Friday is last day to register for Advanced Dreamweaver
SCPA is hosting an advanced Adobe Dreamweaver workshop next Thursday, Nov. 1 at SCPA Offices in Columbia.
The deadline to register in Friday, Oct. 26.
Adobe expert Michelle Kerscher will train attendees. In addition to working as a trainer for SCPA, Michelle has mastered design and use of Adobe products as a newspaper designer, Web designer and commercial press designer. She has a real knack for explaining high-tech topics in plain-language. This training will be easy to understand for all levels of Adobe users. Though Michelle will touch on some of the latest features of CS6, her classes are designed for users of all versions of the software in Mac or PC platforms.
Registrants must have attended the Intro to Dreamweaver
on Sept. 27 or have basic proficiency in Dreamweaver.
Register and see more details about this event.
SCPA to host daily, weekly publishers' roundtables
SCPA will host its annual roundtables for daily and weekly publishers this winter.
The Daily Publishers' Roundtable will be held Thursday, Dec. 6, and the Weekly Publishers' Roundtable (moved from the original date of Nov. 15) will be Friday, Jan. 11. Both will be held at SCPA Offices from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch will be provided.
Topics of discussion
will include: success stories, niche products, online revenue and paywalls, innovative ideas, building circulation, postal and delivery issues, and increasing revenue and controlling costs.
There is no cost to attend thanks to sponsorship from SNPA.
Send SCPA your USPS Statement of Ownership
Paid newspaper members -- you should have already filed and published your 2012 Statement of Ownership, Management and Circulation. But have you sent a copy to SCPA yet?
A current ownership statement is a requirement for membership in SCPA. Your ownership statement is used to update circulation statistics, which are then used to promote our industry. These are also the figures that will be used for the 2013-2014 S.C. Newspaper Directory.
Send SCPA a copy of your form via email or mail (P.O. Box 11429, Columbia, S.C. 29211).
SCPA will send out distribution affidavits for free newspapers during the first week of November.
Opinion: Autopsies are public records
The Greenville News
Sumter County’s coroner should not have withheld an autopsy report from the Sumter Item newspaper by claiming such reports are medical records and not subject to the state’s Freedom of Information Act.
The burden for withholding any record generated by a public servant, board, commission or council should be significant. Records should be presumed to be public unless there’s a compelling reason to withhold them, and it’s rare that a whole class of public documents — such as autopsy reports — should be exempt from freedom of information laws.
A Circuit Court judge erred in saying that burden is met in the case of autopsies. The ruling arose out of a 2010 officer-involved shooting in the city of Sumter and a FOIA request by a reporter with The Item newspaper that was rejected by the city. The city argued that the autopsy was not public because it was a medical record.
Such a conclusion runs counter to the state’s FOI Act, and it runs counter to the Legislature’s specific intent regarding autopsies as made clear by a 2002 law that specifically exempted portions of autopsy reports from the FOIA. That case is compellingly made in the newspaper’s appeal of the Circuit Court ruling that upheld the city’s misguided definition of autopsy reports.
“Had it been the intention of the General Assembly to include autopsy records within the scope of medical records, it would not then have been necessary for the inclusion of specific exemptions from the mandatory disclosure requirements,” attorney Jay Bender wrote in the newspaper’s appeal.
That is a perfectly logical conclusion. This state’s lawmaking body presumed autopsies to be public records and therefore carved out in 2002 what it viewed as a reasonable exemption for portions of them. (Whether the original exemption is reasonable is not at issue in that case, but suffice it to say that FOI laws should cast as wide a net as possible and any exemption deserves careful scrutiny.)
Furthermore, as stated in the newspaper’s appeal, autopsies are not medical records because they don’t involve any medical care.
Attorney seeks to stop online photos of suspects
The Associated Press reported this week that a Columbia lawyer wants jails across South Carolina to stop publicly posting pictures of people who are arrested.
The pictures are being picked up by a website called mugshots.com and posting them on their own site. The site then charges people up to $399 to remove a photo, even if charges were dropped, scrubbed from someone’s record or the person was found not guilty, attorney Seth Rose said.
“They are shaming people, then extorting them with no concern about the presumption of innocence,” Rose said.
Rose, who also is a Richland County councilman, has already convinced the Richland County jail to remove photos from its website. Information like names, charges and bail amounts remain. The county also will continue to treat the jail pictures as public information and email them to media members, county spokeswoman Stephany Snowden said.
Rose is talking to attorneys and other people, trying to figure out a solution that can work statewide. At least 17 counties post pictures of inmates with online jail information. Officials in Florence and Horry counties said they post jail pictures because they are public information and have not heard any complaints.
SCPA executive director, J-School dean named to governor's panel on ethics reform
SCPA Executive Director Bill Rogers and Charles Bierbauer, a former CNN bureau chief who is now dean of the University of South Carolina’s College of Mass Communications and Information Studies have been asked by Gov. Nikki Haley to serve on a ethics reform panel.
The panel is comprised of 11 non-public officials made up of experts in law enforcement, ethics and media. Former Republican Attorney General Henry McMaster and ex-Democratic Attorney General Travis Medlock will chair the panel.
During her State House news conference, Haley, herself the target of ethics hearings this summer, said the state’s laws are too weak and too vague.
The group she formed has roughly 90 days to hash out a plan that it will recommend to lawmakers.
Rogers said he would be interested in strengthening the state’s FOIA, something lawmakers tried to do last session but ultimately failed.
“It’s important to look at the problems in the law and try to fix it,” he says. -- Free Times
The North Augusta Star moves
The Star in North Augusta has moved to a new location -- 404 E. Martintown Road, Space 2, North Augusta, SC 29841.
|The postal service's junk mail scandal
By Charles Lane, Editorial Writer for
The Washington Post
I haven’t heard much talk about it from the 2012 candidates, but there’s a scandal brewing in this country.
Monday through Saturday, uninvited messengers show up at households all across America and drop off unsolicited catalogues, credit card come-ons and other paper equivalents of spam e-mail. Americans get 84 billion pieces of this stuff every year — the vast majority of which they dump, unread, in the nearest trash can or recycling bin.
If homeowners are merely annoyed, local governments are furious; it costs them $1 billion per year to collect and dispose of the waste, according to a recent New York Times report.
Yet the federal government stands by and does nothing to stop this nuisance. Arguably, Washington is encouraging it.
I refer, of course, to the U.S. Postal Service. The digital age has rendered paper obsolescent and the postal service’s business model unsustainable. Buffeted by a 26 percent drop in first-class mail volume since 2006, it lost $15 billion in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30.
And the postal service has exhausted its line of credit with the U.S. Treasury for the first time ever, which means that henceforth it must fund current operations out of current revenue, to the extent that’s possible.
It has asked Congress for the authority to make necessary cost-cutting reforms, such as suspending Saturday delivery and closing unneeded facilities. But lawmakers are dithering, lest they offend any of the “stakeholders” — direct-mail advertisers, postal unions, rural politicians — that feed off the postal gravy train (or what’s left of it).
Mobile Rising: newspaper readership up
NAA 2012 ‘Circulation Facts, Figures & Logic’ is now available
More tablet owners are reading newspapers on their devices, according to the latest data from comScore’s TabLens research service, which is based on a three-month rolling sample of 6,000 tablet owners; these findings, along with new data from GfK MRI, hold out the promise of growing advertising and circulation revenues from this burgeoning new channel.
Overall, 11.5% of tablet owners -- a definition that includes iPad, Android tablets, Kindle Fire, and Nook -- said they read newspapers on their tablets “almost every day” or “at least once a week.” Some 14.6% said they read newspapers on their tablets one to three times a month, and 37.1% said they read newspapers on their tablets once a month.
Mark Donovan, comScore senior vice president for mobile, noted that 7% of all newspaper page views now come from tablets.
Pew: 4 out of 10 young people ‘read daily news or newspapers’
A Pew study of young people’s library habits yields some interesting stats: Some 40% of Americans under age 30 regularly read daily news or newspapers, compared with 62% of older adults.
Younger Americans are also are less likely to read newspapers on any particular day; among these regular news readers, 56% of those under age 30 read news on a typical day, compared with 78% of those over 30.
Additionally, among regular news readers, 71% of those under age 30 consume their news on a computer or handheld devices such as a tablet, e-reader, or cell phone, compared with 51% of older adults.
Though young adults are less likely to read news than older adults, “Americans under age 30 are more likely than older adults to do reading of any sort (including books, magazines, journals, newspapers, and online content).”
“Circulation Facts, Figures & Logic” has become an essential publication that publishers and circulation executives rely on for measuring performance and industry standards. The 2012 edition is the latest installment of the ongoing NAA circulation study documenting fundamental changes in marketing the daily newspaper, and the role these strategic changes play in the development of the industry’s new business model.
The report includes the latest data and trending information on a range of circulation metrics, including: subscription sales; subscriber churn; retention data by sales source; single-copy sales by outlet; and subscriber payment practices. It also provides an in-depth look at other aspects of newspaper marketing, from strategic use of discounts to pricing strategies and outsourcing of distribution functions.
This resource is free for NAA members and is available for non-members to purchase.
Longtime spokesman of South Carolina’s SLED agency dies
Hugh Munn, the first public information officer for the State Law Enforcement Division, died last week.
He was 70 years old.
Munn joined SLED in 1976, after working for years as a journalist, including at The State newspaper.
For many in South Carolina, Munn became “the face of SLED,” standing before cameras at the thresholds of major crime scenes across the state, explaining fatal tragedies to the general public, delivering shocking details into criminal investigations or disclosing the wayward actions of trusted public officials.
A native of Camden, Munn is survived by his wife of 40 years, Linda, two daughters, Sarah and Melissa, and other close relatives.
When Munn retired from SLED in 2002, he started a new career teaching in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at USC. He also developed training programs for international media and law enforcement based on best practices for the missing child AMBER Alert System.
"In his years at SLED, Hugh was always helpful to reporters and editors and gave them any information SLED had," SCPA Executive Director Bill Rogers said.
Nov. 1: Advanced Adobe Dreamweaver (Part Two of Two), SCPA Offices, Columbia
Nov. 22-23: Happy Thanksgiving! SCPA/SCNN Offices Closed
Dec. 6: Daily Publishers' Roundtable, SCPA Offices, Columbia
Dec. 7: News Contest Deadline; Rules, tags and forms available here
Jan. 3, 2013: Legislative Workshop for the Media, More details coming soon!
Jan. 11: Weekly Publishers' Roundtable, SCPA Offices, Columbia
Jan. 18: SCPA Foundation Internship and Scholarship application deadline
March 22-24, 2013: SCPA Annual Meeting and Awards Presentation, The Westin Poinsett Hotel, Greenville