Publishers: Editors: Managing Editors:
Undated (AP) _ A summary of developments in the news industry for the week of Dec. 14-21: Justice Department Seeks More Information on Newspaper Sale
PITTSBURGH (AP) - The Justice Department asked the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to provide more information about the newspaper’s proposed purchase of its rival, The Pittsburgh Press.
The move will delay by at least three weeks the settlement of a labor dispute that has kept both newspapers off the streets for all but two days since May 17.
The department has 20 days after it receives the Post-Gazette’s information to make a decision, according to Gina Talamona, a Justice Department spokeswoman. The department’s request was made Dec. 17.
The Post-Gazette had planned to have papers on the streets beginning Jan. 4. It can cancel the sale if it’s delayed beyond Jan. 15.
Blade Communications Inc. of Toledo, Ohio, which owns the Post-Gazette, has said it planned to publish one seven-day morning paper.
An attorney for some Press employees has argued to the Justice Department that Blade should be ordered to spin off a six-day afternoon publication to keep a second daily paper based in the city. A group of Press employees also wants to buy the Press and keep it running as an independent afternoon paper.
Blade officials said the sale and closing of the Press wouldn’t violate antitrust laws because the Post-Gazette would face increased competition from suburban newspapers.
Also Dec. 17, Blade and Press owner E.W. Scripps signed an agreement to turn the Press over to the Post-Gazette. They had previously signed a tentative deal.
About 25 of 212 newsroom employees at the Press said the Post-Gazette offered them jobs. Post-Gazette Assistant Managing Editor Woodene Merriman said no Press employees would be hired before the Justice Department approved the deal.
Teamsters delivery drivers called a strike May 17 against The Pittsburgh Press Co. to protest its plans to implement a regional distribution system that would have eliminated 75 percent of their jobs.
The Press Co. published the afternoon Press and printed and distributed the morning Post-Gazette under a joint operating agreement, allowing independent editorial staffs to share advertising, production and circulation staffs.
E.W. Scripps Co., the Press’ parent company, said in October it planned to sell the Press. The deal with Blade was struck later that month and hinged on the Post-Gazette’s ability to negotiate contracts with the 10 unions that represent production and maintenance employees.
The Teamsters agreed to terms in mid-November and the other unions fell in line soon after.
Before the strike, the Press was the dominant paper, with a circulation of 209,000 daily and 556,000 Sunday. The Post-Gazette had a circulation of 154,000 Monday through Saturday mornings.
--- Paper Pushes Into Strikebound Pittsburgh
GREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) - The Tribune-Review newspaper is putting the word ″Pittsburgh″ on its front page to mark its increased presence in the city.
The Tribune-Review has opened a bureau in Pittsburgh - which has been without its two daily newspapers since May because of a strike - and is selling more papers in the city and its suburbs, said George Beidler, executive editor of the Greensburg paper. Greensburg is about 30 miles outside Pittsburgh.
Copies of the Tribune-Review distributed in Pittsburgh now carry the city’s name above the name of the paper.
″We’re responding to a market that has fallen into our laps,″ Beidler said. ″We want to hold on to as many readers as possible.″
Beidler said daily circulation of the Tribune-Review has grown from 53,000 to 85,000 and Sunday circulation from 94,000 to about 200,000 since the strike began.
--- San Diego Edition of Los Angeles Times Folds
SAN DIEGO (AP) - The Los Angeles Times published its last San Diego County edition, withdrawing more than 100 news people from the nation’s sixth-largest city.
The only commemoration in the final county section Dec. 18 an advertisement signed by the staff to thank San Diego for the edition’s 14 years.
The Times is the second editorial voice lost to San Diego in 1992. The San Diego Tribune merged with The San Diego Union in February, forming what is now the city’s sole general-interest daily.
The Times’ five editorial employees who remain in San Diego will contribute stories to the main edition. Twenty-six advertising personnel will stay, too.
The rest of the 108 full-time San Diego news staff members were offered other positions with the Times, or received enhanced severance packages if they left the paper.
The Los Angeles Times, minus a local news section, will continue to be sold in San Diego. The circulation of the Times’ San Diego edition as of March 1992 was 61,653 daily and 71,246 on Sundays.
The San Diego edition was called an experiment when it was started in 1978.
The Times announced Nov. 6 that it was folding the edition because of tough economic times and because the newspaper wanted to strengthen editions closer to Los Angeles.
--- Union, Publisher Deadlocked Over Daily News Buyout
NEW YORK (AP) - A federal appeals court expects to rule by Christmas to clear up a logjam of litigation preventing the sale of the Daily News to publisher Mortimer Zuckerman.
A three-judge panel of the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals listened Dec. 17 to arguments in the unsuccessful negotiations between Zuckerman and a typographers union.
Lawyers said they are $3 million apart on a $30 million deal to compensate the workers for the loss of guaranteed lifetime jobs.
″We think that $3 million is a gap that can be closed,″ said Andrew Irving, a lawyer for the union negotiating on behalf of 167 typographers.
The court indicated it would rule on the various appeals by Christmas. Arguments revolved around whether negotiations were fair and whether the lifetime guarantees could be voided.
News lawyer Marc Kirschner said the newspaper filed a new motion before a bankruptcy judge asking to void the contract which guaranteed the typographers’ jobs. A hearing on the motion is scheduled for Dec. 28.
Harvey Miller, a lawyer for Zuckerman, said 36 hours of negotiations with the union before the Dec. 17 hearing failed to produce a settlement.
Zuckerman, a real estate developer and publisher of Atlantic Monthly and U.S. News & World Report, plans to pay $36.3 million to buy the newspaper and millions more to build a new printing plant.
Zuckerman has told the newspaper that he will withdraw his offer if the deal is not closed by Jan. 1.
Lawyers say the News could be forced to close within months if the purchase isn’t completed. Study: More Than One-Third of Papers Admit Influenced By Ads
MILWAUKEE (AP) - Advertisers pressured about 90 percent of the nation’s newspapers to change or kill stories, and were successful with about one third of the newspapers, a study said.
The study also said advertisers withdrew ads from 90 percent of newspapers because of displeasure with news content, and more than half of respondents said there was pressure from within their newspapers to write stories to please advertisers.
″It shows that as the media have become bottom-line oriented, they have been more likely to capitulate to advertisers, and in the long run this has a very detrimental effect on news readers,″ said Lawrence C. Soley, a Marquette University professor and co-author of the study.
The survey was sent to a random sample of 250 daily papers in January and February. About 60 percent of editors returned the questionnaires.
The study, also written by Robert L. Craig, a professor at the University of Ulster, said that newspapers were pressured by advertisers regardless of their size or circulation. He said the economic slowdown the past few years had increased pressure on editors to accept advertisers’ demands. Editors were more likely to cave in on ″small things,″ but hold out on issues that editors considered more principled, he said.
A newspaper industry representative called the survey’s findings ″vastly overstated.″
″It’s a problem that’s endemic to newspapering,″ said Peter Winter, senior vice president of market development at the Newspaper Association of America. ″But I don’t see any changes at all in terms of newspapers being more receptive to tailoring editorial to suit the needs of advertisers.″
Winter said advertisers and editors both adhere to the principle of keeping editorial content independent from advertising.
The findings were published in the December issue of the Journal of Advertising.
--- Photographer Attacked Twice in Somali Capital
MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) - Teen-agers with assault rifles robbed an Associated Press photographer, and later a mob stoned him and two others. A Kenyan news agency reported that one of its employees was shot and wounded.
One of the attacks appeared to be caused by religious hostility.
There have been concerns that large numbers of Westerners in Somalia because of U.S.-led famine relief operations would create tension in the Muslim nation. Some Somalis had objected to the deployment of U.S. troops.
The Africapix agency said Hassan Ali, an audio recorder, was shot and robbed outside outside a mosque on Dec. 11 while on assignment for Italy’s RTI Milan television. Ali was the first journalist wounded since the Marines landed Dec. 9 to launch Operation Restore Hope.
AP photographer John Moore, 25, of Irving, Texas, was attacked Dec. 12 while while waiting to photograph the first Marine-escorted food convoy into northern Mogadishu.
Moore was speaking to a Somali man in a home along the convoy route when three Somalis who appeared to be in their teens entered and pointed AK-47 assault rifles at the photographer, his translator and the homeowner.
The teens fled with two cameras.
About two hours later, Moore walked a few hundred yards down the road from the hotel where journalists are staying to take pictures of French soldiers and Marines on patrol.
About 60 Somalis, mainly children and teen-agers, surrounded him and began shouting that he was a Christian, he said.
Moore began walking back to the hotel and was near its gates when he met AP photographers David Brauchli and Hassan Amini. The increasingly belligerent crowd closed in and one person grabbed Brauchli’s sunglasses while others tried to steal the photographers’ cameras.
As the photographers fled, people in the crowd began hurling rocks at them. One hit Moore in the face, bloodying his lip.
Marines in an armored personnel carrier nearby and French soldiers at a checkpoint were within yards of the incident but did not intervene.
Pentagon spokesman Michael Byers in Washington said that whether the military helps non-Somali civilians depends on whether they were busy with other matters at the time.
″What it comes down to is that is up to the unit commanders based on the situation at the time,″ Byers said.
On Dec. 11, an NBC camera crew was shot at near the green line that separates north and south Mogadishu. No one was hit. A free-lance photographer was robbed at knifepoint in the capital that night. UPI Establishes Internship In Helen Thomas’ Honor
WASHINGTON (AP) - United Press International is establishing a $25,000 journalism internship in honor of Helen Thomas, its longtime White House reporter.
The endowment, to be known as the Helen Thomas-UPI Women in Journalism Internship, will support a student at the Washington Center for Politics and Journalism, UPI said Dec. 17. Each intern will work in UPI’s Washington bureau and receive a $1,000 stipend.
Ms. Thomas has covered the White House since 1961, the longest unbroken White House assignment of any journalist today. She has been a reporter for almost 50 years.
″She has been an inspiration to many young, aspiring journalists, and we are pleased to establish this internship in her name to assist future generations of reporters,″ said Steve Geimann, UPI executive editor.
UPI, in financial difficulty for many years, was sold for $3.95 million at a bankruptcy auction last summer to Middle East Broadcasting Centre Ltd., an Arabic television network.
--- Carriers For Closed Newspaper Share $3 Million Settlement
ST. LOUIS (AP) - About 100 carriers for the former St. Louis Globe-Democrat will accept $3 million to settle an antitrust suit against Pulitzer Publishing Co. and The Herald Co., which published the newspaper.
The 98 carriers or their estates sought $83.4 million in damages in their 1987 suit.
The carriers alleged that Pulitzer, which publishes the St. Louis Post- Dispatch, and Herald conspired to create an illegal monopoly to put The Globe-Democrat out of business.
The suit says the sale of the paper to Jeffrey and Debra Gluck was a sham because the couple lacked resources to keep the Globe operating. It contended that Pulitzer and Herald overlooked more qualified buyers in an effort to produce a monopoly in St. Louis.
In February 1984 - with Justice Department approval - some assets of The Globe-Democrat were sold to the Glucks, who published the newspaper until September 1985. The paper was then sold to Veritas Co., which published it from January 1986 to October 1986.
Ted Perryman, a lawyer for The Herald Co., said the settlement reached earlier this month satisfied all parties.
--- Star-Bulletin Employees Given Notice of Possible Closure
HONOLULU (AP) - The owner of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin has given employees notice that the newspaper could be shut down if it is not sold by Jan. 31.
The company said there is little likelihood of closure and that the notice was merely a legal formality in its move to buy its rival.
About 90 full- and part-time employees of the Star-Bulletin and about 800 Hawaii Newspaper Agency employees received a letter Dec. 15 from Gannett Pacific President Richard Hartnett.
The 45-day notice is required by state law, but Hartnett said that the company does not anticipate anyone will be terminated or be laid off.
Gannett Co. Inc. entered into an agreement with the Persis Corp. to buy the morning Honolulu Advertiser for $250 million. However, Gannett must first sell the afternoon Star-Bulletin to comply with federal anti-trust laws.
The newspaper agency handles advertising, production and circulation for both newspapers under a joint operating agreement.
Gannett wants to sell the Star-Bulletin and complete the purchase of the Advertiser by Jan. 31.
--- Great Falls Tribue Employees Vote to End Union
GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) - A group of employees of the Great Falls Tribune has voted to end union representation.
Employees represented by the Great Falls Newspaper Guild voted 47-25 on Dec. 16 to discontinue the union that had represented them since 1936.
The Newspaper Guild includes employees in the Tribune’s news, advertising, accounting, photo lab, production services and circulation departments.
The vote is subject to certification by the National Labor Relations Board and will be final if no formal objections are filed by Dec. 23.
The Newspaper Guild is the second union to decertify at the Tribune since it was purchased by Gannett Co. Inc. in April 1990. Mailroom employees voted to give up union representation earlier this year. Tribune press workers remain unionized.
--- Deal Reached To Sell Worcester Magazine
WORCESTER, Mass. (AP) - The publisher of the Worcester and Hartford business journals has reached agreement to buy Worcester Magazine.
Terms were not disclosed.
The buyer, Worcester Publishing Ltd., already publishes the Worcester Business Journal, Hartford Business Journal and Inside Worcester.
The company will buy the magazine from Worcester County Newspapers, which will continue to provide printing and other services. Worcester County Newspapers publishes 15 weekly papers and a daily serving the Sturbridge area.
Worcester Magazine is a 16-year-old weekly alternative newspaper with a free distribution of 30,000. It was bought by Worcester County Newspapers in April 1987. Grit Moves To Kansas
WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. (AP) - Production of the Grit, a national newspaper published in Pennsylvania since its founding in 1882, has moved to Topeka, Kan.
The biweekly publication, owned by Stauffer Communications Inc., is transferring editorial, circulation and advertising operations, said Donald Keating, assistant vice president and manager of Grit Properties.
The Jan. 3 issue of the Grit, which has a circulation of 325,000, will be the first edition of the newspaper produced in Kansas. Stauffer bought the Grit in 1983. When the Grit announced in May that it would shift its operations to Topeka, it had 57 employees. It now has 22 workers.
Several employees were offered jobs in Topeka, but none accepted.
The Grit, which once had a circulation of 1.3 million, consists mostly of feature stories. Keating said the newspaper would develop a nationwide network of free-lance correspondents.
The magazine was founded in 1882 by Dietrick Lamade. The Lamade family sold it in 1981 to ADVO-System Inc. of Hartford, Conn., which in turn sold it to Stauffer. A regional Sunday Grit newspaper was published until the end of 1990. It ended when the local Williamsport newspaper, the Sun-Gazette, announced it would begin publishing a Sunday edition.
--- Denver Post Repays Debt to Former Parent Company
DENVER (AP) - In a move to strengthen its competitive position, the Denver Post Co. said it has repaid its debt to The Times Mirror Co.
The Post repurchased a 10-year, $70 million note issued by Los Angeles- based company in December 1987 when an affiliate of MediaNews Group bought the newspaper from Times Mirror.
--- Star Tribune Expands Distribution
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The Star Tribune will start delivering magazines, catalogs, samples and other targeted materials within its market areas under an agreement with a private mail carrier.
Alternate Postal Delivery, the nation’s largest private mail carrier, agreed to help the newspaper expand its delivery services, according to James Diaz, senior vice president of sales and marketing at the Star Tribune.
Delivery through the new agreement will begin in selected zip codes and then be broadened to include other areas, the newspaper said.
--- Ohio Newspaper in $10 Million Expansion Project
WILLOUGHBY, Ohio (AP) - The News-Herald is beginning a $10 million expansion project.
Publisher Joseph A. Cocozzo said growth in circulation has led to a need for more space and a more advanced printing plant. Since 1972, the circulation has increased from 20,000 to 58,000 daily.
The News-Herald’s property straddles the Willoughby-Mentor line, with 194 of the its 250 employees working in Willoughby and the rest working in Mentor.
The expansion will add 58,000 square feet to the Mentor buildings. It also will add 88 jobs within the next 10 years.
MORE Military Censor Blocks CNN’s Access to Satellite
JERUSALEM (AP)- The military censor blocked CNN’s access to its satellite for eight hours Dec. 15 in retaliation for reporting on the death of a kidnapped policeman before official permission was granted, the CNN bureau chief said.
The censor informed Cable News Network bureau chief Charles Hoff that he would block the network’s access to its satellite until 10 p.m., Hoff said. Hoff said the bureau wasn’t going to file before then anyway.
The censor refused to comment on the report.
Uri Dromi, head of the Government Press Office, said CNN had committed a ″grave violation of the censorship regulations.″ He confirmed that the censor’s move was a punishment for CNN’s violation of military censorship.
Hoff said he had informed the network’s Atlanta headquarters that the body of the paramilitary border policeman had been discovered and CNN Atlanta headquarters then broadcast the news worldwide.
The military censor called Hoff and informed him CNN was in violation of censorship, since the victim’s family had not been informed of the body’s discovery. Israel requires all local and international journalists to submit sensitive material for censorship.
Meanwhile, Israeli newspaper editors rebuked the military censor for suppressing reports on the government’s steps to deport Palestinians.
Israeli and foreign journalists were blocked by the military censor for at least six hours from reporting that buses were carrying the suspected Muslim fundamentalists toward the Lebanon frontier.
They also were barred from reporting efforts by civil rights groups to get a Supreme Court injunction.
Thus none of Israel’s morning newspapers carried full reports of the overnight drama, which ended Dec. 17 with the Supreme Court upholding the government’s expulsion order.
Defense Ministry spokesman Oded Ben-Ami justified the censorship on security grounds, saying the soldiers involved in the operation were in the occupied territories and Israel’s self-declared security zone in south Lebanon.
--- Israeli Army Snatches Palestinian Journalist in Night Raid
JERUSALEM (AP) - Soldiers burst into the home of a leading journalist in the occupied Gaza Strip on Dec. 14, arrested him and emptied his office of files and equipment, family members said.
Taher Shariteh, 33, works for Reuters news agency, The New York Times and the British Broadcasting Corp.
″About 15 soldiers came in at around 11 p.m., ordered Taher to put on his clothes and took him away,″ said his brother, Zaher Shariteh, 34. ″They didn’t tell anyone where they were taking him.″
It was unclear whether Shariteh’s detention was linked to the army’s search for Palestinian guerrillas in the Gaza Strip, which began after a Dec. 7 ambush on a military patrol killed three soldiers.
Human Rights Watch, a New York-based rights group, reported that it urgently messaged Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin to say it was ″very distressed by the reported arrest.″
The group demanded Shariteh’s ″immediate release unless there is compelling evidence that he has committed a recognizable criminal offense.″
Shariteh also was arrested last year. Upon his release a month later, he reported being tortured by his jailers. He was never tried.
--- Soviet News Agency Chief: Don’t Spy on the Job
MOSCOW (AP) - The chief of the state-owned news agency ITAR-Tass said his foreign correspondents are prohibited from engaging in espionage - unless it is on their own time.
Vitaly Ignatenko told the weekly newspaper Literaturnaya Gazeta that his journalists must work fulltime for ITAR-Tass, unlike some Soviet KGB agents who pretended to be correspondents during the Cold War.
But he conceded he could not say whether some journalists were working on the side for the Russian Intelligence Service, the former KGB.
″I do not rule out that, maybe, some of them may help the secret services on a voluntary basis (by) sharing information. But this must be done on a voluntary basis,″ ITAR-Tass quoted Ignatenko as saying.
Ignatenko, once a spokesman for former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, became chief of ITAR-Tass after the 1991 coup. He said the agency replaced 25 percent of its foreign correspondents that year and changed another 25 percent in 1992, sending 60 new reporters abroad.
ITAR-Tass has more foreign correspondents than any other Russian news organization, stationed in every major world capital.
Former Soviet state television - now called Ostankino TV - also has correspondents abroad. Last year, then-chief Yegor Yakovlev said he fired all spies working as journalists and prohibited correspondents from cooperating with the secret police. BROADCAST FCC Fines Howard Stern’s Employer $600,000
WASHINGTON - The Federal Communications Commission voted to levy a record $600,000 fine against the company that employs Howard Stern, the notorious radio host who has tested the limits of the First Amendment.
The commission voted 5-0 on Dec. 18 to fine Infinity Broadcasting Corp. rather than subject the New York-based company to a hearing on whether it should lose its license, according to Maureen Peratino, an FCC spokeswoman.
Separately, the commission voted 4-1 to allow Infinity to purchase three radio stations for $100 million from Cook Inlet Radio Partners, she said. The Cook Inlet stations are in Boston, Chicago and Atlanta.
FCC Chairman Alfred Sikes was the dissenter on the second issue, Peratino said.
The decision capped weeks of wavering over how to punish the company for Stern’s on-air behavior, which the FCC has deemed indecent.
Infinity is free to appeal the fine.
--- Supreme Court Will Take Up Bans on Broadcast Lottery Ads
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court said it will decide whether television and radio stations in states that ban lotteries may be barred from airing commercials promoting a neighboring state’s lottery.
The court agreed Dec. 14 to review a ruling that said the Federal Communications Commission cannot prohibit a radio station based in North Carolina, where lotteries are illegal, from broadcasting ads for Virginia’s state-run lottery.
Radio station WMYK-FM broadcasts from Moyock, N.C., about 3 miles from the North Carolina-Virginia border. An estimated 92 percent of the station’s listeners live in Virginia.
The station is owned by Edge Broadcasting Corp., based in Virginia Beach, Va.
Fearing that it might face FCC sanctions if WMYK received some of the millions of dollars Virginia spends each year promoting its state-run lottery, Edge Broadcasting sued the government in 1988.
The lawsuit said federal laws prohibiting such advertising in states that ban lotteries violated the broadcast company’s free-speech rights.
U.S. District Judge Frank Kaufman in Norfolk ruled that the federal laws could not be constitutionally applied to WMYK.
Acknowledging that the federal government has authority to help North Carolina discourage gambling by banning such ads in that state, Kaufman said North Carolina residents in WMYK’s listening area ″experience pervasive exposure to Virginia lottery advertising through telecast, broadcast and print media″ based in Virginia.
A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Kaufman’s ruling last February by a 2-1 vote. The appeals court panel said the challenged federal laws do not directly advance the government’s interest of protecting North Carolinians from gambling.
In the appeal acted on Dec. 14, Bush administration lawyers urged the justices to reverse the appeals court ruling.
The government’s appeal relied in large part on a 1986 Supreme Court decision that allowed Puerto Rico to ban all casino gambling ads aimed at Puerto Rican residents.
In that ruling, the court said Puerto Rico’s ″greater power to completely ban casino gambling necessarily includes the lesser power to ban advertising of casino gambling.″
--- Pat Robertson Wants Radio Service to be ‘Objective News Source’
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson will not interfere with the content of his new radio news service, Managing Editor John Rodman said.
Beginning in February, StandardNews will air seven newscasts an hour from a bureau in Washington, Rodman said. The service will offer separate broadcasts for religious and for secular stations.
″I want to have an objective news source that’s balanced in the coverage of the news,″ Robertson said. ″There is a need for perhaps some more objective reporting, particularly on family issues.″
StandardNews said it has commitments from 600 radio stations to carry the service. About half the stations are religious and some are former clients of Robertson’s defunct CBN Radio Network.
The goal is to have 2,000 stations by 1995, said General Manager Shirley Thornton.
The service’s headquarters will be in Washington, but it is a division of Virginia Beach-based Broadcast Equities Inc., which is part of a for-profit subsidiary of Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network.
--- Pennsylvania Company Buys WPRO-AM And WPRO-FM
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Tele-Media Corp. has reached an agreement with ABC- Capital Cities to buy radio stations WPRO-AM and WPRO-FM.
The purchase by Tele-Media, owner of WWLI-FM and WLKW-AM in Providence, would create the state’s most powerful radio operation with an estimated 30 percent share of the market in the 25-to-54 age group. The price was not disclosed.
The deal is subject to approval by the Federal Communications Commission.
WWLI-FM and WPRO-FM are top-rated stations that have been close competitors in recent years.
WPRO-AM broadcasts news, talk and sports. WLKW-AM is an easy listening station with mainly older listeners.
Bellefonte, Pa.-based Tele-Media owns nine radio stations in Pennsylvania and Illinois. The company also owns and operates cable TV systems in 17 states.
--- Syracuse TV Station Manager Leaves for Dallas
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) - Cathy Creany, general manager of WTVH-TV in Syracuse, will become general manager of WFAA-TV in Dallas on Feb. 1.
WFAA is one of five television stations owned by A.H. Belo Corp., which also owns the Dallas Morning News. Creany, 42, joined WTVH in 1980 and became general manager in 1986. Restrained News Coverage Not Result of Riots, Broadcasters Say
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Television stations refrained from live coverage of an urban melee because the story didn’t merit it, not because of criticism of last spring’s blanket riot coverage, officials said.
″The story wasn’t that big,″ Warren Cereghino, news director for KTLA-TV, said of the unrest Dec. 14. ″My decision to not try to interrupt programming (was because) the story wasn’t big enough and didn’t get big enough.″
Many stations had aerial shots of rock- and bottle-throwing protesters. At least eight TV helicopters sent to the scene forced Los Angeles International Airport to assign a special controller to monitor the traffic.
But the footage showed up as tape on regularly scheduled newscasts. It was in sharp contrast to the April riot coverage that exposed residents to live, vivid pictures of looting and violence.
Live shots on 11 p.m. broadcasts showed police in control of the intersection.
″We covered the story on its merits,″ KCBS-TV news director John Lippman said. ″It was a different story than the riot story. In April, the story and the reason for live coverage was (the lack) of police response. Here, there was police response.″
Roger Bell, news director at KABC-TV, said his station waited until its regular 5 p.m. newscast to broadcast tape of the incident. There had been earlier coverage of the peaceful protest.
″We showed a great deal of restraint,″ just as the station did during the riots, he said. He said KABC did not go live when rioting flared after police officers were acquitted of beating motorist Rodney King.
″We’re all nervous. The whole city’s nervous,″ he said, noting such upcoming events as the officers’ retrial on federal charges. ″We want (the city) to come out looking better than it did last time.″
But station officials defended the media’s right to provide live coverage of news events as they deem warranted.
″We’re always concerned about the ‘kill the messenger’ mentality,″ Lippman said.
--- CNN Buys Stake in German All-News Network
NEW YORK (AP) - Cable News Network is buying a portion of n-tv, Germany’s 3-week-old, all-news network.
The partnership between CNN and the 24-hour, German-language news channel will enable coordinated newsgathering efforts, exchange of news footage and cooperative access to facilities, officials said Dec. 17.
Under the arrangement, CNN will purchase 27.5 percent of the shares of n- tv, which signed on Nov. 30.
CNN’s English-speaking correspondents will have little if any presence on n-tv, said Karl-Ulrich Kuhlo, a founding partner. He said the channel, which reaches nearly 10 million German households, employs about 100 journalists.
CNN’s Berlin bureau will relocate to n-tv headquarters there. CNN, which reaches about 3.5 million German households, will continue to be seen in Germany.
--- Multinational Effort Gathering to Launch New TV News Network
LYON, France (AP) - Thirty-nine countries from England to Russia to Egypt are helping launch a TV news network Jan. 1 to compete with Cable News Network for the eyes and ears of Europeans and North Africans.
Media analysts are split over whether Euronews - a nonprofit operation with no correspondents, anchors or bureaus - will pose a serious threat to the pioneering U.S.-based all-news network.
But the new channel is good news for a European Community struggling to keep plans on track for a stronger economic, political and monetary union.
″We must be able to do it for Europe,″ Euronews Secretary-General Pierre Brunel-Lantenac said Dec. 18.
The network, which employs 120 people, debuts in January.
Euronews will use raw footage or programs from member countries’ state TV stations and add voiceovers in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian and eventually in Arabic. Programming will include live coverage of news events.
The signal will be sent mainly via cable and satellite, though a few countries will broadcast it on airwaves. About 30 million viewers are initially expected. Twenty hours of daily programming are planned in January, rising to 24 hours in April.
The initial budget is about $13 million, with 75 percent coming from member nations and the European Community and the rest expected from advertising.
Financial Director Jean-Claude Silvain acknowledged difficulty attracting advertising. He predicted that advertising would not reach 50 percent of the operating budget before 1997.
Cable News Network, which says it beams into 51 million households in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, said it welcomed the new entry in the market.
″We don’t see it as direct competition,″ Peter Vesey, vice president of CNN International, said. ″We could possibly be a complementary set of services.″
Euronews is the second regional challenge to the 10-year-old CNN, which itself struggled in the beginning. Last year, the British Broadcasting Corp. launched World Service Television in Asia; analysts say it is doing well.
Euronews members include stations in Belgium, Cyprus, Egypt, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Monaco, Portugal and Spain. Euronews assures that as part of the 39-member European Broadcasting Union, Germany and Britain would also contribute footage.
--- Jury Finds ″20-20″ Innocent in Defamation Case
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - ABC and ″20-20″ newsmagazine correspondent John Stossel did not libel a dentist in a program about insurance fraud, a jury decided Dec. 18.
The jury ruled that Stossel and ABC didn’t defame Dr. Owen Rogal, nor did it falsely betray him in a wrongful light. The allegations weren’t libelous or defamatory.
Rogal sued the network and Stossel, saying he was libeled in a March 24, 1989, program about insurance fraud.
The show centered on dentists who treat temporomandibular joint syndrome, a jaw irritation that has a number of causes, ranging from a car accident to chronic teeth-grinding. In the program, Rogal was depicted as a dentist who found the syndrome in almost all of his patients, including Stossel, who went in for an exam as part of the story. PERSONNEL Cook Retires, Brumback Named Tribune Co. Chairman
CHICAGO (AP) - Stanton R. Cook will retire Jan. 1 as chairman of Tribune Company’s board of directors and will be replaced by Charles T. Brumback.
Brumback will continue as president and chief executive officer.
Cook, 67, will remain a member of the board and plans to continue as chairman of the Tribune Company’s Chicago Cubs baseball team, the company said.
Cook served as Tribune’s chief executive officer for 16 years until 1990. He was elected chairman in 1989 and became Cubs chairman in 1990. He joined the Chicago Tribune Company in 1951 as a production engineer.
Tribune also owns seven television stations and publishes seven daily newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune.
--- New Managing Editor for Fond du Lac Reporter
FOND DU LAC, Wis. (AP) - Richard Roesgen has been named managing editor of The Reporter in Fond du Lac.
Roesgen, 31, replaces Elliot Tompkin, who was appointed editor of the Anderson (Ind.) Herald-Bulletin. Roesgen will supervise The Reporter’s editorial staff of 19 full-time and five part-time employees.
Roesgen joined the newspaper in July 1991 as news editor. He previously worked at the Grand Forks (N.D.) Herald, The Lincoln (Neb.) Star and the Helena (Mont.) Independent Record.
--- Delaware State News Names Editors
DOVER, Del. (AP) - Tamra S. Brittingham has been promoted to editor of the Delaware State News. Michael J. Pelrine succeeds her as managing editor.
Ms. Brittingham, 39, had been managing editor since 1987. Pelrine, 34, who was assignment editor, assumes day-to-day management of the newsroom.
Ms. Brittingham also has been named regional vice president of operations for Independent Newspapers Inc., the parent company. She will work as an adviser for INI’s operations in the region, which include The Daily Whale in Lewes, The Daily Banner in Cambridge, Md., a twice-weekly paper, five weekly publications and two printing plants.
Pelrine came to the State News from the Sulphur Springs (Texas) News- Telegram in 1987.
--- Milwaukee Journal Names Publisher, Executive Editor
MILWAUKEE (AP) - Robert H. Wills, vice chairman of Journal-Sentinel Inc., will become publisher of The Milwaukee Journal while managing editor Steve Hannah will be executive editor.
The promotions are effective Jan. 1.
Wills, 66, joined the Journal more than 41 years ago as a reporter. He became city editor in 1962 and was appointed Sentinel editor in 1975. He became executive vice president of Journal-Sentinel Inc. 16 years later.
Hannah, 44, joined the newspaper in 1975 as agricultural and rural affairs reporter. After serving as chief of the newspaper’s Madison bureau, he was named metropolitan editor in 1983, managing editor-news in 1985 and managing editor in 1986.
Hannah replaces Editor Sig Gissler, who is taking early retirement effective Dec. 31.
Gissler, 57, came to the Journal in 1967 as an editorial writer and became editorial page editor in 1977. He was named associate editor in 1984 and became editor in 1985.
--- Cincinnati Enquirer Announces Executive Changes
CINCINNATI (AP) - Lawrence K. Beaupre has been named editor and vice president of The Cincinnati Enquirer, succeeding George R. Blake, who is taking a new job as the newspaper’s vice president of community affairs.
Beaupre, 48, had been executive editor and vice president for the Gannett Suburban Newspapers group in White Plains, N.Y., since 1984. He was Gannett’s Editor of the Year in 1988.
Before going to White Plains, Beaupre spent 16 years at Gannett’s Times- Union in Rochester, N.Y., progressing from reporter to managing editor.
Blake’s new duties include expanding the Enquirer’s customer service program, monitoring governmental actions that involve the newspaper and planning projects with other members of the Enquirer’s operating committee, said Harry M. Whipple, president and publisher.
Blake, 47, has been editor since August 1980. He previously was editor of the Fort Myers (Fla.) News-Press and the Pacific Daily News in Guam.
Replacing Beaupre in White Plains is 39-year-old Kenneth Paulson, who had been executive editor of Florida Today in Melbourne, Fla.
--- Eisner Named Treasurer of Cox Enterprises
ATLANTA (AP) - Dean H. Eisner has been named treasurer of Cox Enterprises Inc., succeeding John C. Mellott, who was promoted to vice president and general manager of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Eisner was managing director of international development for Cox Enterprises, based in London.
Cox Enterprises publishes The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and 16 other daily newspapers and owns 24 cable television systems and 20 radio and television stations in the United States.
--- Oregon Publisher to Retire
ROSEBURG, Ore. (AP) - Philip D. Neiswanger, publisher and editor of The News-Review for 18 years, said he will retire by the end of January. Neiswanger, whose career spans more than 40 years, said a new publisher will be named next month.
Neiswanger began his career working as a reporter and sports editor for the Idaho State Journal while attending Idaho State College. He later worked as a reporter and editor at newspapers in Montana and Washington.
In 1963, he came to Oregon as a wire editor for the Herald and News in Klamath Falls. He has also worked for newspapers in Modesto and Napa, Calif.
--- Gaston Gazette Names Managing Editor
GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) - Skip Foster, design editor at The Gaston Gazette, has been named the newspaper’s managing editor.
Foster, 26, began his newspaper career in 1988 at The Hickory Daily Record as a sports reporter. He joined the Gazette in 1989 and was named assistant sports editor in 1990. In 1991, he was named design editor.
--- Mosesso Named Daily Press Publisher
PARAGOULD, Ark. (AP) - David Mosesso is the new publisher of The Paragould Daily Press.
Mosesso has been the newspaper’s general manager. The publisher’s job had been vacant since 1989, when Fred Wulfekuhler sold the Daily Press to Paducah Newspapers Inc., based in Paducah, Ky.
Mosesso also will continue to be responsible for Areawide Media, a sister organization in Salem that publishes three weekly newspapers in northern Arkansas and one in southern Missouri.
Mosesso spent three years as manager of The Merchant Shopper in White County before joining the Daily Press earlier this year.
--- Aberdeen American News Names Managing Editor
ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) - The Aberdeen American News has named J.P. Furst managing editor.
Furst, 35, replaces Mike Burbach who left to become executive editor of The Minot (N.D.) Daily News.
Furst comes to Aberdeen from the Duluth (Minn.) News Tribune where he was a part-time city editor and a reporter.
He was a free-lance writer for three years and a reporter for four years at The Jamestown (N.D.) Sun before joining the News Tribune staff in 1988.
--- Two Named to Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting Posts
ELYRIA, Ohio (AP) - Arthur D. Hudnutt, president of the Lorain County Printing and Publishing Co., has been appointed chairman of the board of Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting Co.
Gary L. Kneisley, who had been vice president of operations and general manager of the broadcasting company since 1985, was selected to be the company’s president and chief operating officer.
The Lorain County Printing and Publishing Co. publishes the Chronicle- Telegram and The Medina County Gazette. Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting Co. operates radio stations WEOL and WNWV.
Hudnutt succeeds Otto B. Schoepfle, who died Oct. 28. AWARDS AND HONORS Texas Group Wins National Freedom of Information Award
GREENCASTLE, Ind. (AP) - The Society of Professional Journalists has presented its First Amendment Award to a Texas group dedicated to informing citizens of their freedom of information rights.
″The Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas is recognized as ″The″ FOI organization in Texas and has earned a reputation as one of the leading state FOI organizations in the country,″ said Phil Record, ombudsman of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and special assistant to the publisher.
The Foundation of Texas works to educate the public and encourage public officials and the legal profession to follow the state’s open meetings and open records laws.
It sponsored the first national meeting of state FOI groups in Dallas in 1988. It also sponsored a journalists mission to Latvia to help that country establish a free press. It also conducts seminars and sponsors a hot line for FOI questions and advice.
SPJ established the award in 1975 to recognize extraordinary efforts to preserve and strengthen the First Amendment. The award was presented Dec. 3. DEATHS Mark Goodson
NEW YORK (AP) - Producer Mark Goodson, the ″Father of the Game Show″ who changed the course of television with classic creations like ″The Price Is Right,″ ″To Tell the Truth″ and ″What’s My Line?″ died Dec. 18 of cancer. He was 77.
He served as president and chairman of the board of Mark Goodson Productions until his death, creating 42,000 half-hour programs in his prolific television career.
Goodson also owned a group of weekly and daily newspapers. The Goodson Newspaper Group eight daily papers are: the Morristown (N.J.) Daily Record; Delaware County (Pa.) Daily Times; The Mercury of Pottstown, Pa.; The Independent of Massillon, Ohio; Daily Freeman of the Kingston, N.Y., The Oneida (N.Y.) Daily Dispatch; the Ocean County Observer of Toms River, N.J.; and the Evening Herald of Shenandoah, Pa.
He is survived by a son and two daughters. Dorothy M. Gorrie
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Dorothy M. Gorrie, widow of former Associated Press bureau chief Frank Gorrie, died Dec. 15. She was 91.
Gorrie, who died in 1975, worked for the AP for 50 years, 28 in Seattle, where he became bureau chief. He was Kansas City bureau chief for 22 years.
Mrs. Gorrie is survived by a daughter, four grandchildren and two great- grandchildren. John C. Kelley
McCOOK, Neb. (AP) - John C. Kelley, a former newspaper reporter and aide to a congressman and governor, died Dec. 15 at age 66.
Kelley was an administrative assistant to former Rep. Don McGinley, D-Neb., from 1958 to 1960 and a special assistant to former Gov. Frank Morrison from 1960 to 1964. He also worked for the Lincoln Journal.
He is survived by his wife, three daughters, six grandchildren and three stepsons. William Michelfelder
NEW YORK (AP) - William F. Michelfelder, a novelist and journalist, died Dec. 13. He was 82.
Michelfelder’s works included two novels, ″A Seed Upon the Wind″ and ″Be Not Angry.″ His non-fiction books included two works on the medical profession, ″It’s Cheaper to Die″ and ″Medical Nightmares.″
Michelfelder was a reporter and editor at many newspapers including The New York Journal-American, The New York World-Telegram & Sun, and The Boston Record-American.
He is survived by his wife, Phyllis. Bill Rainey
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Bill Rainey, an assistant metro editor at The Times- Picayune newspaper, died Dec. 17 of cancer. He was 59.
Rainey, who was born in Meridian, Miss., went to work for The Meridian Star after a stint in the Army.
Later, he worked at the Jackson (Miss.) Daily News, The Greenwood (Miss.) Commonwealth, the Texas City Sun and The Dallas Morning News before joining The States-Item in New Orleans in 1969. He was named sports editor when the paper merged with The Times-Picayune.
Rainey is survived by his wife, two sons, a daughter, a stepson, a stepdaughter, seven grandchildren, two sisters and four brothers. Steven J. Ross
NEW YORK (AP) - Time Warner Inc. chief Steven J. Ross, a master corporate dealmaker who parlayed a funeral home business into the world’s biggest media and entertainment company, died Dec. 20 of prostate cancer. He was 65.
Ross was on a leave of absence as chairman and co-chief executive of Time Warner when he died in Los Angeles, the company said.
During the 1980s, Ross capped his reputation as a consummate dealmaker by negotiating the merger of his Warner Communications Inc. with Time Inc.
Time Warner is perhaps best known for its flagship magazine Time, its movie and records business that include artists such as Madonna and rap singer Ice- T, and such pay-TV operations as Home Box Office. It is also the second- biggest cable TV system operator in the country.
Survivors include his wife and three children. John S. Shortle
WINAMAC, Ind. (AP) - John S. Shortle, a former headline writer for The Indianapolis News who later owned the Winamac Republican newspaper, died Dec. 15. He was 71.
Shortle bought the Republican in 1947 and sold it in 1954 when he opened an insurance agency.
He is survived by his wife, two sons, four daughters and seven grandchildren. Jim Thacker
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Retired WBTV sportscaster Jim Thacker, died Dec. 14 of a stroke. He was 64.
Thacker retired as the Charlotte television station’s sports director in January 1981.
In addition to his work for the station, Thacker was an announcer for Sun Belt basketball games, NCAA basketball tournament, ESPN college football, ACC basketball for the Metrosports Network and golf tournaments.
He was part of the CBS announcing team for The Masters golf tournament for seven years. In the early 1980s, he provided commentary for British television of the PGA Championship.
He is survived by his wife, Pat. George Williams
BROOKFIELD, Mo. (AP) - George P. Williams, co-publisher of the Daily News- Bulletin in Brookfield and son of the newspaper’s founder, died Dec. 14 at age 68.
Williams was also the former owner of KGHM in Brookfield.
Williams took over the helm of the newspaper after the death of his father, Ira J. Williams, who began the paper in 1947.
In the last two years, Williams began sharing publishing duties with his daughter, Susan C. Abeln, and her husband, Richard E. Abeln.
He also is survived by another daughter, Twana Phillips, and four grandchildren. William A. Wood
NEW YORK (AP) - William A. Wood, whose radio commentaries assessing the news media’s performance were heard around the nation for 21 years, died of lung cancer Dec. 15 in Chapel Hill, N.C. He was 80.
Wood was a professor emeritus of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University in New York and was one of Columbia’s first teachers of broadcast journalism.
Wood worked as a reporter and announcer for radio stations in San Francisco before serving as a Navy press liaison officer during World War II and a State Dept, radio and TV officer for the following five years.
He held executive jobs with CBS television in Washington and educational stations in Pittsburgh and Detroit before joining the Columbia faculty in 1957. He retired from teaching in 1978.
His radio commentary, ″Report on the Press,″ was carried three times a week on CBS radio until he was diagnosed with cancer last summer.
Survivors include his wife and two sisters.
--- NOTES FROM EVERYWHERE:
Dozens of bidders from around the country jammed Christie’s on Dec. 18 and others bid by phone to claim their own piece of Mad memorabilia as the anything-for-a-laugh magazine put its archives up for sale. Those laughs may have been cheap, but the prices weren’t. Of 322 works offered, 308 went for a total of $636,625 including a 10 percent buyer’s premium ... Newsroom employees at The San Antonio Light have set up an altar of sorts mourning the impending death of the newspaper, decorating it with flowers, candles and staff mementos. The newspaper’s owner, Hearst Corp., is buying Rupert Murdoch’s rival Express-News and will close the Light if it can’t sell the paper.
End Industry News