The Guardian ‘clarifies’ Whisper articles
Good morning. Here are 10 media stories.
- 'So, can I have my job back?'
The Guardian issued a 237-word statement it called a "clarification" Wednesday that walked back claims in the paper's articles about Whisper, a social media app that allows users to share anonymously. The Guardian also removed an opinion piece about the app. (The Guardian) | "The Guardian’s clarification blunted its earlier reports, which had raised broader questions about so-called anonymous messaging apps that promise users the ability to post without revealing their identity." (The Wall Street Journal) | "So again, whether you call it a correction or not, what seemed fairly damning before, now looks pretty innocuous." (TechCrunch) | A former Whisper news editor tweeted after the statement was published. "So, can I have my job back? Or just funemployed forever? That’s cool, too." (@JoshuaChavers) | "also 'clarification' is a word honest news organizations should banish" (@abeaujon)
- Columbia’s J-School will reduce class size, cut positions
The Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism will "decrease enrollment over the next several years and will eliminate about six staff positions before the next school year, according to an email sent Wednesday to staff members and full-time faculty from Steve Coll, the dean of the school," Sydney Ember reports. (The New York Times) | "While graduate student applications rose sharply after the recession that began in 2008, the school’s class size is headed back to a lower 'historical norm,' Coll said." (Bloomberg) | Here's Coll's full email to staff and faculty, published first by Jim Romenesko. (Romenesko) | "In today's dire media landscape, budding young journalists have only two clear paths to success: Pay $93K for a masters in journalism from Columbia's journalism school, or get a Twitter account, which is free." (New York)
- Inside The New Yorker's paywall experiment
The New Yorker saw a surge of traffic to its site when it re-erected its paywall following a months-long period of free content. “It wasn’t a massive increase in readers between July and November. There was an increase, but there wasn’t a massive increase,' said Nicholas Thompson, editor of NewYorker.com. 'What’s weird is we launched the paywall, and then there was a massive increase.'" (Nieman Lab)
- 'We’re in crisis because we chose the wrong metrics'
Columbia Journalism Review takes a deep dive into the philosophy of Chartbeat, the audience metrics company that champions attention, rather than clicks, as the measurement advertisers should value. "This switch, Haile believes, will increase the value of the kind of content people are actually reading—the kind of content that has taken a beating in recent years." (CJR) | Poynter's Rick Edmonds wrote about the value of reader engagement in March. (Poynter)
- The New York Times reaches layoff settlement
The Newspaper Guild of New York and The New York Times have reached an agreement regarding circumstances surrounding layoffs for several of the paper's employees, Erik Wemple reports. "'The Guild felt confident in prevailing through the arbitration process,' said Unit Chair Grant Glickson in a guild news release. 'But we believe that a settlement was in the best interest of our members, who can now take their considerable talents and move on in their careers without going through a grueling legal battle.'" (The Washington Post) | Related: "What journalists should know before taking a buyout" (Poynter)
- Headline writing tips from digital news outlets
Newspapers "need to catch up fast" with digital news organizations that write social media-friendly headlines, writes David Arkin, vice president of content for GateHouse Media. "As newspapers have worked to develop better SEO they are unfortunately getting passed over by digital news organizations that have figured out that writing engaging, sharable and fun headlines, is the wave of the future." He points to BuzzFeed, Mic and Vox as role models. (LinkedIn) | Related: "Top 8 secrets of how to write an Upworthy headline" (Poynter)
- What would success look like at NBC News?
Michael Wolff examined the circumstances surrounding Andy Lack's return to NBC News amid the chaos created by the decline of "Today" and Brian Williams' suspension. "If Lack can re-establish Today (not an easy job), he's a hero. If he rehabilitates Williams — and as the sagacious outsider, he can seem to objectively weigh and discharge Williams' sins — and the Nightly ratings, he's a giant." (The Hollywood Reporter)
- OC Register owners 'do not seem likely to sell'
After resigning from their executive duties Tuesday, Aaron Kushner and Eric Spitz "do not seem likely to sell anytime soon," Freedom Communications CEO Richard Mirman told The New York Times' Ravi Somaiya Wednesday. "'They’re very passionate, entrepreneurial folks,' he said. 'They’re still invested in the company, and they both want to make sure that the paper supports the community, supports readers.'" (The New York Times)
- Front page of the day, selected by Seth Liss
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch got late-breaking news of the shooting of two police officers on the front page. (Courtesy the Newseum)
- Job moves, edited by Benjamin Mullin
Michael Bloom is now president and general manager at First Look Media. Previously, he was CEO of The Guardian’s U.S. operations. (Poynter) | Lisa Lerer will cover Hillary Clinton for The Associated Press. She is a correspondent at Bloomberg Politics. (Poynter) | Job of the day: The Red & Black is looking for an editorial adviser. Get your résumés in! (Journalism Jobs) | Send Ben your job moves: firstname.lastname@example.org.