Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

News-Press Salsipuedes Continues...

We have an unconfirmed report of another major resignation from the News-Press -- this in from an anonymous:

Len Wood Photo Editor for 25+ Years gave notice of 2 weeks, but after Andrea Huebner, Life Sections Editor was Dismissed for "Poor Quality" Work (read Union Symphasizer )-Len Immediately Left the Building! Also, Newsroon Editor Colby [LastNameUnknown].

Yikes. Len is a great photographer and has a lot of history in our town. If there is no one left, how can there be a union?

The DailyKos, one of the most respected and largest blogs in the country now has a thread on the NewsPress Mess.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

For all the talk about how the rash of resignations is destroying the News-Press, there's surprisingly little change in the paper itself. Neither I nor my newspaper-reading friends have observed any decline in the quality of the paper, and we've been regular readers for 20 years. We miss Barney Brantingham, but the news articles seem stronger and better-edited than before.

Also, some of the new reporters are better writers and less biased than the ones they replaced.

9/13/2006 7:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Advertisers beware.

9/13/2006 8:10 AM  
Anonymous News-Press was declared dead on arrival at Cottage Hospital today said...

Take this handy quiz to find out what side you're really on in the NewsPressMess.

A local newspaper owner reminds me of
A. The Wicked Witch of the West
B. Marie Antoinette
C. The Red Queen in "Alice in Wonderland"
D. Leona Helmsley
E. Francis of Assisi

My favorite quote is
A. "I'll get you, my pretties!")
B. "Let them eat cake."
C. "Off with their heads."
D. "Only the little people pay taxes."
E. "Thou shalt have no other Gods before me."

If the forest was on fire, I would first save the
A. animals
B. trees
C. people
D. big bags of money under the bed
E. myself

To save the planet, I would
A. downsize the yacht
B. lose the Ferrari, Porsche, jet
C. become the fearless champion of feral pigs
D. fire Dr. Laura
E. sue the Coastal Commission

When faced with a problem, I
A. get a new attorney
B. get two new attorneys
C. steal someone's website
D. issue a press release
E. have my junkyard dog editor smear their reputation

Answer key:
1. If you laughed at any of the choices, you are on the side of righteousness.
2. If you always answered "E", check your driver's license: you may be the owner of a venerable, once respected So Cal daily.

9/13/2006 8:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Len Wood is not the only departed causing comment; see this commentary on Andrea's firing:

9/13/2006 8:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea Huebner, Life section editor, who is widely respected as a competent journalist, was fired because she had the "cojones" to allow Dr. Michael Seabaugh's column benignly referencing "Dr." Laura Schlessinger. Outrageous

9/13/2006 9:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least some folks have the guts to quit.

9/13/2006 9:07 AM  
Anonymous dd said...

Doa - I'm ROFLMAO! That was quite good. dd

9/13/2006 9:23 AM  
Blogger bob said...

Ouch. Used to work with Andrea and she was a class act all the way around. As fate has it, she had not seen the posting for the SBNP opening, I had, she expressed an interest and I passed it along to her. Don't hate me, Andrea....

9/13/2006 9:41 AM  
Anonymous Worker Bee said...

That first comment was clearly made by one of Wendy's hired boobs - the quality of the paper is clearly in a wild decline. Hey PR hack: we aren't fools. Who do you think you're fooling?

And as far as those who remain not having guts: they have the courage to stick it out and fight the person who destroyed their jobs for no reason.

In fact, at this point, quitting is unhelpful. Unless it's financially unworkable, staying on to vote for the union before departing is the best way to stick it to Wendy and her lap dogs.


9/13/2006 9:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


9/13/2006 10:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey 7:56,

I can see Wendy's swift-yacht is moving full speed ahead. You could at least add a little flair to the propoganda. You read like a robot.

When the truth comes out about the nature of these lastest departures (I'll leave it at that benign description for now), people are going to flip out. It's outrageous.

9/13/2006 10:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: anonymous 9/13/2006 7:56 AM:

At last we hear from one (or more) of those "unbiased", local-news covering, union-busting new reporters/hires from the News-Press.

Little change? Better than before? Don't delude yourself, or try to delude others.

9/13/2006 10:49 AM  
Anonymous donate said...

Press Release
August 29, 2006
Contact: Sue Broidy (805) 640 7340

Many residents of Santa Barbara are concerned about the situation faced by journalists who have recently lost their jobs at the Santa Barbara News Press. Valued citizens who are an integral part of our local society, they deserve recognition for the sacrifices they are making as a result of their courageous choice to put journalistic ethics ahead of their personal economic security.

Concerned community members have therefore recently established the Journalist Loan Fund to help those who may be in financial need.

Loan Fund Trustees have been identified and a Fund Raising Committee is being set up. Over $1,000 has been raised to open the account.

Donors are encouraged to be as generous as possible to support the growing number of journalists who have shown the courage to stand up for freedom of the press and journalistic integrity.

Please make your checks payable to the Journalist Loan Fund, attention Sue Broidy, 3412 Calle Noguera, Santa Barbara CA 93105. The Santa Barbara Bank and Trust account number is 0100252972.

9/13/2006 10:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was amused today by a NP published letter from Matt Reeves of Vandenberg Village indicating that all who decry Ms. McCaw's meshing editorial and reporting must be liberal Democrats. I wonder what Mr. Reeves makes of the NP reliance on the Center for Union Facts - that famous shill for management opposition to labor - for support for its editorial attacks on union representation of its workers. I guess the NP choice of letters, i.e., only those from the likes of Mr. Reeves, suggests a McCaw intention to turn the paper in the Fox direction qualified only by a lack of patriotic military support where local animals might be hurt in military exercises.

9/13/2006 12:36 PM  
Anonymous First District Streetfighter said...

The quality of the News-Press has declined. Fewer stories, writing that misses details, and lots of filler with wire stories.

The decline has been noted in many comments in many blogs, but never in in the News-Press own letters to editor, despite many letters sent in. That is a decline in itself.

Nice try with the Huffing and puffing in the first comment in this string. The more you spin, the more the facts get revaled to bite back. Those facts are stubborn things.

9/13/2006 1:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good for Len! Who's next?

9/13/2006 1:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone post an NP advertiser list yet? I've moved to the bay area, but want to be sure to boycott NP advertisers when I visit.

9/13/2006 3:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Len Wood is more than a great photographer, although that is fine enough, but not too unusual in this town. He's an excellent graphic artist, doing many of the maps, charts and other illustrations for the paper. If it is true that he has quit then that is a great loss and I am very sorry!

9/13/2006 4:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From the Indy media blog:

Len Wood Quits, Two Others Fired

By Indy Staff, September 13, 2006

News-Press Photo Chief Steps Down as Life Editor and Sports Stringer Canned

Veteran News-Press photo chief Len Wood has given notice and two other newsroom staffers have been fired, including Life editor Andrea Huebner.

Huebner was fired for allowing Dr. Michael Seabaugh’s column criticizing fellow columnist Laura Schlessinger to appear, according to sources. The News-Press ran an apology to “Dr.” Laura for Seabaugh’s comments. We also understand that Dr. Seabaugh has resigned as a result.

Wood and Huebner were the last remaining editors of those on the job when the newsroom meltdown began over two months ago. Along with the firing of Colby Frazier, a former sports stringer recently promoted to metro reporter, this brings the total of departed staff to 22.


9/13/2006 5:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd quit too! All hell is going to break loose after the union vote.

9/13/2006 5:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Colby got axed after he was specifically assigned to cover a story that he knew raised some conflict of interest concerns for himself. After being assured it would be fine (by his editor) he covered the event and wrote his story that (surprise) got killed. He was then promptly terminated for violating the papers conflict of interest policy.
The only thing Colby did wrong was support the union. Three weeks till the vote... who is next.

9/13/2006 10:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Santa Barbara was a very nice town before Wendy moved here and it will still be a very nice town when she leaves.
She has been very generous to the community and causes of charity while she has been here. I thank her for all she has done in the past. but these causes in our community were fine before and will be after.
I know a printing plant is hard to put in a suitcase but maybe it can be towed behind the boat and shop can be set up elsewhere, oh shall we say anywhere they will have her... maybe Santa Rosa Island they could use a daily.
Feel free to take the Dr. and Co. along, one of them needs the free ride.

9/13/2006 11:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

from today's L.A. Times:,0,4442987.story?coll=la-news-comment-letters

Santa Barbara can't paper over this dispute

September 14, 2006

Re "Summer of Discontent Heads for Fall," Sept. 9

The Santa Barbara News-Press may have become a national joke, but the harm done is no laughing matter. This is not a "feud" between employees and management, and owner Wendy McCaw is hardly the underdog in an ideological battle with Santa Barbara's city government.

For reasons no one can fathom, McCaw has chosen to make war on the community in which she lives, and the list of private organizations and individuals she has attacked grows daily.

As a result, Santa Barbarans no longer have a newspaper; we have an unreliable rag whose current editors can't distinguish a legitimate news story from a condiment.

We will continue to boycott the paper until journalistic integrity has been reestablished.



Santa Barbara

9/14/2006 7:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This scroll is alarmingly littered with company propaganda. Wake up, people! It's a blood-bath inside News-Press walls. I have to deal with it everyday. Management is fighting the union toothe and nail, even if that means sacrificing quality and destroying lives.

9/14/2006 8:42 PM  

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