The State, The Sun News to paywall in December
The State in Columbia and The Sun News in Myrtle Beach, both owned by The McClatchy Co., will begin charging for digital content starting in December, the papers' publishers announced earlier this week.
Beginning Dec. 4 and Dec. 5 respectively, The State and The Sun News will follow more than 300 newspapers in South Carolina and across the nation by charging a fee to access the content on their websites and mobile sites.
Both papers' digital “platforms” will continue to offer an E-edition available by desktop, laptop and tablet, as well as an array of articles, blogs, databases, photographs, video galleries, forums, surveys, updates and breaking-news offerings that expand the content offered in the printed newspaper. Both papers will also offer mobile apps.
For non-subscribers, McClatchy will offer limited pageviews every 30 days.
Under this arrangement, digital content will become part of a package of subscription offerings to new and existing customers. Current subscribers to the printed newspaper will continue to receive access to the digital products at no additional cost until their current subscriptions expire.
Upon renewal, State newspaper subscribers will receive access to digital products for $2.77 per month. Customers who do not subscribe to the printed newspaper will pay $8.95 per month for digital access.
Myrtle Beach residents who want digital-only access, without a print subscription, will pay $6.95 per month.
Current print subscribers who do not want digital access can opt out of the digital plan when their subscriptions are due for renewal.
The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette, also owned by McClatchy, are already paywalled sites.
McClatchy executives announced in July that they'd roll out metered paywalls for all of their newspapers by the end of the fourth quarter. Plans at The (Rock Hill) Herald are pending, McClatchy announced earlier.
Change made to amend News Contest rules
It has come to our attention that part of the rules related to the new magazine contests are unclear. Take a look at (117) Sports Specialty Publication or Sports Magazine and (118) Feature Specialty Publication or magazine. Note that for these contests, each entry shall consist of a single specialty publication or magazine. There is no limit on the number of entries a newspaper may submit in this contest. This means that individual editions may be submitted as separate entries.
You may have also noticed that we revised the eligibility rules to state that entries must be published in your newspaper's full run or zoned edition, specialty publication or newspaper's website or affiliate website. That means that photos, stories, etc. that run in your magazine or other specialty publications can be entered into other contests (Example: a photo of a beautiful sunset that only ran in your lifestyle magazine could be entered into the pictorial contest or a story about a 113-year-old football fan could be entered into the profile feature writing or story category).
Rules have now been updated on the website to reflect this change. Please let Jen or Bill know if you have any questions.
Rules have also been posted for the Associate and Individual Member Contest and the Collegiate Contest.
You now have less than a month to enter
the professional News Contest and the Associate and Individual Contest. The deadline is fast approaching on Dec. 7. Collegiate members have until Dec. 21 to enter.
Legal training video available 24-7 on Web
In an effort to provide cost effective and flexible training, SCPA has an on-demand training video, What to Do When, that focuses on legal issues faced regularly in newsrooms large and small across South Carolina.
SCPA Attorney Jay Bender and SCPA Executive Director Bill Rogers lead members through a 30-minute question and answer session on the most often asked legal questions in the newsroom.
Juvenile arrests, shield law, access to birth certificates, copyright of Google maps, naming rape victims and cameras in the court room are just a few of the topics discussed.
“This video is a great primer and refresher on S.C. laws impacting your newspaper,” Rogers said.
“This is a way to provide top-notch training without incurring travel costs and minimizing loss of staff time,” he said. “We really hope people will watch it individually or set up brown bag lunches to watch it as a staff group.”
What to Do When is available to SCPA members for free 24-7 on the Members Only section of the site. Go to www.scpress.org and click “Members Only” to view the video. Contact Jen if you do not know your paper's username or password.
City water, sewer officials in Columbia are directed to stop talking about investments in upgrading sewer system
The State reported this week that federal environmental enforcers have blocked Columbia wastewater officials from talking to The State newspaper about one of the city’s largest investments — tens of millions of public dollars used to upgrade its crumbling sewer system.
The Environmental Protection Agency told city officials last week to stop discussing what they have done or plan to do to deal with the deteriorating sewer system, said city manager Steve Gantt and assistant city manager Missy Gentry, who oversee the city’s water and wastewater divisions.
To publicly discuss any aspect of the sewer system risks violation of the confidentiality agreement the city signed with the EPA and the U.S. Justice Department as part of an impending civil settlement, Gantt and Gentry said.
Greenwood School District denies records request: FOIA experts say state law doesn’t shelter information
The Index-Journal reported that Greenwood District 50 superintendent Darrell Johnson denied a Freedom of Information Act request Oct. 12, a move several FOIA experts say is inconsistent with state law.
On Oct. 2, the Index-Journal requested access to former Emerald volleyball coach Gina Sargent’s personnel file. District officials said Sargent resigned her volleyball coaching post Oct. 1.
Sargent, however, said she’d characterize her departure as a resignation and firing.
“It was a little bit of both,” Sargent said Oct. 1.
Upon learning of Sargent’s possible dismissal, the Index-Journal filed the FOIA request, asking for access to her personnel file, as well as emails related to Sargent from Johnson, other District 50 administrators, assistant superintendent Randy Vaughn, Emerald principal Brad Nickles, Emerald assistant principal T. Carter and Emerald athletic director Tim McMahon.
On Oct. 12, Johnson sent a letter to the Index-Journal.
“Your request for personnel records is denied because the requested materials are exempt from disclosure under the FOIA,” the letter stated.
The letter did not cite any exemptions in the FOIA.
Later in Johnson’s letter, it suggests “a significant amount of time” will be required to “gather and examine” emails before releasing them. The school district requires a 50 percent deposit before the examination process. The school district has not provided the Index-Journal an estimate 19 days after Johnson’s letter was written.
Centenarian still works at Upstate newspaper
By Brandon L. Leonard, Hometown News
While many never arrive to their 100th birthday milestone, local centenarian Jessie Smith not only celebrated the special day with friends on Oct. 23 but she was also at work.
“It’s like therapy for me back there,” Smith said of the pressroom at Hometown News’ office in Woodruff. “I enjoy being able to get out of the house.”
Jessie’s secret to reaching 100 was staying active, and she has been.
She still works two days a week putting inserts in papers at Hometown News. She played golf until 1994, being named the Ladies’ Champion at Three Pines Country Club nine times since she started playing in the early ‘50s. And she still rakes leaves at her home almost daily, especially during this time of the year when they fall constantly.
“I can’t stand for them to lie on the ground like that,” Smith said.
Born at home in the Bethany community in Laurens County, Smith was one of eight children.
Of the day of her birth, her father, Irby Thackston, wrote in his journal, “Aunt Lou died. Helped in home. Sow had five pigs. Jessie born,” Smith said.
As she told the story to co-worker Don Cody, he laughed and asked, “Who do you think squealed more that day, you or the pigs?”
Smiling, Smith said, “I was a good baby.”
“She’s an inspiration,” Cody said. “To get up and go and come in is one thing. But she is sharp and has a good sense of humor. It’s hard to complain when you see Jessie’s there. She’s willing to do and to work as long as she can.”
Osteen Publishing expands operations to New Mexico
The Osteen family of Sumter has purchased The Las Cruces (N.M.) Bulletin, a weekly newspaper, and its affiliated publications.
"The most important resources in any business are the people, and we're excited to add these very talented and dedicated New Mexico folks to our great teams in Sumter and Florida," the Osteens said in a statement. "We believe in the future of community news organizations, and adapting these publications and their websites for the future will be accomplished - with our strong support - by local professionals who know their audience."
The Osteens also own The Item in Sumter and three publications in Florida.
The Bulletin's publisher will report to Larry Miller, chief executive officer of Osteen Publishing Co. and OPC News. Miller works out of his office in South Carolina and will be in the New Mexico market frequently. Also an Oklahoma native, Miller has 35 years of experience at newspapers throughout the country and has been associated with Osteen Publishing since 2007.
As of 2012, members of the Osteen family of Sumter, have been involved in community newspapering for more than 150 years, one of the longest continuous family involvements in the United States.
Barack Obama wins US election: how newspapers recorded history
AP rolls out video service; eyes revenue sharing
Barack Obama has been re-elected to a second term as U.S. President. Here is how some of the world's major papers have recorded the historic moment. Here is how some of South Carolina's daily newspapers covered the win (click here and scroll to South Carolina).
SCPA members can help New Jersey newspaper colleagues hit hard by Sandy
NJ Press Association, through its NJ Press Foundation, has launched an initiative aiming to provide much needed financial assistance and moral support to NJPA members devastated in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The page created on NJPA's website, www.njpa.org/hurricanesandy, describes the basis for the effort in greater detail including a link for making a secure donation online.
There is also a link providing a PDF explaining the program. Several NJPA members and their employees are really in need of help.
SABEW accepting applications for January healthcare symposium in New York
Applications from journalists are now being accepted for a two-day Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) fellowship program on the business aspects of healthcare.
The Commonwealth Fund awarded a grant to the SABEW to develop a two-day symposium in New York City.
The session, which will be limited to 14 journalists selected through an application process, will be held Jan. 17-18 at Reuters headquarters at 3 Times Square.
The deadline to apply is Monday, Nov. 19, at 5 p.m. Participants will be given fellowships that cover travel, hotel and other costs for the New York program. Apply by sending a letter of interest and a resume to Warren Watson, SABEW, Suite 416, Cronkite School, 555 North Central, Phoenix, AZ 85004. In the letter, applicants should explain their background and interest in the topic and benefits they believe they would derive from participation.
The Associated Press is rolling out a new HD video service that permits newspapers to upgrade their online video offerings.
AP CEO Gary Pruitt said the service, which the cooperative has been marketing in Europe, is now available to North American newspapers. The Wall Street Journal, Pruitt said, is the first U.S. paper to use the service.
“It’s basically on-demand to HD videos; newspapers just search for the videos they want and pay for what they use. You get broadcast-quality news online,” he said at Inland Press Association’s annual meeting last week.
“This type of product was out of range for most newspapers before; now they don’t have to invest in costly video equipment.”
AP is also making available to newspapers a digital vertical offering, dubbed Digital News Experience. The service, Pruitt said, is a package of curated content that can be branded under the newspaper’s own name.
Subjects include sports and other news events. “This will help keep people on your website,” Pruitt said. “They won’t have to go (elsewhere) to get information.”
AP is making the service available for free, with the agency sharing national ad revenues 50/50. Papers keep the revenue generated from local ads sold as part of the package, Pruitt said.
“Revenue-sharing is a new model we have to explore,” he said. “With newspapers facing economic challenges, AP can’t go in any longer and say, ‘pay us more.’ Revenue sharing allows us to offer new services and help you too. Being partners is a way for both of us to sustain ourselves.”
Revenue-related sessions offer ideas, insights
If you are an NAA member, you can watch a series of free revenue-related webinars. These free sessions pack deep insights and valuable recommendations into one hour. The time investment pays off in new ideas for your organization. November topics include: Migrating to Modular Ads, The Used-Car Consumer Buying Process Funnel, Paid Content Strategies, Part 1: Strategy Assessment and Recommendations and Viewable Impressions: How to Prepare for New Ad Measurement Standards.
Vicki Shealy dead at 62, retired S.C. editor
CHAPIN – Retired veteran journalist Vicki Thomas Shealy, 62, wife of Chapin Mayor Stanley E. Shealy, died Sunday, Nov. 4.
She retired in February, 2012, after a 40 year career in newspaper journalism. She was an honor student and graduate of Pompano Beach Senior High in Florida in 1968. After obtaining her degree in journalism from the University of South Carolina College of Journalism, she began her newspaper career at the Hartsville Messenger in 1972. She later worked as a reporter for the Greenwood Index Journal, as a staff writer and associate editor of the Newberry Observer, and served as community editor with the Neighbors section of the Columbia Record and later at the State. In 1992 she joined the staff of the Lexington County Chronicle and Dispatch-News, where she served as metro editor until her retirement in February, 2012. Funeral services will be held at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Nov. 9, at Mt. Horeb Lutheran Church with interment to follow in the church cemetery. The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, at Caughman-Harman Funeral home, Chapin Chapel. Memorials may be made to Mt. Horeb Lutheran Church, Technology Fund, 101 East Boundary Street, Chapin, SC 29036. She had two daughters, Lauren Victoria and the late Allison Elizabeth Shealy; sister, Terry Mays of Delray Beach, Fl and a brother, Chris Thomas of Lennon, MI. Mrs. Shealy was a member of Mt. Horeb Lutheran Church. She was honored by the Lexington County Council and Lexington Town Council upon her retirement.
The first step for meaningful business reports? Make them understandable
Your newsroom has just finished brainstorming on how to beef up its business reporting. The conversation happens to be at the same time your newspaper has a major announcement itself. What better opportunity to signal to your readers a new page in local business reporting.
The headline: "Publisher announces the call for redemption of all its public debt" The story begins: "XYZ Publishing Co., parent company of the local newspaper, announced the call for redemption of all of its public debt. The company elected to redeem all outstanding notes under its publicly funded indenture, and deposited funds with the trustee to pay off these notes … XYZ Publishing Co. refinanced its debt under more favorable terms …" The company's CEO adds, "Today demonstrates just how far we have come in proving that there is a sustainable future for our company."
Say what? The press release may as well have been written in Chinese. It would have just as much meaning for most readers.
|The power of the right story
Thomas knows the power of storytelling. "I've found that the right stories help me sell more advertising," he said. "After all, prospects are like everyone else. They like to hear stories and examples of things that have happened to other people.
Thomas is right. Every sales person should have an arsenal of stories for a variety of purposes – to establish credibility, illustrate product benefits and answer objections. "Sales stories shouldn't go on and on forever," he said. "They must be focused and to-the-point, with a clear beginning, middle and end. And I've learned that it shouldn't take long to get to the end. There are a lot of approaches, but the formula I like best is known as SPAR – Situation, Problem, Action and Result."
Let's take a look at Thomas' storytelling technique:
Situation: "In this step, take a moment to set the stage," Thomas explained, "For example, you could say, 'Three months ago, I was working with the Ace Widget Company on a new ad campaign. They had advertised with our paper on occasion, but most of their budget had been spent in other areas.' In just a couple of sentences, this gives your listener a snapshot of Ace Widget's situation."
Nov. 22-23: Happy Thanksgiving! SCPA/SCNN Offices Closed
Dec. 5: Webinar: Mobilize your classifieds
Dec. 6: Daily Publishers' Roundtable, SCPA Offices, Columbia
Dec. 7: News Contest Deadline; Rules, tags and forms available here
Dec. 7: S.C. Journalism Hall of Fame Nomination Deadline
Dec. 7: Webinar: Will Paywalls Kill Newspapers' Web Advertising?
Dec. 21: Collegiate 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