A weekly newsletter for members of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, including news, training opportunities, free content and job openings.
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Wisconsin Newspaper Association

Weekly Briefing
Thursday, March 8, 2018

Controlled blast clears explosives

A loud boom and burst of flame signaled bomb technicians had ignited a “controlled detonation” intended to destroy explosive chemicals inside a Beaver Dam apartment Wednesday afternoon. Bomb experts descended on the apartment following an explosion Monday that left one person dead and displaced residents in several surrounding buildings. This photo by Chris Higgins appeared on the front page of today's Daily Citizen in Beaver Dam.

The WNA features work produced by Wisconsin's photojournalists in each issue of the Weekly Briefing. Have a photo you'd like to share? Email the photo, credit and cutline information to

Online registration for the 2018 WNA Convention & Trade Show will launch Friday, March 9 at Visit the website to see the current speaker lineup, too, with new speakers being added daily!

Visit the Convention Website
Reserve your room

Take advantage of our discounted room rate during the 2018 WNA Convention & Trade Show! The WNA has a block of rooms available for $119 per night at the Sheraton Madison Hotel, 706 John Nolen Drive, Madison. The deadline to reserve your room at this special rate is March 28.

The convention will be held April 12-13 at the Sheraton.

Book your room ►
Next week is Sunshine Week!

WNA members are encouraged to participate in Sunshine Week, an annual nationwide initiative to promote open government. This year's Sunshine Week runs March 11-17.

The goal of Sunshine Week is to spark a nationwide discussion about the critical importance of access to public information. The initiative is sponsored by the American Society of News Editors and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.

Newspapers can promote Sunshine Week by publishing stories, editorials, columns, cartoons and graphics highlighting government openness. ASNE and RCFP have made several items available in an online toolkit.

Read more about Sunshine Week ►
Open the 2018 Sunshine Week Toolkit ►
Celebrate Sunshine Week with journalism trivia March 15 in Madison

Journalists and friends of journalism: dust off your media history and “All The President’s Men” knowledge, and join the Madison chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for a journalism-themed Trivia Night during National Sunshine Week. Trivia night will be held from 7-9:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 15 at Argus Bar and Grill, 123 E. Main St. in the basement, with trivia run by League Trivia of Madison. Trivia will start at 7:30 p.m.

Newsrooms and friends of journalism are encouraged to form teams of up to six players. To register, please email with your team name, team members, and how you’ll pay. Cost of entry is $10 per team member.

Read more ►
Freedom of Information Council names Opee winners

Gov. Scott Walker, several journalists and a courageous private-sector employee are among those honored by the 2017-18 Openness Awards, or Opees, bestowed annually by the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council. The state Legislature, meanwhile, is being singled out for negative recognition. The Wisconsin Newspaper Association is a proud supporter of the Opees.

Read more ►
Pulse Survey results now available

In 2017, the WNA partnered with Pulse Research to conduct a comprehensive shopping survey of newspaper readers across the state. Thanks to promotional efforts by our members, we exceeded the required sample size and the survey results are available for your use.

The Pulse of America survey captures shopping and purchasing intentions and spans 550-plus business types, as well as several thousand products and services. These results can help you identify potential clients and develop effective marketing plans for your advertisers.

To request access to the survey results, contact WNA Communications Director James Debilzen at

Request access to the Pulse Survey results ►
Get the scoop on Wisconsin's water

The Wisconsin Humanities Council will host "Wisconsin's Water Future," a half-day workshop on April 26 that will provide reporters with background information, resources and tips for covering news about Wisconsin's water. The workshop will discuss the state's rich water heritage, issues regarding water quantity and quality, how to find data to develop stories and more. The workshop, part of the council's "Beyond the Headlines" series, is sponsored in part by the WNA. It will be moderated by Ron Seely, an award-winning science and environmental journalist who wrote for the Wisconsin State Journal for nearly 35 years. There is no fee to register for the workshop.

Read more and register ►
Nominations sought for NNA's Amos, McKinney & Phillips Awards

The National Newspaper Association is seeking nominations for the Amos, McKinney & Phillips Awards, which are the highest honors awarded to working and retired newspapermen and women who have exhibited distinguished service to the community press.
For more information and forms, visit

Read more ►
Congressman introduces Journalism Competition and Preservation Act

In an effort to ensure fairness and preserve critical access to trusted, high-quality news, Congressman David Cicilline (D-RI), the ranking member of the House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, introduced the “Journalism Competition and Preservation Act of 2018” on Wednesday. The bill would incorporate a limited safe harbor into current antitrust laws, providing news publishers the ability to collectively negotiate with big tech platforms, such as Facebook and Google, on important factors – such as the quality, accuracy, and attribution of news sources – that underpin their livelihoods and affect the public’s continued ability to access news from trustworthy sources.

Read more ►
Journal Sentinel to host MPI's 'Great Bosses Boot Camp'

Management expert Jill Geisler will lead a one-day interactive workshop on how to be a great newsroom boss during the Mid-America Press Institute's "Great Bosses Boot Camp" March 24 at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The cost is $40 for MPI members and $50 for nonmembers.

Read More ►
  • HOTEL ROOMS AVAILABLE: There is a room block at the Westin Milwaukee for $119 a night plus taxes and free internet. If interested, please contact Pam Dempsey at
Why you should ask permission before embedding someone's tweets in a story

KNIGHT FOUNDATION | A new report from the Knight Foundation explores how Black Twitter, Feminist Twitter, and Asian-American Twitter interact with news, and offers suggestions for how news organizations and journalists can strengthen their relationships with these communities. One of the report’s suggestions is asking for permission before embedding a user’s tweets, and even paying for tweets that they consider “intellectual property.”

Read More ►
New regional sports editor joins Hometown News

Cara Dempski joined the Lake Mills Leader and Cambridge News/Deerfield Independent as regional sports editor on March 5. She hails from Elk Mound, near Eau Claire, and left behind the seven-person office of DeWitt Media to join Hometown News Limited Partnership, which owns the Leader and News/IndependentWhile working for the DeWitts, Dempski covered all athletics at four schools – Boyceville, Colfax, Elk Mound and Glenwood City – and served as a government and local news reporter in addition to her feature-writing and sports duties. Prior to that, Dempski worked in human services for approximately 10 years.

Read more ►
State Journal sports staff wins national awards

The Wisconsin State Journal sports staff has won a pair of national awards for its work in 2017 in judging by the Associated Press Sports Editors organization. The State Journal, competing in the category for newspapers with a print circulation of 30,000 to 75,000, earned a Top 10 distinction for its daily sports sections in judging by editors from around the country. The newspaper also won Top 10 honors in the special section category for its preview of the University of Wisconsin's men's basketball season.

Read more ►
Better Writing With Bart
Details, details, details ...

If facts and figures are the frame of a news story, then details are the art that reside within, writes columnist Bart Pfankuch. Proper use of details makes readers see people, places and things in their heads. They heighten understanding, create specificity and can add life, emotion or humor to a piece. They display the uniqueness, unusualness and sometimes hilarity of life and all its glorious characters. They can take an article from interesting to unforgettable.

Read more ►
The Wisconsin Newspaper Association has partnered with various organizations to provide free content to members. If you have questions regarding the content below, please contact WNA Communications Director James Debilzen at 608-283-7623.
The Capitol Report

The Capitol Report provides a weekly analysis of issues being debated in Wisconsin state government. The column is underwritten by the WNA and produced exclusively for its members by, a nonpartisan, Madison-based news service that specializes in coverage of government and politics. The byline should read “By”. Proper attribution to is appreciated.

EDITORS: Please include the following tagline at the end of the column – “The Capitol Report is written by editorial staff at, a nonpartisan, Madison-based news service that specializes in coverage of government and politics, and is distributed for publication by members of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association.”

Column for the Week of March 12
Attorney general contest a ‘sleeper race’ in busy election year
Download column ►

Discover Wisconsin

A weekly column written by the staff of Discover Wisconsin highlights things to do and see throughout the State of Wisconsin. The column is accompanied by photos for use in print and online. 

Column for the Week of March 12
Stops Along the Driftless Wisconsin Wine & Cheese Trail

Download column ►
Fiscal Facts

Weekly facts from the Wisconsin Policy Forum, the state’s leading resource for nonpartisan state and local government research and civic education.

NOTE TO EDITORS: “Fiscal Facts” replaces “WISTAX Facts,” which was produced by the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance. The Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance and Public Policy Forum merged on Jan. 1, 2018, and is now the Wisconsin Policy Forum.

Column for the Week of March 12
Wisconsin Voter Turnout Usually Dips for Spring Elections
Download column ►
Online Media Campus is a partnership of the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association, the Wisconsin Newspaper Association Foundation and press associations throughout the United States and Canada, offering high-quality, low-cost online training to media professionals. The cost is $35 per webinar. Webinar packages are also available.

ATTENTION WISCONSIN JOURNALISM STUDENTS AND ADVISERS: Is there an Online Media Campus webinar you’d like to take? The WNA Foundation will sponsor your registration! Contact Jana Shepherd at to register.
Upcoming Webinars
Thursday, March 22 at 1 p.m.
Understanding Analytics
Presenter: Sherri Horton, data scientist for GateHouse Media
Register ►
Thursday, April 19 at 1 p.m.
Making Digital Audio Part of Your Daily Routine
Presenter: Megan Rohrbacher, Portsmouth Herald/Edge Radio
Register ►
Archive Spotlight
Online Media Campus offers access to more than 200 archived training webinars! Check out the featured archived webinars below or see what's available in the editorial, revenue, digital age, management, technology and circulation categories.
What Works and What Doesn't Work for Site Design
Presenter: Natalie (Talia) Stroud, associate professor of communication studies and journalism and director of the Center for Media Engagement at the University of Texas at Austin
Register ►
Advertising is NOT Marketing! Tips from the Media Marketer
Presenter: Stuart Arnold, founder of Strategic Planning Specialists
Register ►
Maximizing Your Digital Revenue – Don't Leave Money on the Table!
Presenter: Max Freund, multimedia reporter, web developer and digital news product manager for The Gazette Company in Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Register ►
As part of the WNA’s partnership with the Local Media Association, LMA offers special discounted rates on many benefits including webinars to our members. Webinars for association partner members are $29 each ($59 for non-members). See all LMA webinars at
Upcoming Webinars
Tuesday, April 17 at 2 p.m.
Beyond the Click – Other measurable actions that should be part of your digital campaigns
Presenter: Brock Berry, founder and CEO of Adcellerant
Register ►
WNA members get a discounted rate of $15 per Inland Press Association webinar. Non members are welcome at $25 per webinar. See all Inland Press Association webinars at
Upcoming Webinars
Tuesday, March 13 at 2 p.m.
Using all your sales tools: Selling effective multi-channel campaigns
Presenter: Greg Swanson, partner/business development leader, and Destination Commerce Corp.’s OneBoat community CMS
Register ►

There is no charge for members of the WNA to place help wanted ads on the WNA's website. Use the submission form on the website to post your ad or submit your ad by email to Ads will appear online for 30 days and are included in the Weekly Briefing.

Current Openings
Higher Education Reporter – Wisconsin State Journal
Editor – Amery Free Press
Reporter – Waukesha Freeman
Account Executive – Kenosha News
Lifestyle Editor – Sun Prairie Star
Circulation Director – The Journal Times, Racine
Managing Editor – Advertiser Community News, Seymour
Reporter – Ozaukee Press, Port Washington
Account Executive – Kenosha News
Reporter – Conley Media, West Bend
Managing Editor – Lodi Enterprise & Poynette Press
Visit WNA Career's page ►
Submit a job listing ►
Need to get rid of an old bundle tying machine, replace a worn out piece of equipment or sell your publication? Wisconsin Newspaper Association members are welcome to place “for sale” or “items wanted” ads in the Weekly Briefing and on the Buy-Sell-Trade page of the WNA's website for free. Submit your ads by email to
Submit a Buy-Sell-Trade listing ►
For Sale

Letterpress engravings, wood type, California job case tray – Golden Members Dave and Gretchen Skoloda have downsized so there’s no wall space for their collection of letterpress engravings, wood type and a California job case tray. We have about two dozen examples of wood type and a dozen or so engravings. Make an offer to or 608 781 7502.

Small town community newspaper for sale. The Marion Advertiser has published weekly without interruption since 1895. It is now time to turn the business over to someone else. Owner has been with the business since 1967 and along with his wife, has owned it since 1985. Currently run as a mom and pop business with a part time salesman. Good cash flow from a 16 page broadsheet with nearly 1900 subscribers plus around 200 over the counter sales each week. If you are interested, please contact Dan at

Printing equipment for sale – Wisconsin Newspress, Inc. 113 E. Mill St., Plymouth, WI, 920-893-6411 ext. 29; has the following printing equipment for sale:
  • 2013 Cheshire 7000 with 2″ Videojet addressing head, computer and software. Asking $15,000
  • 2006 Cheshire 7000 with 2″ Videojet addressing head, computer and software. Asking $7,500
  • 2013 Bunn 1691 tying machine. $2000
  • Bunn 1691 tying machine. $1000
  • 2000 Screen Katana 5055 FTP imagesetter, Xitron Navigator RIP. $2500
  • 2001 Screen Katana 5055 FTP imagesetter, Xitron Navigator RIP, no dongle. $2000
  • Southern Lithoplate subtractive aluminum plates 36x24x.008 $1.75 ea. 1800 available
  • Southern LIthoplate plate developer 5 gal. cubes $40 ea. 10 available
  • Southern LIthoplate plate finisher 5 gal. cubes $40 ea. 14 available
  • Nu-Arc Flip-Top 6000 watt plate exposure machines $500 2 available.
  • Nu-Arc Flip-Top 3000 watt plate exposure machine $500.
  • Graham plate processor $500

Copy waxer – We are searching for a Daige-type copy waxer in working order. We occasionally use the waxer for mocking up a special section. Contact or call Gary Ridderbusch at Vilas County News-Review at 715-479-4421.

Electrical parts (sensors) for a hand-fed Auto Labe labeling machine, or if anyone has a hand-fed labeler they would like to get rid of, the Courier Press in Prairie du Chien is looking. Please call (608) 326-2441. Ask for Steve.

The Weekly Briefing is published Thursdays by the staff of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association.

Created by and for Wisconsin’s newspapers, WNA exists to strengthen the newspaper industry, enhance public understanding of the role of newspapers, and protect basic freedoms of press, speech and the free flow of information.

Have news you want to share in The Weekly Briefing? Contact James Debilzen at 608-283-7623 or
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