Tag Archives: Awards
Last year’s conversion to an electronic entry process for SABEW’s Best in Business context was such a hit that, for the upcoming contest in 2007, they’re going almost completely digital.
Here’s what’s changing:
If you’re entering the section contest, you’ll enter as you did last year: register your entry online, and then mail in four copies of each of the sections you’re entering. But if you’re entering any of the news contest categories — enterprise, breaking news, projects or columns — you’ll register the entry online, attach a pdf (or include several of them in a zip file, which we’ll tell you how to create), and that’s it – you’re finished. Nothing to copy or mail.
More details, and explicit directions, will be included in the Best in Business instructions to be posted on the SABEW web site soon.
Also new this year is one entry deadline: Feb. 1. Last year, SABEW created some confusion by having two entry dates — one to register and one to postmark your entries.
The first two mandatory dates for the 2006 section contest are Thursday, Feb. 16, and Sunday, Aug. 20. SABEW will announce the third mandatory date, and give you more information on the three dates you can choose, by the end of the year.
The mandatory date for the column contest is Wednesday, Feb. 8. Columnists who did not publish that date should submit the first column published AFTER Feb. 8.
Earlier this week, the CBS show “60 Minutes” received nine nominations for this year’s annual Emmy Awards for Business & Financial Reporting. That’s the most nominations for any show on television, and more than entire business news networks such as CNBC. It’s also more than 25 percent of the 33 nominations.
Among the “60 Minutes” segments nominated was a great piece on the France family that runs NASCAR, a segment on General Motors, and others that looked at workplace issues.
To some, that may seem surprising. “Sixty Minutes” has this public perception of going after politicians and criminals and features of famous people such as the one this past Sunday on Notre Dame football coach Charlie Weis. But it has a nearly 40-year tradition of producing some of the top business stories on TV, and Tuesday’s nomination count verified that. That’s why I think it’s the best at business journalism on TV. It’s consistently covered business news more aggressively than anyone else on TV, without fear of who’s going to get upset.
The show, which aired for the first time in September 1968, began by covering many business stories and issues that delved deeply into businesses. In short time, companies and executives began to fear receiving a call from â€œ60 Minutes.â€? Many began denying requests to be interviewed by the show.
Executive Producer Don Hewitt reacted by stating, â€œBusiness wants reported only what fits the carefully tailored profile that Madison Avenue and public relations people have put together.â€?
Not all of the stories about business and businessmen were critical. In the first year, the show profiled billionaire oilman H. L. Hunt in a laudatory, rags-to-riches profile. More recently, Leslie Stahl reported a positive piece on former GE CEO Jack Welch for the program.
But many of the shows broke new ground in business journalism. In 1978, â€œ60 Minutesâ€? cooperated with the Chicago Sun-Times to set up a bar to catch government officials taking bribes. The same year, the show ran a story on the Pinto that questioned the safety of the Ford Motor Co. vehicle. The Pinto story ran despite Fordâ€™s being a sponsor of the show, and it continued the tradition of the business press aggressively covering the auto industry. Later that year, the show also ran an expose on service stations making unneeded repairs. In 1979, the show ran a segment on a California chemical plant that was contaminating water in the area.
One of the showâ€™s most famous pieces of business journalism occurred in 1979, when it ran a 16-minute segment on the construction of a nuclear power plant by Illinois Power. The Sunday night show accused the company of millions of dollars in excessive costs that would likely be passed on to consumers. The next day, the companyâ€™s stock fell in the busiest trading day of its history.
In 1980, a segment discussed the rising number of workers who were paid in cash never reported to the Internal Revenue Service, while another piece delved into the silver business and how Nelson Bunker Hunt was cornering the market. The same year, it profiled the head of the Federal Trade Commission after businesses complained it was being heavy-handed with its regulations. In 1989, the show ran an expose on Freedom Financial Corp., a time-share resort company that offered outlandish gifts such as cars and money to get people to visit its locations. The next year, it documented how used car dealers were rolling back the odometers on vehicles to increase their price.
â€œSixty Minutesâ€? contributed to business journalism by showing that investigative reporting about business and companies could be done in any medium. And it awoke many in the print media, which had primarily been silent in criticizing industry in the 1950s and 1960s, that there were important stories to be covered that were being ignored.
In addition, the show spawned a number of similar shows on television that also began to aggressively pursue business stories as part of their regular segments. Among them were ABCâ€™s â€œ20/20â€? and NBCâ€™s â€œPrime Time Live.â€? Many of these shows copied â€œ60 Minutes.â€?
CBS dominated the nominations for the fourth annual Emmy Awards for Business & Financial Reporting, with 15 nominations. Nine of the 15 nominations were for segments done by the “60 Minutes” staff.
NBC was a distant second with five nominations, while CNBC garnered four nominations, according to a news release from the National Television Academy. CNN and PBS each received three nominations.
The Emmy Awards for Business & Financial Reporting recognize outstanding achievement in business & financial reporting telecast from July 1, 2005 thru June 30, 2006. A total of 33 nominations in seven categories were announced Tuesday.
At the ceremony, the National Television Academy will present its Lifetime Achievement Award in Business & Financial Reporting to Paul Steiger, managing editor of The Wall Street Journal, overseeing U.S. and international print and online editions, and vice president of Dow Jones & Co. CNN’s Lou Dobbs received the lifetime award in 2005.
â€œThe importance of economic journalism became paramount to consumers over the past year,â€? said Peter Price, President/CEO, National Television Academy, â€œas we strove to understand skyrocketing gas prices, the real estate downturn, the ups and downs of the stock market, and a myriad of financial issues. This yearâ€™s entries demonstrated the real value of business and financial reporting to the consumer, and the nominees represent the best of an excellent body of work.â€?
A complete list of the nominees and the categories can be found here. The awards will be presented on Thursday, Dec. 7 at the Rainbow Room in New York City. The event will be sponsored by CondÃ© Nast Portfolio, a new business magazine launching in spring 2007.
Due to consumer and advertiser demand, BusinessWeek will increase the frequency of its Small Biz magazine. Formerly a quarterly publication, the magazine will now publish six times per year.
Launched in 2004, SmallBiz is distributed on newsstands and through controlled circulation. The increased frequency follows praise for SmallBiz. In February, the magazine increased its rate base by 30 percent. The publication has also been honored with two prestigious Neal Awards for Best Start-Up Publication in 2005 and Best Single Issue in 2006.
The BW media kit on its web site stats that Small Biz is read by 650,000 people each issue and will increase that number to 675,000 for the February/March 2007 issue.
â€œThe superb editorial content in Small Biz has driven both consumer and advertiser demand for the magazine,â€? said BusinessWeek Senior Vice President and Publisher Geoffrey Dodge. â€œThe new bi-monthly schedule will allow us to better meet the needs of both our readers and our customers.â€?
BusinessWeek is a leading global business media organization, providing insight and analysis to a worldwide audience of business leaders. Founded in 1929 and published by the McGraw-Hill Cos., BusinessWeek magazine has more than 4.7 million readers each week in 140 countries. Local language editions include Chinese, Russian, and Bahasa Indonesian.
The firing of BusinessWeek labor reporter Aaron Bernstein after more than two decades of work at the publication and several major journalism awards is again being used by other journalists to lament the demise of such coverage. Earlier this week, The New Republic’s John Judis wrote about Bernstein’s departure from the glossy.
At the Washington Monthly, Kevin Drum wrote, “The labor beat at daily newspapers has been on the verge of extinction for years. My local paper, the LA Times, used to have some of the best labor coverage in the country, thanks to its great labor beat reporter, Harry Bernstein, but that heritage declined and then finally died last year when labor writer Nancy Cleeland left the beat.”
Later, after discussing Bernstein, Drum added, “As labor unions decline in power and advertisers insist ever more vigorously on appealing to specific demographics (young, white collar, lots of disposable income), coverage of blue collar and working class issues simply fades away. It’s like this stuff doesn’t even exist anymore. And let’s face it: if all you read is BusinessWeek or your local daily, it doesn’t.”
Read more here. Meanwhile, former Mother Jones reporter Brad Plumer used the Bernstein issue to discuss the demise of labor reporting. He wrote, “FAIR delivered a similar indictment back in 1989, noting that few outlets employed a labor reporter, that newspapers rarely cover labor issues unless a strike is going on, and that labor coverage has been replaced by a ‘workplace beat’ investigating office gossip and the like. And it’s hard to ascribe all of this to a lack of interest. Cable outlets, after all, spend lavishly on corporate- and finance-oriented shows, even though most of them have earned piddling earnings since the stock market crash in 2001. Even PBS has no counterpart to Kudlow & Cramer.
“Anyway, we’re a far cry from the start of the 20th century, when Eugene Debs’ Appeal to Reason boasted a stunning 760,000 subscribers. Indeed, one of the last major labor-run publications, the Racine Labor–often held up as a model for other aspiring labor papers to emulate–closed down in 2002. Anyway, people can debate causes all day, but it’s hard to imagine that the decline of labor coverage hasn’t had a negative effect on unions–or the labor movement in general.”
Read more here.
Adam Bryant, the former Newsweek business editor who returned to the New York Times earlier this year, has been named deputy editor for enterprise for the business section, according to a memo from business editor Larry Ingrassia posted on the Romenesko blog.
Bryant succeeds Paula Dwyer, who is moving to the paper’s Washington bureau. Dwyer was once a BusinessWeek reporter based in DC.
Ingrassia wrote in the memo, “Since rejoining the Times earlier this year from Newsweek, Adam has demonstrated his talents as an editor, both on enterprise stories and in helping direct coverage of some major running stories, like the mounting problems of the American auto companies.
“Indeed, a number of you have volunteered in recent weeks that Adam would make a great replacement for Paula. I couldn’t agree more.
“Adam’s good story sense, his deft touch with copy and a feel for good presentation that he developed while he was Newsweek’s business editor make him a particularly good fit for this job. He’ll oversee the daily display, working closely with our design, photo and graphics team, as well as work with cluster editors and reporters on page one stories. For now, Adam will continue to oversee the reporters who have been in his group.”
Read more here. Ingrassia also said that he was looking for another editor.
I wrote back in July that Bryant’s departure from Newsweek was one of the most significant events in business journalism during the first six months of the year because it signaled a decreasing emphasis on business coverage by the news magazine.
The New Republic’s John Judis wrote that BusinessWeek made a mistake two weeks ago when it laid off labor writer Aaron Bernstein.
Judis wrote, “Bernstein was terrific at it. If you had wanted to follow the growing conflict between afl-cio President John Sweeney and his former protÃ©gÃ©, Andy Stern (of the Service Employees International Union), you had to read Bernstein. In September 2004, well before the conflict burst into the open, Bernstein wrote a cover story on Stern for BusinessWeek.
“But Bernstein didn’t just cover the labor movement. He covered the ferment over trade, outsourcing, immigration, inequality and the minimum wage. He wrote cover stories for BusinessWeek about the growing income gap between workers and managers; he covered the backlash against globalization that led to the anti-World Trade Organization demonstrations in Seattle in 2000. For his reporting, he won Gerald Loeb and George Polks awards and accolades from the Overseas Press Club, the New York Press Club, and the Sidney Hillman Foundation.”
Later, Judis speculated about his firing: “A serious writer–and particularly one who writes about the American worker–has no place at a magazine that aspires to be the People of the business world.
“Perhaps this new BusinessWeek will make more money than the old. Then [Editor Stephen] Adler will be vindicated in the new cutthroat world of magazine publishing, which sees magazines as simply another commodity to sell. But I somehow doubt that a magazine named BusinessWeek can attract the narcissistic readers that advertisers love. My guess is that, under Adler, BusinessWeek will become a magazine that is neither particularly profitable nor socially useful. In any case, it has already lost at least one reader.”
Read more here.
Slate’s Jack Shafer examined why Bloomberg News has continued to grow and expand its operations while other newsrooms are shrinking.
Shafer wrote, “During this shrinking era, a news service started from scratch and entered in the ultracompetitive field of business journalism and has thrived almost to the point of dominance. The outfit, Bloomberg News, now employs 1,700 reporters and editors in 127 bureaus worldwide, and its wire service routinely supplies most top papers with business news and briefs. As other publications have shed older, high-paid journalists, Bloomberg News has hired them: Al Hunt (Wall Street Journal), John M. Berry and Charles Babcock (Washington Post), Margaret Carlson (Time), and Roger Simon (U.S. News & World Report), just to name a few. Yes, dinosaurs all, but each conveys to readers credibility and cachet that only money can buy.”
Later, Shafer wrote, “Bloomberg’s human-generated news stories are only slightly warmer to the touch. Many are written to an old template that requires lede sentences to contain a number. Words such as ‘but’ (too abrupt), ‘flat’ (markets aren’t curved, how can they be flat?), and ‘uncertainty’ (markets move for a reason) are subject to banishment by editors. Words that signify something demonstrable, such as ‘biggest’ or ‘first,’ are preferred. Even if Bloomberg News reporters desired to produce well-crafted prose, how often would they have the time? In this competitive beat, five seconds separates an ‘atta-boy’ scoop from the shame of getting beat by Reuters. Theirs is the ultimate news-you-can-use for the most demanding and wealthy readers in the world.
“To use an old 1990s software clichÃ©, Bloomberg excels in producing granular news. It doesn’t matter much to your pocketbook if the price of a barrel of oil moves 10 cents, nor is a record of that movement likely to find a place in your daily newspaper. But fortunes are made on smaller price swings than that, which means very small audiences will pay handsomely for the micro-news Bloomberg delivers inside of micro-news cycles. This turns the daily newspaper concept inside out: Dailies strive to discover and report news that appeals to the many. For that reason, nobody should live on a steady diet of Bloomberg. You’d get scurvy. Still, the Bloomberg operation has earned Gerald Loeb Awards, bestowed mostly by a panel of other business journalists, for its work.”
Read more here.
Ron Fields, business editor of The Hawk Eye in Burlington, Iowa, has been named managing editor of The Hays Daily News in Kansas, according to an AP story.
Fields, 33, takes over for Patrick Lowry, who was promoted to editor and publisher in August. He will begin Nov. 6.
The AP story stated, “Fields has been at the Hawk Eye for about 10 years, after serving as an editor at the Clinton (Ill.) Daily Journal and the Monmouth (Ill.) Review-Atlas.
“A graduate of MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Ill., Fields has won numerous awards from the Iowa Press Association and the Illinois Press Association for news writing, editorials and business coverage. He will move to Hays with his wife, Gretchen, and son, Jack.
“‘Any community with a strong daily newspaper is blessed,’ Fields said. ‘I look forward to helping the Daily News continue its development and maintain its role as a positive factor in Hays’ future.’”
Read more here.
George P. Gombossy, editor of The Hartford Courant’s business section since 1995 and a SABEW board member, will leave his post in November to write an investigative consumer column that will debut early next year, according to a story in Tuesday’s paper.His new column, tentatively titled “At Your Service,” will research people’s complaints, concerns and questions and get them answers, Courant Editor Cliff Teutsch said Monday in an e-mail to the newsroom.
“George’s understanding of business, government and consumer issues, his wide circle of contacts and his years of experience as one of The Courant’s most effective investigative reporters make him ideally suited for the job,” Teutsch said. A new business editor will be named soon.
Gombossy, 59, has written or co-authored articles that earned him more than 20 journalistic awards, including the George Polk Award for local reporting.
Read more here.