Monday, January 19, 2009

News-Leader looking for "city hall watchdog"

The Springfield News-Leader is seeking a "city hall watchdog," according to an ad placed Jan. 13 with

The News-Leader Media Group in Springfield, Mo., is looking for a reporter who is energetic, passionate about holding elected officials accountable, and is a critical thinker who can create enterprising coverage for our print and Web editions.

We are a community-focused news organization that creates deep local content for a daily and Sunday newspaper, weekly newspapers, glossy magazines, several Web sites, a mobile site and a news-based text messaging service. The ideal candidate has a track record of looking beyond meetings and press releases for news, is focused on the impact of events on real people not bureaucrats, has experience reporting through documents and data, and understands that occasionally every watchdog needs to do more than growl.

We’re a Gannett media company and at the forefront of developing content for multiple print and online platforms. Our reporters create multimedia content – including audio clips, podcasts, videos, photos and photo galleries – and interact with our readers/users through blogs, online forums and beat advisory groups. We’re constantly reinventing our newsroom, so you’ll need to be energized by innovation and change.

Like to shine light into dark corners? Have a nose for news and not allergic to the 24/7 news cycle? Want one of our best, toughest beats? We should talk.


Anonymous said...

Good luck, hope you get the job.

Anonymous said...

"reinventing our newsroom"

Is that another way of saying "we have discriminatory hiring practices and fire some of our best employees"?

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you noticed this job ad. Have you realized that, since its recent layoff of 19 people in the newsroom, the News-Leader has now advertised to fill three positions?

Why didn't the News-Leader hang on to a few of those 19 laid off people to fill these jobs? Why not keep your loyal employees working for you instead of tossing them out and then looking for some brand new people?

They say it costs less to retain employees vs. dealing with turnover, costs associated with hiring, orientation, etc.

Sure, these positions require some non-traditional skills -- skills that you don't usually learn with a degree in journalism (the web editor type stuff, html, etc.). At least, this stuff wasn't regular academia when I graduated from college not too long ago.

But wouldn't it have been nice to see Sarah Overstreet or one of the other 18 laid off people come back in a new role, with some new skills added to the mix, rather than 19 people canned?

Randy said...

To the first anonymous: Not a chance, I would never do anything to deprive you from reading what you apparently cannot live without.

Anonymous said...

I hear you get a week's vacation right off the bat!

Anonymous said...

Could it be that the lay-offs were a nice way of saying, "We really don't need you, we want someone we think can write better?"

Since when should a person be hired for life? Other than teachers that receive tenure; businesses, especially in Missouri, with the employ at will,have the right to replace employees (even at greater cost) to run and advance their businesses.

Anonymous said...

Only four of the 19 people who were sent packing came from the newsroom:

Overstreet, the columnist

a copy/design editor

a graphics/copy editor

and the features sections editor

A reporter and copy editor have since left the paper. So these jobs fill those openings...

Anonymous said...

To ANON 10:03 -- No, it was the News-Leader's (Gannett's) way of saying, "We want someone who is younger and less experienced and who, therefore, will cost us less in pay as well as less in grief from city officials and the Chamber of Commerce, because this new hire won't know how to dig up any real dirt."

Anonymous said...

News-Leader executive editor Don Wyatt is looking for a lapdog, not a watchdog.

Anonymous said...

And the lapdog better have a funny sounding last name and be a member of a minority group.