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Don’t vote? Then don’t complain about politicians.
No doubt you’ve heard that one before. Exactly why I never miss a voting opportunity, as I sure don’t like missing out on a good political whine.
But the matter of digital at the AJC.com (and other Cox digital products too, but I’ll worry about the others later) has gone beyond whining to just embarrassment at and for our flagship, hometown, news delivery outlet. (I’d call it a paper, but I’m not referencing any print product here. Just the digital stuff.)
I think of gorgeous pictures from the Atlanta Beltline lantern parade last night that could have enticingly filled out a compelling homepage this morning, 9-7-14, shifting to exciting sports-related photos later in the day to enhance the Falcons’ season opener, alongside the numerous political stories from the week in some kind of overview wrap-up. And, yes, even that craptastic Ross Harris (the dad accused of murder-by-hot-car) story somewhere in an appealing homepage-in-my-head Sunday edition presentation… and well, I just wanna cry for what could be AJC.com. And WSB-TV.com too. (They should be one e-product really, but that’s another rant altogether.)
When you don’t give a shit about digital, guess what? It shows! “Coming Sunday” on Sunday, plus all the cliched copy and grade school headlining imaginable? Gawd, today’s AJC digital product is so pitiful I wouldn’t dream of sharing it with my social network; I’d rather bury it out behind the woodshed.
My head is reeling, because the hard-working journalists, the few left around there, the proud, have done plenty of heavy journalistic lifting all through the past week, especially regarding the nasty level of corruption all through Georgia state and local politics. There’s been great work from numerous Cox employees reporting a massive amount of hanky panky straight out of DeKalb County, our bustling courtrooms, the AG’s and the governor’s offices, etc.
Only to piss it away on digi-crap you see a sample of in the above picture/screen grab. And on a Sunday too, the prime news reading and media consuming day for a serious journalism audience. And I’m not even highlighting their hideous homepage, whatever’s there, or not, now. Nor the online AJC’s rampant level of daily copyediting (or lack thereof) boo-boos. I’m scared to go back to their weekend-neglected homepage.
Since I gave-up on the AJC’s digital presentation with my croissant, second cup, and screens this morning, I thought about buying the paper product with which to properly absorb the Georgia political and otherwise news of a busy past week.
Not now. I’ll just put my $2.50 towards a NYT and call it a Sunday.
UPDATE: Seems GPB has abandoned their attempt at a “two way street” and removed all comments and commenting from Bill Nigut’s blog post referenced in this post and associated hyperlinks. Too bad. Loved the “Whatever Saruman” one!
Bill Nigut is “thrilled” to be back on the airwaves of radio, via WRAS. That makes one person in Georgia. The rest of us? Not so much. (See the comments, coming fast and furious, at his blog post trumpeting his latest broadcasting
Mr. Nigut’s on-air and in-real-life persona has always been loud, large, and obnoxious. He’s that person who insists on being heard through the din of a crowded networking event or cocktail party. Sucks the wind right out of any space, and takes it all for himself.
It helps that he’s a tall guy, but Nigut can bray and preen with the best of ’em. I once made the mistake of walking past Bill Nigut and Neal Boortz chatting together at some random Atlanta Press Club event. I was hurled three city blocks away by the gasbaggery posturing alone.
Nigut makes claim to being a champion for pretty much everything and everyone he can think of: the helpless, the homeless, the voiceless, the poor, but especially Richie Rich Chamber-types, in his windy GPB blog post declaring his latest radio show intentions with WRAS, awww shucks, ma’am style:
I am thrilled to be back in radio and hope you’ll join me to meet extraordinary people, hear important ideas and explore the rich arts and cultural work being done in Atlanta and Georgia. It should be fun; it should be illuminating, and if I do it right, it should make us all just a little more aware of what a remarkable place we live in.
Beware a wolf in sheep’s clothes. Nigut is merely an old media bully worming his way into a place, space and time where he is not wanted because he believes his own hype, and is still in love with the sound of his own voice, and has sorely missed hearing it bellowing hither and yon from whatever Atlanta microphone he can grab first before anyone else has a chance to get there. Everyone knows this, because they’re watching it happen. In real time, more or less, given the enduring popularity of the #SaveWRAS hashtag.
GPB stole programming out of the mouths, minds and hearts of numerous Georgia State University students, and took it for a very select,
very few one old media talking head s. No one’s believing a wisp of spin put on the matter by anyone at GSU or GPB leadership. They’re operating in an echo chamber, as that deafening sound you don’t hear anywhere in Atlanta is anyone other than Bill Nigut and Teya Ryan themselves coming to their own sorry little defense of what they’ve done to raid WRAS.
The best thing Bill Nigut can possibly do for his rapidly fraying Georgia media legacy, and trust me, he surely thinks he’s still got a shot at one, is to give the programming of WRAS back to the kids of GSU. Now.
Bill Nigut of Georgia Public Broadcasting shows his hand as to why he was so excited about the WRAS Album 88 kids getting kicked to the curb: he gets to expand his own personal talk show, On The Story, to another platform. What a preening douche. #SaveWRAS indeed. From that.
The full GPB press release is at the jump.
Read the rest of this entry
As I’ve died and gone to Atlanta media circus heaven lately it’s been hard to break away to play ringmaster by providing the necessary, critical blog posts. Facebooking and Twitter alone are about to do me in.
Honestly, I’ve been having too much fun sitting back with my peanuts and cotton candy watching from here in the cheap seats. But someone’s gotta play local TV news farm media critic in this town, other than @RichardsDoug; and there is, of course, no one better qualified to do so than me.
Thus, let me take a moment to pry open the laptop and reflect on just last night’s Atlanta local TV media hightlights and lowlights before I go back in for more. (Thank goodness for that new, 4-5pm block from Channel 2, eh?)
Last night WSB-TV, or WizBee or Death Star Two as it’s called in the biz around here, was on disjointed fire! When they open a 6pm with longtime, hysterical crime reporter Mark Winne (his Facebook fan page is here) rest assured we’re going to be served drama.
The local TV news station that can’t do ’em some news drama, in a city as ragingly dysfunctional as Atlanta, is just dead to me. Otherwise, why bother to exist? Anyway… getting to the point.
Winne led-off with pretty good shrieking over the hilariously mule-headed refusals by a few implicated (now kinda sorta fired) APS school administrators to… go down without a public fight. I think they were bellowing for a publicized *hearing*, whatever the heck that is. Good luck with that tall order.
The best part was a replay of Winne grilling, weeks ago, one of the most mule-headed APS admins fingered in the whole royal cheating mess, Tamara Cotman.
Low and behold, Cotman was, once again, right up in our living rooms. Still looking slouched down and bloated from all the investigatory stress and educator cake she’s been consuming over the years, defensive and sliding down a slippery conference room leather chair slope of no-where-else-to-go prayer.
Cotman was posed in the classic ATL local TV media perp tableau – lawyer on one side, Mark Winne leaning in with a question on the other. Talk about media places you never want to be seen in this town.
Bless her tired, stressed, cake-laden heart. I almost felt sorry for her, as, so far, Jesus has yet to come to her emotional or otherwise rescue. Maybe next year. Keep those prayers and cards and letter coming, Atlanta!
Did you hear the uncontrollable sobbing? See the river of tears? Cringe a lot but keep watching and listening? Feel those familiar, empathizing stabs-through-the-heart as a parent? Sure you did. Who could miss the bizarre, loud, soggy and sloppy vehicular homicide perp-‘fession yesterday in Atlanta media. It played big.
Now I will confess. I am in shock and awe with defense attorney’s, Lawyer David Wolfe’s, sick and brilliant and kinda wild media tactic. Trust me, ALL local Georgia media are now his personal media bitch, even the usually crime-reserved WABE. Watch him as he trots out the hysterically earnest nice white folk with the cute white folk names… such as Christa. What media could resist? And why would they? Gonna print big. Sell some papers. Tune-in. Click-on.
And the terrible thing is that all this Get To Know Me And My Deep Regrets tactical media ploy by Wolfe could keep this remorseful, hysterical-on-cue, stupid young woman out of the pokey… in what will now become a trial of the year, if it ever gets to trial. (NOTE: One atty. says the D.A.’s office will never plea down here. Too high-profile for that.)
This one plays close to home as I just spent four months downtown at the Georgia State Capitol during the 2010 legislative session, where earnest young folk such as the victim in this terrible accident (not crime), Jordan Griner, made the whole silly place hum.
Jordan Griners were everywhere. Young Griner was very much the face of the next generation of Georgia political operatives. Far too young to yet be turned manipulative and hard and unfriendly and cunning by the relentless power drama at the Gold Dome. And far too young to die, at just 24, on a Midtown street two blocks from the safe confines of home after a fun and casual night out with friends.
On an almost daily basis I too drive through the intersection where Jordan Griner was killed by the stupid drunk club-goer, thinking of young Jordan but also thinking of how I too was once a young, stupid, Atlanta night-clubber. In other words, ye olde classic There But By The Grace Of The Goddess scenario.
Now that I’m older, wiser, less energetic, and presumably more analytical, particularly with media matters, I really want to have a nice long chat with Lawyer David Wolfe about his media mechanizations for his stupid, drunk, club-going client; I’m fascinated by Wolfe’s mad legal-media skills and tactics. He waves his client-wand, and wow, all Atlanta media step and fetch to do his get-this-on-cam-for-your-A-block bidding… all without spending one dime or lifting a finger. Just a phone call or email or two or a dozen.
Naturally, I want to hear all about his overall media strategy too, which of course he’s not going to reveal to me or any other media-type or reporter. (Dale Russell may get an interview after all is said and done. Maybe.)
So until I get motivated enough to find a trial lawyer in my social network to interview, please leave me YOUR thoughts on this public, Georgia-specific, legal-media matter here. Especially if you’re a lawyer.
From the institution that’s downsized itself into oblivion… how about a nice streaming bowl of “media solutions!” All the while the AJC, (aka “Panda Press”) has managed to set absolutely NO standard for online anything, other than to issue bleating memoranda via Julia Wallace (who doesn’t even blog last time I checked) that end-up all over Romensko claiming the AJC’s going to dominate online-everything in their path. Oh sure.
Have you ever tried to use the commenting interface on their blogs? Now that’s some scary shit. Crashes everything from Windows ’98 to entire HVAC units. “Media solutions” from the AJC. LMAO! Hey, it’s your money. From Atlanta Daybook today:
“We have fundamentally changed our organizational structure and go-to market approach based on research and feedback we heard from our advertisers and prospects about their continued challenges,” said W. Michael Clay, AJC Senior Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer.
“We’re responding with AJC Media Solutions. We’re more than a newspaper, we’re now a one-point-of contact solution across digital, print and direct marketing platforms that can help businesses navigate their messaging to the audiences and consumers they seek and that will truly help them grow their businesses.”
Full boast here. This is about like saying local TV news stations have functioning video archives on their websites. Oh sure. Let’s all “skip-to-market” while we’re at it.
If you’ve never worked a media project in Atlanta with Jeff Jeffares you’re either a hack or thirteen-years old. Jeff’s been creating ATL-related media since before Zeus had a lightening bolt. And he just keeps on going… this time with a directing gig at an Obama inaugural ball. From the AJC:
Next week, Jeffares will fly to Washington, D.C., to help an old friend from Atlanta’s WAGA-TV, Carroll Platt, who is in charge of directing cameras at five of 10 official inaugural balls, including the Neighborhood Ball, at the Washington Convention Center. Jeffares, who has already submitted his name for Secret Service clearance, does not know which ball he will film yet.
Wonder if I could pull cable in Narcisco Rodriguez? Of course I could!
The days of hiring a PR firm to print you up some super nice cards, letters and other dead-tree products, write-up a whimsical, mostly phoney press release about your event, launch or product… whatever it is you’ve got going on, and then having that PR firm’s interns send it out to “The Media” are over.
Gone, and likely forgotten before long. Having worked in newsrooms through the years, and being on the receiving-end of some lovely and creative media packets and timely press releases, I can’t tell you how quickly the trash cans fill up with all that lovely dead-tree stuff anyway. Pity really.
Rising from the ashes of the demise of traditional PR is something along the line of Net Party. I shot some video at last night’s monthly Atlanta Net Party (hope to post some here soon), met the founder, Jeff, and realized that not only was this a face-to-face networking event with hundreds of lovely, talented people packing the line to get in at Buckhead’s Tongue & Groove, it was a data-dive of a social media mashup. There was something in this event for Kaneva, Concept Hub, Brand Atlanta, and everyone who showed for the yummy free food and $5 martinis.
Of course I Twittered throughout the event, as did Amani Channel. And I woke-up to… not some gorgeous stranger, alas, but seven nine new Twitter followers in my InBox. That stream here:
Crazy person zooming around parking deck in a gorgeous vintage Mercedes. WTF?
Boy does the ATL singles scene sure beat a night of TV. These folk are impossibly gorgeous.
DJ must be ready to assume duties. The disco ball is now on.
@jimstroud tearing UP the dance floor! Well kinda.
Hanging with Amani. Life is always ok that way.
oh for chrissake. Nice guy hands me his card. I try to read a/out my reading glasses. It’s was upside down!
Anyone at Net Party wanna do shooters with a 40-something soccer mom? Like just one?
There are hundreds of people at @idealist Net Party shindig. A long way from our 7 ATL blogger meetups 3 yrs ago!
at Net Party at Tongue & Groove. Packed! Reminds me of 80’s Limelight meat market scene!
I’ll write-up more about this soon, about how this one event will morph into many exciting new ventures and adventures. Right now, I’ve got to go work on the video! One note about casting the Net Party promotions & sponsorship net even wider… If I owned a luxury car dealership, such as the one just down the street on Piedmont from Tongue & Groove (where last night’s social networking event was held), hint hint Mercedes of Buckhead, I’d have sent a least 2 comely reps. And parked one of my pretty toys right out front too.
One questions though… why in the world would anyone use the word “tongue” in their business enterprise? It’s really not a very attractive word. Feh.
UPDATE: Video of the NetParty event is above, or click here.
For some odd reason, likely out of sheer boredom, Shelby Highsmith rolled on this Atlanta Press Club event, including Art Harris rambling on about something. Most in attendance at Manuel’s afterwards agreed that:
a.) Suits are still boring.
b.) The whole are blogs media? discussion is getting really old and pointless.
c.) No one had a freakin’ clue as to what Art Harris was talking about.
Regardless, several of the bloggers in the room took a moment today to give the Ethics and Business and Everything On The Planet and Blogs panel discussion ye ‘olde post-mort try. Bless their hearts. Some are here:
More timely and much more interesting would be Amber of Being Amber Rhea being quoted throughout this Wired article on how new media tools, blessedly, allowed sex worker advocates to be heard through the media cacophany that followed the Spitzer Pays For It saga.
NOTE: Eerily like the woman of the French Revolution who famously knitted away as those who had to pay were carted off to the the guillotine, Amber can be seen on the tape at 03:55… furiously Twittering away.
Many modes of Atlanta media collided in the midst of a tornado-warning storm with aplomb, and some help from Hair Color For Men, yesterday at the lovely Buckhead home of film critic, Eleanor Ringel Cater.
At a cocktail party given by Ringel, her husband Arthur Cater, Lisa & Bill Tush, and Tom Houck to celebrate the release of their mutual friend Richard Zoglin’s new book, Comedy At The Edge: How Stand-Up in The 1970’s Changed America, politics edged into the drawing room, quite literally, when Rep. John Lewis, the subject of national media buzz on every political hack show just hours before, dropped-in and said a few funny, mostly non-political bon motes for a crowded foyer, unless you call announcing the pending marriage of Tom Houck something political. (Who exactly Houck is to be marrying remained something of a mystery as no one could seem to find more than the usual supply of former Houck fiances on-hand at the Ringel-Cater home.)
Even alt-media trekked up Peachtree in driving rain to make this seriously uptown party. Stomp and Stammer writers Glen Sarvady and Tom Roche were standing by lest things got too crashingly MSM. Sarvady’s writer wife, the wicked-funny Andrea Sarvady, found lately traipsing through the AJC, was delightfully along for the soiree as well.
Best thing spotted all night? No, not David T. Lindsay (who was of course not there), but the custom-built shelving created just for Ms. Ringel Cator’s real-deal movie schwag. You might have a house at St. Simon’s. You might have an iPhone and a trust fund. You might have a beautiful third spouse and a home theater, but I doubt you have the authentic schwag to go along with your rental DVDs. And oh yes dear, the logo-edorned Bridget Jones’s Diary granny panties were hard not to slip into my latest Target purse.
Fortunately, this Mostly Media maven came safely home through all the challenging elements, via her own carriage, to a deeply satisfying Colin Firth-as-the-ultimate-Darcy (Pride and Prejudice) on Masterpiece, the show formerly known as Masterpiece Theater. Change the title all you want, but never mess with my smoldering, plucky Brits.
But here’s a little Cowboys and Colored People if you woke-up feeling a bit raunchy and kinda 70’s America.