Scott Dickensheets, whose most recent stint as editor of Las Vegas Weekly began in July 2008, is leaving to become a columnist at the daily Las Vegas Sun. Both the Sun and Weekly are owned by Greenspun Media Group.
A federal appeals court has ruled that Nevada has the right to ban certain advertisements of legal brothels, saying it doesn't violate the First Amendment of free speech. The decision overturns the ruling of a federal district judge, who held the state did not have the right to impose the restrictions on advertisements after a suit challenging those limits was brought by Las Vegas CityLife, the High Desert Advocate and brothel operator Bobbi Davis. "Nevada has tailored its restrictions on advertising to attain a reasonable fit between ends and means," the opinion reads. CityLife editor Steve Sebelius says he was surprised and disappointed by the ruling. "Given the fact that it is a commodity, I think it's inappropriate for the state to restrict First Amendment-protected advertising about that commodity," he says. READ MORE from Sebelius on his CityLife blog.
Steve Sebelius will soon have an additional hat to wear. On top of his job as CityLife's editor, he is joining the local TV station Channel 8 as part of its investigative team; he will also appear on-air twice a week to discuss politics, and cover and analyze the 2010 elections. Sebelius says his TV commentary will not be ideological, but it will be contextual. "I'm not going to deny I have an ideological point of view, it would be foolish and intellectually dishonest," Sebelius says. "But when you are a professional journalist, you have the obligation to be fair. My role is not to argue with these newsmakers, but report what they do and put it into context for people."
Andrew Kiraly will be leaving the alt-weekly to take over as editor of Desert Companion, an award-winning bi-monthly magazine published by Nevada Public Radio.
The Greenspun Media Group, which publishes the Weekly along with the daily Las Vegas Sun and a host of other properties, laid off a number of employees yesterday as part of a major restructuring to streamline operations. Staff at all of the company's publications will now be housed in one building and coalesce in three teams: editorial, advertising and support. Greenspun has not released the number of layoffs involved, but the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that the number is "at least 20" and includes two Weekly staffers. On his blog, Weekly columnist Steve Friess says those two are Bethany Acree and Josh Bell.
Andrew Kiraly has taken to Twitter to poke fun at Nevada politicians like Sen. John Ensign and Gov. Jim Gibbons, in what he calls "a text version of an editorial cartoon." Kiraly's fake account for Ensign, who admitted to having an affair this summer, drew the attention of a staffer for the senator, who called the content "vulgar," "offensive" and "deceptive." That account has been shut down by Twitter, but Kiraly has launched a new one that is more clearly labeled as parody. The most recent entry from SenatorEnsign2: "I advise the women of America NOT to postpone breast exams. Be responsible and proactive. Take your health into my own hands."
Las Vegas CityLife, Las Vegas Weekly and the Reno News & Review took home a total of 74 awards at the annual Better Newspaper Contest put on by the Nevada Press Association. CityLife won 34 awards, with 16 first-place finishes; the News & Review won 28 awards, including 11 firsts; and the Weekly won 12 awards, four of which were first-place.
Las Vegas Weekly has the best entertainment website with fewer than one million unique monthly visitors, and Baltimore City Paper is the best weekly newspaper-affiliated website, according to the 2009 EPpy Awards, which "honor the best websites in the media world." This is City Paper's second EPpy -- it won the Editor & Publisher and Mediaweek sponsored contest in 2006 as well.
Stephens Press, the book publishing division of CityLife's parent company Stephens Media, is launching the CityLife Books imprint, which will publish up to four titles each year. The imprint will be edited by CityLife publisher Geoff Schumacher, who says he will be looking for proposals and manuscripts that speak to regular readers of the alt-weekly. "We want to publish books that question the conventional wisdom and offer new ways of looking at this region and its people," he says in a release. "Great writing will be paramount."
Two AAN members are finalists in this year's EPpy Awards, which "honor the best websites in the media world." Las Vegas Weekly is a finalist for best entertainment website with fewer than one million unique monthly visitors, while Baltimore City Paper is a finalist for best weekly newspaper-affiliated website, a category the Santa Barbara Independent won last year. Winners of the awards, which are sponsored by Editor & Publisher and Mediaweek magazines, will be announced on May 7.