Headlines from the Mississippi Press Association
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March 2017 » Volume 12 » Number 3
Gene McDavid, retired publisher of the Houston Chronicle, welcomes attendees to the 2016 O.C. McDavid Conference. This year’s event, named in honor of the longtime artist and Jackson Daily News managing editor, will be held March 30 on the Jackson State University e-Center campus.

McDavid Conference joins JSU event

MPA’s annual workshop for collegiate journalists is this year joining with the Jackson State University School of Journalism and Media Studies Conference.

The 19th annual O.C. McDavid Journalism Conference will be held March 30 on the campus of the JSU e-Center in Jackson.

The JSU event is a day-long workshop for students in the university’s School of Journalism and Media Studies, bringing in speakers and panels to help majors prepare for post-school careers. The McDavid Conference is sponsored annually by the the MPA Education Foundation for students of journalism at universities and colleges throughout the state.

“Because of our schedules, this was a unique opportunity to bring together these two events this year,” said MPA executive director Layne Bruce. “We’re excited to be partnering with JSU on the conference.”

There is no cost for students or MPA members to attend the event, which will feature panels discussing careers in print, digital and broadcast journalism and public relations. The McDavid Conference will also, as is customary, feature a speaker on the arts in recognition of O.C. McDavid’s long secondary career as a sculptor and artist. The event will culminate with the presentation of the Better Newspaper Contest Student Division awards.

Registration for schools is now underway. To sign up to attend, contact MPA Member Services Manager Monica Gilmer, 601-981-3060.

Internship application deadline is April 28

Applications to participate in the annual MPA Education Foundation Internship Program are now available and due by April 28.

Per a change to criteria made last year, interested newspapers must identify an eligible intern before they apply to MPAEF for funding. Additionally, preference will be given to students pursuing a degree in journalism, communications or related fields. See the application and cover letter for full details.

Applying newspapers will be notified of their acceptance in the program in early May.

While newspapers are responsible for selecting their own interns, MPA will keep profiles of interested student candidates on file. Contact Member Services Manager Monica Gilmer to select to receive information on qualified candidates as it becomes available.

Public records audit set for Sunshine Week

The Mississippi Center for Freedom of Information is coordinating a public records audit to help raise awareness about the need for government transparency at all levels.

The audit, which will conducted during Sunshine Week, March 12-19, will test local responses to a basic public records request.

Sam Hall, executive editor of The Clarion-Ledger, is chairing the project. MPA member papers are encouraged to participate.

“The point of the project is not to publish the information; nevertheless, we have chosen as a test case something that should produce data worth analyzing for a story — public employee payrolls,” Hall said. “If (your newspaper wants) to participate in the project but request different information, that would be fine, too.”

The cover letter from Hall to newspapers and a sample request reviewed by MCFOI attorney Leonard Van Slyke can be downloaded here.

Hall said he is targeting March 6 as the deadline for notice from newspapers who will participate.

Contact Hall for more information.

Sunshine Week is an annual observance of access to public information and what it means to local communities. The event is coordinated nationally by the American Society of News Editors and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.

Top network seller will win iPad Mini

Each quarter in 2017, MPS will hold a Top Performer Sales Contest for newspaper reps who sell into the MDAN and QPN display and MCAN classified network programs.

Top performer in the display contest will win a new iPad Mini. Top performer in the classified contest will win a year-long subscription to Netflix. The deadline for the first-quarter contest is March 31.

Member newspapers who sell into the MPS networks retain half of the sales price for themselves. In addition, MPS pays a cash bonus direct to the rep who closed the deal.

Ads can run after the contest of deadline of March 31 so long as they are booked when the contest closes. Must be a new client to MPS or a client that has been inactive at least 12 months. Some other restrictions apply. Download a contest flyer for details.

Visit the MPS website for information on network program pricing or contact network sales coordinator Sue Hicks, 601-981-3060.

With media, President Trump has his cake and eats it, too

President Trump wants to have it both ways, and, for now at least, it looks like he’s getting what he wants.

He excoriates the media as an “enemy” of the people, but gorges on it – even the purveyors of what he maintains as “fake news.” He clearly subscribes to the line of thought that any kind of publicity is good publicity.

What else could be behind the brazen move of barring The New York Times, CNN, and Politico from a Feb. 24 briefing by press secretary Sean Spicer?

Services are Tuesday for Stanley Dearman, 84, former long time editor and publisher of The Neshoba Democrat, who died Feb. 25 in Florida… Gannett recently announced The Commercial Appeal in Memphis will shutter its Union Avenue production plant and move printing to nearby sister newspaper the Jackson Sun… State Auditor Stacey Pickering recently told the media his office was exempt from the Public Meetings ActThe Northside Sun in Jackson is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2017… Scott Waller, former publisher of the Madison County Journal and business editor for The Clarion-Ledger, has been named interim CEO of the Mississippi Economic Council in advance of the retirement of long-time CEO Blake Wilson later this year.
» Reader trust remains highest in print newspapers » News Media Alliance
» These journalists were no enemies of the people » USA Today
» Younger Americans relied on national papers more for election news than older Americans » Politico
» NYT Editor says Trump has been great for circulation » Mediate
» How media are using encryption tools to collect tips » NPR


March 2
Webinar – Best Practices for Public Notice
March 15-17
NNA Community Newspaper Leadership Summit, Washington, DC
March 23
Webinar – Engaging Readers Through Your Editorial Page
March 30
McDavid Journalism Conference, Jackson State University e-Center.
April 27
MPA-MPS Spring Board Meeting. University of Southern Mississippi
July 6-8
MPA-LPA Joint Convention, Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino, Biloxi
Copyright © 2017 Mississippi Press Association, All rights reserved.

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