Entries Tagged 'Media' ↓

WoodStein talk at Augie (Guest Post Cameraman Bruce)

Bob and Carl were in town to chat last night for the yearly Augustana Boe Forum. Tickets were scrounged up so we, Scott and me, could attend the event. It was an interesting night.

Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin moderated a comfortable chat with Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein from big chairs setup on the stage. The March 19th, 2019 event was well worth attending. These are reporters who have poked da bigwigs of every political stripe for soon 50 years and appear to be ready to keep doing it.

It was fun to watch the attendees troop in from our floor level seat in front of a group from Stormland-TV. Some of the comments from behind us were hilarious, as some of them were trying to understand the subtleties of the speaker’s comments.

(DL: When Woodward asked the crowd how many people watch TV for their news, only about 10-20% raised their hands, when he asked print/internet the entire rest of the crowd raised their hands. After that I heard someone faintly behind us say ‘keloland.com’. I really only believe people watch local TV news for the local weather, but not local news.)

Also from our spot we watched many of our local authoritarians march in. We also could see these politicos appear to listen to and understand the message the two Washington reporters were trying to convey. From our perch, observing the locals added to the enjoyment of the evening. Few of them seem to be there to learn government openness. Maybe these local politico were there to improve the ongoing efforts of hiding information from those of us who look too close.

Many times during the questioning, my thoughts went to comparing our local buffoons of power with the 1970’s Washington power buffoons. It brought back the fall of 1974, when I was able to have a front row seat at the Watergate trial with Judge John Sirica presiding over the trial of several top Nixon aides, including H.R. Haldeman, John Ehrlichman and former attorney general John Mitchell. I would have never had a front row seat to history had these two men not been allowed by the Post to do their jobs to the fullest extent possible.

Washington of 1974 was an electric place following the collapse of one government and all the changes happening as the new administration was trying to start up. Without these two lowly police beat reporters, looking into a simple burglary, who knows what damage would have happened to all of us. We also have those who say these two might have damaged our system, history will tell. One thing we do know, the 1st Amendment worked. Bi-partisan politics works. We also have learned our system of education has not worked, but that is another story for another time.

A couple of side stories of interest, included hearing their insider’s view of how Republican U.S. Senators Hugh Scott and Barry Goldwater honestly told Nixon he did not have the votes to stay in power. Bob’s personal change in his view of Gerald Ford’s unconditional pardon of Nixon, one month after the resignation of Nixon was refreshing. The country in 1974 was pissed at Ford, most of America wanted revenge. Only Gerald Ford had the guts to end the collective “long national nightmare” of Richard Nixon and sacrificed his political career for it.

It was interesting to listen to these two heroes of my early adult political life, discuss their ability to “follow the money” to break the corruption and intrigue of the Nixon administration.  When the reporters brought up their comparisons between the 1970’s and now, many in the audience were definitely upset. This crowd reaction to their comparison was so divisive, Bob and Carl commented on the split crowd. As the discussion of the current administration’s documented and published 8,000 lies progressed, the crowd’s reaction even seem to catch the speakers by surprise. It also came out how little appreciation there was of their work by some in the audience.

Bob and Carl let us know many Republicans in power positions today do not like Trump and his actions but still don’t raise their collective voices to challenge it.  Our local authoritarians in the room did not like what they heard.

(DL: Former Mayor Bowlcut & Bucktooth made an appearance, as he walked along the bleachers he shook everyone’s hands like he was running for something. I guess it is not to early to announce you are challenging TenHaken).

The local authoritarians, sitting within our immediate view, did not like hearing some of their stories of how the reporters have researched corrupt politicians. Toward the end Boe Forum organizers asked two of Augie’s best and brightest to ask some questions. A lighthearted moment of the event was when one of the students accidently named the pair “Mr. Woodstein” in his question. Nice touch. These journalism students centered their comments on the fate of local media and especially newspapers. In the reporter’s answer was a dig on Gannet’s takeover of local media and their profit motivation over community news. It also reminded me of personal conversations with Al Neuharth where he was so proud of USA Today and how it would control the dialogue of the nation.

Just few lessons relearned on Tuesday night: 1) no matter who is in power, money is the root of all corruption. 2) The ability of corrupt individuals who believe in and have the goal of absolute power to control our lives must be kept in check. 3) Our local government efforts are in the mode of their 1972 efforts to follow the money, power and money run hand in hand. 4) Authoritarians have no business being part of American politics, power or life.

The real life versions of Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman of the movie have aged well. Long may they continue to poke at the pompous buffoons of power. We need it more now than ever.

Digital media is still popular . . .

Ms. Schwan wrote a great article about how digital media still works, if you do it right;

One headline proclaimed “BuzzFeed and the digital meltdown” and explored the challenges facing the once-darling of digital media. The next headline read “Decline in readers, ads leads hundreds of newspapers to fold.” It detailed a Montana community that lost its newspaper and now looks to a one-man operation for news, mostly through his Facebook posts.

Take those two examples, multiply them out across the nation, and you’ve got a glimpse at what media leaders are grappling with as they attempt to build sustainable business models.

In midst of the latest ‘reporter shield law’ signed by Governor Noem, I still find it a bit odd that they excluded journalists who are independent and work exclusively on the internet. Yes, there is a world of difference from what Jodi does and what I do, but we still work in the same platform, opposite of the failing one;

I used to half-joke when I was in the newspaper industry that, as a business editor, I had pretty good job security.

Someone would have to write the story about whenever the place went out of business, and it seemed logical the role would fall to whomever was left writing about business. By that point, it was really only me, anyway.

It became clear to me that my future wasn’t in that industry, though, during an earnings call in late 2016 when my company’s CEO was asked to “score” the opportunity for continued expense reduction. He compared it to being in the third inning of a baseball game. In other words, they saw plenty of room to further cut costs. I’m not sure where they would consider themselves at today, but I suspect they haven’t reached the seventh-inning stretch.

And it’s just not the dead tree version that is actually dying, the digital format our local newspaper applies is dying also. It’s almost like they are trying to kill off the traditional paper by putting stories online sometimes 2-5 days before they print in the paper. Only to direct people to a website that you have to pay to read (which I felt was a horrible idea). I always thought that they should have kept the online FREE and posted teasers to stories that you could read in the daily printed subscription getting people to read both. I was even surprised with all the stories about flooding emergencies in SF, they still were not offering FREE online readership (I think they had one story available for FREE?).

Jodi says it best, digital media works depending on your platform and opportunities. I often have people tell me across the state that they wouldn’t know what was going on in city government if they didn’t read my site;

I don’t know if this is the future business model for local media, but it’s working so far, and it definitely can grow more. I would argue it has to in order to deliver what the community needs and deserves.

The sad irony is that, in the case of Sioux Falls, there has never been more to talk about. We’ve never had this level of development and industry change. We’ve also never encountered the corresponding challenges that growth brings to a community in quite this way. Look even at this week, when unprecedented weather demanded we have credible information-gatherers spread throughout the state.

In short, there have never been more stories to tell in this city. And it’s sad to me that there is a decreasing number of journalists to tell them. It motivates me to figure out a better way. And two years into it, at least I can say I’m on my way. Thank you so much to all who help make it possible.

I would agree, there are so many stories out their to be covered and lack of experience, lack of creativity, lack of resources, lack of historical knowledge and just plain lack of people and lack of good leadership if there is any leadership at all. This all reared it’s head last week when KSFY reporter, Vanessa Gomez accused city councilors Starr and Stehly of ‘putting her in the middle’. Uh, it’s kind of your job to ferret out the truth (I will give you a hint, it wasn’t coming from TJ TypeOver and City Hall). Ironically shortly after their press conference there was an announcement from city hall to run 3 pothole shifts with a goal to get caught up by April.

Maybe other media digital platforms are failing, because essentially they have a losing team. Sorry Jodi, I wasn’t as polite about it.

I’m a credentialed journalist of ONE

In South Dakota, you can get a badge for almost anything!

As I have stated before, there is no credentialing of journalists in South Dakota. You can certainly belong to the SD Newspaper Association, you can also work for a TV station or newspaper in which you collect a paycheck. You can also have a degree in communications and journalism. But in SD, there is NO organization that will give you credentials.

I find it ironic that a state legislature and governor’s office find it necessary that you have credentials to carry a pen, but you only need a holster to carry a gun.

Their misunderstandings between the 1st & 2nd Amendments are astounding.

Hopefully this Bill will be amended on the floor

So this bill is moving forward;

A bill seeking to protect journalists and their sources of information passed out of committee this morning Pierre.

Members of the House Judiciary Committee advanced House Bill 1074 by a unanimous vote.

Reporter Shield Laws have become common across the United States but South Dakota has lagged behind in adopting reporter privilege as law.  That from proponents who testified on behalf of the bill.

It fails to recognize ‘bloggers’ as journalists even though countless judges have determined them as journalists (I have qualified as press when I covered the Sanders and Clinton campaigns and got the same treatment as TV and newspaper journalists);

What is not included in HB1074 is a provision for bloggers and other social media based operations not affiliated with credentialed news sources, publications, or call letter broadcast stations.

As I have said in the past, I sell advertising on my site, so I do get paid. I have also pointed out the major newspapers and TV stations across the state could not survive without their internet revenue. Most people get their news from the internet. I would also argue that many major news stories get their start on the blogs. The local stations pluck story ideas from my site all of the time. The EC siding settlement would have never occurred if Bruce and I didn’t make a stink about it. This law should be amended to include bloggers.

South Dakota MSM should be against this bill

It surprises me that the print and TV MSM is not against this bill since it leaves out the internet as a news service;

(1)    Obtains or receives the information, with or without solicitation, in the course of gathering or obtaining news for publication in a newspaper, magazine, or for broadcast by a radio or television transmission station or network; and

(2)    Is employed by or otherwise associated in a new-gathering capacity with the newspaper, magazine, or radio or television transmission station or network [HB 1074].

While I have several arguments against being ‘PAID’ to qualify as a journalist (I do sell advertising). It amazes me in this digital age that the local TV and Print wouldn’t be against this legislation because it does NOT include the internet.

The argument is obvious. The Argus Leader and all of our local TV stations maintain very active websites. Even some of the more advertising slanted media in town like 605 Magazine has an active website. Siouxfalls.business is only web based.

I get no news from TV. Haven’t turned one on in over 6 years (except in my occasional hotel stays). I read the state’s dailies online. In fact, if I had to guess, most of these media sources could not pay the bills or survive if they shut down their websites.

While it is obvious the ‘internet’ was left off of this bill to poke an eye at bloggers, it really misses the point that most people get their news digitally. While Pitty Patt may not be my favorite person in the whole wide world, I think he said it best;

Given the prevalence and shift of resources to the Internet in the news world, I would argue that it’s the legislative equivalent of writing legislation for licensing requirements for the horse and buggy… and ignoring the fact that most people are traveling by automobile.

I’m surprised there wasn’t a bill proposed this year that asks the Capital Building to maintain a stable.

The Argus could soon have a new owner

So this was surprising;

The hunter has become the hunted. Newspaper publisher Gannett Co. may find it difficult to resist the advances of an activist investor and potential buyer.

MNG Enterprises Inc., the owner of the Boston Herald and Denver Post that’s backed by hedge fund Alden Global Capital, on Monday disclosed a 7.5 percent stake in Gannett and made an unsolicited offer to acquire it.

Someone wants to buy Gannett? Uh, okay. If it happens, I’m sure there will be changes to staff and content. I guess it all depends on if someone buys it.

John Michael’s Forum • Jan 2019

Former Mayor Munson

LISTEN HERE

• Dave gives all the credit to Jeff ‘Cherapa Place’ S. for making the River Greenway successful. He failed to mention the behind closed door negotiations, the threats of lawsuits and the millions taxpayers have spent subsidizing the bulk head for Cherapa. Yeah, I will give credit to, credit for being successful of bilking the taxpayers of Sioux Falls.

• When John brings up the extremely polluted Sioux River, Dave changes the subject and says the scenery is beautiful though if you take a canoe ride.

• Dave thinks having problems from fast growth is a good thing.

• And in his last laughable comments, he thinks Sioux Falls city government elected officials have good ethics. Yeah, since you and Bowlcut & Bucktooth have left. This was hilarious coming from a guy who SHOULD HAVE been charged with violating city ordinance with Phillips to the Falls.

Sioux Falls Central District Councilor Curt Soehl

LISTEN HERE

• Curt seems to be under the impression that Sioux Falls has few problems. I guess low wages, very little affordable housing and our drug crime epidemic are not real PROBLEMS.

• Curt makes an interesting point that while Sioux Falls attracts a lot of Doctors and White Collar jobs, he says, “Nobody comes here for a $15 per hour jobs.” John points out you can’t make a house payment in SF for those kind of wages.

• John also makes an interesting comment that the buses in Sioux Falls should be on a 24 hour route to all the Walmarts. Yeah, John, just what Walmart needs, more subsidies from government. We already subsidize their employees in welfare, medicade and SNAP. And subsidize them again with all the SNAP recipients. So now you want the public to subsidize transporting people to their store. HELL NO! Walmart should be paying for our public transit system through a local transportation tax.

Former Mayor Rick Knobe

LISTEN HERE

• When John asks Knobe what he thinks of TenHaken’s job performance so far, Rick says he doesn’t feel like Paul was prepared for it after running a small internet marketing firm. He thinks he struggles with working with Directors, Councilors and the Public and Public input. I would agree 100%.

• Rick feels the city needs to implement strategic planning.

• In one of the more stranger ideas, Rick felt people should only be able to use E-Bikes on the bike trail if they have a special disabled sticker they got from their doctor. Yeah, besides feeling depressed because they don’t have the physical ability to ride a regular bike on the trail, why not shame them with a sticker. Whatever. I guess even old people rip on old people.

Which headline is true?

Ironically, either one could be . . .

You had Ted the amateur gyno

Lynn, who felt it was okay to run over Liberals with cars

Mike the bigot

Matt who thought session was about drinking and having sex with legislative college staff

Gene who wants to watch female lobbyists pee

Saving babies while allowing more guns and cutting education funding . . .

Mayor TenLincoln?

I had to take a double take when I saw this image on KDLT’s site for a story about 2018. Maybe’s it’s an omen . . . LOL . . . yeah right.

Sioux Falls city council approves raise for RC Police?

The local TV stations are at it again.

First we have a recent story about the Triage Center with a shot of the Minnehaha County Commission. Shows you how long it’s been since Stormland’s TV cameras have been at a meeting, Pekas and Kelly haven’t been on the MCC in over two years.

I also enjoyed the story about the SF Police getting a raise. Apparently they are now wearing Rapid City badges.

Images: Kelo TV