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Combining sports departments

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by SCEditor, Jul 8, 2008.

  1. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    I don't know if this was driven by McClatchy like the Charlotte-Raleigh deal, but Hilton Head and Beaufort's papers have combined their sports department and their sports section.


    They recently laid off a sports designer in Beaufort, but it looks like the rest of the staff will remain intact. The new SE in Beaufort, who hasn't been there very long I think, is bumped down to ASE.
  2. KYSportsWriter

    KYSportsWriter Well-Known Member

    I'd hate to be the odd man out in that deal...
  3. thegrifter

    thegrifter Member

    Wasn't it Beaufort that layed off a designer who just started there months earlier?
  4. Editude

    Editude Active Member

    It's been discussed before, but the San Bernardino and Ontario/Pomona papers combined their sports sections, and the results have not been uniformly successful.
  5. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    Yes. They hired a guy and a few months later let him go.
  6. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Outing alert: The Grifter is Jessica DaSilva
  7. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I like it that "layed off" has just up and become part of the SJ lingo.

    I used it in a Facebook message today and have no clue if the person I sent it to (a journalist) is here or not. They may be sitting there thinking "what an idiot."
  8. MU_was_not_so_hard

    MU_was_not_so_hard Active Member

    Buddy of mine described the new digs, and it sounds like it's actually a really good idea. The rest of the sections will follow suit, and eventually, it sounds like they will be one paper.
    Sports, with Jeff Kidd having worked at both papers, seems like a natural place to start.
  9. bob

    bob Member

    The Patriot Ledger (Quincy, MA) and Brockton Enterprise have a common sports editor and share a lot of content. There doesn't seem to be much of a mission plan. Quincy often uses Brockton stories, but Brockton rarely uses Quincy because their union made a deal that says they have to staff local pro events. Quincy doesn't have that deal, and they sometimes don't staff games. When the Celtics made their playoff run, their Red Sox seat at Fenway was usually empty because they have one guy covering both teams. Quincy also frequently uses content from the Metrowest Daily News in Framingham, another Gatehouse paper.
  10. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    I don't know if it's a good idea; I'm still mixed on it. But they couldn't have gotten anybody better than Jeff Kidd to run it. It actually sounds like it might be costlier, especially with high gas prices. They've got one guy who is covering four private schools that are scattered all over the place. Before, they had somebody in Hilton Head that covered the HH schools and traded with Beaufort if they met up. I do know it will continue to be a strong product as long as Kidd is running it.
  11. fossywriter8

    fossywriter8 Active Member

    OK, I work for much two smaller papers than what seems to be the majority of posters here (metros), so I may have a different take on this.

    Let me get this straight. Two sister papers -- daily papers, I take it -- merge their sports departments and increase their high school coverage to ... 11 teams?!

    My part-time gig is at a small daily in northwest Ohio and my full-time job is at a twice-a-week paper in a nearby town (I'll explain another time in another post, but it does work). The daily paper covers 14 high schools (11 with football) along with a Division II college and a Division III college, all spread out over five counties. One of the stringers also covers Ohio State football (home and away), while we have a few columnists for outdoors, bowling and local racing. The twice-a-week paper covers eight high schools (six of which are the same as the daily paper, and six of which have football), spread out over three counties.
    The daily paper has three full-timers, two part-timers and a pair of stringers. The twice-a-week paper has me and a stringer (forgive the grammar).

    I realize the two papers which just merged probably also cover some pro and D-I college teams, so there's obviously work there. But if the daily paper I work at only published local rec sports and briefs a couple times a week and cut way back on the non-revenue high school sports (I'm not familiar with the area in question, but that pretty much sounds like everything but football and boys basketball) our readers would be righteously pissed off.
    And who cares if they put national box scores, NBA Finals and World Series stuff online? Fans can get that anywhere on the Web. Unless you're staffing the event, leave that stuff off the Internet and use the Web to broaden your own coverage.
  12. SCEditor

    SCEditor Active Member

    Fossy: The Island-Packet has always had what most would consider a bloated staff. The paper previously covered four high schools (and other events, obviously) and had a five-person staff. They now also have small school, USC Beaufort. My shop, similiar size and in a different part of the state, covers nine schools, two Division II schools and other events. We've had a three-person staff (four if you count our oldtimer who covers golf and outdoors).

    The one thing these two papers have as an advantage is that there is A LOT of money down in Hilton Head. I imagine they're doing better than most McClatchy properties.

    It is a curious move. Both sports section seemed to be running fine on their own, but like somebody mentioned, this could be the first step in combining both publications. And if they do that, they'll probably cut some jobs or not fill them through attrition. But that's speculation on my part.
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