Chuck Kerr is the latest alt-weekly art director to have his work spotlighted by Robert Newman on the Society of Publication Designers' blog. Kerr, who won an AltWeekly Award for Cover Design in 2007, says he has a "pretty simple" cover design philosophy -- "sell the story in under five seconds." He adds: "The more complex the story, the more I try to create imagery that elicits an emotional response or plays off a well-known pop culture icon -- anything to plant my idea in the reader's head as quickly and permanently as possible."

Continue ReadingSan Antonio Current’s Covers Have ‘Intelligence and Graphic Power’

"Both sides appear to agree in court that the case boils down to a fight over whether a pivotal section of California law should protect businesses or consumers," the East Bay Express' Robert Gammon writes in his in-depth update of the legal fight between the San Francisco Bay Guardian and SF Weekly. "If the Weekly wins, it could effectively eviscerate a section of California's Unfair Business Practices law, and thus make it nearly impossible for small, independently owned companies to fight off well-heeled competitors who try to drive them out of business. But if the Guardian wins, it could end up hurting consumers, because corporations may be fearful of offering steep discounts on their products because they will be sued for 'unfair business practices.'"

Continue ReadingInterpretation of One California Law is Key in SFBG/SF Weekly Case

Chris Keating, who was most recently publisher at the San Antonio Current, has been named the new publisher at Times Shamrock sister paper the Cleveland Scene. Replacing Keating in San Antonio will be Michael Wagner, a former publisher of the Riverfront Times. He will take the title of general manager.

Continue ReadingTimes Shamrock Taps Chris Keating as Scene Publisher

In an appeal brief filed yesterday, SF Weekly is asking the California courts to overturn the San Francisco Bay Guardian's $21 million judgment in the 2008 predatory-pricing case, marking the final written document that will be entered into the record as part of the Weekly's appeal. The court is now expected to schedule oral arguments in the case, with a final decision coming "anywhere from five to eighteen months," according to the Weekly.

Continue ReadingSF Weekly Asks Appeals Court to Overturn Bay Guardian Judgment

A San Francisco judge today heard arguments on whether SF Weekly should be forced to give half of its advertising revenue to the San Francisco Bay Guardian as part of the Guardian's continuing efforts to collect on the 2008 judgment in the predatory pricing suit between the two papers. The judge issued a "late tentative ruling" that suggested he will do just that, and he said he will give the final ruling soon. Meanwhile, the Guardian has asked a judge to add Village Voice Media, LLC and Village Voice Media Holdings, LLC to the companies that make up the Weekly's parent company in the judgment. (When the Guardian's suit was initially filed, the Weekly was still owned by pre-merger New Times.) A hearing on that matter has been set for March 12. The Weekly has said it is waiting to make any payments to the Guardian until it exhausts its appeals. MORE: Seattle Weekly wonders why The Stranger is sending a reporter to San Francisco to cover this, when Stranger editor Dan Savage's sex column runs in many papers that SF Weekly's parent company owns.

Continue ReadingBay Guardian/SF Weekly Case Back in Court Today

San Dieguito Printers has filed a lawsuit in San Diego Superior Court alleging that the Reader breached a contract between the two parties when it switched to a new printer at the beginning of this year. The printing company says it signed a 10-year contract to be the Reader's exclusive printer in 2005. The suit names Reader publisher Jim Holman -- both as a person and as a business -- as the defendant, rather than the Reader, as the printing company argues that the paper is being operated as a sole proprietorship.

Continue ReadingPrinter Sues San Diego Reader for Breach of Contract

The San Francisco Bay Guardian last week filed its response to SF Weekly's appeal of the 2008 jury award in the Guardian's predatory-pricing lawsuit against the Weekly. The Weekly says it will file one more reply with the court within the next month or so, at which point the Court of Appeals will either set a date for oral arguments or issue a ruling based on what has been submitted by the two parties. In related news, the Guardian reports that a federal judge last week rejected the attempts of Weekly parent company Village Voice Media Holdings to avoid a state court proceeding where it may be added to the judgment against the Weekly.

Continue ReadingBay Guardian/SF Weekly Case Moves Along

Mirissa Neff is one of three reporters for the new PBS primetime series SOUND TRACKS: Music Without Borders. The pilot for the show, which aims to "[explore] the world, combining journalistic curiosity with the adventure of travel and the soul-satisfying, hip-shaking pleasures of great music," will be airing on PBS stations on Monday, Jan. 25.

Continue ReadingSan Francisco Bay Guardian Art Director Part of New PBS Music Show

As the San Francisco Bay Guardian continues to try and collect millions of dollars awarded to it in a 2008 predatory-pricing verdict against SF Weekly and its parent company, the Guardian's attorney tells Bloomberg News it is considering a court petition to put Village Voice Media into involuntary bankruptcy to collect the debt. VVM's lawyer tells Bloomberg, however, that "it is simply ludicrous" to suggest that any of the company's other newspapers might face bankruptcy as a result of the California judgment. Meanwhile, VVM executive editor Michael Lacey took issue with the framing and premise of the original Bloomberg story, calling its insinuation of a looming bankruptcy proceeding a "false, inaccurate smear." (The Bloomberg story linked above was updated after Lacey and VVM's attorney contacted the reporter to make some corrections.) READ MORE from the San Francisco Chronicle and The Stranger.

Continue ReadingGuardian Says it May Force Bankruptcy on VVM; VVM Calls Idea ‘Ludicrous’