By Jeremy W. Steele
Business Reporter, Lansing State Journal — SPJ Region 4 Director
ALL WORK AND NO PLAY.... It probably doesn't come as a surprise to most working journalists, but media professionals are being tasked with more responsibility, they're facing changing job requirements and are more aware of the commercial side of the business than ever before, according to a survey of reporters, producers and online contributors by PR Newswire and PR Week. Among the findings:
— 57 percent feel they are being asked to work more today than in the past few years, while 56 percent say they are contributing to other mediums outside of their official duty.
— 67 percent of newspaper journalists anticipate "declines in print circulation and increased focus on the Web" over the next three years.
— 91 percent of respondents indicated "Make my publication successful by creating appealing content for its audiences" as the top consideration of their job.
— 70 percent of total respondents suggest that public opinion of journalists has gotten worse during the past five years.
PLANT THIS TREE FOR EARTH DAY. What do a Grammy-winning songwriter and the editor of the largest U.S. newspaper have in common? A love for the First Amendment. On Monday, during an appearance at Miami University in Ohio to highlight a growing number of threats to press freedoms, USA Today editor Ken Paulson and Freedom Sings musician and Grammy-winning songwriter Don Henry are among a host of guests slated for "The Liberty Tree Initiative: Celebrating the First Amendment." The event is organized by Miami's journalism program. For details, as well as student-produced reports on journalism under fire and other related topics, . Questions? Contact event chair Patricia Gallagher Newberry at firstname.lastname@example.org the event Web site or (513) 529-5893.
AL JAZEERA IMPACT. The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C., is hosting "Al Jazeera English in Southeast Asia: Prospects and Impacts" to take a look at the impact the Middle East-based channel is having on the region. The event, which runs from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. Monday, April 7, features several Asian journalists, including Al Jazeera English's Veronica Pedrosa, a news anchor based at the Kuala Lumpur broadcast center, and the Indonesian journalist Atria Rai-Tene of Trans TV in Jakarta. RSVP by close of business Friday to email@example.com. Complete event info can be found on the Center's Web site. Be sure to scroll down to Upcoming Events. To watch the event on the Web for free, click on the event title and then on the Webcast icon.
THE DL ON THE AP. The Associated Press will host presidential hopefuls and Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama at its annual meeting Monday, April 14, at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. Chairman of the AP Board of Directors Dean Singleton, AP President and CEO Tom Curley also will report to the membership. Members of the working press may request press credentials by contacting Communications Manager Jeff Sigmund at (571) 366-1088 or firstname.lastname@example.org. An audio-only live Webcast can be heard on AP's corporate Web site. AP's annual meeting page has further information. The event runs concurrent with the Newspaper Association of America's annual convention. Get details on that event at The Newspaper Association of America's Web site.
HALLMAN KNOWS THE WAY TO SAN JOSE. SPJ will host a Narrative Writing Workshop, led by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Tom Hallman Jr., of the Oregonian, April 26 at San Jose State University. The workshop will show journalists how to move beyond the inverted pyramid-style of writing to the art of storytelling. The program will be from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and cost $40 for SPJ members and $60 for non-members. Lunch is included. Late fees shall apply for registrations received less than two weeks before each workshop. For complete details or to register, visit SPJ's Narrative Writing Workshop page or call Programs Coordinator Heather Porter at (317) 927-8000, ext. 204
CHANGE OF COURSE? Looking for program ideas for your chapter? The Chicago Headline Club is hoping to help journalists who are considering a new career path. The SPJ chapter will host a series featuring public relations professionals in a variety of specialties. The free programs will be held 6:30-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 9 at the Oak Park Library, 834 Lake St., Oak Park, Ill., and 1-3 p.m. Tuesday, April 22, at the Community Media Workshop at Columbia College Suite 201, 619 S. Wabash Ave., Chicago. Contact Kathy Catrambone, Chicago Headline Club executive director, at email@example.com.
EDUCATION IN THE KINDERGARTEN COP STATE. A group of journalists is hosting a series of online briefings on education policy issues in California. The program launched Wednesday with a panel discussion on the state education budget. Catch the inaugural event online.
MISS OUT ON SPJ IN DC? TRY NLGJA. Don't just watch election news from the sidelines this summer. Join the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association in the nation's capital for an exciting out-of-classroom experience. NLGJA's 2008 Student Project pairs students with professional mentors to report, photograph and design the daily print, TV and radio news of NLGJA's National Convention from August 19-24 in Washington, D.C. NLGJA covers travel, lodging, food and convention registration expenses. The deadline for this year's program has been extended to Friday, April 11. Visit NLGJA's Student Project page to see coverage produced by last year's Student Project, and download an application for this year's program.
GET READY FOR CHANGE. Victoria Lim, a nationally known leader in convergence and the changes in journalism, will be the featured speaker April 12 at a "Sharpen Your Skills" workshop sponsored by the Cleveland professional chapter of SPJ. Register now to take part in this outstanding program at the Holiday Inn at West 150th Street and I-71. The cost of $25 for SPJ members $30 for non-members and $15 for students includes lunch. Reserve by calling Tom Moore at (440) 333-7382 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Want hear Victoria before the workshop? Tune in tomorrow at 9:35 a.m. Eastern to WCPN or just go online following the show.
QUIETLY LOOKING FOR DONATIONS. The Greater Los Angeles Pro Chapter is soliciting items for its silent and live auctions as part of its 32nd annual awards banquet next month. The Distinguished Journalists Awards banquet will be Wednesday, April 30 at the Omni Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. The event helps SPJ/LA raise money for local programs, including scholarships and professional development. Donated items should be delivered to a chapter board member by April 14. To arrange for delivery, contact SPJ/LA Vice President Alice Walton at email@example.com. Get more information on the banquet online.
HONORED IN THE 'D'. The Metropolitan Detroit Chapter will host its annual Journalist of the Year Awards on Tuesday, April 15, at the San Marino Club, 1685 East Big Beaver Road, Troy. Tickets are $35 for student members and $50 for professional members, or buy a table of 10 for $500. For details, call (586) 306-2035, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
THE FACS ON GAS. Join the The Foundation for American Communications (FACS) and SPJ for "Gas Pump Prices, New Nukes and Alternative Energy," a Wednesday, April 23 seminar on energy issues in the Southeast. Participants will get the latest information on gasoline pump prices, a look at proposed nuclear power plants in the area and hear the latest on other energy alternatives. If you cover energy, business, the environment or government you should be at this free day long seminar to be held at Cox Enterprises in Atlanta's Perimeter Center. The seminar includes breakfast and lunch. There is no cost to attend, but participants must be registered in advance. For further details or to register, go to The FACS Web site.
JOURNOS, MEET TECHIES. Journalism's ideals meet Silicon Valley's tools in this three-day, conceptual mashup, NewsTools2008, from Wednesday, April 30, to Saturday, May 3. The three-day Journalism That Matters event that will offer journalists, technologists, entrepreneurs and funders a chance to explore ideas, form partnerships, develop projects, outline systems and businesses for sustaining "journalism that matters." NewsTools2008 is limited to about 150 participants. The $395 registration covers all events and a companion one-day Society of Professional Journalists "meet up." For details and registration information, visit The Media Giraffe Web site or The NewsTools2008 Web site. The event is hosted by the Journalism That Matters Collaborative, the Media Giraffe Project, the Northern California Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) and Yahoo! Inc.