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WaPo Partners With Intersect.com to Interview Participants at Stewart’s Rally This Weekend

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The Washington Post announced that it will join with Intersect.com in an effort to get on-the-ground answers from participants in Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert’s “Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear” on the National Mall this weekend.

Rally patrticipants will “help us cover the rally and answer reporters’ questions about the event.”

Comedy Central estimated in its permit application for the rally that as many as 25,000 people would attend the event, which is scheduled for Saturday from noon to 3 p.m. More than 220,000 people had RSVP’d for the event on Facebook as of late Monday, but it’s difficult to gauge how many will actually turn out.

The Story Lab team will be filing stories throughout Saturday’s events on the Mall via Intersect, a new site designed to collect and present stories live and from the scene. Here on washingtonpost.com and on Intersect’s site, we’ll be documenting the scene and asking those in attendance and those watching at home to weigh in on the politics vs. entertainment question. Please join us.

SIGN UP: If you’d like to share your own rally stories on Intersect, visit Intersect.com and use the invite code “washingtonpost” to create an account.

Maybe the first question could be: Have you found a port-a-potty yet?

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Post’s link to Intersect.com is broken on the Post’s site. A ticket has been ordered to fix it. Here is a working link to the web site.

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Written by newscycle

October 28, 2010 at 11:08 pm

Washington Post’s 4Q Profit Quadruples

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The Washington Post Co. today reported net income of $91.2 million ($9.78 per share) for the fiscal year ended Jan. 3, up from $65.8 million ($6.87 per share) for the fiscal year ended Dec. 28, 2008.

Net income for the fourth quarter of 2009 was $82.2 million ($8.71 per share), up from $18.8 million ($2.01 per share) for the fourth quarter of 2008. Operating income for 2009 increased to $194.0 million, from $174.2 million in 2008. For the fourth quarter of 2009, operating income increased to $146.2 million, from $62.3 million in 2008.

Excluding charges related to early retirement programs, the company’s 2009 and 2008 operating income included $8.1 million and $25.7 million, respectively, of net pension credits. For the fourth quarter of 2009 and 2008, operating income included $2.9 million and $5.9 million, respectively, of net pension credits. Overall, the Company estimates a total net pension credit of $2.0 million in 2010.

Written by newscycle

February 24, 2010 at 10:58 am

Posted in Washington Post

Washington Post to Deliver Most of the Remaining Sunday Newspapers Today

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Michael Calderone of POLITICO reports that most of those Washington Post readers who did not get their Sunday newspaper because of the storm this past weekend should expect them today.

The Washington Post managed to deliver 400,000 to 450,000 Sunday papers, according to a representative. But for those who didn’t get a weekend paper yet, I’m told that 80 percent or more copies still undelivered should arrive by tonight. (In total, there should have been 642,000 delivered this past weekend).

Besides the print edition, the Post’s website witnessed a surge in readers, reinforcing the idea that local papers should never overlook the public’s appetite for up-to-the-minute traffic and weather.

The Post’s site brought in twice the typical weekend pageviews, with a daily average of 16.4 million, according to the Post’s statistics. Also, the local page was up 182 percent from a recent weekend, and the mobile site clocked in an additional 500,000 views Saturday.

Written by newscycle

February 8, 2010 at 3:34 pm

WaPo Pulls Milbank ‘Mad Bitch Beer’ Video After Complaints From the Left

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After facing heat from the PC police, most notably the Columbia Journalism Review, Talking Points Memo and MediaMatters, The Washington Post has pulled Dana Milbank and Chris Cillizza’s latest edition of “Mouthpiece Theater” in which the pair mocked the now-famous “Beer Summit” with thoughts of what brews other political leaders might drink had they been invited.

Most notably, Milbank says, “we won’t tell you who’s getting a bottle of ‘Mad Bitch’ beer” as picture of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was flashed on the screen.

Washington Post Communications Director Kris Coratti emailed TPM the following statement.

“The video was a satirical piece that lampooned people of all stripes. There was a section of the video that went too far, so we have removed the piece from our website.”

The skit, which is understandably tasteless to some, is an equal-opportunity offender. Both sides get slapped around pretty good. But what was telling was that TPM and MediaMatters seemed to only get worked up about the Clinton reference. While they did indeed mention the barbs thrown at the right, the real anger and protests that lead to the Post pulling the piece surrounded the Clinton reference. For some reason, Sen. David Vitter’s drinking a “Happy ending” or the pontiff knocking down an “Angry Monk” didn’t seemed to phase anyone one bit. Without a doubt, had Milbank and Cillizza flashed a picture of Sarah Palin instead of Hillary Clinton during the “Mad Bitch Beer” segment, TPM and others on the left would had probably praised the duo for their cutting edge comedy. Mocking someone on the right is generally OK, but please, please, leave the left alone. That’s just tasteless.

Written by newscycle

August 2, 2009 at 9:19 am

Posted in Washington Post

Tagged with

‘Mad Bitch Beer’ Video Gets Yanked From WaPo Site

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After facing heat from the PC police, most notably the Columbia Journalism Review, Talking Points Memo and MediaMatters, The Washington Post has pulled Dana Milbank and Chris Cillizza’s latest edition of “Mouthpiece Theater” in which the pair mocked the now-famous “Beer Summit” with thoughts of what brews other political leaders might drink had they been invited.

Most notably, Milbank says, “we won’t tell you who’s getting a bottle of ‘Mad Bitch’ beer” as picture of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was flashed on the screen.

Washington Post Communications Director Kris Coratti emailed TPM the following statement.

“The video was a satirical piece that lampooned people of all stripes. There was a section of the video that went too far, so we have removed the piece from our website.”

The skit, which is understandably tasteless to some, is an equal-opportunity offender. Both sides get slapped around pretty good. But what was telling was that TPM and MediaMatters seemed to only get worked up about the Clinton reference. While they did indeed mention the barbs thrown at the right, the real anger and protests that lead to the Post pulling the piece surrounded the Clinton reference. For some reason, Sen. David Vitter’s drinking a “Happy ending” or the pontiff knocking down an “Angry Monk” didn’t seemed to phase anyone one bit. Without a doubt, had Milbank and Cillizza flashed a picture of Sarah Palin instead of Hillary Clinton during the “Mad Bitch Beer” segment, TPM and others on the left would had probably praised the duo for their cutting edge comedy. Mocking someone on the right is generally OK, but please, please, leave the left alone. That’s just tasteless.

Written by newscycle

August 1, 2009 at 11:07 pm

Washington Post Reports Net Loss of $19.5 Million in First Quarter

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The Washington Post Company today reported a net loss of $19.5 million ($2.04 loss per share) for its first quarter ended March 29, 2009, compared to net income of $39.3 million ($4.08 per share) in the first quarter of last year.

Results for the first quarter of 2009 included $13.4 million in accelerated depreciation at The Washington Post (after-tax impact of $8.3 million, or $0.89 per share); $16.9 million in restructuring charges related to Kaplan’s Score and Professional (U.S.) operations (after-tax impact of $10.5 million, or $1.12 per share); and $6.6 million in early retirement program expense at Newsweek (after-tax impact of $4.1 million, or $0.44 per share). Results for the first quarter of 2008 included charges of $24.6 million related to early retirement program expense at Newsweek (after-tax impact of $15.3 million, or $1.60 per share).

Revenue for the first quarter of 2009 was $1,054.1 million, down 1% from $1,063.1 million in 2008. The decrease is due to revenue declines at the newspaper publishing, television broadcasting and magazine publishing divisions, offset by revenue growth at the education and cable television divisions. The company had an operating loss of $19.6 million in the first quarter of 2009, compared to operating income of $66.9 million in 2008. Operating results were down at the newspaper publishing, education and television broadcasting divisions, while the cable division reported improved results for the quarter. The magazine publishing division reported a loss for the first quarter of both 2009 and 2008.

Excluding charges related to early retirement programs, the company’s operating income for the first quarter of 2009 includes $1.3 million of net pension credits, compared to $6.6 million in the first quarter of 2008.

Written by newscycle

May 1, 2009 at 4:21 pm

Posted in Washington Post

Washington Post Announces Newsroom Reorganization

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Washington Post Executive Editor Marcus Brauchli announced sweeping changes in newsroom operations today in an extensive memo that was made public by Jim Romenesko. In it, Brauchli details “new reporting groups, streamline editing desks and anticipate the impending integration of our print and digital news operations.”

Brauchli told staffer that “a single editor ultimately ought to be able to oversee all versions of a story, whether it appears in print, online or on a BlackBerry or iPhone. Space in the newspaper and editing firepower in general should be allocated based on a day’s news priorities, not a predetermined formula.”

Here is the complete memo:

From: Marcus Brauchli
Sent: 04/16/2009 09:01 AM EDT
Subject: Announcement on Restructuring

To the staff:

Today, we are beginning a reorganization to create new reporting groups, streamline editing desks and anticipate the impending integration of our print and digital news operations.

The changes reinforce our longstanding belief in great reporting and writing as the vital center of The Post’s journalism. We want to empower journalists and encourage them to work across departments and platforms. In addition, we want to simplify the handling of words, pages, images and new media, building on the prescient move to “two-touch” editing under Len and Phil. Decisions about space and play must happen faster, both in print and online, and in a way that pulls together our now-separate newsrooms. A single editor ultimately ought to be able to oversee all versions of a story, whether it appears in print, online or on a BlackBerry or iPhone. Space in the newspaper and editing firepower in general should be allocated based on a day’s news priorities, not a predetermined formula.

These changes will alter the way we do things, but they will not affect the commitment to journalistic depth, authority and excellence that has defined The Post. Just the reverse: We think these steps will help us to adapt more easily to the economic and technological challenges that face us, while preserving the best of our traditions and values.

Key Personnel Changes:

In keeping with our strategic focus on serving readers in and interested in Washington, we will put most news reporters under two senior editors, a National Editor and a Local Editor. Much first-line editing, copyediting
and production will occur on a new Universal News Desk under another senior editor. Together with the executive editor, the managing editors and the deputy managing editor, these people will form the core leadership of them newsroom.

* Kevin Merida, now Assistant Managing Editor for National News, will become National Editor.

* Emilio Garcia-Ruiz, now Assistant Managing Editor for Sports and Weekend Editor, will become Local Editor.

* Sandy Sugawara, now Assistant Managing Editor for Business, will become Editor of the Universal Desk

These changes, which become effective May 1, will set in motion other personnel moves.

* Scott Vance, now Assistant Managing Editor for News online, will become News Editor when our print and online desks merge, working closely with the National and Local editors to drive coverage across platforms.

* Bill Hamilton remains Enterprise Editor, working for Liz and
helping to guide many major projects into the paper and online.

* Bob McCartney, now Assistant Managing Editor for Metro News, will become a columnist on metropolitan affairs.

* Matt Vita, now Emilio’s deputy, will become Sports Editor.

* Greg Schneider, now Sandy’s deputy, will assume responsibility for Business.

Coverage Groups:

Local, National and Business reporters and editors who “commission” or drive coverage will be organized into coverage groups. Decisions about what we cover and who should handle what story will be made by the leaders of these reporting groups. Each reporting group will be responsible for a specific area of coverage and be led by an editor and probably at least one deputy, who may also write.

To give you an idea how this will work, we recently posted a job running Science, Health and Environmental coverage. That editor will have primary responsibility for coverage of those areas, across the paper and the website, and will oversee the reporters on those subjects. Most stories from these coverage groups will be edited on the universal desk throughout the day. The groups will manage blogs and may edit major projects internally. Other groups will be created around subjects such as National Security, Local Business and Development, Social Issues, and so on. We will announce their formation in coming weeks and post available openings for editors and deputies.

All the news reporting groups will work for Kevin or Emilio. Kevin has run National since January, but already has displayed great talent as a story conceptualizer and the special effectiveness of someone who is both a leader and a role model for many of his reporters. Together with his deputy, Marilyn Thompson, Kevin has been building a highly capable team whose coverage goes beyond the routine and brings real insight.

Emilio, a native of the Washington area, has run sports brilliantly in his second stint here at The Post. His focus on breaking news and exclusives, on strong narratives and the superb work of our columnists and photographers, has made our Sports section the best. He’s also pioneered print-online integration for The Post this year, bringing together our sports journalists in what has been a very useful and successful experiment. We will place great emphasis on developing strong local journalism, especially online.

Emilio’s exceptionally talented and versatile deputy, Matt Vita, will succeed him as Sports Editor. A former national-security editor and
Congressional reporter for The Post and a former foreign correspondent for Cox Newspapers, Matt shares much credit for the Sports department’s recent successes.

Bob McCartney, who has served the paper so well as AME/Metro for the last four years, will become a Metropolitan columnist, one of our leading voices in the community where Bob grew up and has lived and run coverage for so long. His distinguished career as a foreign correspondent, managing editor of the International Herald Tribune and the first AME of the continuous news desk, and as a business editor and a reporter gives him the kind of depth and wisdom that will infuse his writing with authority and insight.

Universal News Desk:

The Universal Desk will ultimately combine what is now spread across departments and two separate newsrooms, bringing together many people now in the ranks of assigning editors, copy editors and the news desk, as well as many producers at the website. It will handle editing tasks large and small, and make decisions about space allocation and story play, deciding what appears where on the paper’s news pages and online. Most stories will be edited on the universal desk, rather than in reporting groups. Stories edited during the day for use online will form the basis for their print versions, and vice versa.

We still have a lot of planning and consultation to do before the desk will be up and running. We invite your input and ideas, and expect to be discussing with many people both downtown and in Arlington what the right organization is.

Anyone who has watched Sandy’s incredibly agile oversight of the business and financial staff, especially the way she and Greg led The Post’s super coverage of the economic and financial crisis, will understand immediately why she is the right person to take on the immense task of creating a new, high-octane news engine.

Greg, a smart, seasoned editor with experience on National as well as Business, will take over the business staff from Sandy and become The Post’s main national economics and business editor. Greg has more than earned this field promotion after the often-heroic hours and exacting editing he put into the business staff’s outstanding coverage of the financial and economic crisis. Like Kevin, Emilio and Sandy, Greg will work with us in mapping out the detailed newsroom structure.

The bridge between the coverage groups and the Universal Desk will be Scott, when he becomes News Editor. Among his many roles will be setting intraday deadlines, guiding our homepage and ensuring that The Post is competitive on all platforms, on all stories that matter to our readers. A veteran of National and the printside before he took on a key news job at washingtonpost.com, Scott has worked with just about everyone here, and to great effect.

Another central figure in the universal desk will be Ju-Don Roberts, Managing Editor of washingtonpost.com, who has steered our digital edition’s continued success and whose print and online experience are vital to re-imagining our editing operations. She’s been a top-class leader and will remain point person for The Post’s digital edition, working with Raju on innovations and development of the best possible website for our readers.

Future Changes:

While we have outlined major changes here, there are many gaps still in our plan. As you will see, there are unanswered questions about some departments, including Style and the presentation, visuals, interactivity and web tools/innovations groups. Working with the new leadership team, we will come back to you with more specifics in coming weeks. We plan to move as quickly as possible to announce further details of the structure of the reporting and editing groups. Some new roles will emerge from this process, and we expect to post those jobs as well.

We are, as you know, embarked on a number of big projects. Most notably, we plan to bring in a new content management system—production software, in plain English—and are rethinking aspects of our newspaper’s design. We expect that system will take a year to go live, but our reorganization anticipates the changes in workflow that will result from a single editing and production system. Design changes in turn will reflect what the new technology and newsroom organization will enable.

We also are on track with plans to meld our print and digital newsrooms over the summer and into the fall. Shirley Carswell, Claudia Townsend, Peter Perl and a small army of others are leading various efforts, and we undoubtedly will have more to say about these plans in coming weeks.

We believe the changes we are undertaking will enhance our competitiveness by focusing our journalistic energy on coverage of core areas and by simplifying editing processes. As we integrate editing and production, print and digital, we will be able to deliver smarter, faster news online, while preserving the writing, depth and range of coverage that define The Post.

Finally, for anyone who gets this far, we have one final tidbit: We’ll hold a town hall meeting at 2 p.m. today in the auditorium to take questions and discuss these plans or any other issues.

Marcus
Liz
Raju

Written by newscycle

April 16, 2009 at 10:55 pm

Posted in Washington Post

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