April 12, 2013

• Google Analytics and the KPA Public Notice Website

• KPNS passes 22,000 Scraped and Shared

• ARK Now at 107 Newspapers

• Two questions of the week

• News from Harrodsburg Herald Brings Memories of Jane Bird Hutton

STATE RELEASE ON ‘BURNING’ HAS INTERESTING CONTACT PERSON

Sometimes you just can’t make things up. The state issued a news release earlier this week about open “BURNing” being illegal.

And the contact person for more information?

roberta.burnes@ky.gov

MEDIA DAY WITH THE STATE POLICE

Hopefully this isn’t one of those “entrapment” invitations like law enforcement agencies have for criminals. You know, where they invite some criminals to a hotel meeting room, telling them they’ve won a vacation or a new car and then when the criminal arrives, the handcuffs go on.

So I pass along this invitation from the Kentucky State Police with caution:

KSP MEDIA ADVISORY

Contact: Trooper Michael B. Webb

Public Affairs Branch

Office: (502) 782-1780

Cell: (502) 226-0660

WHAT: An informational meeting and luncheon for members of the news media and the Kentucky State Police.

WHEN: April 25, 2013. Meeting: 10:00 a.m. – Luncheon Noon.

WHERE: KSP Headquarters – 919 Versailles Road, Frankfort 40601

WHO: Commissioner Rodney Brewer, executive staff, Public Affairs Officers, Public Affairs Branch staff and KSP webmaster.

WHY: KSP would like to invite our media partners to headquarters for a Media Day. Our agenda includes topics on what can and cannot be released by policy or law, open records requests and KSP website information. We are also seeking input from your organization on how we can better serve your needs. The meeting will be followed by a luncheon.

By the way, I’ve signed up so I’m willing to take the chance there will be no handcuffs used.

ARK NOW AT 107

For years, the ARK program remained fairly constant. In the last nine years, the number of newspapers in the program has been 98 or 99, although briefly in 2005 it did grow to 104. But by 2006, some newspapers dropped out and put the 2×2 program back in the high 90s.

Something hit recently and within the last three weeks, we’ve seen it grow to be the largest participatory network with 107. Nine papers have joined since February.

QUESTION(S) OF THE WEEK

If I can remember each week to do this, I’ll try to put in a question asked by a member or two and give you my non-lawyer answer.

So I’m beginning with two for this week:

• Can we accept cigarette advertising?

Easy one. YES you can. The ONLY criteria about the ad itself is that the ad must have one of the Surgeon General warnings printed within the ad. Doesn’t matter which one as long as one of them (there are seven or nine versions) is included with the ad.

Law does not allow cigarettes to be advertised at less than wholesale but that’s an issue ATF (Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) would go after the advertiser on. Not you, the messenger.

On more than one occasion, in asking ATF about alcohol, tobacco or firearms advertising, they’ve told me they won’t go after the media but after the advertiser. The media used might get a letter clarifying the law but they won’t pursue anything other than making information available.

• Can we publish in an ad, “Must have verifiable income”?

My non-educated guess is NO or at least “probably not.”

It is NOT acceptable according to HUD to advertise “must be employed.” That would discriminate against those who are retired or those who might be living on disability insurance. I would think “verifiable income” would relate more to being employed.

However, it IS acceptable to publish “credit check required.”

There is a difference. That retired couple might have a large nest egg but they’re not going to want to show you their bank account to be allowed to rent the apartment/duplex/house. But running a credit check is different from verifying income and so my non-attorney suggestion would be to have the advertiser change the wording to “credit check required.”

That way you both stay out of trouble because the Human Rights Commission will go after the advertiser AND you, the messenger. And we don’t want that.

If you need a copy of the HUD Watch Words — in color, with red meaning do not publish; yellow meaning use caution with that term; and green to go for it — just send me an email.”

CHANGES AT THE HARRODSBURG HERALD

Described as new and exciting,” changes are in the works at the Harrodsburg Herald. Here’s a message from Ad Director Cathy Caton:

“It is our mission at the Harrodsburg Herald to continuously provide both the community and our trusted business partners with the absolute best product available. In order to do this, we will be undergoing a few new and exciting changes over the coming months.

“In the past we have only been able to offer spot color. Starting with our May 2 edition will be able to offer process color. If you are interested in switching your ad to process color, please contact me for pricing.

“Also, with that edition our newspaper will change from 11.5″ wide to 10.5″ wide.”

THOSE CHANGES TAKE ME BACK TO MY EARLY DAYS…

And my first two encounters with Jane Bird Hutton, publisher of the Herald back in the 1980s.

In 1985, KPS was placing an insert for the Department of Insurance and the department told us that it could pay no more than five cents per insert. So our task was to identify newspapers that would accept that rate. And to avoid anti-trust violations, we had to be careful. The only way to do it legally was to ask the newspaper, “Will you accept five cents per insert”?

Answer yes and the newspaper got the insert; answer no and the newspaper didn’t.

There were 50 or 60 newspapers on the department’s list and one of those was The Harrodsburg Herald. And the ONLY one to answer no was Jane Bird Hutton. She would accept nothing less than 10 cents per insert.

I called her just to verify her answer and to let her know she was the only newspaper not accepting five cents per insert.

To which she responded: “I don’t want the damn things. They fall out of the newspaper and when people leave the office, inserts are all over the sidewalk or all over the post office floor. So I price inserts high to let advertisers know I don’t want to deal with their inserts.”

That was in a phone call. A few months later on the way to Somerset, I stopped by to meet Jane Bird. We had a pleasant chat and I learned a lot about a family-operated weekly newspaper. The outer office was where they sold office supplies and customers were coming in constantly to buy pens or paper or paper clips, what have you. There was also a line of 10 to 15 people at the counter. I asked Jane Bird about them and she said, “Oh those people are waiting to buy a copy of The Herald. They know when it comes off the press so they come and stand in line.”

She gave me a tour, and it included the pressroom. It was already shut down for the day since the paper had been printed. And the pressmen were starting to clean it up. She said they do that as soon as the presses stop so it’ll be ready to print next week’s paper.

The floors in the pressroom were immaculate. You could have eaten off them. Spotless!

I told her that there were newspapers in Central Kentucky looking for a printing place and since she had press time, I’d be glad to refer them to her.

“No, I don’t want them. We print our paper, we shut down the press and clean it up and then it’s ready for next week. We’re not going to print anything else but The Herald.”

Jane Bird Hutton didn’t mince words, didn’t care to let you know her thinking. But she was a jewel of a publisher.

GOOGLE ANALYTICS AND KPA’S PUBLIC NOTICE WEBSITE

GeoTel/Newz Group made available to me Google Analytics this week about the KPA Public Notice website.

Here are some of the analytics for the past three weeks:

Total Visits – 717

Unique Visitors – 445

Page Views – 1,181

Countries – 664 visitors from the U.S.; India is second with 39

Top States – 362 visitors were from Kentucky; 96 were from Ohio; 49 from Tennessee (oh, and 9 are from Hawaii). Hmm, wonder if the Board would send me to Hawaii to interview those nine to see how they like the website?

Top Cities – Lexington had the highest number of visitors with 110; then Hopkinsville (74), Ashland (37), Paducah (17), Frankfort (12), Louisville (11) and Owensboro (10). Others had less than 10.

Visitors from Ashland, Frankfort and Madisonville averaged more than two page views per visit.

Lexington, Owensboro and Oak Grove visitors had the longest duration on the site.

362 visitors used Internet Explorer; 147 used Safari; and 117 used Firefox. Strangely, Safari users stay longer on the website than any other browser user.

81 of the visitors are Roadrunner clients; 45 are Windstream; and 36 are Insight.

Of those accessing the site as “mobile users,” 56 are Apple mobile users with 31 accessing from an Apple iPad and 25 from an Apple iPhone.

HOW MANY ISSUES WOULD IT TAKE TO PUBLISH 22,000 STORIES?

I couldn’t begin to answer that but think about it — 22,000 stories. That’s a bunch of writing, good reporting by reporters around the state.

And that’s the number of stories the Kentucky Press News Service has made available since we started the service October 1, 2009.

I’m not certain we thought it would grow this large this fast. But with 80 newspaper websites being scraped, some of those every single day, you can see the work that’s gone into this. It’s unique among state press associations. And it’s free!! Well, for the time being, it’s free.

I think there are some efforts around the country to mimic this — maybe Ohio and Indiana — and some others are suggesting the newspapers upload their best stories themselves, a process that we nixed here because the stories would be far fewer than what we’ve made available.

I’ve been invited to be a speaker at the Newspaper Association Managers annual conference in August to talk about our news service. And every chance I get, I like to brag on what KPA is doing…in this area and in any other.

If you haven’t signed the agreement yet to participate, and want access to those 22,000 stories that will be 25,000 stories before long, contact David Greer at dgreer@kypress.com or call him at 800-264-KPA1.

CHECK YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS BOOK, PLEASE

And if you have any @kypress.com email addresses in your address book that are NOT staff members, please delete those. At one point we were giving members and especially Board members an @kypress.com email address so it would be easy to remember an email address for someone.

But those kept getting hacked and instead of disturbing the Board, and other members, anymore, we just deleted all of those non-staff kypress.com email addresses.

If you’re trying to reach a KPA staff member, it’s still first initial last name@kypress.com (with no space between the initial and the last name). But for anyone else, those don’t work anymore.

2013 INTERNSHIPS

With Monday’s deadline looming to select interns for the Host Newspapers, we’re about to complete the process. Seventeen interns have been selected and will be interning this summer with three still left to find their intern.

So far, five of the interns are from Murray State; four from Western; three from UK and from Eastern; and one each from Morehead State and Northern Kentucky University.

CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION MONTH CONTINUES

It goes throughout April and I want to relay the appreciation and thanks from a couple of statewide organizations for your involvement/participation in promoting child abuse. Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky executive director Jill Seyfred and Mary M. Corbett, system VP and Government Relations Officer for Norton Healthcare and working with us on the Partnership to Eliminate Child Abuse both have sent several emails the last two weeks, letting me know about stories newspapers are printing on child abuse.

Both Jill and Mary, and both groups, are very appreciative of the attention the issue has received through your pages.

FOCUS ON SEPTEMBER 9

Now that my 138 closest friends have gone home til January and once the KPA Board meeting is over on April 18, I’m going to start focusing on the inaugural Kentucky Press/Tennessee Press Border War golf tournament. It’s scheduled for September 9 at Fairvue Plantation Country Club in the Gallatin/Hendersonville, TN., area. Check out the country club at www.clubatfairvue.com and you’ll be ready to play in this inaugural event.

The cost is $75 per person and proceeds will be divided between the Kentucky Journalism Foundation and the Tennessee Press Association Foundation. And most of the registration fee will be tax deductible for you.

Since it’s a few months away, I’ve not pushed KPA members to sign up but note that Tennessee already has 38 people committed. So get ready for information coming your way and urging you and staff members to sign up and help KPA’s foundation. Our funds are primarily used for the internship program and you heard at the Winter Convention that 2013 President Willie Sawyers would like to see KPA be able to offer more internships. We already have the most successful press association internship program in the country and we want to add to that.

SCHEDULE TODAY

Most of it will be spent on the road to Shebyville, Shepherdsville, Bardstown, Harrodsburg and Stanford, picking up the entries those newspapers judged for the Alabama Press Association. And at the same time, I’m hoping to get David Spencer on the road, to Lexington, Georgetown, Cynthiana and Dry Ridge for the same reason.

Again, my thanks to those who helped judged the APA ad and news contests last week here in Frankfort and to the ones who finished up the contest by judging at their office.

Not long as such but hopefully there’s something in here you can use or learn about. As always, call if you have questions, comments, concerns, issues, clarifications, corrections, additions or deletions.

Otherwise, thanx!!!

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