December 14, 2012

On Second Thought

• Are you ready for a convention? We’re getting that way

• Convention website taking shape

• Younger readers still want the news; just the delivery has changed

• New look to public notice website

• Unless the Mayans are right, there WILL be a Friday Member Update/On Second Thought next week


I plan on having a Friday Email/On Second Thought about 10 a.m. next Friday since the Mayans predicted only the date – December 21, 2012 – that the world would end and not the exact time.


We’ve received numerous comments/compliments on the quality of the program and speakers for the 2013 KPA Winter Convention. But just wait til you see the website!! (Want a sneak preview? Go to and check it out!)

CAUTION – It’s still under construction so keep checking back for the final product. But the micro-version surpasses anything I’ve seen another state press association do.


A reminder to make your room reservations. The Brown has a January 3 deadline and there are a couple of big doings in Louisville – a huge boat show for instance – and rooms could be at a premium. It’s better to make a room reservation now and change or cancel it later, than to wait until after January 3.

We’ve shortened the room reservation URL to so go there now and make your reservations.


I see some TV stations, well, WLEX-TV in Lexington especially, has been taking on newspapers for starting to charge for access to their websites.

TV stations can’t question the value of the news because their websites have only a few local headlines on, and maybe two or three sports stories and little of it comes from their own news crews.

And I know a couple of you have emailed me with your thoughts of TV stations doing that. But I think it’s finally dawned on me why.

All these years they’ve been accessing newspaper websites across the state to get up-to-date news from local and outlying communities. They did this at no cost to their station, other than assigning a few in the newsroom the task of “check out some newspaper websites for the latest news.” And so staff members, as time permits, will check those newspaper websites.

Now it’s not so easy. They’ll have to pay for the access instead of stealing it from the newspapers. Oh, sure, they might give a little credit to the newspaper or newspaper website for any of the stolen stories but they won’t go out of their way.

Of course, they aren’t sharing that with their readers but taking the opportunity to make newspapers look like the bad guy.

One way to stop newspapers, and radio stations too, from stealing your stories is to put up a paywall.


Coming Up In 2013

· Classified Outbound Calling, Revenue That Sticks! – January 16, Janet DeGeorge, Classified Executive Training

· InCyberspace No One Can Hear You Scream: Trademarks, Copyrights and the Internet – January 24, David Nelmark, Belin McCormick, PC

· How to Improve Sales Performance by 30% in the Next 30 Days! – February 22, Daniel Grissom, Step Up Selling

· What’s Fair Game For Republishing in the Digital Age? – March 28, Corrina Zarek, Iowa Watch


So I’m going to focus on the convention. This one really could end up with about 1000 people over the three days, with the inclusion of the Kentucky Intercollegiate Press Association, Kentucky News Photographers Association and the Kentucky High School Journalism Association. Of course, those along with KPA.

David Greer still anticipates 350 to 400 high school kids attending on Thursday, January 24, for the KHSJA portion. We suspended KHSJA conventions two or three years ago, deciding to join with universities on their high school workshops. But with some pleas from high school teachers, we have reinstituted it for 2013 and moved it to our Winter Convention schedule, instead of a stand-alone late Spring convention day.


Take a minute in a few minutes and check out and its new look. The site is operated by Newzgroup/GeoTel, a Columbia, and MO., company that purchased our clipping service back in 1997. GeoTel has been operating the site this year and we’ve steadily added newspapers. Should be in the neighborhood of about 130 now, uploading their notices and most uploading their complete issues. That way, GeoTel can extract the public notices and post them easily on the website. The redesign has been about two months in development and was launched earlier this week.

Run a test – when you get to the site, put in a key word or two, search by your newspaper and see how this system operates. It really does run smooth.


Leigh Ann Thacker, with Southern Strategy, and I will be meeting Wednesday morning with the Kentucky County Clerks Association. The discussion will center on a standard policy about access to polling places I know many of you have no problems whatsoever, taking pictures, talking with voters, even being asked by the clerk’s office to take a picture. But there are also stories of the news media being barred from accessing the polling place, talking with voters or getting any identification.

It’s funny but very sad to hear some of the stories emanating from newspapers. They’ve been told to take a picture of a person’s backside, or from the knees down, or you can’t come in here, you’ll have to wait outside to talk with any voters. Some voters have given permission for their picture to be taken and their name used only to have an election officer override that permission.

I really don’t want us to have to go through the legislative process to get this taken care of so I’m hoping they will adopt a policy that all clerks will agree to. It’s not perfect but is a starting point. It would go something like this:

(3) Representatives of the news media may enter the voting room on election day for the limited purpose of filming the voting process for a reasonable amount of time only after displaying to the precinct election officers a valid Press Pass or a written authorization to enter the voting room provided by the county board of elections for that county for that election. The county board of elections’ written authorization shall be on a form prescribed by the State Board of Elections and signed by the Chair of the county board of elections. The representative of the news media shall not film the identity of voters in the voting room without first requesting and gaining the permission of each voter as long as this conduct does not interfere with the voting process or is not for the purpose of creating a check off list, in violation of subsection (2). No interviews shall be conducted in the voting room and no interviews of voters shall be conducted until the voter has cast a ballot and exited the voting room.


I’m sure you know about newspapers cutting staffs, decreasing the news hole, even changing to a smaller, almost tabloid size format.

I realize it’s not a Kentucky company, and no Kentucky connections that I know of, but what The Orange County Register Company in California is doing bucks the trend of cutbacks and downsizing the newspaper.

The Register introduced dramatic upgrades to five additional community newspapers: San Clemente Sun Post News, Huntington Beach Wave, Fullerton News-Tribune, Tustin News and Orange City News.

The newly designed newspapers transition from tabloid format to the larger broadsheet format, matching the size of the Register daily. The revamped newspapers have nearly three times as much local content as their predecessors, including more stories, event listings, photos, graphics, opinion columns and many more faces from each community.

Ten of the Register’s 24 community newspapers have now introduced upgraded versions as part of a phased rollout that began Nov. 29. The five others include the Anaheim Bulletin, Irvine World News, The Current (which serves Newport Beach and Costa Mesa), and the Mission Viejo and Lake Forest editions of the Saddleback Valley News.

Six more community newspapers will be upgraded in January, with the final eight transitioning in February. The phased upgrades represent one of the largest investments made by any local news organization in the nation.

Register owner and Publisher Aaron Kushner said the massive overhaul of the company’s community newspapers is an effort to strengthen ties with local readers.

“Many of these newspapers are local institutions,” Kushner said. “With these changes, we wanted to do all we can to make them even more important sources for the stories and photos that resonate in our cities and engage our readers. We really care about each of these communities and we want to make sure they feel at home with us when they open up their local newspaper.”

Bucking an industry trend that includes reducing pages or frequency of distribution, the Register’s community newspaper upgrades are part of a larger strategy to add depth to local content and improve the overall quality of the newspaper portfolio. The Register has hired dozens of journalists to strengthen its local content. Many are city reporters and editors dedicated to enhancing community newspaper coverage.


They might have abandoned the printed version but younger readers are still news junkies. What’s changed over the years if how they get that news. This is according to a Pew Center study:

Since the rise of the Internet, print media — most notably newspapers — have faced a big problem with younger readers. But according to a new study released today by the Pew Research Center and The Economist Group, when you look specifically at the devices they love — the smartphones in their pockets — young adults rival or even surpass their parents and grandparents as news consumers.

According to the report from Pew’s Project in Excellence in Journalism, 37 percent of smartphone owners between the ages of 18 and 29 get news on their devices daily, along with 40 percent of smartphone owners aged 30 to 49. Those are slightly higher than the equivalent rates for 50-64 (31 percent) and 65-plus (25 percent). Among tablet owners, news consumption numbers were broadly similar across age groups, with 50- to 64-year-olds being the peak news consumers.

There’s more good news for media companies hoping to reach younger readers: They are more likely to share the news they read on mobile devices and to engage with ads on smartphones and tablets. For ads in particular, readers 18-29 were twice as likely to “at least sometimes” touch an ad on a tablet than people 30-49.

Use of mobile devices has been on the rise for some time, as has growing use of phones and tablets as the main method of going online. Pew’s new findings again reinforce the importance of mobile to the future of journalism, but it also points to new opportunities for media companies.

The data comes from a survey of 9,513 adults, 4,638 of whom owned a mobile device, between June and August of this year.


But we’ve been focusing most all our efforts on the 2013 KPA Winter Convention. We’ll be releasing the convention website, with ALL the information you could possibly ever want on speakers, programs, the benefits, the Trade Show, the registration form and anything else we can find to write about.

So since this is short, the speakers are the ones you want to know about. Some of them you know already; many others though are new to Kentucky Press.

So here’s a brief bio about each speaker.


Kevin Slimp is a lot of things to a lot of newspapers these days. Dozens of newspapers are in business today because of changes in policy at major financial institutions that keep up with Kevin’s research. His battles with groups and experts who say that print is dead have become legendary.

Kevin was probably the first national figure to speak on the convergence of print and online media in the journalism world more than 10 years ago. Schools of journalism, including Western Kentucky University, brought him to campus to explain what the future would look like in the late 90s and early 2000s. There’s probably no one in our industry who understands the role of print and online and its relationship to each other better than Kevin.


Who really needs no introduction. Max was vice president of Landmark Community Newspapers, Inc., a KPA Past President, and has served as chairman of the National Newspaper Association’s Postal Committee for the last quarter century. He probably knows more about the USPS and the Domestic Mail Manual than even the Postmaster General. Max has testified before numerous Congressional committees as issues about service, rates and delivery have affected our industry. Max Heath uses his career in newspapers as the background for understanding postal issues and what any changes can do to newspapers.


Matt is a native of Bowling Green and a graduate of Western Kentucky University. Matt comes to Louisville Web Group with many years of experience in successfully developing and marketing websites, from interactive community sites to ecommerce, and has worked with Drupal specifically for over 5 years. He is lead developer and helps manage the day-to-day operations of the company, ensuring all projects are a success, and is also active in business development.


Mike is an award-winning editor with a history of innovation and is the Houston Harte Endowed Chair at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. His research focuses on best industry practices, opportunities presented by new technology and new revenue models, with a particular focus on paid content.

Mike joined the faculty in 2010 from The Bakersfield Californian, the family-owned newspaper he helped lead for almost 17 years.

A graduate of the journalism school, Mike was also managing editor of The Hartford Courant and served in key roles at The Philadelphia Inquirer, Columbia Daily Tribune, Coffeyville (Kan) Journal and Hattiesburg (Miss) American.


Peter Wagner is no stranger to members of the Kentucky Press Association. He is founder and president of Iowa Information, Inc., which publishes The N’West Iowa REVIEW. When he and his wife, Connie, started the

newspaper, they did so with three paid subscribers and a handful of skeptical advertisers. Today, more than 6000 subscribers receive the 80-page plus newspaper every week. The REVIEW has won over 200 first place awards in state and national contests and has been named Iowa’s Newspaper of the Year an unprecedented 17 times.


Joe DeBiak is the CEO and founder of the Center for Advertising Effectiveness and presenter of the nation’s number one print and web advertising strategies. These researched, tested, and scientific strategies are brought to life through Joe’s dynamic workshops that teach advertising representatives, managers, artists, and advertisers how to get instant results from their print and digital advertising. This digital-growth workshop will also introduce a potential new revenue stream to publishers.

Joe is a “newspaper insider” that has worked within newspapers and print publications for the last 18 years and understands the multitude of challenges our industry faces. He has worn several hats during that time, including that of advertising sales, sales manager, ad director, and general manager in both the weekly, small-daily, and major-daily environments. Joe’s path in publishing has lead him here… passionately training and coaching media reps how to help their advertisers get a “ROI” from ads in newspapers and on media websites.


The Owensboro Messenger Inquirer is a central location for several Paxton Media newspapers and has a staff of 32 graphic designers and 38 design/page layout staff members handling 51 daily newspapers and 32 weekly newspapers total. Bob Morris, publisher, heads a panel discussion on his operation and how it can benefit newspapers.

Rob McCullough, with the Somerset Commonwealth Journal, uses independent contractors to handle graphic design of ads as well as special sections. And they seldom have to be in the office, using technology to work their own schedules from home.


Elizabeth is a faculty editor on the interactive copy desk at the Columbia Missourian, the city’s morning newspaper and a lab for Missouri School of Journalism students. In cooperation with the community outreach team, she develops and executes strategies for the Missourian’s social media accounts. Elizabeth spent nearly four years at the Columbus (Ga.) Ledger-Enquirer as a copy editor and designer, business editor and copy desk chief. She also spent time at a financial news service based in Charlottesville, Va., as a web editor. She is a graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism.


We’ve been talking about “the digital transition” for a decade. Why haven’t we emerged yet? What’s on the other side? What comes next? Josh Awtry, editor of the Fort Collins Coloradoan presents a thoughtful look at where we need to go, and why even the hottest digital products could soon become a thing of the past.


John is a member of the KPA Digital Committee that’s been meeting for the last year. Earlier this year, John spoke at a circulation conference in St. Louis on various ways to use the Internet to grow circulation. It was well received in St. Louis and as a part of KPA, we wanted you to learn about how using the Internet can help you increase circulation as well.


Everybody can reinvent themselves! Jim Mathis, The Chief of Reinvention Nation™ helps leaders who want to increase the outcomes in a changing economy. It’s really that simple and easy! 

A Best-selling author and international speaking professional who has reinvented his own business and helped many others reinvent themselves, Jim shares his expertise in an interactive, engaging style. He shows everyone that reinvention is easy by coaching leaders on how to re-evaluate and re-purpose their practices. 

Jim is a member of the International Coach Federation, the Global Speakers Federation and author of the Best-selling book: “Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results.”


Stephanie Padgett is an assistant professor at the Missouri School of Journalism where she teaches media strategy and planning. She was a RJI Fellow and studied how small to mid-size papers can increase online revenue. Prior to arriving at Missouri, Padgett spent 20-plus years in advertising. She planned and implemented campaigns for Nicorette, Nicoderm, Roto-Rooter and others at Empower MediaMarketing in Cincinnati, OH. She served as the Ohio Market Manager for The Media Audit and helped sales staffs at the Columbus Dispatch, Clear Channel, Toledo Blade, Cincinnati Magazine and other local media outlets increase sales through effective use of qualitative research. When not working in advertising, Stephanie is a board member for the Columbia Youth Football and TRYPS Children’s Theater.


Monica, also known as chairman of the KPA Associates Division, is a former reporter for The Kentucky Post in Northern Kentucky and in 2001, after 16 years as a reporter, she went to law school and now is with Frost Brown Todd LLC in Cincinnati.


Tony Casale, CEO of American Opinion Research. Tony was on the planning and startup editorial team of USA TODAY, helped found its well-known polling operation and served as corporate Director of Research Services for Gannett Co., Inc., before joining AOR.



David Greer is the resident advisor on the International Space Station’s overhead viewing schedule and notes that today, 5:46 p.m. Eastern, should be a great time to view it. It’ll be almost directly overhead, at 82 degrees, visible for four minutes as it appears from the southwest and disappears northeast. It’s hard to miss – a solid bright light in the sky, going a lot faster than any airplane.

Take the kids out and let them view it. The schedule and everything else about the ISS is available at There was a good viewing time last night, for three minutes though not as directly overhead as this one.

See the stuff you learn in the Friday Email!!


Okay, not a lot to update you on this week. We’ve been focusing on the convention so this is top-heavy with that and it might remain that way until January, or until members show they’re getting the message, going to register and make room reservations.

That reminds me to remind you:

• Go to and make your room reservations. Only takes a minute so cross that assignment off your list by doing it now

• Check out (though remember, it’s still in construction) and then check back periodically for everything you need to know about the 2013 KPA Convention but didn’t know to ask.

One of the segments David S. did a nice job on is displaying the mug shots of most all of the speakers. When I saw that lineup yesterday, I wanted to put across the top: “Would you buy a used car from these folks? Maybe not but you’ll learn about this business you love and how to do it better.”

Still might.

Anyway, call if you have questions, comments, concerns, issues, clarifications, corrections, additions, deletions or anything else.

And as always, thanx!!!

2012 KPS PLACEMENT TOTALS IN-HOUSE – $4,684,321.82


December 18, 2012 – 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. – KPA/KPS Staff Christmas Lunch, Central Office

December 19, 2012 – 10 a.m. – Leigh Ann Thacker and David T. meeting with Kentucky County Clerks Association on Polling Place Policies

1:30 p.m. – Meeting with Jill Seyfred, executive director, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky, and J.D. Chaney, Kentucky League of Cities and PCAK Board member

2:30 p.m./1:30 Central – KPA Digital Committee Conference call

December 24-25, 2013 – KPA Central Office Closed for Christmas

December 31, 2012 – January 1, 2013 – KPA Central Office Closed for New Year’s

January 8 – 11, 2013 – Kentucky General Assembly Organizational Session

January 24 – 25, 2013 – 2013 KPA Winter Convention, The Brown Hotel, Louisville

January 26, 2013 – Both the Kentucky Intercollegiate Press Association and Kentucky News Photographers Association finish up their 2013 Conventions at The Brown

February 5 – March 26 2013 – 2013 Kentucky General Assembly Session

March 13 – 15, 2013 – National Newspaper Association’s We Believe in Newspapers Leadership Conference – Crystal City Marriott, Washington, D.C.

September 12 – 15, 2013 – 127th Annual National Newspaper Association Convention and Trade Show, Phoenix, AZ

August 6 – 9, 2013 – Newspaper Association Managers Annual Convention, Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax, Nova Scotia

January 23 – 24, 2014 – 2014 KPA Winter Convention, Hyatt Regency, Lexington

January 22 – 23, 2015 – 2015 KPA Winter Convention, Marriott East, Louisville

Sometime in 2017 – We’ve been asked to judge the Mississippi Press Association Better Newspaper Contest in 2017. Please hold the year open for further information on when, where and what media format Mississippi papers will be in that year.

Sometime in 2018 – Colorado judging KPA Excellence in Kentucky Newspapers Competition

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