News and Views

What separates a classroom from a newsroom?  I argue not much.  Like a teacher, newsroom managers have to inspire, encourage, and educate the people they work with every day.  With that in mind, here is the first of what I hope to be a regular installment in a Newsroom as Classroom series.

Teaching is ingrained in the culture of my newsroom.  I’m the ND of WFUV FM, an NPR affiliate station, based on the Rose Hill campus of Fordham University in the Bronx.  We’re only a two-person full-time news department.  It’s me and my assistant ND, Robin Shannon.  But, we’re a large department when you count up our student staffing.  We have as many as 15 students who work in our newsroom at any given time.  They serve as anchors, reporters, writers and producers.

A Well-Mannered Reporter's Secret Weapon

May 31, 2012

I have a reporter in my newsroom who thanked me yesterday for her new “secret weapon.” I gave her a simple tool that takes very little of her time, and has resulted in high level sources calling her back quickly, public relations people smoothing the way instead of blocking it, and people who don’t frequently listen to our station still remembering her name.

She is so impressed with the difference it’s making in her reporting that she may very well be angry if she discovers I’m revealing it here. She believes it gives her an edge over the other reporters on her beat. 

What is this trick that melts the hearts of the coldest CEO, and gets busy PR people to move your name to the top of their “call back” list?

The hand-written thank you note.

Funding and Firewalls

May 17, 2012

One of the most popular requests for help on Newslink and PRNDI’s Facebook page recently has been in the area of Funders and Firewalls. People want to know how to fund their shows and positions without creating a conflict of interest.

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