The editorial decision by Gannett to assert that legal immigrants to the United States of America and illegal immigrants are the same effectively and immediately terminates their credibility as an objective news organization and valid source of information.
Several e-mails recently, soliciting my opinion on the firing of a supposedly professional member of the news media, whose employment with THE (DENVER) POST was terminated after he published a tweet as response to the winner of the Indianapolis 500, 2017.
If the Twitter account used was provided by his now-former employer his decision to use their resources in this manner demonstrates an undeniable lack of professionalism on his part, along with his unabashed lack of maturity and responsibility. If the account was a personal Social Media account, but people knew who he was and what he did for a living – again, his actions were unprofessional and immature. Additionally, as a supposed professional whose living is derived from Free Speech, he should have known through formal education and experience and accepted the responsibility and burden that comes of this most precious right within the United States of America. His actions demonstrated utter contempt and disrespect for Free Speech and the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America – which goes to the overall reality of news media presently, and why, in general, it is on a path of ruin and demise.
His choice to do what he did and the subsequent response from his now-former employer represent a larger, undeniable, and uglier truth within much of the news media in the State of Colorado: Racism, bigotry, prejudice, anti-Semitism, sexism, discrimination, hatemongering, sedition, and treason are acceptable within the framework of the news media as long as they advance the partisan political agenda of the so-called professional news organization involved. THE (DENVER) POST, which has a well-documented and well-known history of such practices, and its dishonest response to the inappropriate action by an employee – they prefer the derogatory term “worker” – only serves to reinforce this truth and reality. If THE (DENVER) POST were a professional news organization, which merited respect and deserved credibility, it would have addressed this behavior years ago when the newspaper still had the opportunity to be considered professional and legitimate. The latest expression of lip service, which is nothing more than self-serving damage control and an outright lie, and public response from executive management, demonstrate that such things are not warranted.
To be fair to THE (DENVER) POST this business model is not restricted to them or their parent company, Digital First Media. It is, unfortunately, the favored and preferred business model of Gannett, Scripps, and The McClatchy Company, among others: Partisan politics over objective fact and truth presented with professionalism, maturity, civility, and respect.
If the now-former employee of THE (DENVER) POST had prefaced his employment-ending tweet with another tweet it is likely he would still be employed with the newspaper and held up as a hero and standard for other members of the news media: If he had asserted – without benefit of relevant fact – that the 2017 winner of the Indianapolis 500 had voted for Donald J. Trump; that he were a Christian, Jew, Catholic, or Mormon; that he had served in the Armed Forces; that he had been a member of law enforcement prior to becoming a professional auto racecar driver; that he opposed “recreational marijuana”; that he opposed homosexuality, bisexuality, transsexuality; that he believed in God, the subsequent tweet which expressed racism, bigotry, prejudice, and hatemongering would have been allowed, and the executive management of THE (DENVER) POST would have made excuses in his defense.
No one should pity this supposedly professional member of the news media. He made his choices, and must accept the consequences of his actions. As to his current employment status – he will eventually be presented as a victim of circumstance, and will be employed again as a professional member of the news media, wherein he will superficially redeem himself because few members of the news media presently are held accountable and responsible for their actions while demanding such things of everyone else.
As to THE (DENVER) POST: If the majority owner of Digital First Media, the parent company of THE (DENVER) POST, Alden Global Capital, was sincere about realizing a healthy return on its investment it would use this as opportunity make Digital First Media into a professional, legitimate, and credible news organization through the process known as “cleaning house”: The firing of Chief Executive Officer of THE (DENVER) POST, Michael Tully, and the editor of the newspaper, Lee Ann Colacioppo; the firing of Albert Manzi, CEO of Prairie Mountain Media, a subsidiary of Digital First Media; the firing of the editor of THE DAILY CAMERA, Kevin Kaufman; the firing of the publisher/editor of THE ESTES PARK TRAIL-GAZETTE, Michael Romero; the firing of the editor of THE TIMES-CALL, John Vahlenkamp; the firing of the Managing Editor of THE REPORTER-HERALD, Jeff Stahla; the firing of Publisher and General Manager of THE CANON CITY RECORD, Karl Wurzbach because all of them are responsible for content published in the newspapers and on the Social Media platforms of Digital First Media that is far worse than what was tweeted by their now-former comrade; including a comment explicitly calling for the assassination of the President of the United States of America.
As to the other news organizations referenced – they would do well to learn from this event and proceed accordingly. It is unlikely they will do so and, like Digital First Media, will meet an unfortunate end.
Today is Memorial Day.
Today, to the men and women, ready and willing to make the ultimate sacrifice in defense of the United States of America, we say: Thank you.
The announcement is certain to upset more than a few: The White House recently unveiled its proposed budget for 2018, which includes increased spending for the military, but a cut of more than $26 billion, which will involve the defunding, eliminating, or phasing out of more than sixty federal programs.
Cuts to funding in the proposed budget include a reduction of $4.9 billion from the Education Department.
Because much of the news media in the State of Colorado, through comments allowed to their Social Media platforms, has made it known that they believe public education should always receive more funding and not less, this proposed cut is certain to be met with opposition. If the cut were to taken affect what specifically would be cut and why? It would be useful to know the specifics, but expectation that the news media in Colorado overall will properly research and report on the matter is unrealistic.
Job cuts in the news media generally result because of declining revenues – a reduction in advertising and subscriptions; actions made by individuals and businesses who no longer consider the news media overall a worthwhile investment because they cannot be trusted or believed, owing to their willingness to favor partisan politics, along with an undeniable lack of objectivity, professionalism, and maturity.
It is appropriate to wonder if this business model is being taught in colleges and universities and if so, why:
I once worked for a company that was faltering and floundering financially. Despite being created by a man with a good idea and good intentions the company had fallen on hard times because the CEO at the time (who was not the founder of the company) decided a business model based on an absence of logic and reason was a path to success. Pending failing contradicted this opinion, and it was decided in a moment of common sense that all of the employees should be put to work coming up with a new business plan that would return the company to success.
To make a long story short – that did not happen. The company filed for bankruptcy and was eventually dissolved, its few assets sold off.
Before that happened I was assigned the task of researching successful business people in the State of Colorado and identifying what led to their success. In my research I came across a man named Philip Anschutz, who once held the distinction of being the only billionaire in the State of Colorado for several years. As I read about Mr. Anschutz, setting aside the obvious bias and prejudice presented as objective and professional journalism, I learned several things about how to achieve success and applied them to my life, personally and professionally.
As a gesture of thanks to Mr. Anschutz I would like to suggest that he create one more business certain to add billions to his fortunes: A competitor to Netflix. Make it a company based in quality, unlike Netflix.
Like a growing number of people I am on the verge of terminating my account with Netflix. All but a monopoly where DVDs delivered for home use is concerned; Netflix has decided like my now-former employee that a business model devoid of quality is a path to success. Nine of the ten DVDs sent to me recently for home viewing had to be returned because they were physically damaged and did not work properly. Seven of the nine DVDs returned had to be replaced because they were broken, scratched, and failed work properly when loaded into the DVD player. Five of the seven returned had to be replaced again, and of the five returned none were replaced with working DVDs because, apparently, it is the policy of Netflix not to provide quality service and a quality product after a certain point.
Add the lack of professionalism on the part of the Customer Service Representatives who answer the telephone when the need arises to have a DVD replace and the Netflix experience, increasingly, is not one many want to repeat. And more than a few people who share this unfortunate experience have also commented on the hours the Customer Service Department is available: If you call after 6:00 P.M. Pacific Time (7:00 P.M. Mountain Time) you will receive a recorded message to call back. Given the fact many people work during the day and given the fact they want to watch a DVD after 7:00 P.M. Mountain Time the lack of Customer Service support makes no sense. Additionally there is the matter of DVD availability. Too many people have remarked on how they put a DVD in their queue for Netflix only to be informed there will be a “long wait”. A long wait that may be years in length. Given this delay it may be easily and justifiably interpreted that Netflix is offering something it does not have, which constitutes fraud.
If Mr. Anschutz wants to add to his substantial wealth he should start a competitor to Netflix and contradict the business model of Netflix: Ensure the DVDs available to subscribers are not damaged. Make sure Customer Service is available at a time when customers need assistance and support. Do not advertise something you do not and will not have available. Require your representatives to be professional and mature, which includes civility and courtesy.
Doing so will provide much-needed competition, and given Netflix has no interest presently in changing its way, will likely put Netflix out of business – which is the only future it deserves.
There is at least one allegedly professional news organization in the State of Colorado that has decided terrorism is the same thing as professional journalism. At least one so-called news organization in Colorado has decided that allowing people to establish fake name accounts on Social Media platforms – specifically Disqus – and then threaten others using these accounts is acceptable and supports their definition of community-oriented journalism.
I will not name the supposedly professional news organizations in the State of Colorado that permit this behavior, but I will say this: Any business in Colorado that chooses to do business with these so-called professional journalists support and condone acts of terrorism. I do not business with these journalists/terrorists, and I no longer do business with businesses which do business with these alleged journalists. If you are a business owner in the State of Colorado and you notice your business is dropping off, seriously consider who you do business with. Seriously consider ending your relationship with so-called news organizations which condone and encourage terrorism over actual journalism.