Media

Carlsbad Patch Loses Local Editor

by The Editors on February 2, 2014

Carlsbad Lajolla PtPatch, AOL’s misguided attempt at creating a national network of corporate “hyper-local websites” is nearly over for Carlsbad. Not that we’re surprised. When the site launched on October 8, 2010 we were quoted on the website LostRemote regarding what we thought of Patch’s parent company AOL:

“They are the world champions of wasting money on doomed projects and they will outspend you every time. . . that said, having a company with the visibility of AOL interested in hyperlocal media brings more attention to the whole category and that’s good for all of us right?”

Well, we’re not sure it was good for all of us, but it seems even AOL grows tired of wasting money on doomed projects. On Wednesday, January 29, 2014, Patch’s new majority owner Hale Global reportedly asked AOL to lay off 80-90 percent of Patch’s editorial staff, according to a story on JimRomenesko.com.

Here’s a little of the call that went out from Patch COO Leigh Zarelli:

Hale Global has decided which Patch employees will receive an offer of employment to move forward in accordance with their vision for Patch and which will not. Unfortunately, your role has been eliminated and you will no longer have a role at Patch and today will be your last day of employment with the company. …Thank you again and best of luck.

The downside of this call is that Patch has cut able, energetic local Carlsbad editor Deanne Goodman and rolled her old responsibilities into those of La Jolla and Coronado Patch editor Michelle Mowad (they’re all just generic SoCal beach cities, right?).

Goodman’s last story for Patch (Carlsbad Building North County’s First Roundabout) was posted at 6 AM on January 29, 2014 and later that day her old profile page began turning up a “There doesn’t seem to be anything at this address” response. In fact, clicking on many of the bio links of recent Patch stories ends on a similar page. Guess that’s what happens when nearly everyone gets laid off.

Goodman was able to get one last tweet out of her Carlsbad Patch Twitter account: “After 3.5 years, unfortunately I’m no longer with Patch, please follow me at @DeanneGoodman13.” If you’d like to see what Goodman is up to lately, follow her on Twitter.

{ 2 comments }

AOL To Sell Money Losing Patch

by The Editors on January 17, 2014

100873975-173180981.530X298Not sure how much longer we’ll have a Carlsbad Patch to kick around, but as long as we do it won’t be owned by AOL.

According to a story on CNBC today, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong (above right) has decided to sell a majority share of Patch to Hale Global, an investment fund.

Patch, AOL’s big bet on local news, has been a big problem for the company. In 2012 Patch had a loss of $35 million, and last year after hundreds of layoffs and shuttering many of its sites, it still didn’t turn a profit, despite a promise that it would by year-end. . . The terms of the deal were not announced, but AOL is effectively contributing Patch, while Hale contributes cash.

AOL will still be a minority owner, but they won’t have to take all the loses. Nice how there continues to be a market for businesses that lose money isn’t it? Guess everyone needs a write off here and there.

[Link: CNBC]

{ 0 comments }

Carlsbad High School TV Covers Election

by The Editors on November 7, 2012

Img 6366-1

The talented crew from Carlsbad High School TV spent last evening (November 6, 2012) down in the thick of San Diego’s election 2012 coverage hub at Golden Hall producing hourly reports from 5 – 9 PM.

The team responsible included: (From the left) Brandon Scharaga (soph), Mark Huckaby (jr) Leonardo Sander (Sr.) Ashley Welzel (jr) Taylor Team (jr) Brian DeGour (Sr.) Adam Faringhy (jr) Sam Stadlberger (jr) Nicole Walker (jr) Matt Kenney (sr) Allie Degour (soph) Seannie Bryan (Sr) Gabe Retzer (soph) Joseph Smith (soph).

The great job they did last night proves they’re ready to take on the biggest stories gives the local “professional media” a reminder not to slack off because theses kids are coming up.

[Link: CHSTV]

{ 0 comments }

Papa Doug Going After Tribune Co.

by The Editors on October 18, 2012

Manchester T250Doug Manchester, the owner of the U-T San Diego (and the North County Times) is now officially going after the Tribune Company, according to a story on KPBS.com. The Tribune Company owns The Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun, The Hartford Courant and more importantly, the LA Times.

“We certainly are going to look at it,” Manchester said. “We are looking at it, yes. I would like to, yes.” . . Tribune spokesman Gary Weitman refused to comment on what he called speculation regarding the company and its assets. The Tribune’s owners are two hedge funds and JP Morgan Chase. U-T CEO John Lynch said recently that the paper’s ownership was interested in acquiring a company that would give it a national footprint. . . “We believe our business model will work and create great economic benefit to all of the investors,” Lynch said.

Media companies are cheap right now. For businessmen with another stream of revenue and the desire to give themselves good press, owning newspapers apparently makes sense.

[Link: KPBS]

{ 1 comment }

Get Riehl: R.I.P. NCT, Hello Big Brother

by Richard J. Riehl on October 17, 2012

Ut NcYesterday afternoon I went to the North County Times online to ask for a vacation hold for a couple of days while we’re out of town. The website no longer recognized me as a subscriber, so I had to resubmit my street and email addresses.

This morning I got an email in reply, thanking me for “subscribing to U-T San Diego’s digital only edition. We know you have several options in how you receive your news and are glad you chose us.” It was signed “Papa Doug Manchester.”

That reply and the death of the only other choice of a daily newspaper in North County sealed my decision to extend that vacation hold request to forever.

The first three days of the North County Times under Manchester’s ownership reveals its new brand: just an added section to U-T San Diego, gratuitously carrying the familiar blue NCT masthead (adding “U-T” to it) dishonestly designed to reassure North Countians they haven’t lost their daily newspaper. [click to continue…]

{ 1 comment }

NCT Editor Kent Davy Canned By Manchester

by The Editors on October 1, 2012

523967 122417281233732 832970956 N T250Turns out North County Times editor Kent Davy could have let Carlsbadistan.com columnist Richard Riehl tee off on [new NCT owner Doug] Manchester” after all, as he’s getting the boot at the newspaper anyway, according to a story in the KPBS.org.

Davy said he was informed he would not be moving forward with the new management that takes over the paper today, though he was asked to be on a transition team for an indeterminate period. . . Davy arrived from Chicago in 1996 to become the editor of the North County Times after the owner of the Blade Citizen bought out its rival North County paper, the Times Advocate, and merged the two. Now, with the buyout of the North County Times by Manchester, Davy will move on.

We’re guessing it is “Davy’s commitment to balanced local journalism” that did him in. Another sad day in San Diego media.

[Link: KPBS.org]

{ 0 comments }

Get Riehl: Censorship Comes to Town

by Richard J. Riehl on September 20, 2012

Screen Shot 2012-09-20 At 3.56.35 PmBeginning in October Carlsbadians will get only Papa Doug Manchester’s (right) slant on the daily news.

Who’s Papa Doug (his preferred first name) and why should we care? The hotelier-turned-media mogul bought the North County Times [for $11.95 million]. Added to his acquisition and name change to the San Diego Union Tribune two years ago, he’s hellbent on creating a Hearst-like media empire in San Diego County.

And why should we care? He’s declared an editorial war on government employees, unions, President Obama, writers who don’t help promote the community, and anyone who walks, talks or acts like a Democrat. My last North County Times column critical of the empty boosterism of Carlsbad’s latest State of the City video would not see the light of day in a Manchester newspaper. [click to continue…]

{ 3 comments }

AOL Hitting A Serious Rough Patch

by The Editors on March 8, 2012

Patch Network LogoThis week AOL’s Patch, the network of faux-local cookie-cutter websites, is reportedly firing a slew of sales people. While the original rumor was that the company would fire 200, Patch PR and president Warren Webster refused to comment on that number, according to a story on Business Insider.

We asked one employee how many people were getting let go, and this person responded: “Why does it matter? It is 2 people on my team and other ones too. It stinks.” . . Says another: “I’m taking my 15k payout and running the hell away from this disaster.” . . The firings come after the experiment lost ~$150 million last year.

Business Insider goes on to explain in more detail:

The problem with Patch is a pretty classic one: it has too many employees (~1,500) working on a product that doesn’t get enough attention from consumers and, therefore, advertisers trying to reach consumer.

It won’t be long now. . .

[Link: Business Insider via I Want Media]

{ 1 comment }

Doug Manchester’s Media Mocking

by The Editors on December 8, 2011

Doug ManchesterThe San Deigo Union-Tribune’s new owner Papa Doug Manchester is getting clowned all the way out in New York City according to this post on Gawker.com. In their story New Slogan Proves San Diego Paper Is Owned By Nut they said:

Why would a successful businessman pay so much money for a media property that its previous owners couldn’t wait to unload? Well, a couple reasons. First, the paper is reportedly profitable at the moment, and Doug Manchester, like many first-time newspaper owners before him, probably thinks that he is smart enough to not only stay profitable, but increase profits, for long period of time. (He is wrong.) And second, because Doug Manchester is a “conservative and anti-tax” nut who plans to use the paper to push a “pro-business” (meaning pro-Doug Manchster’s financial interests!) agenda.

Yep. Sounds about right.

[Link: Gawker]

{ 1 comment }

Cherry Street Stairs Score A Cover

by The Editors on December 4, 2010

Cherry St HoyleCarlsbadistan based Transworld Skateboarding Magazine just featured the Cherry Street Stairs in a Kenny Hoyle January 2011 cover shot by Seu Trinh.

Here’s what the magazine editors had to say about it.

Multiple visits, sore legs, cries to the heavens, and mental breakdowns were all ingredients in Kenny Hoyle’s massive oceanfront kickflip. But Kenny’s the one who came up with the bright idea of using a crappy waterlogged piece of wood as run-up. Hey, sometimes you’ve gotta pay to play, even if you’re paying in madness.

Madness, yes, but how does it compare to this inline skater on the Sycamore Stairs back in the day?

[Link: Skateboarding Magazine]

{ 0 comments }