Thursday, June 28, 2007

Walzer: The TL is filing stuff in court to use against me in the paper

The lawyers for Allison Walzer and the Times Leader continue to piss all over each other in federal court. Walzer's lawyer is mad that the paper's lawyer spilled the beans re: her "confidential" settlement offer of $2.5 million. In addition, he newspaper's lawyer has allegedly "placed extraneous and inappropriate material into its filings in order to create quotations from which it could litigate this case in its own newspaper." And so on. Click above to read the latest filing, which contains a mix of technical arguments and bile.

The Wall Street Journal comes to Scranton

The front page of Monday's Wall Street Journal carried a great story about the difficulty the Scranton School District has had in integrating special-education students into the mainstream curriculum. An excellent read. Click above to read the story in its entirety.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

AP won't move Pocono Record video of golf course strippers

"I didn't see it as offering a lot toward the story other than blurry images of a girl in a bikini and a guy sitting in a chair with golfers playing through," an AP editor told The Morning Call of Allentown. Romenesko has picked up the story.

A Soprano kissing contest in Wilkes-Barre

We'll take a coffee mug. And a mouse pad.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Pocono Record breaks story of strippers at golf course -- with video!

Well! The Pocono Record writes about strippers at a golf outing in Stroudsburg and includes a video... of the strippers. Well played, Pocono Record. Well played.

UPDATE: Jim Romenesko's Obscurestore has picked up the story.

Ouch: Scranton Times punk'd -- twice

Times-Tribune police reporter writes in a Sunday column about Art Franklin, a fictional character who has appeared in the paper twice in the last year. The first time was in November, when a Scranton firefighter gave the fake name to reporter Dave Falchek. But more recently -- and more damning -- a letter from Art Franklin was published on the editorial page on June 15. "Last Friday, The Times-Tribune mistakenly printed a letter to the editor from (guess who?) Art Franklin," Kemeny writes. In other words, the paper doesn't verify the identity of writers of letters to the editor. Nice.

Bonnie Adams briefly back in TL fold

Joe Soprano welcomes reporter Bonnie Adams back from nursing school to write a few summer stories for the Times Leader.

The TL's Richard Connor writes about how the paper can't write about the "investigation" at the courthouse

There's enough gossip about an alleged federal investigation of county government "to make a person believe the old where-there-is-smoke-there-is-fire adage," Connor writes.

Monday, June 25, 2007

TL to buy Spanish-language Hazleton monthly

Of course, the story doesn't say how much the Times Leader is paying. Interesting tidbit in the story's last legs: "El Mensajero’s offices in Hazleton provide “a solid base” to help The Times Leader expand in the southern tier of Luzerne County." Will the TL reopen and staff a bureau there?

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Finally, a way to get rich at the CV

(UPDATE: The paper sold for $9.50.) We tried to ignore the Voice solidifying its place at the kiddie table by playing along with the WWE's faked murder of Vince McMahon in Wilkes-Barre Township. But now that day's paper is going for $7.50 a pop on eBay. Who said there's no reward for bad journalism?

"This is not a threat. I am begging you to do it."

The Times Leader's attorneys are opposed to Allison Walzer adding all kinds of anti-Richard Connor stuff to her lawsuit. They say Walzer and her Philadelphia lawyer, Neil Hamburg, "uses the threat of a retaliation claim and her illogical insistence that Mr. Connor’s testimony was somehow untrue to attempt to extort settlement of this matter at her incomprehensible demand of $2.5 million." Not much new, but interesting nonetheless. Click above to visit the Nepamedia Walzer vs. Times Leader page, where all the latest filings are yours to read.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Please make it stop

Rain of terror? Flood of memories? I'm dying here.

Welcome new columnist Mike Burnside to the TL

We're a little late on this, but the Times Leader has added Wilkes University employee Mike Burnside as a columnist. Early verdict: Makes Casey Jones look like Jimmy Breslin. Behold:

  • In today's paper, something about poetry or opera or something

  • Have you ever noticed how mosquitoes fly?

  • Meanwhile, Chris Kelly leads with a top-40 song quote and writes about how he likes comic books
  • Rich Connor writes about father's day and his daughter, age 6 (!)

    Six? Impressive.

    Federal judge that Walzer depo of Connor can continue

    The judge ruled that Walzer's lawyer only has two hours and has to stick to questions "pertaining to plaintiff’s claims," which sounds pretty broad. The unbylined TL piece strangely refers to the proceeding as an "interview" and not a "deposition," apparently deemed too hard a word for TL readers.

    Some blogger takes issue with John Cole altering a cartoon

    Some guy didn't like Times-Tribune cartoonist John Cole's piece about anti-immigration picketers and also didn't like that Cole altered the cartoon before it was reprinted in the Louisville Courier-Journal.

    Wednesday, June 13, 2007

    Times-Tribune has most popular story on Obscurestore

    Matthew Kemeny's story about the Scranton guy who shot his wife's computer after he caught her on MySpace picked up the most comments today on Jim Romenesko's Obscure Store Web site. Kudos.

    Everyone welcome Rebecca Bria to the Times Leader

    Rebecca Bria, a graduate of Luzerne County Community College and Wilkes University, is the newest reporter in the TL family (though her e-mail says Dallas Post). Welcome.

    Monday, June 11, 2007

    Ed Christine is out

    UPDATE: An e-mail allegedly from editor Larry Beaupre and posted here by a commenter seems to confirm that Ed Christine has left the building.

    EARLIER: The rumor mill is reporting that Ed Christine is no longer the metro editor The Times-Tribune of Scranton.

    In the interim, read "Surgeon, editor to face new challenges in China" -- a story written about Ed Christine by Ed Christine's wife.

    Beale's Bites is back

    Beale's Bites, a wonderful blog that covers broadcast media in northeastern Pennsylvania, has returned. Go over and see what's up.

    The TL's Connor: Harvard is for pussies

    Times Leader editor/publisher Richard Connor rips "a group now becoming popularly known as “The Bancroft Family,"" and says "they are collectively ringing their hands." Also: You're a bad son if you go to Harvard while your family is running a newspaper. Finally: Stories in the TL aren't for sale. Got it.

    Friday, June 08, 2007

    Allison Walzer goes all scorched-earth on Richard "I don't recall" Connor and the Times Leader

    The shit is on! We're sorry to have missed this earlier in the week. But Allison Walzer is taking it to the next level. She wants to amend her lawsuit to include all kinds of claims of how Richard Connor is obstructionist, evasive, is dishonest or has amnesia.

    "He testified, “I don’t know” 86 times, he said “I don’t recall” or “I can’t recall” 100 times and he
    said, “Not that I recall” 28 times," Walzer's lawyer wrote. Much of the discord centers on Walzer questioning Connor about allegedly sleeping with subordinate Katherine McMahon or Katherine McMann (note to Walzer counsel: please pick one spelling) during his first stint in Wilkes-Barre, as well as allegedly having "sexual relations" with Debbie Price, editor of the Fort Worth Star Telegram, while Connor was publisher. Madness!

    Click here to visit the nepamedia Walzer v. Times Leader page, where you can download all these filings, read them at your leisure, and even search for keywords!

    Pa. Supreme Court to hear Scranton Times-Tribune shield law case

    What's at stake isn't whether the Scranton paper libeled two former county commissioners. That comes later. What the state supreme court will decide is whether the newspaper can be compelled to reveal its source for the stories. Inexplicably, both Erin Nissley (Times-Tribune) and Terrie Morgan-Besecker (Times Leader) both omitted from their stories that the source -- state BNI agent James Kolojejchick -- has already been outed, fired, and jailed.

  • Erin Nissley's Times-Tribune story

  • Terrie Morgan-Besecker's Times Leader story
  • T-T reporter's first-person piece about her trip to Africa

    "My view of the world — and my place in it — will never be the same," writes Sarah Hofius after her three-part series following the work of nuns with the poor of Africa. Read on for the young reporter's first experience there.

    Tuesday, June 05, 2007

    Anti-immigrant crowd sicced on editor of Hazleton paper

    Tuesday's Times-Tribune of Scranton carries a detailed Nichole Dobo story about how Amilcar Arroyo, publisher of the Hazleton-based El Mensajero newspaper, needed a police escort to get out of Sunday's Hazleton anti-immigrant rally after a white woman from Bethlehem smelled his Latino blood and all but called for a lynching on the spot. Never mind that he's an American citizen.

  • See The Morning Call's video showing the woman, Pamela Hauptmann, going apeshit and trying to call the crowd in on the publisher
  • Monday, June 04, 2007

    The Scranton paper sends a reporter to Africa

    Kudos to The Times-Tribune of Scranton, which sent reporter Sarah Hofius to Uganda and Tanzania for a week to report on Marywood University's work to improve Catholic education in the African countries. The stories are relentlessly glowing in their portrayal of the church's work -- "Across the continent, Catholic sisters are stepping in where no one else will" -- but the newspaper deserves credit for being ambitious enough to undertake the stories.

    Saturday, June 02, 2007

    The TL's Mary Therese Biebel becomes a clown

    Biebel is invited to join the circus for a day. Strangely, she quotes Ringling Bros. employees only by their on-stage pseudonyms.

    The TL's Lisa Sokolowski starts blogging

    Sokolowski, formerly a sports writer and now a features writer at the paper, will be blogging about... stuff. Enjoy.

    Voice pretties up Web site

    It's a new day for the Citizens' Voice Web site. Look how the newspaper's name is reflected in the Susquehanna River! Fancy. "Readers can explore “Online Extras,” such as blogs, videos, photo galleries, a daily John Cole cartoon and blog, a new Food & Wine section and reader polls," the newspaper reports.