Your connection to industry & member news
Your connection to industry & member news
Your connection to industry & member news  |  June 30, 2022

Editor's Note: There will not be an eBulletin next week.
Have a safe and happy Fourth of July! We'll be back in your inbox on July 13.

Friday is deadline to submit PALMY corrections

Friday is the final day to submit corrections to the 2022 PALMY Advertising Contest. If your newspaper participated, please review the winners list and let us know if you have corrections.
Winners are not for release until July 13.
On July 13, the digital awards presentation will be made available and judges' comments, Best of Show, Designer of the Year and the President’s Awards for Best Overall Advertising will be announced.
Awards will be presented in person or mailed to winners in mid-July 2022. Please tell us if you'd like to have a recognition event at your newspaper or if you'd prefer us to mail your awards.

"Wind power" 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.

FOI Briefs

Pauley: No documentation given before $50K settlement vote

After Fairfield County Council voted Monday night to award an unnamed former employee $50,000 to settle a claim against the county, Councilman Douglas Pauley informed The Voice that he plans to call for a motion to reconsider the vote at the next council meeting.
“We were, basically, not given any information during executive session by the council leadership, making it impossible to make an informed decision about the issue. We were each given a single sheet of paper with some notes about the issue – very few notes, in fact. – and Mr. Bell took the paper back from us before we left the executive session,” Pauley said.
On June 15, The Voice sent a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to County Administrator Malik Whitaker requesting to review all records relating to the job performance and claim of the former employee.
Gwendolyn Ashford, executive assistant to Whitaker, responded.
“The action of County Council was one act in a controversy involving an employee. At this time, materials requested are all incident to the formation of a contract” Ashford wrote. “Should the transaction produce a binding contract, the requested documents will be made available for public inspection as required by law.”
Pauley said no mention was made during the executive session of a contract to be signed.
By Barbara Ball, The Voice of Fairfield County | Read more

Legal Briefs

‘It feels like we’re being bullied’: LR5 teacher describes school atmosphere amid lawsuits

When a Midlands schoolteacher answered a lawyer’s questions for a school board member’s lawsuit, the lawyer offered her the chance to turn the tables for a moment and ask her questions.
One question was weighing on Mary Wood’s mind. “Are you guys going to come after teachers?” the Chapin High School teacher asked.
“When you say, you guys —” replied Desa Ballard, the attorney for Lexington-Richland 5 school board vice chair Ken Loveless.
“You as an attorney representing Mr. Loveless, are you going to sue teachers?” Wood said.
“I have no instructions to do that,” Ballard replied. “Is that helpful?”
“No,” Wood said.
The exchange is part of the depositions that Wood and eight other people were subpoenaed to give as part of a lawsuit Loveless filed against a constituent for critical comments made about him on Facebook. Loveless says the comments are defamatory.  ...
In a separate filing on Thursday, Loveless asked the court to limit the questions opposing attorneys can ask him, arguing he brought the defamation case as a “private matter” and should not have to answer questions about the operations of the school board on which he serves.
“Loveless is concerned that the scope of discovery ... needs to be established to prohibit discovery on any topic regarding actions Loveless has performed in his actions as a member of the Lexington/Richland School District 5 Board of Trustees.”
Loveless’ request, filed as part of the Scully case, is in response to what the document calls similarly “abusive” requests for information by Stiles’ attorneys, who have sought information from other members of the Lexington-Richland 5 school board.
Failing that, Loveless’ attorney also asks that the court limit the dissemination of whatever material is uncovered by the discovery process, citing an online comment attributed to Scully that “They desperately want to squash these suits b/c they know the discovery process will bring their corruption to light.”
“While defense counsel is of the highest integrity and professionalism, there are numerous persons in the community who want to publicize whatever information they obtain in discovery to perpetuate hostility and anger among persons for whom the actions of the Lexington Richland School District Five Board are of interest,” Loveless’ motion says.
By Bristow Marchant, The State | Read more

People & Papers

Wigger

Wigger named Newberry Observer publisher

Changes are coming to the staff at The Newberry Observer. Editor Andrew Wigger is being promoted to the publisher role effective June 29.
“I am immensely honored to accept the role of publisher at The Newberry Observer. I have been with the paper, and the community, for the past eight years. I have learned a lot during that time, and am continuing to learn,” Wigger said. “During my time at the paper, I have worked to become an active member of the community and will continue to do so. I look forward to continuing what Andy started and help grow the newspaper and to provide the news and content you will not see anywhere else.”
“I would also like to take a moment to thank Champion Media for putting their faith in me to lead The Newberry Observer. Also, I would like to take a moment to thank Andy for all the support he has given me during his time as publisher, I have very large shoes to fill,” Wigger added.
Wigger started at The Observer in July of 2014 and has moved up the ranks from reporter to editor and now publisher.
Wigger’s promotion comes as current publisher, Andy Husk, is stepping down to relocate to Omaha, Neb.
From The Newberry Observer | Read more
Manigault

Aiken Standard welcomes guests, celebrates 155th anniversary

Dozens of members and boosters of the Aiken Chamber of Commerce had the Aiken Standard’s office on their agendas Thursday afternoon, as the daily newspaper serving Aiken County celebrated its 155th anniversary by playing host to a Business After Hours gathering. ...
Among high-profile visitors was Pierre Manigault, chairman of the board of Evening Post Publishing, the newspaper’s parent company, which bought the Aiken newspaper in 1968.
“Aiken is special to us,” he said, addressing the assembly and acknowledging that his company now owns and operates two daily newspapers: The Post and Courier, based in Charleston, and the Aiken Standard. 
“Aiken is special to me, in particular, just because I … go back a long time with my family,” he said. “My grandmother was born here, in 1902, and I came here a lot with my father, as a child, and now I’ve got children. I’m here with my daughter all the time, for rides and horse shows, and … this really feels like my second home. I love Aiken.”
Also on hand was P.J. Browning, president of Evening Post’s newspaper division. She described the Aiken Standard as “a newspaper deeply tied to the community it serves” and clearly having “weathered a lot of storms and unquestionably stood the test of time.”
By Bill Bengtson, Aiken Standard | Read more
Sapakoff

Post and Courier's Sapakoff named NSMA 2021 SC Sportswriter of the Year

Gene Sapakoff was named the National Sports Media Association's 2021 South Carolina Sportswriter of the Year on June 27 at the annual NSMA banquet in Winston-Salem, N.C. The NSMA honors sportswriters and sportscaster winners from all 50 states. This is Sapakoff's eighth time winning the prestigious award.
He is a sports columnist for The Post and Courier and covers Clemson, South Carolina and other interesting things. Sapakoff is also a repeat SCPA Judson Chapman Award winner. 
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Industry Briefs

Supply chain blues: Publishers share insights and a few tips amid supply chain woes

Leonard Woolsey, president of Southern Newspapers, got unwelcome news recently. A truck had an incident out on the road, destroying thousands of dollars worth of newsprint coming from a vendor to a Southern Newspapers property in Kerrville, north of San Antonio. “It’s just a crazy story that will make every news publisher cry because we’re trying so hard to get newsprint these days.”
There’s no crying in newspapers, but many in the industry will empathize with the frustration at losing any newsprint as papers around the country scramble to keep enough rolls in stock to make their print runs. “I will say it's as scarce as I think anybody that's been in this business for any time has ever seen,” said Woolsey, whose company has 10 papers in Texas and one in Oklahoma. Publishers are also closely monitoring ink and printing plate supplies.
According to one Georgia publisher, supply chain slowdowns that started around 18 months ago show no signs of abating. “I wouldn't say it’s getting better. I don’t think it’s getting a whole lot worse. But I’m not encouraged that we’ve turned the corner just yet,” said Otis Brumby III, president and publisher at Times-Journal Incorporated, Marietta, told E&P in May.
Brumby said his company’s good relationship and communication flow with his newsprint vendors have helped manage the situation. “One of the things we’ve tried to do to offset that is just keep a higher amount of inventory than we normally would. That way, if there are some surprises, a delayed truck or something like that, it doesn’t materially impact our overall business because we also do a good bit of commercial printing. We want to make sure we don’t have to make that phone call to our customers that we’re out of newsprint.”
Kruger Inc., with its head office in Montreal, is Times-Journal’s main newsprint supplier. The company also uses some smaller suppliers. Times-Journal has three dailies and several weekly papers in suburban Atlanta.   
Publishers know well that trucking issues are the most obvious contributor to the supply chain snarls. “Just all the labor shortages and the fuel charges, and there are not enough trucks on the road right now to handle all the supply nationwide. We're just one of the industries impacted by that,” said Brumby. He points out that many of the factors are out of the vendors’ control.
By Mary Reardon for Editor & Publisher | Read more

Columns

By Jacqueline Hough,  News Editor, Herald-Advocate

The value of community newspapers

Last week, I learned some sad news.
The Mount Olive Tribune in Mount Olive, North Carolina is closing at the end of this month.
This closing hit very close to home for several reasons. The Mount Olive Tribune was the first newspaper where I was a reporter.
The year was 2001, and I was a very green reporter from South Carolina. I had never been that far away from home. I loved my reporting job and was proud of the fact that I was the first African American reporter for the newspaper.
I have always said everything I learned about community journalism during those early years came from a comic book-loving editor and a grizzled, grumpy reporter in the cubicle next to me. They taught me what community journalism was and helped to instill a solid work ethic. The Mount Olive Tribune helped me to strengthen my skills as a reporter and gave me the confidence to grow in my career.
The other reason it hit home was that Mount Olive, with a population of almost 5,000, will not have a local newspaper. The county still has a daily newspaper, but it is not the same.
The 118-year-old Mount Olive Tribune reminds me of the Herald-Advocate. I know some people say there is nothing in this newspaper, but as the content manager/creator, I think there is a lot here.
Each week, the ultimate goal is to provide this county with information. This could be about deaths, births, marriages, accidents, arrests, education, and sports. Read more
By Warren Peper, The Post and Courier

The value of local newspapers

It was while sitting in a church pew waiting for a funeral service to begin that a conversation between two ladies behind me piqued my interest. “I miss reading the paper,” one said to the other. “It’s just not the same. I especially miss the obit pages.”
The irony of the conversation didn’t escape me. Here we were, in rural Florida, paying our respects. The ladies in the nearby pew certainly had no idea that I was a freelance columnist for a newspaper many miles away.
As they continued to chat, they discussed a dislike of computers, as well as how many times one lady’s first husband had moved her all across the country. She continued to explain she was happy to be divorced from him and I found myself thankful that the organ music was starting which would mercifully bring an end to their conversation. Read more
By Ken Paulson Director and Professor, Free Speech Center 
Middle Tennessee State University

The Spirit of ’76: Protecting us against the Putin Playbook

As we gather to celebrate Independence Day, it’s a good time to reflect on how our most fundamental freedoms have served this nation well.
It’s an even better time to think about what would happen if those liberties were taken away.
Sadly, the latter doesn’t take much imagination in 2022. Your closest video screen will show you scenes of Russian troops pummeling Ukraine with the support of a majority of the Russian people. 
The Russian public has been told that their country is doing noble work ferreting out “Nazis” and that the West is engaged in its usual persecution of Russia and its people. Surveys say most Russians believe it.
In times of war, people always want to see their government as the good guys, but it’s still a little hard to grasp how that many people can be so thoroughly misled.
That’s the power of the Vladimir Putin playbook. The Russian president quickly and with little opposition eliminated the freedoms of speech and press.
First, Putin bandied around allegations of “fake news,” undermining domestic news media that had far more latitude than their Soviet Union counterparts. Read more
By John Foust, Advertising Trainer

A key question: What’s next?

Gregory talked to me about a lesson he learned in his early days of selling advertising. “In one of my first presentations, the prospect rejected my ideas for a new campaign. Back at the office, my ad manager must have noticed the stunned look on my face. When I told her what happened she didn’t want to know the gruesome details. She just asked, ‘Okay, so what’s next?’
“That turned out to be great advice. I sat there and gave myself a good talking-to. Nothing could change the fact that my sales presentation had fallen flat. But what I could change was my approach to that reality. Instead of giving up on that new business prospect, I dove back into my notes, reflected on our conversation during my presentation, and developed another campaign proposal. The new ideas were accepted, and I’m happy to say that company became a consistent advertiser.
“What I learned is that it’s important to look ahead,” Gregory said. “Think beyond what is happening right now and be ready to change directions.”
Gregory’s story reminds me of an old Bob Hope line in a movie I saw on TV: “All I’ve gotta do now is figure out what I’m gonna do now.” If we look beyond the double-talk of that gag, we’ll see some real truth. Our biggest challenge is often figuring out what to do next. Read more

Upcoming Events

As a service to its member newspapers, SCPA lists employment opportunities on our site upon request. There is no charge for this service to SCPA member newspapers. Please email openings to Kassidy Wright.
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