Reservations open for annual convention

Reservations are now being accepted in the MPA room block for the upcoming 147th Annual Convention at the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino in Biloxi. The convention will be held June 20-22 at the coast's premier resort destination.

Online reservations can be made by clicking here. You can also call the hotel direct at 228-386-7444  or toll-free at 888-567-6667. Reference the Mississippi Press Association Convention when making your reservations via phone. The group rate is $169 nightly for the evenings of June 19-22. Deadline to make reservations is Wednesday, May 29.

The convention will kick off the evening of June 20 with an opening reception at the Biloxi Visitors Center. Keynote presenter Friday morning will be Bill Nichols, editor-at-large of Politico and a former Mississippi journalist. Convention sessions will include presentations on multimedia, the Affordable Healthcare Act, newspaper and magazine design, Freedom of Information and more.

A key highlight will be the return of the MPA Regatta on Friday afternoon, June 21, for the first time since Hurricane Katrina. The event will be fun for competitors and spectators, with beverages and refreshments available against the backdrop of the gulf at the Ocean Springs Yacht Club.

The event will conclude, as is customary, with the presentation of the Better Newspaper Contest Editorial Division Awards at noon on Saturday.

Grenada, Tupelo, Water Valley selected for Main St. programs

Three north Mississippi communities have been selected for the spring session of retail seminars coordinated by the Mississippi Press Association and Mississippi Main Street Association. The programs will be held in Grenada, Tupelo and Water Valley in early June 3-5. The GrenadaStar will co-sponsor its local event.

It is the second time Main Street and MPA have partnered on the programs, following up a holiday season seminar series held last October in Philadelphia, Brookhaven and Natchez. The sessions are led by retail and customer service expert Margie Johnson.

Johnson, who founded the Shop Talk consulting firm, will present a "Winning Strategies" seminar in each participating city to help local businesses improve their marketing and sales.

Johnson has more than 30 years of experience as an owner/entrepreneur in the retail world. Her "customer centered" training sessions and approach to solving business problems have assisted hundreds of clients to develop that competitive edge that is so necessary in the business world today. Johnson is a frequently requested retail expert speaker at national conventions, as well as a frequent contributor and writer for regional trade publications.

For more information on the program, contact MPA Executive Director Layne Bruce.

Central Mississippi newspaper for sale

Community weekly newspaper and fast-growing county-wide quarterly magazine for sale in central Mississippi. Owner ready to retire but searching for the right buyer to take good care of community and newspaper. Fast access to Jackson and other regional cities via I-20. Excellent opportunity for self-starter or semi-retirees looking for a rewarding challenge. Serious, confidential inquiries please submit letter of interest in confidence, including contact information, to Community Newspaper, 371 Edgewood Terrace, Jackson, MS  39206, or email your letter to jobbank@mspress.org.

USPS softens bar code requirements for papers

Newspapers claiming automation mailing rates for their Periodicals newspapers or Standard Mail flats not eligible for Enhanced Carrier Route rates face new hurdles on Jan. 26, 2014, as the U.S. Postal Service's mandates for Full-Service Intelligent Mail Barcodes (IMbs) kick in. But National Newspaper Association President Merle Baranczyk said NNA's efforts had built in new options for many newspapers to avoid the full impact.

 

USPS this week announced that the new Full-Service IMbs would be required for all mail seeking automation discounts. The first step toward its program to achieve greater service accountability began in January 2013, when mailers began using the Basic IMbs. The next step requires individual numbering on mailpieces, sack and tray tags and pallet placards so that USPS can see where the mail is throughout mail processing and delivery.Those individual numbers must also be provided to USPS through electronic documentation, with some exceptions.

 

Baranczyk said NNA had petitioned the Postal Service to make numerous changes to help newspapers adapt to USPS's digital conversions.

 

"We asked for a longer period for the conversion, which USPS did not grant. But it did create options for newspapers whose mailing software cannot handle the requirements, and relaxed the requirement to put a differentindividual number on each newspaper. We are gratified that USPS heard our concerns on this count," he said.


Read more.

Monthly webinar series: Sales, tech & more

The MPA Education Foundation co-sponsors webinars monthly through a partnership with the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association and Iowa Newspaper Foundation. Topics covered include editorial and journalism, advertising sales, circulation and marketing and more. The cost to MPA member papers to participate is only $35.

Click here to learn more about the Online Media Campus and upcoming programs.

UPCOMING EVENTS

May 2-3           MPA-MPS Spring Board Retreat, Biloxi, MS
May 9              Webinar: Close More Sales
May 27            Memorial Day
June 20           MPA-MPS Board Meeting, Biloxi
June 20           MPA Education Foundation Board Meeting
June 20-22      147th Annual Convention, Beau Rivage Resort, Biloxi

Click here to visit the MPA Calendar

INDUSTRY HEADLINES

Gannett Q1 revenue improves with paywalls

From Net News Check
Revenue gains from the companywide rollout of paywalls last year helped offset nearly all of the 4.5% decline in advertising revenue during the quarter. Digital revenue for the publishing segment rose 75.5%, Gannett said. At its local domestic publishing operations, digital revenue rose 98.4%.

NAA turns fiesty at annual mediaXchange conference

From Poynter
The Newspaper Association of America’s annual mediaXchange conference is always part industry promotion, an occasion for expressions of confidence. But at this year’s edition in Orlando last week, those sentiments had a fighting edge.

AP latest to fall victim to Twitter hack; markets hiccup

From USA Today
Hackers broke into the Associated Press Twitter account last week and posted a bogus story about an explosion at the White House. It sent the stock market into a tizzy for about five minutes.