Tag Archives: Cox Enterprises

Tip Your Huge Media Market Giant

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A team of reporters from WSB-TV Channel 2 television news was there; someone apparently tipped them off to the arrest beforehand. The station has had exclusive access to the court proceedings since then.

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Now I can’t speak to the matter of terrorism-related charges brought on anyone, let alone a Clayton County, Georgia woman who wanted to kill all the whities via YouTube. (Although this particular burden never stops Matthew Charles Cardinale, the editor of Atlanta Progressive News. But he’s in law school now, so off he goes. Go Matthew go.)

I can, however, speak to the stinky little underhanded and exploitative way in which virtually all federal and state-related arrest media straight out of Atlanta (that good ‘n juicy perp-walk stuff) gets handed to market-dominating WSB-TV (Cox Enterprises) alone, on a silver platter, by someone at WSB-TV’s brother who happens to work in federal (or state) law enforcement.

So let’s recap: someone who works in government serves up exploitative tidbits to a single, for-profit entity, Cox Enterprises. Over and over and over again.

This sleight-of-media-hand trick has been going on in the Atlanta media market for decades: exclusive access to media/news-gathering opportunities (those folk in big trouble with the law) which no doubt many other players in this same media market would also love to exploit for their organization’s financial gain.

May be legal, but it ain’t right.

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Delta Bashing Makes Editorial Data Fly High

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Delta Bashing Makes Editorial Data Fly High

Here’s a fun, Atlanta-specific, advertising/sales v. editorial modern media dilemma!

Clearly, anything related to Delta-bashing, particularly Delta‘s frequent flyer program SkyMiles, makes data go hog wild. As it did with some impressive CTR numbers I sent to the Atlanta Business Chronicle from my Facebook alone. (See graphic below. If you don’t know what CTR means by now, you shouldn’t be in the ad/sales side of the media biz. However, old fogey journos, I will give you a pass on it.)

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I’ve yet to notice the AJC cranking out any of this trendy SkyMiles-bashing editorial product as did, rather gleefully, the Biz Chron. WABE also seems to have caught an editorial-minded whiff of blood in angry Delta customers’ waters.

(I can only dream of one day running a company whose profit margin and stock price chronically deflect the hatred of its own customer base! But let’s move on.)

And why would the AJC jump on the I Really Hate Delta! bandwagon? Delta’s a fine, legacy, ad-buying customer for the AJC and all of Cox Enterprises. I expect what Delta wants by now, editorially speaking, at the AJC or WBS, Delta’s going to get. Or have quietly overlooked. Barring plane-related disaster media, of course.

But there’s your data-driven media rub right there. As what the people want, editorially and as displayed by the numbers, is hardly what your dearest ad buyer would like to have lying around the house.

Torn loyalties. ATL style.

The Craptastic Digital Life Of The AJC

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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.

Get On Board The GPB Programming Theft Train!

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In a rigid environment stripped of anything remotely representing a “two way street,” GPB’s Bill Nigut babbled non-freely away recently (Thursday, July 3, 2014) to AJC’s Rodney Ho about not one but two upcoming WRAS shows he’s stolen carved-out for himself. One being called, snort, “Two Way Street.”

Given that no one’s the least bit interested in organic Nigut dung radio product, but rather far more interested in the outrageous public relations heap GPB’s laid in the wake of their mindless decision to raid WRAS, Ho dutifully attempted to steer his Nigut chat time toward media issues people actually want to hear about. Only to be shut-down by a free speech wrangler named Mandy. From Ho’s Radio & TV Talk blog:

When I mentioned that some WRAS fans are making him the bogeyman, he shrugged. “As a guy who covers politics,” Nigut said, “I know people decide to assign a motive and give you an agenda. It has nothing to do with reality or who you are.” Twice while I was on this subject, GPB spokeswoman Mandy Wilson interrupted me to say, “We’re here to talk about Bill’s radio shows.” I wasn’t expecting Nigut to saying anything except positive things about the deal and he didn’t appear to mind talking about the deal. But with a publicist in the room clearly uncomfortable with me probing that subject, I backed off.

Because what Atlanta really wants is to consume news from news farms where the news product is locally-sourced by obstructionist publicists named “Mandy.”

But wait! There’s more! More Bill Nigut in our futures! Of course Bill Nigut just had to have another politics show all for himself, in the way a toddler hoards all the red and green trucks, now that he’s playing with his stolen programming booty there at GPB.

Read the rest of this entry

Eggs Into Cox-Only Basket Spells Trouble

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And on the Don’t Put All Of Your Eggs In The Cox-Only Basket beat we have this breaking news item from Reporter Hobbs at the Daily Report. Cue the banging typerwriter music:

Dow Lohnes’ Atlanta office is undergoing a shakeup after a major client, Cox Enterprises, decided to pull some of its legal work from its longtime outside counsel.

Full story about the hemmoraging of lawyers at Dow Lohnes here.  Note to self: File under Things This Professional Basket Lady Knows Well.

Skewed Georgia Political Journalism On Most All Georgia Media Farms

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There is a good bit of chatter (on Facebook) about Nikema Williams’ excellent decision to open-up the process of electing a new Democratic Party of Georgia (DPG) chair to more than white male-only candidates.

A little background… seems there was something in the DPG’s by-laws about if a white male (or black woman presumably, or whatever was the most matchy-match) was serving as chair of the party and left that post early, then the person to fill the chair/leadership void would have to share not just a similar but also an identical demographic. Such as also being a white male, as was Mike Berlon, of course, who recently and unceremoniously left the chairpersonship of the DPG.

So Ms. Williams has changed the chairpersonship rules up a bit, in her interim, between-chairs-role and duty. And that’s ok, ‘far as I’m concerned.

But what concerns me as a writer/editorialist, and also as a pan-media and prolific content provider (of more than mere text, in other words), much more than the fate of DPG leadership, is the dearth, lack, and scarcity of women or minority writers at the The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on issues and matters pertaining to Georgia-based politics. And other media outlets too, but let’s start with the most influencial.

DPG rules can change all they care to, and that’s fine. But there are some other unwritten “rules” around this town that need to change too, if you ask me. Which of course no one did.

Oh, but they should. Ask me.

Cox Plantation Selling Off Parcels

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Wanna buy a Cox newspaper? Bet they’re an even better deal than an SUV about right now. Take your time, kick a few tires, consult with Clark Howard about the wisdom of such a purchase. From a large Cox parcel:

Cox Enterprises, owner of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, is selling newspaper holdings in North Carolina, Colorado and Texas, the company announced today.

The $15 billion company will keep three of its largest newspapers, including the AJC, The Palm Beach Post and the Dayton Daily News.

Company officials did not disclose a sales price for the properties placed on the market, but said revenue from the sales will be used to pay down debt.

“This decision was made as part of an ongoing strategic review of our portfolio and enables us to maintain our strong and stable financial performance,” said Jim Kennedy, Cox chairman and CEO.

Cox will also sell Valpak, the company’s direct mail advertising division, officials said.

Large newspaper companies around the country have been shedding some of their holdings because of declining revenues and the slumping economy.

Rest of story here. Think I’ll take a pass on the dino-papers, but I like those Valpak carpet cleaning coupons. I actually use those things.