Your connection to industry & member news
Your connection to industry & member news
Your connection to industry & member news  |  April 27, 2023

Sign up for free virtual FOI & libel training

May 18 | 2-3:15 p.m. | Zoom

Join SCPA  Attorney Taylor Smith on Thursday, May 18, from 2-3:15 p.m. for a refresher on the S.C. Freedom of Information Act and libel. If you are new to the Palmetto State or just need a refresher, sign up for this helpful session.
This session is only open to SCPA members and is free to attend. 
If you have specific questions or topics that you’d like Taylor to address, you are welcome to email us in advance.

SCPA member services orientation set for June 8

Are you a news organization leader who is new to SCPA?
SCPA’s next new editor/publisher/member orientation is set for Thursday, June 8, from 2-2:30 p.m. on Zoom.
If you’re a leader at your news organization, we invite you to learn more about SCPA’s member services, legal/FOI Hotline, SLED Checks, lobbying, training, contests, communications, resources and ad representation.
This will be an informal space to get information about your membership and ask questions.
RSVP if you’d like to attend.
If you’d rather set up a time to meet with SCPA staff at your newspaper or at our office, contact us.

"Tim Scott’s special announcement" by Robert Ariail

If you can't get enough of award-winning Camden cartoonist Robert Ariail, enjoy his new strip featured every week in the Charleston City Paper, which has granted us ongoing permission to republish it. Called "Lowcountry," the weekly feature, which is available for syndication in South Carolina newspapers, focuses on politics, human nature, the environment and public policy. More: Contact publisher Andy Brack.

Legal Briefs

SC killer freed 16 years early on secret order heading back to prison, SC Supreme Court rules

The convicted murderer who was released 16 years early on a secret order is being sent back to prison to serve the remainder of his sentence, the S.C. Supreme Court ordered after a hearing on April 26. 
Law enforcement have been directed to immediately take custody of Jeroid Price, who fatally shot 22-year-old Carl Smalls Jr., a college football player, at a Columbia nightclub in 2002. The justices voided the order in a 3-2 vote.
S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson, who requested a bench warrant from the high court, said Price’s early release in March was unlawful, in part, because no hearing was held where the victim’s family or prosecutors could argue to keep the killer in prison. 
By Caitlin Ashworth, The Post and Courier | Read more

Supreme Court takes up disputes involving public officials who block critics on social media

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to take up a pair of court fights involving public officials who block their critics on social media and whether elected officials can be sued by users who lost the ability to interact with those accounts. 
The issue of public officials blocking followers who criticize them on Facebook and Twitter and whether this crosses a constitutional line was at the center of a lawsuit brought against former President Donald Trump in 2017. A federal appeals court in New York ruled that Trump violated the First Amendment when he blocked critics of his policies on Twitter, and the former president asked the Supreme Court in 2020 to weigh in.
By Melissa Quinn, CBS News | Read more

Industry Briefs

LMA announces new sustainability lab for family-owned, independent local media

Local Media Association is launching a new lab program aimed at finding paths to sustainability for family-owned and independent local media organizations, thanks to funding from Google News Initiative.
Directors of the LMA Family and Independent Media Sustainability Lab — FIMS Lab for short — and a team of expert consultants will work for one year with key leaders of 12 family-owned and independent local media companies, immersing in strategic business transformation work intended to advance them toward long-term sustainability and financial independence. ...
Lab participants also will benefit from general strategic planning and consulting services, including on-site visits by subject-matter experts with agendas tailored to each participating organization’s needs. And the Lab will cover costs for each participating company to send its main stakeholder to an in-person, full-cohort meeting in Chicago coinciding with LMA Fest, the week of July 31.
Any local news media company in the U.S. or Canada with at least $1 million annual revenue that can demonstrate it is family-owned or independently owned is welcome to apply. Qualified organizations may include single-location/single-outlet organizations as well as family or independent media groups serving multiple locations. Also, media type does not matter: digital, print or broadcast media should all qualify, as long as they are significantly focused on local news and journalism.
Applications are open now through May 5. Learn more

Q&A with media and politics researcher Danny Hayes

Duke’s DeWitt Wallace Center for Media & Democracy and the UNC Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media (CISLM) hosted the Local News Researchers Workshop Feb. 16 and 17 in Chapel Hill. 
Danny Hayes (he/him) is a professor of political science at George Washington University. He is a researcher of media, public opinion and elections. He holds a B.A. in journalism, masters in government and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.
Hayes has written three books on the intersection between media and politics: “News Hole: The Demise of Local Journalism and Political Engagement” (2021); “Women on the Run: Media, Gender, and Political Campaigns in a Polarized Era” (2016); and” Influence from Abroad: Foreign Voices, the Media, and U.S. Public Opinion” (2013).
CISLM intern Caitlyn Yaede sat down with Hayes via Zoom for the following interview.
Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media: What’s a recent research project you’ve done that has helped us understand the challenges facing local news?
Danny Hayes: In 2021, my co-author Jennifer Lawless and I published a book called “News Hole,” which documents how local newspaper coverage of local politics across the United States has been declining for a couple of decades and how that has contributed to Americans knowing less about who their local officials are, being less likely to participate in local elections and a variety of other effects on civic engagement.
(These effects) raise some questions about how voters and other organizations can hold elected officials accountable in an era where local news is becoming harder to find.
CISLM: What should non-academics — local journalists or civically engaged community members — learn from that research?
DH: I think there are a couple of things. One is that if we want a vibrant, healthy democracy in the United States — a country where lots of decisions relevant to people’s lives are being made by local elected officials — then we need information sources that can help people find out what those elected officials are doing and how those policies and decisions are affecting people’s lives.
In order to have that, we need to have news organizations, like local newspapers, that have traditionally functioned to serve that purpose. We need to find public policy solutions, whether that’s intervention by nonprofits or the government or just really creative journalistic efforts to solve this information gap. That’s an important part of sustaining a really healthy democratic culture in the United States.
CISLM: What’s a recent research project in local news that you admire?
DH: My colleague in the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University, Matthew Hindman, published a book in 2018 called “The Internet Trap.” One part of this book shows how the design of the internet, its algorithmic nature and its dominance by big companies — mostly search engines and advertising firms — deprioritizes local news. It makes it hard for people to find local news, but it also shows that there’s relatively weak demand for local news.
I think that’s a really important demonstration of how the internet has fundamentally reshaped the media environment and the particularly pernicious consequences that it’s had for local news. This is something that policymakers and others need to be focused on as they think about this problem.
By Caitlyn Yaede, Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media, UNC | Read more

Lessons from the digital subscriptions sprint cohort for Table Stakes alumni

In the digital subscription cohort for alumni of the Table Stakes Local News Transformation Program, five teams were challenged to think creatively about growing and retaining digital audiences through experimentation. In this Better News piece, each team shares the challenge it took on over the four months and highlights its biggest lessons.
From Better News | Read more



Bill McDonald, former longtime The State columnist and author, dies at 85

For decades, writer and columnist Bill McDonald informed and entertained readers in Columbia and across South Carolina, seemingly never meeting a stranger along the way.
On Sunday, his story came to a close, though his words will live on in the hearts and minds of many for years to come.
William Davis “Bill” McDonald, who worked as a reporter and columnist at The State newspaper for more than 30 years and later authored two books, died on Sunday, April 23, after a brief illness. He was 85.
McDonald, a Winnsboro native, was employed at The State from February 1968 to April 2000, according to company records. He worked as a staff writer and reported on scores of topics across the decades, but it was his work as a columnist for which he was most noted. Those pieces often took on a folksy, slice-of-life tone, a fact that was noted when McDonald was presented The State’s Ambrose Gonzales Award in 1985.
By Chris Trainor, The State | Read more

Former Sun News reporter Kathleen Vereen Dayton dies

Kathleen Maria Vereen Dayton went to be with her Lord and Savior on April 12, 2023 at her home in Murrells Inlet, S.C. ...
Kathleen was born on August 12, 1956 in Charleston, South Carolina. She graduated from First Baptist Church School and later graduated from the College of Charleston. Kathleen began her professional career at WCBD TV station in Mount Pleasant working as an assistant to the news director. Kathleen was a brilliant writer who wrote for many local publications and magazines including an ongoing column in The Omnibus newspaper. She won the State South Carolina Short Story Contest in 1989. She would go on to be a news reporter for The Sun News in Myrtle Beach for many years, winning several Press Association awards. Following her career in Myrtle Beach, she continued as a business reporter for the Charleston Business Journal when she moved back to Charleston to be closer to her young grandchildren. Read more

Upcoming Events

Twitter Facebook Instagram LinkedIn
powered by emma