Member News (1/24/19): $56K for public records; RTD launches video network; two editors bi adieu; activists print fake editions of WaPo

By |2019-01-24T18:52:20+00:00January 24th, 2019|

Public agency wants to charge Pilot $56K for records

The Norfolk Community Services Board wants to charge the Virginian-Pilot more than $56,000 to obtain public records that could potentially show a history of violence at the agency’s offices, which treat residents with addiction, mental-health issues and learning disabilities. .

For the last three months, the Pilot has been seeking more information from the CSB to see if there has been violence among residents at its facilities. They’ve been met with resistance at every turn from the agency.

First, the NCSB incorrectly said they could not disclose any information because of medical privacy issues. Later, they said no information was available because of a possible lawsuit. Now, the NCSB has told the Pilot if they want the records it will come at the cost of $56,528, saying that processing the request will take more than 1,100 hours of staff time.

“That message is ‘These records are something we don’t want to give you,’” said Pilot Executive Editor Marisa Porto. “It’s the public’s right to know if it’s a safety concern, and no one should have to pay what amounts to a full-time salary to find out.”

RTD launches video network

The Richmond Times-Dispatch has launched the Virginia Video Network, a new advertising solution that will funnel video to display screens and periodical racks at popular retail locations in the greater Richmond area.

“The Virginia Video Network revolutionizes the way we provide valuable news content that our audience depends on, as well as the business solutions that we offer to our advertising partners,” said Broderick Thomas, director of VVN. “VVN expands the dynamics of how the RTD broadcasts in our community.”

Using VVN, advertisers will be able to target specific consumers using demographic data. There are more than 20 active display screens around the Richmond area.

Two editors leave from Daily Press, Pilot

Two longtime editors from the Daily Press and Virginian-Pilot have left the newspapers.

Tom White, who most recently served as editor of Inside Business, accepted a buyout from Tribune Publishing Co. White has been with the Pilot for more than 35 years and previously served as a sports and news editor.

“I didn’t quite make 4 decades but close,” White wrote on Twitter. “Today’s my last day at The Virginian-Pilot. Took a buyout and look forward to slowing down for a bit … then seeing what might be ahead. I don’t think God’s done with me just yet. I hope not.”

Jim Manner, who was a news editor at the Daily Press, has also left.

Fake Copies of the Washington Post, printed, distributed by activists

Last week a group, who describe themselves as a “trickster activist collective,” printed an almost-identical replica of the Washington Post print edition filled with anti-Trump messages and handed them out to people across Washington D.C.

The front-page headline of the fake edition read, “Unpresidented,” and it was filled with false stories detailing President Trump’s exit from the White House with the future date of May 1, 2019. The Post’s slogan, “Democracy Dies In Darkness,” was changed to “Democracy Awakens in Action.”

“We will not tolerate others misrepresenting themselves as The Washington Post, and we are deeply concerned about the confusion it causes among readers,” said Post spokeswoman Kris Coratti. “We are seeking to halt further improper use of our trademarks.”

A website designed to mimic the Post’s was also launched and contained the same false stories that were in the printed edition. All totaled, the fake editions of the Post, both print and digital, cost the group, Yes Men, about $40,000. They printed 25,000 copies and estimated that 10,000 of those were distributed.

The same group was responsible for similar stunt in 2008 when it printed fake editions of the New York Times.