“The Family” is taking on new meaning in Spokane, Wash. The Local Planet Weekly reports that the Cowles family, developers of River Park Square mall in downtown Spokane, has filed subpoenas in the long-running legal battle over the public-private partnership established to remodel the mall and adjoining parking garage. The Cowles family also owns Spokane’s daily newspaper, The Spokesman-Review, as well as the local business journal and NBC television affiliate. The subpoenas target political opponents, including The Local Planet Weekly and anyone who helped with its AAN first-place award-winning story, "All in the Family," which details the Cowles family's conflicts of interest.
Across the country, alternative newsweeklies ditched their planned front pages as the awesome events of Tuesday unfolded. East Coast papers like The Village Voice and Washington City Paper are sharing stories and pictures with colleagues from Maine to California.
Columbia Journalism Review delves into newsroom morale in its latest issue. Among the views presented are two from alternative newsweeklies. Former TV reporter Tom Grant is positively euphoric about his new job at The Local Planet Weekly . Meanwhile, over at East Bay Express, there's quite a different outlook.
The Local Planet of Spokane, Wash., which was approved for AAN membership last month in New Orleans, is changing its name to The Local Planet Weekly. President and Co-Publisher Matthew Spaur credits Folio Weekly Publisher Sam Taylor for the suggestion: “He said it would add $100,000 to our value. I’m still waiting for the check,” Spaur jokes in a news release posted on the AAN Web site.