Aiello, Redux Redux

We were going to stop taking shots at Wendy Aiello because she invited us to sit at her table at the Denver Press Club’s annual Gridiron Show (and because Walt kept eyeing us with a “I’m-not-afraid-to-stick-this-fork-in-your-throat” look), but then the entertainment was so godawful* we decided she was fair game anyway.

So imagine our glee when Wendy appeared in this morning’s Bill Husted column. Unfortunately, there really wasn’t much to make fun of. Successful restaurant launch. Placido Domingo. Big write-up in the News. No “PR Princess” comments. But after being a little optimistic with our over/under on Wendy Aiello mentions for both Bill and Penny Parker, we’re taking any mentions we can find. And we’re still gunning for you, Wendy (but please don’t mention that to Walt).

*We enjoyed Andrew Hudson’s band with that skinny lead singer guy

MediaNews Group Calls MediaNews Group Clueless

Aldo Svaldi at the Denver Post gets some serious reporter street cred for writing an article about his paper’s circulation drop that has resulted in a VP from his publisher’s company writing a scathing letter to the editor. And how badly does the Post not want you to read Aldo’s piece? Click the link to the original story in the VP’s rebuttal and see where it takes you. Not to Aldo’s piece. And good luck finding the original story linked anywhere else on the Post’s Web site. Mark Harden at the DBJ and Fitz & Jen at Editor & Publisher have more details.

Westword: Kendrick’s ‘Steady, Reliable and Dull’ Act Never Caught On with Denver Viewers

Michael Roberts at Westword weighs in on 9News’ curious decision to dump half its top-rated anchor team. Meanwhile, 9News news director Patti Dennis is blaming tough economic times for the decision not to renew Bob Kendrick’s contract (as if his contract was anywhere near those of castmates Adele Arakawa, Kathy Sabine and Drew Soicher), and she says she has “no idea” who Adele Arakawa’s co-anchor will be (or whether she will even have one) going forward. If anyone sees Ernie Bjorkman delivering a bouquet of flowers to Dennis, let us know.

Newspaper Update, Sponsored by Zoloft

Where to begin?

  • The venerable Christian Science Monitor is moving nearly all of its news operation online to save money.
  • A coalition of Northeast newspapers and CNN are fighting to offer wire stories to papers that are unhappy with the Associated Press’ high price tag.
  • Gannett’s newspaper division will cut another 10 percent of its staff in a next round of layoffs.
  • Moody’s Investors Service may downgrade its stellar rating of the Post Co. 

Denver PR Jobs

Among those hiring this week are the Colorado Association of School Boards, MWH Global, Raytheon, RES, Starz, Synergy Home Care and Western Union. And if you’re looking to get out of the state, you might consider Advent Solar in New Mexico, the Greater Albuquerque (N.M.) Association of Realtors and Union Telephone/Union Wireless in scenic Wyoming.

Denver Magazine Proves Us Wrong

We put the over/under on Denver Magazine at six issues, and Jay Daignault reminds us that it is now at seven issues and counting. After the collapse of Shine, we were skeptical about Denver Magazine’s chances, and while there have been some turbulent times (replacing Dahlia Jean Weinstein as editor), there have been some good times as well (snagging the exclusive Barack and Michelle Obama interview leading up to the DNC). Here’s hoping that Denver Magazine rides out the economic downturn and becomes the yang to 5280‘s yin. Click here if you want to subscribe.

Denver Post May Go International – But Not in the Good Way

If you are a Denver Post copyeditor or graphic artist, it may be time to give you union rep a quick buzz. Post publisher Dean Singleton told the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association that papers should explore outsourcing domestically or internationally for nearly every aspect of their operations. He pointed to copyediting and design jobs that could easily be outsourced overseas, noting, “In today’s world, whether your desk is down the hall or around the world, from a computer standpoint, it doesn’t matter.” USA Today has the details.

Post Endorses Obama; News Decides to Forego Endorsements

The Rocky Mountain News, widely expected to endorse Sen. John McCain for president, instead decides that endorsing political candidates no longer fit with its editorial philosophy: 

“In the end we’ll leave it to you to come to your own conclusion, trusting that’s what you want and believing this newspaper’s editorial page can be most valuable to you if it helps you reach an informed decision, with an emphasis on informed. After all, ultimately that’s our job. It’s not to pick presidents, senators or representatives.”

The Denver Post, for its part, has now endorsed Sen. Barack Obama for president.

Top Newspaper Websites for September

September was a very good month for newspaper Websites, thanks in part to the 2008 election and the financial meltdown. Here’s a list of the 30 most-trafficked sites during September, according to Editor & Publisher:

Website — Visits — Increase — 20,068,000 — 37% — 12,956,000 — 43% — 11,439,000 — 33%
LA Times — 10,022,000 — 102%
Wall Street Journal Online — 9,047,000 — 94% — 8,610,000 — 122% Francisco Chronicle — 5,129,000 — 18%
New York Post — 4,815,000 — 98%
Politico — 4,605,000 — 219%
Chicago Tribune — 4,558,000 — 46%

Daily News Online Edition — 4,439,000 — 56% – The Dallas Morning News — 3,777,000 — 115%
Chicago Sun-Times — 3,676,000 — 64%
The Houston Chronicle — 3,396,000 — 51%
Newsday — 3,051,000 — 13%

International Herald Tribune — 2,940,000 — 121%
The Washington Times — 2,410,000 — 78% — 2,332,000 — 73%
The Seattle Times — 2,256,000 — 22%
Anchorage Daily News — 2,190,000 — 928%

Atlanta Journal-Constitution — 2,180,000 — 14%
Boston Herald — 2,153,000 — 118%
Baltimore Sun — 2,136,000 — 30%
Star Tribune — 2,134,000 — 50% — 2,086,000 — 70%

Seattle Post-Intelligencer — 2,070,000 — 17%
Detroit Free Press — 1,994,000 — 62% — 1,964,000 — 64% — 1,895,000 — 64%
Village Voice Media — 1,745,000 — (-13%)

‘Judge Naughtyham’ to Step Down; Diamond Cabaret Cuts Staff

It is a sad day in Denver. Chief U.S. District Judge Edward W. Nottingham Jr. appears poised to resign his position in order to head off a judicial probe into his ethics, or lack thereof. Nottingham presided over many high-profile Colorado cases, including the trial of former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio. But he is best known as the judge who admitted he might have spent $3,000 over two days at the Diamond Cabaret but that he was “too drunk to remember much of it,” and for having his name allegedly appear on a list of clients for a high-end, Denver-based call girl syndicate.

Ernie Bjorkman to Cat: ‘Turn Your Head and Cough’

Here at the Denver PR Blog, we are committed to covering Ernie Bjorkman the way Penny Parker covers Wendy Aiello Trista and Ryan (seriously, Penny, we wish them the best but their 15 minutes of fame was up four-and-a-half years ago. Let it go). So in that spirit, we offer you the following “Ernie Update” sponsored by Andrew Hudson’s Jobs List, Denver’s leading purveyor of marketing-related jobs:

Ernie is headed to his mountain home in South Fork to become a veterinary technician.

Give Us $31K, and We’ll Give You the World

Despite what political consultants think, we flacks know that we are the King-makers (and Queen-makers) on the American political landscape. Without us, Sarah Palin is handling ribbon-cuttings at the new Wasilla Piggly Wiggly. With us, she’s a half-dozen points from vice president. So let’s be sure to use our powers for good, alright?

(Hat tip: Mark Harden at the DBJ)

Post: Ernie Bjorkman, 25 Other Staffers Let Go at CW2

The details of the CW2 layoffs are starting to emerge, and Joanne Ostrow at the Denver Post reports that more than 25 staffers are being let go. Anchor Ernie Bjorkman, a fixture of Denver television news for 26 years, is the highest-profile employee to be let go, although he will remain on the air for the next three months.

UPDATE: And, gracious to the end, Fox 31’s Dennis Leonard (yes, the guy who discovered John Mayer, Maroon 5 and Five for Fighting) has wasted no time marginalizing Ernie Bjorkman. Here is Ernie’s CW2 bio prior to the layoff announcement, and here is the new-and-improved version.

CW2 News Staff Gets Foxed; Layoffs ‘Significant’

We noted last month that the Fox31/CW2 news “marketing agreement” would likely result in layoffs, and today we have learned those layoffs will be “significant.” A CW2 official confirmed that news director Carl Bilek was among those notified today they are being let go, but the official refused to discuss whether any on-air personalities have been affected. Mark Harden at the DBJ has the details.

New Denver Ad Club Hosts ‘The (Agency) Dating Game’

The New Denver Ad Club is sponsoring its version of “The Dating Game,” where local client and agency representatives will talk about “what makes a match made in heaven and how to avoid bad breakups.” Panelists include employees from MillerCoors, Village Inn, Rainbow Rewards, Cactus, TDA and The Media Team, and Bob Taber of Thomas Taber & Drazen will moderate. Details are:

Thursday, October 9, 6-8 p.m.
Denver Newspaper Agency Auditorium
101 West Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
$25 for NDAC members; $40 for others
(join or renew a membership before or at the event to get in free)