Sunday, February 10, 2008

What's Going On?

Hi folks,

Let me begin by saying this has been one of my greatest weeks at the Daily News. Not because of anything I did myself, but because of what we accomplished together. The seamless way the staff pulled together through the challenge of election night, then the Winnetka shooting was nothing short of amazing. I can truly say this is the best we've ever been in all my time at the paper and we should all be proud of the work we've put together under extremely trying conditions. I've never felt better or more proud about being part of this staff.

At any time, the work would have been amazing, but given the added pressure hanging over the newsroom, it was unbelievable. I've heard the same bits of news that many of you are hearing about coming cuts in Editorial and elsewhere at the paper. Like you, I don't have specifics about time or numbers, but whatever the case, it's extremely troubling. I don't think anything has been decided, nor have the people I've spoken with given me anything definite, but it's deeply disappointing that MediaNews is even considering cutting into a paper that's been slowly strangled for years. The journalists who report for work each day at this paper give so much of themselves without asking for much in return, yet it often seems like the only rewards are more cuts and fewer resources.

I don't know what the plan is -- this may be an early idea or the changes may be coming soon. It's with great hesitation that I even address it, because I don't want to alarm anyone unnecessarily. At the same time, since the news has been floating around with added urgency, I don't want anyone to be caught unaware. We've been down this road before and had it turn out to be nothing, but my sense is that the corporate folks will continue their seemingly relentless quest for cuts.

The union leadership held a meeting on Thursday night to discuss how to respond to any cuts or reorganization and I came away encouraged. While no one wants to have to face such an unpleasant reality, if and when it comes, we will be ready. We intend not only to continue the dialogue that we've had with the company, but to broaden it by bringing in new leaders to augment what we have so far. There are many extremely sharp minds in this newsroom and we intend to harness as many as possible so if one of us moves on, another will pick up where they left off. That will provide us with much greater stability and hope in the months ahead.

I'm sorry to have to even address this -- as you know, I always try to look for the up-side of things and celebrate our successes-- but the gravity of the situation made me feel I needed to speak up. Hopefully, by getting things out in the open, we can get things settled and get back to the business of putting out the paper. As we've proved this week, we can certainly rise to challenging circumstances and will do so again whenever need be.

Thanks for your time and if anyone hears anything beyond just rumor, please let me know. We will try to get to the bottom of things and keep you in the loop as best we can. And thank you, once again, for all that you do-- you guys are truly the best.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Los Angeles Press Club

Serving Southern California since 1913

Date: Feb. 8, 2008

For Immediate Release

Contact – Edward Headington, Publicist

(323) 669-8081 or

The Los Angeles Press Club and Alex Ben Block present:

“A Return To Corky’s: The Ultimate Herald Examiner Almost-20th Reunion Party”

NEW DATE: Thursday, March 13, 2008


Corky's, one of the world’s great newspaper bars, may be long gone. But for one night we will recreate Corky's -- at least in spirit -- at the Steve Allen Theater in Hollywood to commemorate the late, great Herald Examiner, which perished just over 19 years ago. Former editorial employees, friends and those just curious about an important piece of L.A. history will reminisce, catch up, party and discuss the lasting imprint of one of the city's most colorful newspapers.

The Herald Examiner, once the largest afternoon daily in the U.S., livened up the city until its untimely death in 1989. For one glorious evening, the HerEx and the 11th Street tavern that slacked thirsts, provided a refuge for journalists and hosted bad karaoke for a generation will live again!


Producer/Moderator Alex Ben Block ('79-'84) is joined by legendary editor Jim Bellows ('78-'81) and HerEx alumni who scattered to just about everywhere -- the Times, Daily News, broadcast, magazines and the Internet. Know where to find a fellow HerEx'er? Track them down or let us know about them.


Because it's time. The Herald's legacy couldn't be more important given the threats to important media voices -- all under pressure because of a souring economy, new media and changing consumer preferences.


PLEASE NOTE CHANGE OF DATE TO Thursday, March 13th, Reception and networking start at 6 p.m.; Program starts at 7:30 p.m.; HerEx Reunion Group photo immediately following the program. Spirit of Corky’s bar ‘til 11 pm.


The Los Angeles Press Club at the Steve Allen Theater, 4773 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles , CA 90027 (two blocks west of Vermont Ave ). Plenty of free parking behind the building (enter off of Berendo Street); Metro: Red line, Sunset/Vermont station


$20 admission at the door. $10 if ticket purchased in advance. (Admission free for LA Press Club members and anyone who joins the LAPC that night).


Reserve seats using PayPal in advance online or on the phone for $10 each with guaranteed reserved priority seating (non refundable $5 charge for LAPC members and $10 for non-members, applied to admission). RSVP to:

For more info CONTACT: or call 323.669.8081. Ask to be on the HerEx Reunion mailing list for updates on who will attend as we get closer to the event.


The Los Angeles Press Club stands as an organization devoted to improving the spirit of journalism and journalists, raising the industry’s standards, strengthening its integrity and improving its reputation all for the benefit of the community at large. For more information, go to and/or

PR Newswire, co-sponsor for all Los Angeles Press Club events, is the global leader in news and information distribution services for professional communicators. For more information, go to

2:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let make sure I got this right. This was your best week, and by the way we could be losing our jobs, but don't panic? Thanks man...

1:17 PM  
Blogger Oxnard St. said...

Anonymous 1: Don't leave your BS ads on this blog. I don't want to have to disable comments on here because you're spamming our site. If you want to let people know about your event, e-mail me at and I'll be happy to spread the word in the appropriate forum.

Anonymous 2: Yeah, unfortunately, that's a pretty good way of summing up the situation. Since we don't have the specifics, I don't want anyone to speculate, but I think this is a situation about which we all need to be concerned.

And I stand by my opening comment, as well. The last few weeks of coverage have been outstanding, so to watch MediaNews threaten to cut into a team that's so sharp makes me sick.

11:46 PM  

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