, The Daily News, High School Musical, Kat Wade 
      Third Place, San Francisco Chronicle, A Sizzler, but relief on Way, Kat Wade
    Sports Action
      First Place, Bay Area News Group, Cowboy Kid, Jose Carlos Fajardo 
      Second Place, Oakland Tribune, Mavericks Wipeout, Jane Tyska 
      Third Place, Oakland Tribune, Airborne Posey, Jane Tyska
    Sports Feature
      First Place, The Press Democrat, Giant Jubilation, John Burgess 
      Second Place, Associated Press, March Madness Madness, Paul Sakuma 
      Third Place, The Daily News, A Marathon's Hard Enough, Kat Wade
    Series/Picture Story
      First Place, Oakland Tribune, Hunger in Haiti Post Quake, Jane Tyska 
      Second Place, San Mateo County Times, Choices for Inmates, John Green 
      Third Place, San Mateo County Times, Crumbling cliffs in Pacifica, John Green

    Breaking News
      First Place, KCBS Radio, Firestorm: San Bruno Pipeline Explosion and Fire, KCBS News Team
    Feature Story of a Light Nature
      First Place, KCBS Radio, MUNI Ticket, Mike Sugerman
    Feature Story of a Serious Nature
      First Place, KALW, What lurks beneath: the Bay Area's battle with invasive species in ballast water, Julia Scott 
      Second Place, KCBS Radio, After the Fire, Holly Quan 
      Third Place, KALW, Building by the Bay, Julia Scott
    Sports Story
      First Place, KCBS Radio, Curling, Mike Sugerman
    Public Affairs Program
      First Place, KQED Public Radio, First Generation College Students — Part I, Michael Krasny, Keven Guillory, Judy Campbell, Dan Zoll
    Interview or Talk Show
      First Place, KQED Public Radio, California Music, Michael Krasny, Judy Campbell, Keven Guillory, Dan Zoll
    Special Program
      First Place, KCBS Radio, "Aftershock: The Ongoing Crisis in Haiti", Doug Sovern
      First Place, KQED Public Radio, The Forgotten Ones: A Legacy of Agent Orange, K. Oanh Ha, Kat Snow 
      Second Place, KCBS Radio, Teen Suicide, Holly Quan
    Use of Sound
      First Place, KCBS Radio, "Cable Car Gripwoman," Doug Sovern

    Feature Story of a Light Nature
      First Place, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, Bay Area Bandits, Andrew F. Johnston 
      Second Place, KPIX CBS 5, The Haunting of Brookdale Inn, Chris Bollini 
      Third Place, KRON 4, A Giant Celebration, Da Lin
    Feature Story of a Serious Nature
      First Place, KQED 9, This Week in Northern California: Condoleezza Rice, Belva Davis, Rachel Silverman, Robin Epstein
    Feature Story of a Serious Nature
      Second Place, KRON 4, Church Shooting, Da Lin
    Sports Story
      First Place, KPIX CBS 5, Tough Mudder, Chris Bollini, Producer
    Public Affairs Program
      First Place, KNTV NBC Bay Area, The Real Deal: Good to Know, Jeanette Pavini, Sula Anagnostou, Christina Ricci, Jessica Avanzino, Gerard Cahill, Jonathon Tung
    Special Program
      First Place, KNTV NBC Bay Area, The Real Deal: Family House, Jeanette Pavini, Sula Anagnostou, Christina Ricci, Jessica Avanzino, Gerard Cahill, Jonathon Tung
      First Place, KPIX CBS 5, Bollini Composite, Chris Bollini
      Second Place, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, Johnston Composite, Andrew F. Johnston
      First Place, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, Johnston Composite, Andrew F. Johnston 
      Second Place, KPIX CBS 5, Bollini Composite, Chris Bollini

    Overall Excellence
      First Place, National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, San Francisco/Northern California Chapter, Javier Valencia, Sultan Mirza, Keith Sanders, Darryl Compton
      First Place, San Mateo County Parks Foundation, San Mateo County Parks Foundation, Julia Bott
      Second Place, Broadcast Legends, Broadcast Legends Newsletter, Jim Schock, Ed Vasgersian, Peter Cleaveland, Darryl Compton 
      Third Place, National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Off Camera, Keith Sanders, Linda Giannecchini, Kevin Wing, Darryl Compton

    Overall Excellence
      First Place, San Jose Mercury News, www.MercuryNews.com, San Jose Mercury News Staff
      Second Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, Cromwell Schubarth, Elizabeth Kim 
      Third Place, The Press Democrat, www.pressdemocrat.com, The Press Democrat Staff
    Overall Excellence (Web only)
      First Place, The Bay Citizen, The Bay Citizen -- Year One, Bay Citizen Staff 
      Second Place, Patch-San Bruno, San Bruno Patch, Martin Ricard, Kari Hulac, Jamie White Third Place, Patch, Patch ~ Peninsula Region, Jamie White, Miriam Finder, Drew Himmelstein, Martin Ricard, David Carini, Sarah Yokubaitis, Camden Swita, Kristine Wong, Laura Dudnick, Kenny Porpora, Stacie Chan, Vanessa Castaneda, Don Frances, Scott Campbell
    Breaking News
      First Place, San Jose Mercury News, Achilli Trial Live Blog, Julia Prodis Sulek 
      Second Place, Patch-Menlo Park, Driver Plows Down Santa Cruz Ave, Leaves Trail Of Ruin, Vanessa Castaneda 
      Third Place, Bay City News Service, Officials report on extent of losses, Patricia Decker
    News Story
      First Place, The Bay Citizen, Payment Scandal Rocks SF Unified, Trey Bundy, Jennifer Gollan
      Second Place, Patch-Capitola-Soquel, Soquel Creek Carcinogen, Genevieve Bookwalter 
      Third Place, Patch-Palo Alto, Californians Misled By High-Speed Rail Survey, Aaron Selverston
    Continuing Coverage
      First Place, San Francisco Chronicle, PG&E’s pipeline tests seen as flawed, Jaxon Van Derbeken, Eric Nalder, Demian Bulwa 
      Second Place, Bay City News Service, Continuing coverage of guitar maker's murder, James Lanaras 
      Third Place, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, Tesla and Toyota partnership, Mary Duan, David Goll, Cromwell Schubarth, Beth Kim
    Feature Story of a Light Nature
      First Place, Patch-Half Moon Bay, Dia de los Muertos: Generations Past and Present, Together, Kristine Wong 
      Second Place, Bay City News Service, Men who stole Lefty O'Doul's arm return to bar, Melissa McRobbie 
      Third Place, Bay City News Service, Giants' quirks shine through, Melissa McRobbie
    Feature Story of a Serious Nature
      First Place, The Bay Citizen, After Service, Veteran Deaths Surge, Aaron Glantz, Tasneem Raja, Adithya Sambamurthy 
      Second Place, Patch-Scotts Valley, A Young Survivor's Tale, Shannon Burkey 
      Third Place, Patch-Mountain View, Breaking the Silence of Gay Bullying, Claudia Cruz, Maggie Beidelman
      First Place, Patch-Mill Valley, Mill Valley Film Festival Coverage, Jim Welte, Russell Albert Daniels, Hans Roenau, Atissa Manshouri 
      Second Place, Patch-Petaluma, Transmitting Live ... From a Garage on Ely Blvd., Karina Ioffee
      Third Place, Patch-Half Moon Bay, Dickens Fair Enchants and Transcends Time This Holiday Season, Kristine Wong
    Sports Story
      First Place, Patch-Menlo Park, Football: Palo Alto Wins State Title in Stunner! Scott Campbell
      Second Place, Patch-Half Moon Bay, Mark Sponsler: Forecasting Big Waves for The Jay At Mavericks Surfing Competition, Kristine Wong 
      Third Place, Patch-Menlo Park, Football: Grasping Palo Alto's Accomplishment, Scott Campbell
      First Place, Patch-San Carlos, Whine and Cheese(burgers), Kenny Porpora 
      Second Place, Patch-Half Moon Bay, Pumpkin in My Ears, Pumpkin in My Hair, Pumpkin Everywhere: Pie Eating Contest, Kristine Wong
      Third Place, Patch-El Cerrito, Is That a Green Halo Over El Cerrito's Sidewalks?, Charles Burress
    Multi Media/Interactivity
      First Place, San Mateo County Times, Bomberas Dance Group, John Green 
      Second Place, The Bay Citizen, Bay Citizen Data Applications, Tasneem Raja, Bay Citizen Tech Team
      Third Place, Patch-Dublin, A Dublin High Student Full of Cheer, Erika Conner
      First Place, San Jose Mercury News, Prop 8 Trial Live Coverage, Howard Mintz 
      Second Place, The Press Democrat, BiteClub Dining Blog, Heather Irwin 
      Third Place, Patch-Half Moon Bay, Time for Red Eggs and Ginger, Kristine Wong

    Press Club's award banquet tonight (May 21)

    The Crowne Plaza Hotel
    The Press Club will present awards tonight in its annual Greater Bay Area Excellence in Journalism contest. at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 1221 Chess Drive, Foster City. No-host cocktails start at 6 and the presentation begins at 7. In addition to the awards, KCBS and CBS5's Mike Sugerman will be the keynote speaker. Here's a map to the Crowne Plaza. The winners will be posted here at around midnight.

    New KFOG PD keeps the human element in radio

    Dennis Constantine
    Dennis Constantine, the new program director at KFOG, says music stations like his have an advantage over online music services like Pandora.

    “With companies like Google or Pandora, you’re dealing mostly with technology,” Constatine tells the Friday Morning Quarterback (FMQB) newsletter. “With radio stations you’re dealing with humans. You’re dealing with people who have feelings, like the people who are listening. We can get excited about a song. I don’t know how excited analytics and digital computers can get about a song.”

    Constantine arrived at KFOG in February after years at legendary adult album alternative (AAA) stations such as KBCO Boulder and more recently at KINK Portland.

    “I’ve been meeting with a lot of KFOG listeners just to make sure that I don’t have any sort of preconceived notions or ideas about what it is they want,” Constantine said. “I want to hear directly from them what it is they want.

    “Yes, they’re a very musically active audience. Whether they’re mature or younger, the reason they listen to KFOG is not only for companionship — because we have an incredible air staff that really connects with them – but also for music discovery, and that doesn’t necessarily just mean new music either. ... that we’re finding those gems that either bring back memories or are songs that maybe they’ve never heard before or they’ve only heard on the periphery.”

    Friday, May 20, 2011

    Reporter Gregory Lewis dead at 57

    Gregory Lewis
    Gregory Lewis, a former San Francisco Examiner and Chronicle reporter who most recently had worked at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, died Tuesday at a hospital in Pembroke Pines, Fla., after a two-year battle with prostate cancer. His specialty was the small story scooped from the street, or the din of a barbershop, that took readers into worlds they had never visited, his Chron obit said. Lewis, 57, was recruited to the Florida newspaper by Sharon Rosenhause, former Examiner managing editor who took the same position with the Sun-Sentinel in 2001. She said he was as comfortable covering state legislators in Tallahassee as chatting with patrons at one of his barbershops. "And he didn't think the people in Tallahassee were any more important," Rosenhause said. (Photo credit: Brant Ward, Chronicle)

    UPDATE, 4:10 P.M.: From BeyondChron.org:
      Lewis was part of a cadre of Black reporters, editors and columnists at the San Francisco Examiner and Chronicle in the 1980s and 90s; a group that included reporters Perry Lang, Venise Wagner, Thaai Walker, Austin Long‑Scott, Yumi Wilson, Paula Parker and Clarence Johnson. 
      Lewis wrote stories about Willie Brown’s two terms as San Francisco’s first African American mayor, the impact of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake on the Bay Area’s African American communities, the Million Man March, the gentrification of San Francisco’s African American communities and many other issues during Lewis’ time at the Examiner. ... 
      Lewis made a point to not only become acquainted with then Mayor Willie Brown and other Black community leaders, but everyday Black people who hung out in the Fillmore, Bayview‑Hunter’s Point, East Oakland and other Bay Area African American communities.

    Journalism in the age of Facebook, smartphones

    On May 23-25, journalists and media business professionals will come together at Stanford to discuss where journalism fits in a world with 600 Facebook users and 5 billion cell phones.

    The eighth annual Conference on Innovation in Journalism focuses on the promise of mobile for publishing and journalism. The program will cover devices, business approaches and technologies that power media and their impact on societies around the world.

    Panel discussions include "The Arab Awakening," featuring journalists from the Mideast including two from Al-Jazeera, "Why Innovation Journalism Matters," "Is the Medium Still the Message" and "Are We Heading for Collective Intelligence or Collective Neurosis." More details are available here.

    Press Democrat's John Beck wins features award

    John Beck of the Santa Rosa Press Democrat is the first-place winner for arts and entertainment coverage (among papers with 90,000 circulation or less) in the Society for Features Journalism 23rd annual contest. He appears to be the only Bay Area winner on the list.

    Media fooled by fake Botox mom story

    ABC News has launched an investigation into a report it aired on "Good Morning America" in which a woman claimed she injected Botox into her 8-year-old daughter to give her a better chance at winning beauty contests.

    ABC wasn't the only media outlet that fell for the story. The British newspaper The Sun and the syndicated "Inside Edition" also ran with the story, and the Chronicle's SFGate.com posted this on Sept. 13:
      When a British tabloid that's known for sensationalizing news ran a story in March about a San Francisco mom injecting her 8-year-old daughter with Botox, people were skeptical and questioned whether this story was made up. Turns out the story is true.
    Actually it wasn't true. But to be fair, the Chron's Matier & Ross got on the story a few days later and reported that the woman was using her maiden name and wasn't from San Francisco as had been claimed.

    But TMZ tracked down the mom, Sheena Upton, who went by Kerry Campbell in The Sun and on the TV interviews. She said she first got touch with The Sun through a close family friend and was under the impression she was only doing a simple story about a spa day with her kid.

    Upton told TMZ that during a photo session, producers asked her to pose with a medical syringe and "act like I was just holding it up."

    She said in a sworn declaration to TMZ that she had no idea the story was going to be about Botox -- and claims she doesn't even know what Botox is.

    After the photo session, Upton said things began to spiral out of control — and she received detailed scripts instructing her how to carry on the lie in front of television cameras.

    Upton apparently was working with a broker who got a $10,000 fee from GMA for the story, TMZ reports. Upton said she got $10,000 from GMA and $9,500 from "Inside Edition." The broker's name hasn't been revealed.

    To support her claim, she has produced documents she claims she was given. TMZ posted the documents this morning. They include instructions on what to say and do during interviews with GMA and "Inside Edition."

    An ABC News spokesman told TMZ: "We have just seen the sworn declaration on TMZ written by Sheena Upton, a.k.a. Kerry Campbell, and are vigorously investigating her most recent statement and rapidly shifting story."

    Thursday, May 19, 2011

    Patch editors told to boost production

    The website Street Fight, which covers the hyper local news industry, has obtained an email from Patch Editor-in-Chief Brian Farnham telling his local editors that they should increase the number of items posted each day on Patch's local sites. Patch has 800 sites nationwide including 30 in the Bay Area. Each site is devoted to one city and has its own staff reporting local news.

    Farnham's argument is that unique pageviews will increase if editors post more items. Patch currently requires every site to post a minimum of four times per day.
      ... right now we’ve got 68 sites producing 6 or more articles per day, so we know it can be done. I can also say that because “article” does not have to mean “800 word piece.” And I can say that because of this: in South Florida, 14 sites just completed a three-month test that proved you can do 7 posts a day, hit your UV goals, come in under budget, and cut the LE work hours to between 40-50 hours/week. ... So not only is more production possible, done smartly it’s possible to do with less pain. ... 
      If one of your sites is producing less than 4 posts a day (and unfortunately, there are a lot of these — nearly 350) immediately talk to that editor about it. This should not be a punitive conversation, it should be a collaborative discussion about how to improve things. (Are they spending too much time reporting and writing long articles? Are they too caught up in editing freelancers?)”
    When Street Fight asked Patch about the memo, a spokesperson said both the figure of 68 sites producing six or more stories a day was wrong as well as the figure of 350 sites producing less than four stories a day.

    Farnham, in an interview with Street Fight, confirmed that Patch's new emphasis is on "quick hits," including smaller bits of news as well as daily photo posts.

    3 Bay Area columnists are finalists in national contest

    Three Bay Area writers are among the finalists in the National Society of Newspaper Columnists column-writing contest.

    Steve Symanovich of the San Francisco Business Times and John Philipp of the Sausalito Marinscope are among the three finalists in the humor category for papers under 50,000 circulation.

    In the general interest category for papers over 50,000, one of the finalists is Joel Brinkley, whose column on foreign policy is syndicated by Tribune Media Services. Brinkley, a Pulitzer winner (and the son of the late TV newsman David Brinkley), is the Hearst Professional in Residence for the journalism program at Stanford, a position he assumed in 2006 after 23 years with The New York Times.

    The winners will be announced at a column-writers conference in Detroit on June 25.

    Wednesday, May 18, 2011

    Chron not the only paper punished by White House

    The Chronicle isn’t the only newspaper the White House is punishing for unfavorable coverage. The Boston Herald reports this morning that its access to an Obama fundraising event has been limited because it put a Mitt Romney op-ed on its cover.

    “I tend to consider the degree to which papers have demonstrated to covering the White House regularly and fairly in determining local pool reporters,” White House spokesman Matt Lehrich wrote in response to a Herald request for full access to the presidential visit. “My point about the op-ed was not that you ran it but that it was the full front page, which excluded any coverage of the visit of a sitting U.S. president to Boston. I think that raises a fair question about whether the paper is unbiased in its coverage of the president’s visits.”

    Lehrich said that despite the administration’s beef with the Herald, the paper wasn’t purposely barred from the press pool, and that the White House Correspondents Association picked the rival Boston Globe to serve as the local reporter.

    Obama’s speech in Boston is open to all media, but only a selected pool can attend other aspects of his fund-raiser. Pool reporters must share all their material with other press. The Herald said it has been bypassed for pool duty during Obama’s last two visits despite asking the White House to be the local pool reporter.

    Last month, the White House barred Chronicle reporters from pool duty after the Chron’s Carla Marinucci shot video of protesters mocking Obama at a fund-raiser at the St. Regis Hotel. Unlike the Herald, the Chronicle declined to identify the White House official who made the threat.

    Dana King explains why she decided to go gray

    Dana King ... Before and After
    For the past two months, viewers of KPIX's "Eyewitness News" at 6 and 11 have been watching Dana King's hair turn gray. The change has been gradual, not sudden like when Bob Barker in 1987 went from dark to gray overnight.

    Last night, King explained her decision after doing a story about why people decide to stop coloring her hair. She explained that she had been coloring her hair for 20 years.

    "For me, it was a decision about matching my looks with my experience," said King, 50 51.

    It's a risky move in a business that worships youth. But she said the response from viewers have been overwhelming. She held up a stack of email printouts and said she's received more correspondence on this subject than on anything else she's ever done in the news business.

    She said many viewers asked about her health. She said she's in good health.

    She said that more than 99% of the e-mails were positive. Here's a link to her story and links to the conversations on Facebook and Twitter. And here's a Q&A media blogger Rich Lieberman did with King in March.

    Bob Batlin, newspaper veteran, dies at 80

    Bob Batlin (photo by
    Brant Ward, Chronicle)
    This morning's Chronicle reports that there will be a funeral today (May 18) for Bob Batlin, a longtime Bay Area newspaperman who died May 9 at age 80 after a battle with Parkinson's disease. Batlin retired in 2002 from the Chron after a career which also included stints at the Examiner, San Francisco News-Call Bulletin, the San Francisco News, the Redwood City Tribune and the San Bruno Herald. He worked as a copy editor, entertainment editor, features editor and arts editor. This morning's obit noted that as arts editor of the Examiner, he had to defend his decision to cover rock music to the publisher, who preferred it be ignored. The funeral will be at 11 a.m. at Duggan's Serra Mortuary, 500 Westlake Ave., Daly City. Burial will be at Cypress Lawn in Colma. Memorial contributions may be made to the UCSF Parkinson's Disease Center, 505 Parnassus Ave., Room 798-M, Box 0114, San Francisco, CA 94143.

    Monday, May 16, 2011

    Jim Goldman's college major was what?

    Burson-Marsteller PR man and former CNBC Silicon Valley bureau chief Jim Goldman, who orchestrated Facebook's attempted smear of Google, majored in “Ethics in Political Journalism and Political Philosophy" at Brown University. That's from Gizmodo's Brian Lam, who posted links to this page, this one and this one.

    San Francisco at center of 'data gold rush'

    David Weir of the nonprofit SF Public Press says San Francisco sits at the epicenter of a brand new tech boom revolving around several thousand startup companies, many of which are developing new ways to gather and distribute news. He says they're drawn here by a "data gold rush." Weir writes, "The sweepstakes in the competition to figure out 'local' will help determine the future of journalism in innumerable ways, from the kinds of stories that get covered to the connections between local content producers and consumers, as well as the advertisers who will fuel these localization networks going forward."

    Friday, May 13, 2011

    No clues in sports anchor Daryl Hawks' death

    A day after former KNTV sportscaster Daryl Hawks was found dead in an Atlanta hotel room, authorities have no idea what caused his death. The Atlanta Journal Constitution quotes the local coroner as saying he needs two weeks to determine a cause, and that the initial phases of the postmortem exam revealed "no obvious cause of death." Foul play is not suspected, police said.

    Hawks, 38, worked at NBC's KNTV in San Jose from April 2005 until April 2008, when he left to become a sports anchor at NBC's WMAQ in Chicago. He was on assignment for WMAQ in Atlanta to cover Thursday night's Game 6 of the Bulls-Hawks NBA playoff series when he died.

    His death was particularly eerie for his colleagues at WMAQ, where another sports anchor who was close to Hawks age, Darrian Chapman, collapsed and suddenly died while playing a game of hockey in 2002.

    “It’s surreal,” said Ryan Baker, lead sports anchor at Chicago CBS station WBBM, who was at WMAQ at the time of Chapman's death.

    “Daryl and I flew down to Atlanta on the same flight Wednesday. We laughed and talked and he seemed fine. When we landed around 5 p.m., I said, ‘Maybe I’ll see you a little later,’” Baker told the Chicago Sun-Times. “This morning (Thursday), we were all here for the Bulls’ shoot-around, and after my interviews, I asked everyone, ‘Where’s Daryl?’ No one had seen him.”

    When Baker returned to his hotel, he got the shocking news from a WMAQ photographer on assignment with Hawks.

    The photographer had asked security at the Omni Hotel inside the CNN Center where Hawks was staying to check on the sportscaster, after Hawks missed a wake-up call.

    “I thought of his wife and children, and the folks at (WMAQ), who I had seen still dealing with the aftermath of Darrian’s death when I first got there. For them to have to deal with this again? Unbelievable.

    Chron, Merc much lighter than a decade ago

    The Merc and Chron are about two-thirds lighter than they were 10 years ago. If you’re a regular newspaper reader, you already knew that. But the nonprofit SF Public Press, which is doing a series on the changing Bay Area media environment, actually did the measurements and the math.

    Reporters Erica Reder and Justin Morrison took a week’s worth of papers from 2000 and 2010 and found:
      • That on the same day each week, a Tuesday, the Chron was 60% smaller than in 2010 and the Merc was 66% smaller. They took into account both reduced page counts and the narrower page sizes both papers have adopted as cost-cutting measures. 
      • The page count of the Sunday editions fell from 394 to 220 at the Chron and from 300 to 88 at the Merc. Weekday page counts also fell. 
      • In 2000, ads made up 47% of the column inches in a weekday edition of the Chron. In 2010, that figure slipped to 31%. At the Merc, it’s fallen from 61% to 42% in a decade. 
      • The number of bylined articles in both papers has dropped. The Chron ran 823 over the seven-day period in 2000, and only 599 a decade later. The Merc published 938 bylines that September week in 2000, dropping to 630 bylines in 2010. 
      • Of those stories, about three-quarters were produced by Chron staff in both years, and about three-fifths by Merc staffers.

    KALW 91.7 celebrates 70th anniversary

    On the 70th anniversary of San Francisco noncommercial station KALW 91.7, writer Ben Fong-Torres visited the station, which is housed in converted classrooms in John and Sala Burton High School.
      The facilities and equipment are so modest that David Sedaris, stopping by on a book tour, did a video tour of KALW, calling it a ‘dump.’ But to the station's staff, it's their dump, and it's part of history. 
      KALW was San Francisco's first licensed FM station. In 1954, its studios, then in the Gompers Trade School in the Mission, served as the first home of KQED-TV. 
      Originally established as a radio school in the fall of 1941, KALW moved away from teaching in 1971, and soon became the first San Francisco affiliate of National Public Radio and the first local station to air such programs as ‘All Things Considered’ and ‘Fresh Air.’”
    Station manager Matt Martin told Fong-Torres that 9% of the station’s budget comes from the federal government through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which conservatives in Congress have been threatening to de-fund. Martin said that losing those funds would have a serious effect on the station, but “I think this community would step forward and make up for that. This is a great place to be public broadcasters.”

    KALW general manager Matt Martin (right) with reporters Rina Palta (left) and Erica Mu. Photo by Ben Fong-Torres, via the Chronicle.

    Last day for banquet reservations

    Today, May 13, is the last day to reserve a seat at the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club's awards banquet on Saturday, May 21.

    The event takes place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Foster City, 1221 Chess Drive. In addition to the presentation of awards, KCBS and CBS5's Mike Sugerman will be the keynote speaker.

    Tickets are $55 for Press Club members, $60 for non-members. Free parking.

    Open seating, reserved tables of eight available.

    The dinner starts with spinach salad with shiitake mushrooms and sesame dressing. Entrée choices (as available):

    • Thin slices of chicken sauteed in marsala wine with mushrooms with rice pilaf;

    • Mahi Mahi charred pineapple beurre blanc sauce with rice pilaf;

    • Penne pasta al pomodoro roasted fresh vegetables topped with tomato, fresh basil and pinenuts.

    After the entree, there will be a traditional NY cheesecake with raspberry drizzle. Freshly baked rolls and sweet butter. Freshly brewed Starbucks regular and decaf coffee and assorted tazo teas.

    Thursday, May 12, 2011

    Two former reporters led Facebook's attempted media attack on Google

    Mercurio                    Goldman
    Facebook has been caught secretly paying a major PR firm, Burson-Marsteller, to plant negative stories about Google in the media, according to Dan Lyons of The Daily Beast.

    Burson-Marsteller employees Jim Goldman, a former CNBC tech reporter, and John Mercurio, a former political reporter, attempted to get USA Today, the Washington Post and other media outlets to write scaremongering stories about Google's privacy policies. They even offered to help an influential blogger, Chris Soghoian, write a Google-bashing op-ed, which it promised it could place in outlets like The Washington Post, Politico and The Huffington Post.

    According to Lyons, the plot backfired when Soghoian turned down Burson’s offer and posted the emails that Burson had sent him. You can see it here. It got worse when USA Today accused Burson of spreading a “whisper campaign” about Google “on behalf of an unnamed client.”

    Palo Alto-based Facebook has since confirmed to Lyons that it secretly hired Burson to go after Google because 1. it believes Google is doing something in the social networking arena that raises privacy concerns and 2. Facebook resents Google's attempts to use Facebook data in its own social-networking service, called Social Circle.

    In the aftermath of the revelations, Burson issued a statement saying Facebook asked that its name be withheld "on the grounds that it was merely asking to bring publicly available information to light and such information could then be independently and easily replicated by any media.”

    The firm also said withholding the client’s name isn’t standard operating procedure and “against our policies.”

    Facebook also issued a statement claiming "No 'smear' campaign was authorized or intended" and that it hired Burson to focus on an issue "using publicly available information that could be independently verified by any media organization or analyst.”

    Goldman joined Burson last year after seven years as bureau chief of CNBC's Silicon Valley bureau. Before CNBC, Goldman opened TechTV's Silicon Valley Bureau and was bureau chief for that network in its early days. Goldman got his start in broadcast journalism at KNTV (ABC affiliate at the time) in San Jose after spending three years as a staff reporter for the San Jose Business Journal.

    Before Mercurio joined Burson last year, he was executive editor of The National Journal's Hotline website, according to a Burson press release. From 2002 to 2005, he was CNN's political editor, where he managed reporters and provided on-air analysis. Previously, he was with Roll Call and the Washington Times.

    Former KNTV sportscaster dies at 38

    Daryl Hawks, a former weekend sportscaster at KNTV Channel 11, was found dead in his hotel room in Atlanta today, where he had gone to cover tonight's Bulls playoff game, the Chicago Tribune reports. Hawks, 38, jumped from Channel 11 to NBC-owned WMAQ in Chicago in 2008. The cause of death wasn't immediately known, but authorities said no foul play was involved.

    Newspaper layoffs were worse in Bay Area

    The Bay Area has been hit harder by newspaper layoffs than other parts of the country. That’s one of the points in an article published by the nonprofit SF Public Press on changes in the regional media environment.

    The layoff figure comes from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, which said that half of all newspaper jobs in the Bay Area have disappeared since 2001, compared with 36% nationally.

    On a national basis, those layoffs translated into roughly 1 million (mostly local) news stories not written in 2010, according to Ken Doctor, author of the Newsonomics blog for the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard.

    The SF Public Press story, written by Jeremy Adam Smith, concludes that local governments are operating with less public scrutiny than at any time in living memory, at least as measured by the number of daily newspaper stories about their activities.

    Another story in the SF Public Press series on the media focuses on changes in TV newsrooms, where VJs are now being used at all of the local stations except KTVU.

    In that story, KRON News Director Brian Greif is quoted as saying that his station made a profit last year after its parent company emerged from bankruptcy, and that his morning news is beating KPIX and KNTV in the ratings.

    KRON Station Manager Pat Patton said that when KRON transitioned to the VJ model, veteran reporters were told: “If you want to leave there’s no shame in leaving. We’ll let you out of your contract if you don’t want to do this.”

    He added: “The irony of that is many of those did leave and went to other stations that are now going through the same thing.”

    Dan Rosenheim, news director at Channel 5, emphasized that TV and TV news are still viable businesses, “but they are harder businesses and there is a lot more pressure on costs.” He estimated that the local advertising market has shrunk by 50% in the past decade, from about $700 million a year to between $300 million and $400 million today.

    Appeals court calls for opening pension records

    The Sacramento Bee and the First Amendment Coalition won an important appeals court ruling Wednesday in the battle to obtain pension data for government employees.

    Many government agencies have their own pension systems and don’t use CalPERS. These smaller agencies have opposed revealing the pension benefits of retirees. But the Bee reports that a three-justice appeals court panel ruled in a 49-page opinion that the Sacramento County Employees’ Retirement System, or SCERS, “must disclose names and corresponding pension benefits amounts of its members.”

    The Bee’s Brad Branan wrote that the length of the opinion suggests the justices were anticipating a review by the state Supreme Court. That court in 2007 ruled in favor of disclosure of public employee salaries in a case brought by the Contra Costa Times against Oakland. The Sacramento pension agency hasn’t decided whether to appeal.

    While CalPERS has disclosed pension benefit information, many independent pension systems, such as Sacramento County’s, have not. For a list of independent public pension systems, go to page four of this report by Stanford’s Joe Nation.

    Budget cuts hinder Brown Act enforcement

    Among the casualties of the state budget crisis is the Brown Act that regulates open-meetings. Sara Rubin of the Monterey County Weekly reports that the state Legislature last year cut $17 million for reimbursing local government costs associated with Brown Act compliance. That means there is no way to enforce some of the act’s key components, like posting agendas before public meetings. “I won’t say categorically we can’t enforce anything, but for anything connected tightly to the posting of agendas, we’d be in trouble,” says Monterey County Chief Assistant DA Terry Spitz.

    Tuesday, May 10, 2011

    Candid Camera-like show invokes shield law

    Producers of the show “Bait Car,” which puts an unlocked car with the keys in the ignition on the street to snare car thieves, argued in a San Francisco case that California’s reporter shield law allows them to withhold footage from a man who claims he was wrongly entrapped.

    Actually, the case was more complicated than that, according to David Horrigan, editorial director of courtweek.com, who wrote about the case in a Washington Examiner column.

    The man who claims he was entrapped, Joseph Bullard, also argued selective prosecution.
      Mr. Bullard, a gentleman who enjoys cross-dressing, argued it was no coincidence that the unholy trinity of producers, police, and prosecutors arranged for the Bait Car to be placed outside Diva’s, a well-known, somewhat risqué San Francisco transgendered club. Police countered that they just picked an area known for car theft. 
      To prove Mr. Bullard’s Good Samaritan claim, his legal counsel wanted to see the tapes of the filming from KKI Productions, the producers of the San Francisco episodes of Bait Car. Not unlike Judge John Sirica sending an order to the Nixon White House, Judge Gerardo Sandoval ordered KKI to turn over the tapes. 
      Not so fast, said KKI. Arguing that Bait Car was journalism and that the intrepid Bait Car photographers were, in fact, journalists and so under California’s reporter’s shield law, KKI refused. 
      Judge Sandoval wasn’t buying it. He rejected KKI’s reporter’s shield argument, and demanded the tapes. 
      Funny thing. You may have laughed at Mr. Bullard’s “I was only helping by moving the car” argument, but prosecutors dropped the charges against Mr. Bullard. 
      Bait Car’s producers were working with prosecutors, turning over their tapes to the district attorney’s office, and that cooperation with cops was fatal to their legal argument, according to Judge Sandoval and legal journalism experts. 
      “You can’t have it both ways. You can’t cooperate with one side and not the other,” said Lucy Dalglish, Executive Director of the Reporter’s Committee for Freedom of the Press. “You can make a very strong argument that the cooperation with one side is a waiver of the privilege, Ms. Dalglish added. 
      People v. Bullard does not decide the law on the contentious issue of who gets to be a reporter in the eyes of the law—although it does put Californians on notice that, if you’re in cahoots with the cops, you probably don’t get to be one, at least for reporter’s shield purposes.

    Sunday, May 8, 2011

    Bob Hax, IJ photographer for 35 years, dies

    Bob Hax (Photo from
    1986 by the IJ's
    Stuart Lorette)
    Bob Hax, an award winning photographer who worked for the Marin Independent-Journal for 35 years, died April 30 after suffering an apparent heart attack at age 77, the IJ reports.

    "Everybody in the county knew Bob Hax," said Beth Renneisen, former graphics editor at the newspaper, according to an obit published Saturday. She recalled that politicos of every stripe packed his retirement bash.

    He said his toughest shot was of the grieving San Rafael widow of an airline crash victim on PSA flight 1771 the year before. He said he felt like an intruder when he got the shot of her face, etched in pain as she clutched a flag in a cemetery. Happier assignments, he recalled, were covering the Bay Area visit of Pope John Paul II and the return home to San Rafael of a soldier held as a prisoner of war in Vietnam.

    A memorial service is set for 2:30 p.m. May 14 at Thanksgiving Lutheran Church in Santa Rosa.

    ABC7 will replace Oprah with local news

    Johnson and Biel
    What happens to Oprah’s 4-5 p.m. time slot after her final show on Wednesday, May 25? In many markets, stations will carry reruns of Oprah until the end of the season in September, but KGO ABC7 is filling that time period with news starting Thursday, May 26. The new hour of news, from 4 to 5, will be anchored by Carolyn Johnson and Larry Biel. Biel will continue to do the sports at 9 (on Channel 20) and 11 (on Channel 7), and Johnson will continue with her evening anchor duties. The additional hour of news means that Channel 7 will be airing three hours of news in early fringe, including “ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” at 5:30.

    Saturday, May 7, 2011

    Another way to solve public records disputes

    One flaw in California’s Public Records Act is that if a government agency turns down your request for documents, you have two choices — give up or sue. And suing is costly. Sydney Lupkin of The Bay Citizen says Florida has a better way of dealing with denied records requests — the Sunshine state (pun intended) has an official public records mediator, an independent third party, who settles such disputes without the expense of going to court.

    Student journalist sanctioned for covering protest

    Josh Wolf
    A UC-Berkeley disciplinary panel has concluded that journalism student Josh Wolf should not have been inside Wheeler Hall on Nov. 20, 2009, during an 11-hour student occupation over tuition hikes even though, the panel acknowledged, he was filming the protest as a journalist.

    As Nanette Asimov of the Chronicle put it: Guilty verdicts for practicing journalism are the stuff of authoritarian nations and now, apparently, UC Berkeley.

    The panel ordered Wolf, who graduates today (May 7) with a master’s degree in journalism, to write a five-page essay to help the administration establish a clear policy on the rights of student journalists.

    "I'm more than happy to do anything I can to remedy the situation for future journalists," said Wolf, 28. "But it seems absurd to make it my punishment. (I'm) a consultant without pay under threat of not getting my diploma."

    Wolf served seven months in federal prison in 2006 and 2007 after refusing to turn over unedited footage of a demonstration in San Francisco showing the torching of a police car. He eventually posted the footage on the Internet. (Also see coverage by the Daily Cal and Contra Costa Times/BANG.)

    Brian Hamlin, longtime Vacaville journalist, dies

    Brian Hamlin, a longtime reporter and columnist at The Reporter in Vacaville, died Friday following a battle against cancer at age 61. From his obit in The Reporter:
      Mr. Hamlin excelled at his beat with a work attitude that was both jovial and serious at the same time, former and current editors said. It didn't take long for him to become a guru of sorts to others in the newsroom. He set the example for accuracy and dedication, always willing to offer advice to younger writers and more than willing to share his vast wealth of knowledge on past events in what he lovingly referred to as "S'lano County." …
    Brian Hamlin (2009 photo by
    Ryan Chalk, The Reporter)
    A "patriarch" of the paper is how former Reporter publisher Richard Rico described Mr. Hamlin on Friday. 
      "Brian was, most of all, a journalist. Capital J. As a columnist, he had a rapier wit. As a communicator he was profoundly sensitive, thorough and fair. As a character, he had no equal, nor will he ever," he said. "As his publisher and friend, I shall always value the standard he set for the newsroom, old and newbie alike. Like all great mentors, he set the tone that everyone around him heard and followed." … 
      The impact of his personality on The Reporter is still visible in the many rubber rats he purchased and gave to staffers throughout the years. In fact, many who learned of his death Friday recalled the "weird" and funny gifts he "just had to buy" for them. 
      One Hamlin gesture that Reporter staff past and present will always recall is the tradition he launched of giving a departing employee a wristwatch and a parting speech that usually consisted of a lot of "harrumphs" and "ahems." 
      The gesture, he would explain, was based on the Broadway play and movie "The Front Page," which told the story of a hardworking newspaper reporter and his devious editor. At the end, the reporter boards a train to leave for a better job and his editor gives him his wristwatch. 
      As the train pulls away, the editor calls ahead to the next station, asking officials there to arrest the reporter because he "just stole my watch!" From Mr. Hamlin's perspective, giving a watch to a departing staffer was a way of saying they would be missed and welcomed back any time. 
      He was presented with a wristwatch of his own by staff and loved ones in January. He was a standard bearer for the journalism craft and a kind and generous friend to all who knew him.

    Chron to relaunch SFiS this Sunday

    The Chronicle on Sunday (May 8) will relaunch its glossy SFiS section, which was previously delivered to select zip codes on a monthly basis since 2006.

    The new “SFiS Style” will cover society news, high-end fashion, home decor and “luxurious lifestyles,” according to the Chron’s online media kit.

    For advertisers, there will be “themed content with ad adjacencies to reach your target audience” and “highlighted trends and happenings within the region, driving readers to local shops and retailers.”

    Thursday, May 5, 2011

    Paper closes sports, photo, features departments

    MediaNews Group is shutting down the sports, photo and features departments of its unionized Long Beach Press-Telegram and allowing the 14 employees in those departments to apply for jobs at the non-union Torrance Daily Breeze. That’s according to the Orange County Weekly, Long Beach Post and blogger Gary Scott, a Socal newspaper veteran. The problem is that the Breeze doesn’t have openings for all of these Press-Telegram workers, so at least two sports writers, a features writer and a photographer will be out of work. Apparently, MediaNews plans to have Long Beach paper rely on the Breeze for its photography, features and sports. A Guild rep is quoted as saying this is union busting by MNG.

    Wednesday, May 4, 2011

    SF journalist sues FBI for records about activist

    San Francisco journalist Seth Rosenfeld, perhaps best known for a series he wrote for the Chronicle 10 years ago about the FBI’s harassment of students and faculty in the 1960s, is suing the FBI in an attempt to get records about an activist from that period.

    According to the SF Weekly, Rosenfeld is seeking records the FBI has witheld concerning activist Richard Masato Aoki, who was involved in groups such as the Young Socialist Alliance and Black Panther Party. Aoki died in 2009 and Rosenfeld argues that any privacy issues ended with the activist’s death.

    Tuesday, May 3, 2011

    Sunday increases, daily decreases for Chron, Merc

    Both the Mercury News and Chronicle reported circulation increases on Sundays but declines in daily circulation for the past six months, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC).

    Last year, the Merc added the Contra Costa Times, Oakland Tribune, San Mateo County Times and other papers to its circulation total. This year the Merc added the Marin Independent Journal, Santa Cruz Sentinel, Vallejo Times-Herald and Vacaville Reporter to its circulation. All of the papers are controlled by MediaNews Group of Denver. The moves helped the Merc become the fifth largest newspaper in the country in terms of circulation, with 577,665 copies daily and 636,999 on Sunday, according to yesterday's report.

    Circulation of the Mercury News was down 2.9% daily and up 0.7% Sunday compared to a year ago.

    The San Francisco Chronicle saw a 2.5% decline in daily circulation to 235,350, and a 2.2% increase in Sunday circulation to 292,459.

    ABC is now using a new metric for newspapers, by combining their print circulation with online pageviews. In that competition, the Merc's audience is 2.6 million and the Chron came in at slightly under 2 million.

    Monday, May 2, 2011

    High school journalism contest winners

    Palo Alto High School, with its three publications, took top honors at the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club’s 2011 High School Journalism Awards which were presented today (May 2) at Ralston Hall on the campus of Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont.

    The school’s newspaper, The Campanile, was recognized as the first-place winner in the General Excellence category. The paper’s editor and advisor will be honored at the Press Club’s Evening of Excellence May 21 at the Crowne Plaza in Foster City. Palo Alto students who work on The Viking sports magazine and The Paly Voice news website also collected honors.

    In all, 15 Peninsula high schools participated in the competition which drew 459 entries in 12 categories from 221 students, a 40 percent increase in entries over last year. Fifty students representing 10 high schools won awards. The contest was judged by professional journalists who are members of the Press Club.

    Here is a complete list of the winners:

    Website Design
      First: thebearcat.net, San Mateo High School, San Mateo 
      Second: mabearnews.com, Menlo-Atherton High School, Atherton 
      Third: The Paly Voice, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto

    Website Content
      First: The Paly Voice, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Second: The Oracle website, Gunn High School, Palo Alto 
      Third: aragonoutlook,net, Aragon High School, San Mateo

      First: Michael Cullen, The Viking, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Second: Jeremy Venook, San Mateo High School, San Mateo 
      Third: Arik Schoessow, The Highlander, Carlmont High School, Belmont 
      Honorable Mention: Victoria Bevington, The Thunderbolt, Mills High School, Millbrae

      First: Katharine Pong, The Thunderbolt, Mills High School, Millbrae 
      Second: Catherine Anne Tadina, The Colt Quarterly, El Camino High School, South San Francisco 
      Third: Angelica Perez, The Panther, Eastside College Prep

    Sports Story
      First: Mary Albertolle and Mark Raftrey, The Viking, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Second: Connor Moore, The Highlander, Carlmont High School, Belmont 
      Third: Elia Moreno, The Tom-Tom, Jefferson High School, Daly City

    News Story
      First: Hannah Kim, The Paly Voice, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Second: Tiffany Hu and Annie Shuey, The Oracle, Gunn High School, Palo Alto 
      Third: Aaron Zelinger, The Paly Voice, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Honorable Mention: Tiffany Hu and Annie Shuey, The Oracle, Gunn High School, Palo Alto
      Honorable Mention: Maria Paras and Shawn Singh, The Tom-Tom, Jefferson High School, Daly City

    Feature Story
      First: Kimberly Ibanez and Jaime Real, The Panther, Eastside College Prep, East Palo Alto
      Second: Nathan Norimoto, John Dickerson and Mariah Philips, The Viking, Palo Alto High School 
      Third: Rachel Marcus, The Outlook, Aragon High School, San Mateo 
      Honorable Mention: Lauren Wong, The Campanile, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Honorable Mention: Praveenanurag Dulapalli, The Thunderbolt, Mills High School, Millbrae
      Honorable Mention: Steven Tsujisaka, The Highlander, Carlmont High School, Belmont
      Honorable Mention: Victoria Xiao, The San Mateo Hi, San Mateo 
      Honorable Mention: Meredith Geaghan-Breiner, The Bear News, Menlo-Atherton High School, Atherton 
      Honorable Mention: Maytal Mark and Scott Kleckner, Verde Magazine, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Honorable Mention: Jesse Klein, The Oracle, Gunn High School, Palo Alto

    News Photo
      First: Pauline Santos, The Tom-Tom, Jefferson High School, Daly City 
      Second: Eric Torres, The Outlook, Aragon High School, San Mateo

    Feature Photo
      First: Brandon Dukovic, The Viking, Palo Alto High School 
      Second: Gladys Bustos, The Panther, Eastside College Prep, East Palo Alto 
      Third: Kore Chan, The Outlook, Aragon High School, San Mateo

    Sports Photo
      First: Morgan Babbs, The San Mateo Hi, San Mateo High School, San Mateo 
      Second: Briana Chavez, The Panther, Eastside College Preparatory School, East Palo Alto 
      Third: Kenan Chan, The Outlook Aragon High School, San Mateo

    Layout & Design
      First: The Oracle, Gunn High School, Palo Alto 
      Second: The Panther, Eastside College Preparatory School, East Palo Alto 
      Third: The Outlook, Aragon High School, San Mateo 
      Honorable Mention: The Highlander, Carlmont High School, Belmont

    General Excellence
      First: The Campanile, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto 
      Second: The Oracle, Gunn High School, Palo Alto 
      Third: The Colt Quarterly, El Camino High School, South San Francisco 
      Honorable Mention: The Highlander, Carlmont High School, Belmont 
      Honorable Mention: The Panther, Eastside College Prep, East Palo Alto 
      Honorable Mention: The Outlook, Aragon High School, San Mateo