Wednesday 28 November 2012

Community newspapers forum

TSF readers have posted volumes about the importance of "community" in community newspapers over the years.

Rob Lamberti, who recently took a buyout after 27 years with the Toronto Sun, will be teaching a course on community journalism at Humber College this winter.

Rob writes:

"I was reading some of the comments since the most recent layoffs and a few messages about community journalism struck me.

"I am teaching a course on community journalism this winter at Humber and I was wondering if it would be possible to start a response section on your blog asking what community journalism means to the blog's users and readers and if the company is meeting the needs of the communities it purports to serve.

"I would then like to use those responses, whether anonymous or not, as a gauge and guide of what responsible journalism is at the community level, how it is defined in small communities and what the communities expect from the news outlet that serves them. 

"And of course, satisfaction. Do they feel the community is satisfied with the efforts of the journalists, the staff that supports the journalism (including  advertising) and the company as a whole?" 

Over to you, TSF readers.

Thursday 15 November 2012

An email from Jim Garnett

An email from Jim Garnett, former award-winning Toronto Sun freelance photographer:

Hi John,
Hope this email finds you well. I recently discovered the blog (TSF) and have enjoyed it a lot. I'm not an-ex-Sun staffer, although I worked for the newspaper for a span of twenty-six years.

1985 - 1992 Freelance photographer, answering newsroom 'phones, police desk overnight (weekends), security officer, head of Toronto Sun security (emergency cover after Smiley was fired - or asked to leave - depending on who was telling you the story) and even mailroom guy for a while (doing inserts into the newspaper).

1995 - 2011 Freelance photographer both in Croatia and back in Canada, police desk overnight (weekends) and freelance travel writer (one time only!)

I had the time of my life at the Sun and met some #$%@ing legends. I was so hard up when I began freelancing I slept in my car to save money so I could pay my gas bills driving around looking for 'spot' news so I guess I created a bit of a label for myself. I also won five 'News Photo of the Year' awards (Toronto Fire twice, Metro Police, Toronto Ambulance and Hamilton Police) so I guess I learned something.

Some 'stars' - aside from yourself - Bob Carroll, Barry Gray, Len Fortune, Jack Cusano, Mike Cassese, Greig Reekie, Bill Sandford, Mike Peake, Paul (Pollywog) Henry, Warren Toda, Mark O'Neill, Rob Lamberti, Ed Montieth, Peter Brewster . . . God, how I miss these guys.

Crooks Bar was our haunt before Betty's. Sneaking home along the QEW after some brews caught one or two out when the red lights came on in the rear view mirror. How sad it is to read how Quebecor have driven 333 into the ground.

Anyway, please say hello to everyone for me. After working a great deal for CHCH-TV in Hamilton and CTV in Toronto, I was diagnosed terminally ill in 2009.

My mother is now 85 and pretty frail so I'm in the UK now taking care of her. But my illness is pretty severe too. I just got out of hospital after an infection meant surgery and quite a lot of my right foot had to be amputated. So I'm at home trying to learn to walk again on what's left.

Take care mate!

Jim Garnett
333 Jack of all trades

Tuesday 13 November 2012

Christmas 2012 layoff casualties

Updated June 18, 2913

Another 500 Sun Media jobs have been cut by Quebecor, including a Toronto Sun Day Oner and many other loyal employees across the chain. Names posted will be added to this list.

Known casualties:

Ontario newspapers axed since October
Amherstburg Echo 
Capital City News in Ottawa
Dunnsville Chronicle 
Guelph Review
Kitchener-Waterloo Review
Leamington Post
Lindsay Post 
Midland Free Press
West Niagara News in Grimsby
Windsor This Week 

The Sun tabloids

Calgary Sun
Jim Legg, desker
Sandra Smith, executive assistant
Roy Clancy, columnist 

Edmonton Sun - All 35-plus pre-press employees, plus three copy editors, a photographer,
Jeremy Loome, editorial writer and letters editor, 17 years service Maria Ladouceur,
long-time executive admin staffer 

Toronto Sun
Jim Thomson, Toronto Sun Day Oner, 41 years service
Lorrie Goldstein, senior associate editor, 34 years service 
Gary Loewen

Ottawa Sun - 10 jobs lost, including
Mitch Axelrad, editor-in-chief
Jackie Lawrence, manager 

Ottawa Sun printing plant

Winnipeg Sun - seven employees

Ontario community newspapers
Brantford Expositor
City editor
Newsroom assistant
Managing editor resigned (Nov. 21) 

Chatham Daily News
Bruce Corcoran, managing editor (shown the door Nov. 26)
Pam Wight, assistant managing editor (Nov. 26)
Jeanine Foulon, ad manager
Ron McLintock; circulation manager
A contract ad rep
A customer service rep
Plus Jim Blake, former managing editor and publisher, who
"had editorial oversight of a host of weekly newspapers in southwestern Ontario" 

Chatham This Week
One reporter

Clinton News-Record

Collingwood Enterprise Bulletin
Doreen Sykes 

Cornwall Standard Freeholder - one reporter, an advertising clerk, plus

Milton Ellis, publisher
Anthony Joubert, circulation magaer 

Kenora Daily Miner and News
Bob Stewart, news editor/columnist, 36+ years
Mitch Wolfe, publisher 

Kingston Whig-Standard
Publisher three weks ago, ad director on Monday, sports editor on Tuesday 

Kingston printing plant - more than 40 employees 

London Free Press
Sports editor 

Niagara Falls Review
Seven layoffs, one early retirement. Six are full-time positions

Orillia Packet and Times
Ad manager, 12 years
Circulation manager, 13years
Ad rep, 5 years

Owen Sound Sun Times - two reporters, plus
Cheryl McMenemy, publisher
Karen Pridham, news editor, 27 years service

Sault St. Marie Star - four jobs
Publisher, editorial assistant, reporter and ad sales rep.

Sarnia Observer
George Mathewson, news editor

Simcoe Reformer
Merv Hawkins (gone earlier), group publisher, previously senior group publisher for Sun Media Bowes publishers for about 30 years before that job was eliminated
David Langford, corporate sports editor .

(Daryl Smith, group publisher for southwestern Ontario and Sarnia Observer, ousted last month)

St. Thomas Times-Journal
Patrick Brennan, reporter
Robert Chaulk, photographer

Stratford Beacon-Herald
John Kastner, managing editor 

Welland Tribune - Four jobs lost

Outside Ontario
Drayton Valley Western Review (Alberta)
The publisher and group publisher of Central Alberta 

Portage La Prairie Daily Graphic
Barry Clayton, publisher