AAN News

Heralded iPhone Developer Working on App for AAN Members

Small Society, the company whose work on iPhone applications for the Obama campaign, Whole Foods and Zipcar has earned wide recognition and praise in the growing app development field, is partnering with Pre1 Software and the parent company of Willamette Week and Santa Fe Reporter to develop an iPhone publishing platform which they hope to make available to AAN publishers by late 2009. "We think this may be the killer app for alt weeklies," Willamette Week editor Mark Zusman says. (FULL STORY)
AAN News  |  09-09-2009  1:46 pm  |  Industry News

TIME: Willamette Week Festival an 'Authentic American Experience'new

WW's annual MusicFest NW "is probably the most popular music festival you've never heard of," TIME magazine writes in a special package.
TIME  |  07-16-2009  8:58 am  |  Honors & Achievements

AAN Members Pick Up Dozens of SPJ Awards in Pacific Northwestnew

Five alt-weeklies won a number of awards in the Oregon and Southwest Washington chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists' 2008 Excellence in Journalism Awards. Among non-daily newspapers in Oregon, Willamette Week took home 10 first-place awards, while Eugene Weekly took home one. Among alt-weeklies in the Northwest region, WW won six first-place awards; Seattle Weekly won four; the Missoula Independent won two; and the Pacific Northwest Inlander won one.
Society of Professional Journalists, Oregon and Southwest Washington Chapter  |  06-01-2009  8:27 am  |  Honors & Achievements

Willamette Week Webmaster Invited to Prestigious TED Conferencenew

WW's new, MIT-grad webmaster Seth Raphael leads a double life as a technologically savvy magician, MagicSeth, who performs "tricks involving telepathic Google searches and psychic digital cameras." It is in that capacity that he's been selected as one of 25 fellows for 2009 TED Global, which will be held this summer in Oxford. Raphael will give a three-minute presentation to the invitation-only crowd, which is slated to include speakers like Naomi Klein and black-hole specialist Andrea Ghez. "I've never been nervous before," he says. "I get on stage in front of hundreds of people. I applied to MIT. I wing everything. But this made me nervous."
Willamette Week  |  05-26-2009  3:04 pm  |  Honors & Achievements

Recession's Latest Victim: Hipsters?new

Matt Singer, formerly a staffer at the Ventura County Reporter, moved up the coast to Portland in October with hopes of landing another alt-weekly editorial gig. The Wall Street Journal reports that Singer's quest has been less-than-successful, and uses that anecdote as a springboard into a piece that details how cities like Portland are dealing with a continual influx of hipsters and fewer and fewer jobs. (A story BusinessInsider.com summarized as: "Hipsters In Portland Can't Get Jobs Writing For Alt-Weekly Newspapers.") Willamette Week gets a shout-out in the story as well, for its new "Restaurant Apocalypse" column, which keeps track of the city's myriad restaurant closings.
Wall Street Journal  |  05-19-2009  9:43 am  |  Industry News

Nicholas Kristof: Willamette Week Plays an 'Important Watchdog Role'new

In a blog post on the struggling newspaper business, the New York Times columnist points to WW as "an example of how a small paper" has successfully undertaken investigative and watchdog journalism. But Kristof seems to think the Portland alt-weekly is a rare bird: He adds that small news operations -- especially websites -- can't "undertake major investigations, partly because they're enormously expensive with uncertain results."
The New York Times  |  04-06-2009  8:17 am  |  Industry News

Willamette Week To Play Role in 'Ramona and Beezus'new

The upcoming film based on Beverly Cleary's classic children's book series will be set in Portland, but it is being shot in Vancouver, British Columbia. So how do the set designers hope to replicate Portland in Canada? With Willamette Week news boxes, of course. "The set design department contacted WW publisher Richard Meeker last week, requesting permission to create replicas of WW's blue boxes to use in their streetscapes," the alt-weekly reports. The film may also feature Ramona's dad looking for work via WW's classifieds.
Willamette Week  |  03-18-2009  8:38 am  |  Industry News

Willamette Week Introduces Cost-Cutting Measuresnew

The Portland, Ore., alt-weekly was the latest to announce company-wide salary reductions yesterday. Effective March 16, staff pay will be reduced by 8 percent, while owners Mark Zusman and Richard Meeker will reduce their own pay by 25 percent. The move was made to keep the paper profitable for the balance of 2009. At the same meeting, Meeker, who is WW's publisher, announced that this week's paper was the largest since November and that ad sales for the spring appear ahead of budget.
Willamette Week  |  03-13-2009  8:54 am  |  Industry News

Willamette Week Critic Wins New York Times Oscar Ballotingnew

Aaron Mesh guessed correctly the winners in 22 of the 24 Academy Award categories, missing only on best foreign-language film and original score. That put him ahead of "tens of thousands" of other people and made him the winner of the Times' interactive Oscar prediction ballot.
Willamette Week | The New York Times  |  02-24-2009  9:44 am  |  Honors & Achievements

Attorney Sues Willamette Week for Defamationnew

Portland attorney Robert L. Wolf's case boils down to this: Yes, I had sex with a 16-year-old girl, but she wasn't brain damaged. According to The Oregonian, Wolf claims that Willamette Week published stories about his 1988 incident with a minor that "falsely referred to the girl as 'brain damaged.'" Wolf says he demanded a retraction and editor Mark Zusman agreed in 1996 to eliminate references to brain damage in WW's subsequent coverage of the case, but that in March 2004, the paper published a story reporting that the girl had suffered "neurological damage." Wolf is asking for up to $58 million for alleged defamation, false light, breach of contract, fraud and intentional infliction of severe emotional distress. The Oregonian notes that "(t)he statute of limitations may have run out on some of those claims, because the article was published nearly five years ago."
The Oregonian  |  02-10-2009  12:08 pm  |  Legal News

Newsweek Does Tick-Tock on Willamette Week's Sam Adams Scoopnew

"After last week, Portland's politicians may think twice about trying to put one over" on Willamette Week's Pulitzer-winning reporter Nigel Jaquiss, according to Newsweek reporter Winston Ross. On Jan. 19, Jaquiss broke the news that Portland mayor Sam Adams had sex with an 18-year-old legislative intern and then lied about it. Newsweek notes that WW trumped other news outlets that were pursuing the story: "Jaquiss's scoop is significant not only because it represents the second huge political figure his journalism has humbled in a period of four years, but also because of whom he beat out to get the story: the much larger and much more heavily financed Oregonian."
Newsweek  |  02-04-2009  11:38 am  |  Industry News

Willamette Week Raises Nearly $850K for Local Nonprofitsnew

Publisher Richard Meeker reports that 3,902 people made 8,419 donations totaling $806,581.81 to WW's 2008 Give!Guide, an annual program that supports local nonprofits and encourages the philanthropic impulse among readers 35 and under. When combined with the $4,000 in prizes from WW and $16,000 in prize money from a local research and consulting firm, the total raised this year for 55 Portland-area nonprofits was $826,581.81. Meeker says that's a 60 percent increase over last year and almost 40 times what the Give!Guide raised when it debuted four years ago.
Willamette Week  |  01-28-2009  9:31 am  |  Honors & Achievements

Portland Mayor Decides Not to Resignnew

One week after Sam Adams first admitted to Willamette Week that he had sex with an 18-year-old legislative intern and then lied about it, the newly elected mayor says he'll be going back to work today. MORE ADAMS: The Portland Mercury argued this weekend that Adams should stay; the Oregonian wonders if Portland can move on; and the New York Times looks at a city in "turmoil."
Willamette Week  |  01-26-2009  9:12 am  |  Industry News

Willamette Week Reporter Responds to Criticism on Sam Adams Scandalnew

Portland city commissioner Amanda Fritz and University of Oregon journalism ethics professor Tom Bivins both raise questions about whether the public is being served by Nigel Jaquiss' expose revealing that Portland Mayor Sam Adams had a sexual relationship with 18-year-old Beau Breedlove in 2005. But Jaquiss, who won a Pulitzer in 2005 for an investigation exposing a former Oregon governor's sexual misconduct with a 14-year-old girl, says the criticism is misguided. "This is not a story about sex, and it's not a story about sexual preferences," he tells Oregon Public Broadcasting. "This is a story about a politician who has lied, and who has then had to deal with that vulnerability."
Oregon Public Broadcasting  |  01-22-2009  9:32 am  |  Industry News

Willamette Week Breaks Story of Mayor's Relationship with Teennew

On Monday, the paper published Nigel Jaquiss' expose revealing that Portland Mayor Sam Adams, contrary to his earlier denials, confessed to having had a sexual relationship with 18-year-old Beau Breedlove in 2005. Adams, who was sworn in as Portland's first openly gay mayor on Jan. 1, apologized yesterday for lying and for forcing Breedlove to lie. Also caught up in the City Hall scandal is the Portland Mercury, which was pursuing the story along with WW. Former news editor Amy J. Ruiz was one of two Mercury writers working on the story; subsequently, Adams hired her to be his planning and sustainability policy adviser. "It never crossed my mind that [Adams] might have hired me to keep me quiet," Ruiz says. Adams says Ruiz earned the position on merit. "Amy was hired because of her smarts," he says. Meanwhile, Mercury editor Wm. Steven Humphrey says that the paper didn't sit on the story, but merely lost the race to the finish line to Jaquiss.
The Associated Press | Willamette Week | The Portland Mercury  |  01-21-2009  1:04 pm  |  Industry News