September 6, 2017

We have newsroom cakes (mostly for goodbyes.) We have newsroom pizza (mostly for election nights.) We have newsrooms sending each other food when big news breaks (mostly pizza, but the tradition is evolving.)

And now, it looks like we have newsroom CMS piñata smashings. 

ProPublica's Jessica Huseman shared an image on Twitter last week. 

In January, the Dallas Morning News held a smashing, too, after the audience team spent six months 90 days updating their old and new CMS. 

"After a long summer living in both worlds — one of which was a lot clunkier, slower and more difficult to manage — we were over it," Amanda Wilkins, audience editor. "The entire summer, we were joking about how we wanted to give the old CMS (Escenic Content Studio) a Viking funeral or an "Office Space"style beatdown. I'm not sure who came up with the pinata idea, but we fell in love with it."

Hannah Wise of CBC News said her newsroom did the same thing a few years ago. Wise made the piñata and colleague Marissa Nelson brought the candy.

"I don't remember whose idea the pinata was but I do remember nobody thought it was a bad idea," CBC's Spencer Walsh said. 

A veteran producer who had some history with the old CMS got the first whack at the piñata made to look like the "red bars of death" that showed up anytime the system crashed.

"I don't believe it survived a second whack."

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Kristen Hare teaches local journalists the critical skills they need to serve and cover their communities as Poynter's local news faculty member. Before joining faculty…
Kristen Hare

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