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News-Press Mess: from 2006 to 2010

NLRB Files More Complaints Against News-Press

Call it a double-whammy week for News-Press owner Wendy McCaw and her management team. A day after a judge advised the National Labor Relations Board that the News-Press newsroom's unionization vote last September was legal and valid, the NLRB's lawyers announced that the newspaper's management would be prosecuted for the recent firings of seven reporters. Read story.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

NLRB Judge Rejects News-Press' Unionization Objections

Judge William Schmidt Denies News-Press' Four Objections; Upholds Vote for Unionization Read story.

Monday, March 12, 2007

News-Press Allegedly Asks Google to Reveal Blog Commenter

Anonymous Comment on BlogaBarbara Incurs Subpoena Read story.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

On the Beat 3-1-2007

Metro Monopoly? "How come Metropolitan Theatres has a monopoly on the South Coast?" a reader asked. She's heard from others that the Santa Barbara City Council and county had adopted some kind of ordinance bestowing Metro with a monopoly, allowing no other chain in. Read story.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Former News-Press Editor Spills Bias Beans to Mayor

On Monday, February 26, former News-Press assistant city editor Bob Guiliano sent an email to Santa Barbara Mayor Marty Blum explaining how the mayor is connected to the firings of both Guiliano and reporter Anna Davison. If what Guiliano's email describes is true, then it's clear that the bias is still very much in the News-Press building and that owner Wendy McCaw really has no understanding of the ethical standards that are supposed to be respected in the professional news business. We present Guiliano's letter here. Read story.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Botanic Garden Variety

Barney walks the walk in the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, admiring the California poppies that have just bloomed (pictured), the old dam, and the towering redwoods on a recent, unseasonably gorgeous "spring" day. Read story.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Former News-Press Reporter Responds to Accusations

This re-posting of a comment on a previous entry in the Santa Barbara Media Blog provides an interesting perspective on the mess at the News-Press: that of Camilla Barnwell (formerly Cohee), who quit the paper last summer. Read story.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Fired News-Press Printer Speaks Out

Upon having ended his 26-year employment in the Santa Barbara News-Press printing plant, Carl Batchelder discusses what may have led up to the end of his job. Read story.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Will News-Press Owner Wendy McCaw Wake Up?

According to official counts, more than 200 people showed up for the Wake Up Wendy Wednesday rally today, February 21, in De la Guerra Plaza. They got to hear some pretty moving speeches, show their support for the fired staffers, and start a more pointed campaign against owner Wendy McCaw and the News-Press management. But the question remains: Does McCaw care at all about what the community and the world at large thinks of her? Read story.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

On the Beat 2-22-2007

Barney discusses the ongoing debate on the changing face of downtown Santa Barbara, as well the roasting of former News-Press editor Jerry Roberts, the inaugural Jim Ryerson Environmental Memorial Award, and an opportunity for those familiar with Abbot and Costello to dine at a discount. Read story.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Let's Get Ready to Rally

On Wednesday, February 21, at noon in De la Guerra Plaza, hundreds of people are expected to show up to support the unionized newsroom staff of the Santa Barbara News-Press and call for owner Wendy McCaw to return ethical standards to her newspaper, rehire the reporters and editors wrongfully terminated, and remind her that owning a newspaper means caring about your community and acting like a responsible professional. Does Santa Barbara care enough to make this rally successful? We hope so. (Illustration by Bob Aul, for the OC Weekly.) Read story.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Roasting Roberts, Cold Shouldering, and More

Barney reports on a March 13 roast for Jerry Roberts at AT&T ballpark in San Francisco, talks about the editor's news "friends of" website, gives some insight into what tomorrow's Wake Up Wendy Wednesday rally shall feature, and also provides two YouTube videos of Larry Nimmer's interview with John Zant. And much, much more, of course. Read story.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

One Sick Puppy

News-Press owner Wendy P. McCaw is not content having merely a bee in her bonnet. As befitting someone of her exalted status, McCaw has a whole hive living there. Maybe this fact explains the extraordinary longevity of a story-the sad saga of the News-Press meltdown-that has more legs than a herd of centipedes. Read story.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Fired Editor May Hold Key to News-Press Bias

On Tuesday, Bob Guiliano - the editor who was fired on Friday, January 26 for "performance-related" reasons (not for attending Anna Davison's goodbye party after she was fired, as was first reported) - filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the National Labor Relations Board. Then on Wednesday, the Teamsters were talking about filing another one as well, this time because News-Press attorney David Millstein barged into a Tuesday night union meeting, which is allegedly against federal law. Read story.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The News-Press Speaks (To Their Employees)

Today, Tuesday, February 13, the management of the News-Presssat down with their dwindling editorial staff and laid out their stance on the newspaper's ongoing meltdown. The gist? That this is all a Teamsters tactic to undermine the newspaper and bring in the union, that the newspaper is actually doing better since it cleaned house, and that the community is tiring of the story. Here we present the related memo that was leaked to The Independent. Read story.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

News-Press Under Microscope

Craig McCaw buys in S.B.; Mark French gets PO'd; more on Zant; and praise for Arts & Lectures Read story.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Wake Up Wendy (McCaw) Wednesday!

CORRECTION: The date of this protest, which is being organized by the community and not the former employees, is February 21, not February 14 as first reported. There will be a Valentine's Day protest on February 14, but it will be the normal sort of protest that's been happening for the past week. For many Santa Barbarans who once enjoyed reading an informative daily newspaper called the News-Press (whose website has also started majorly hiccuping today), Wednesday, February 21, will be the day to have their voices heard. That's because on Wednesday, February 21, at noon, there's a large protest being planned for De la Guerra Plaza, directly in front of the headquarters for the once esteemed, now internationally tarnished newspaper. Read story.

Monday, February 12, 2007

News-Press Protesters March to Cappello

Protesters marched from De La Guerra Plaza to the sidewalk beneath News-Press attorney Barry Cappello today to express their anger at this week's firings. Videos included. Read story.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Top News-Press Protest Chants

In the second in a string of four planned rallies this week outside of the News-Press building on De la Guerra Plaza, more than 20 former News-Press employees and their supporters marched and chanted from 3 to 5 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon to protest their terminations and the working conditions under owner Wendy McCaw. More rallies are planned in the same spot from 3-5 p.m. for the rest of the week, and they're asking for all the noisemaking support that the community can offer. Here's a rundown of the top chants. Can you come up with better ones? Read story.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

On the Beat 2-8-2007

With a perspective only a former News-Press long-timer could provide, Barney Brantingam discusses the past week's events at the paper, including the mass firings and the protests the now-former employees have been staging for the remainder of the week. Read story.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Three More Fired from News-Press

They got their notices today: News-Press reporters Dawn Hobbs, Barney McManigal, and Rob Kuznia were given their walking papers on Monday afternoon. Within a couple hours, the three were at Ruby's Cafe on De la Guerra Plaza, in the shadow of the News-Press building, for an impromptu press conference. Here's a more thorough report than the one posted last night. Read story.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Taking It to the Overpass: News-Press staff protest

On Friday morning, the organized newsroom and former employees of the News-Press hung a banner on Highway 101 from the Anapamu Street footbridge. See more photos of the event inside. Read story.

Friday, February 2, 2007

McCaw Hit with Anti-SLAPP Motion

AJR's Susan Paterno Uses Anti-SLAPP Motion to Defend Herself Read story.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

McCaw's Second Letter to Lawyers Alliance

On Tuesday, January 23, News-Press owner Wendy McCaw's attorney Barry Cappellosent a second letter to the Lawyers Alliance for Free Speech, the group of 50 or so well respected attorneys from diverse backgrounds and distinct practices who banded together last fall to help those whose speech has been silenced by McCaw's legal threats. Read story.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

And the Satire Winners Are....

At long last, the winners in the first ever Be-a-Reporter satire contest are announced. (What do they have to do with Millstein and Nipper, seen here? You tell us.) Plus, a round-up of the latest media news, from downtown to the Santa Ynez Valley, where a newspaper is in dire search of an editor. Know any out-of-work journalists? Read story.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Barney's On the Beat

Wendy Ups Ante to $25 Mil: First, News-Press owner Wendy McCaw filed a $500,000 arbitration claim against former editor Jerry Roberts, claiming breach of contract and that he somehow damaged the paper. Then, it was revealed earlier this week, Roberts filed a $10 million counterclaim, presumably alleging that her statements and actions put a multimillion-dollar dent in his reputation. Now, I've learned that McCaw has trumped that by upping her demand to (are you ready?) a cool $25 million. Read story.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Why the N-P Doesn't Talk

You probably missed the editorial in today's N-P that explained why the paper's management has repeatedly avoided talking to "certain media trying to exploit the transitional period at the newspaper." It's clearly a response to yesterday's article in the New York Times. Here's why it raises more questions than answers and why the SB Media Blog is now hosting a Be-a-Reporter contest to tell the story from the News-Press' perspective. Read story.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Barney Breaks $25 Million News

Santa Barbara's media mess once again made headlines at the New York Times, which enables Barney Brantingham to do a little digging of his own and issue his report on his midweek "On the Beat" column. He reveals that Wendy McCaw is now seeking $25 million from former editor Jerry Roberts. We've posted links to both articles inside. Read story.

Monday, January 15, 2007

McCaw Seeks $25 Million from Roberts

Barney breaks the news about Wendy McCaw's $25 million counter- countersuit against Jerry Roberts (pictured), reports on the latest Randy Alcorn news, informs us that United is cutting its Santa Barbara flights, and much, much more in this installment of On the Beat. Read story.

Monday, January 15, 2007

AJR Says No to McCaw

In a sternly yet clear December 27, 2006 letter to Stanton L. Stein, the attorney hired by News-Press owner Wendy McCaw (pictured) to sue newspapers and magazines (including The Santa Barbara Independent), the American Journalism Review's attorney flatly refused to run a retraction of the article on the News-Press meltdown written by Susan Paterno. Read story.

Thursday, January 11, 2007
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