News & Tech: Vermont News and Media Buys Three Papers

May 10, 2021

Article by: News & Tech

Vermont News and Media Buys Three Papers

Vermont News and Media is buying the Brattleboro Reformer, Bennington Banner and Manchester Journal (Vermont) from New England Newspapers, the Reformer reports. Software entrepreneur Paul Belogour leads Vermont News and Media Terms of the deal were not made public. The deal is set to take effect May 14. New England Newspapers (Pittsfield, Massachusetts) will still print the papers for a minimum of five years, said the Reformer.

AP Will Be Contributor to Fact Dissemination Platform Repustar

Repustar, a fact dissemination platform, says The Associated Press will become a contributor. Social media users can tag Repustar in posts they wish to question or verify, and receive short  summaries called “Fact Briefs” in reply. Fact Briefs are contributed by non-partisan research and news organizations on the platform, to address common claims across a range of newsworthy topics and designed to counter misinformation swirling on social media, says a news release. Repustar uses proprietary AI-powered tools to identify and supply these Fact Briefs across social networks when needed by users.

“Misleading content that is designed to attract attention and sell ideology is crowding out facts online and leaving the public disoriented,” said Chandran Sankaran, Repustar’s founder and CEO. “Repustar seeks to return facts to firmer ground with a new and engaging platform for contributors who can meet the public need for credible documented sources, and clear, calm explanations. Few organizations know how to do this better than AP, and we are excited to welcome this global news organization as an early contributor to Repustar.”

“AP has a long history of fact-checking and has provided accurate and unbiased news for 175 years,” said Tom Januszewski, vice president of partnerships at AP. “We are constantly seeking new ways to advance the power of facts. This collaboration with Repustar is an opportunity to help readers separate fact from fiction when they encounter confusing claims on social media.” Twitter users can join the growing community of fans of factual information by following @FactSparrow, says a press release. FactSparrow is an AI-powered bot that fetches Fact Briefs from AP and other contributors on the Repustar platform and delivers them into live conversations.

CNHI Buys Transylvania Times

CNHI has bought The Transylvania Times (Brevard, North Carolina) from The Transylvania Times Inc, the paper reported. The deal closed May 6. Terms were not disclosed. CNHI is based in Montgomery, Alabama. It operates 90 community papers, websites and niche publications in 22 Midwest, Southeast, Southwest and Northeast states.“We are honored to be able to continue the journalism and public service legacy of The Transylvania Times in serving the residents and businesses throughout Transylvania County,” said Donna Barrett, president and CEO of CNHI.

Gannett Papers in New Jersey Vote to Unionize; Other Union News

Journalists at three Gannett-owned papers in New Jersey have voted to unionize, the News Guild of New York says and the New York Post reports. The papers are the Bergen Record, the Daily Record in Morris County and the New Jersey Herald in Newton. The vote was 59-4 for the union, says the Post. The union will be named the Record Guild.

In other union-related news, The New York Times reported April 22 that the New York Times Company would not voluntarily recognize a newly formed union of tech and digital staff, telling the group to go to a vote through the National Labor Relations Board. “The Unit Councils of the New York Times Guild and the Wirecutter Union, which together represent nearly 1,400 employees, strongly condemn Meredith Kopit Levien and A.G. Sulzberger’s decision that the company will not voluntarily recognize the Times Tech Guild. We call on the company to reverse this decision and honor the votes our colleagues have already cast,” said a statement from the Unit Councils of the New York Times Guild and the Wirecutter Union.

Journalists at The Kansas City Star have taken a step toward forming the Kansas City News Guild. Members of the union organizing committee presented local management with the request for voluntary recognition after a majority of eligible staffers signed cards signaling their desire to be represented by the Kansas City News Guild, says the guild. A majority of editorial workers at Insider, formerly known as Business Insider, have said that they have organized to join The NewsGuild of New York, the guild says.

St. Maries Gazette Record Sold

Dan and Cindy Hammes, owners of the St. Maries Gazette Record (Idaho), have sold the paper to Jesse and Sasha Mullen of Montana, according to John Thomas Cribb of Cribb, Greene & Cope, who represented the Hammes family in the transaction. The Gazette Record was founded in 1906 and bought by the Hammes family in 1958. Since 1992, Dan and Cindy Hammes have operated the paper. Jesse and Sasha Mullen are owners of the Bitterroot Star, Silver State Post and Philipsburg Mail newspapers in Montana as well as the Browsing Bison bookstore chain.

Hearst Magazines Offering Buyouts

Hearst Magazines is offering voluntary buyouts to all its sales and marketing staff, says the New York Post. “While our goal is to solicit enough volunteers, it is possible that involuntary departures may occur later this spring,” Hearst Magazines president Debi Chirichella said in a memo to employees, according to the Post. The voluntary offer is expected to go to some 600 of the 2,200 staff in the magazine division, the digital ad agency iCrossing and the branded content group called HearstMade, says the Post.  Town & Country UK magazine will cease publication as part of the cost-cutting moves, City A.M. reports.

Hearst publishes Cosmopolitan, Elle, Men’s Health and Car and Driver, among other titles. It also has ownership in cable networks such as A&E, History, Lifetime and ESPN, 33 TV stations, newspapers including the Houston Chronicle and the San Francisco Chronicle and other businesses. In other Hearst news, Fitch Group, a financial information services operation owned by Hearst, has bought CreditSights, a provider of independent credit research to the global financial community.

imPRESSions Buys Central Graphics

imPRESSions Worldwide has bought Central Graphics (Romeoville, Illinois) in an asset sale. Included in the sale is the parts inventory and other business assets. The two companies have engaged in joint projects for over 25 years. When the owner, Jim Crivellone, decided to retire, he offered to imPRESSions Worldwide President Tom Loesch first right to purchase. Loesch says that the organization will retain a footprint in Chicago and has hired on two parts and service people from Central Graphics to continue to provide uninterrupted service to the current customer base.

In other imPRESSions news, Worzalla Publishing has bought a Sunday 2000 web press for its facility in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. To meet the growing demand for book production, the company consulted with imPRESSions, who’s supplying and installing the commercial press. The eight-unit press will be installed with Contiweb SC splicers and ECOCOOL gas dryers with chills, both PCF1.1 and PFF2 folders, QTI auto-registration and Omnicon press controls. imPRESSions Worldwide has headquarters in Burlington, Washington, and a service facility in Tupelo, Mississippi.

More News

  • As the Boston Globe’s print circulation goes on falling at the industry average of 12% year-over-year, the Boston Herald’s print circulation is falling more than twice as fast as the Globe’s, “raising questions about how much longer the city’s second-largest daily can hang on,” reports the Boston Business Journal.
  • The Daily Advertiser building (Lafayette, Louisiana) is among the Gannett-owned buildings on the market. A listing puts the asking price at $6.5 million. The printing press in the building was shuttered in summer 2020. The paper is now printed in Baton Rouge in an arrangement with The Advocate, that paper reports.
  • Singapore Press Holdings said it’s transferring its media business to a not-for-profit entity, according to The Business Times, a financial daily owned by Singapore Press Holdings.


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