"This issue marks my last as editor-in-chief of Worcester Mag," Jim Keogh writes. "After a year and a half at the helm, and 23 total years of pushing news for The Holden Landmark Corp., I'm stepping away from journalism and into a new career." The search is on for a replacement. "I leave here feeling proud to be a member of the continuum of reporters, editors, salespeople, designers and, yes, bean counters who have published Worcester Magazine, now 'Mag,' without fail since 1976," Keogh adds. "We do good work here, and the magazine will continue to thrive."

Continue ReadingWorcester Mag Editor Departs

The offices of Worcester Mag were broken into and robbed Tuesday night. "They stole at least one laptop that we know about so far, and some cash," said publisher Gareth Charter says. "It's unfortunate timing because we don't keep much cash on hand typically. They got us in between daily bank deposits." Worcester police are investigating the crime.

Continue ReadingWorcester Mag Offices Robbed

Three AAN members took home plenty of awards in this year's New England Newspaper and Press Association Better Newspaper Contest. Boston Phoenix staff writer Mike Miliard was named Weekly Journalist of the Year (judges said he was "obviously a very versatile and talented journalist") as part of the Phoenix's haul of 18 total awards, including 11 first-place wins. Worcester Mag took home nine awards, with five first-place finishes, while Burlington's Seven Days finished first in three categories and won seven total awards.

Continue ReadingAlt-Weeklies Nab Dozens of New England Press Association Awards

In July, Worcester Mag underwent a redesign and launched a new format as part of the paper's evolution since changing owners last summer. Publisher Gareth Charter recently spoke to Worceseter's public radio station about some of the changes and the overall health of the alt-weekly industry. "Weekly newspapers ... are not facing nearly the declines that daily newspapers are," Charter tells WICN-FM. He says that one reason is because an alt-weekly is "more of a leisure read ... as opposed to that daily drumbeat [of news]."

Continue ReadingPublisher Discusses Changes at Worcester Mag and the Alt Industry

The Massachusetts alt-weekly unveils a new format today with more color pages and a stapled bind. Savvy readers may also notice that the publication's title is five letters shorter: Worcester Mag is the official title of the paper now. "We are embracing the abbreviation so many readers have used for years," publisher Gareth Charter says. "We are not a magazine in the traditional sense of that term. We are an alternative news voice; in print once a week and online 24/7."

Continue ReadingWorcester Magazine Debuts New Design and Format, Shortens Name

Boston Phoenix staff writer David Bernstein was named Journalist of the Year by the New England Press Association. He also brought home two additional first-place awards for the Phoenix -- in the Investigative Reporting and Serious Columnist categories. "Mr. Bernstein's in-depth articles are compelling and hyper-relevant, challenging myths and assumptions with sharp, clear reporting and a highly readable writing style," the judges write. "Very impressive!" All in all, the Phoenix won another nine awards, including additional first-place wins for Convergence and Reporting on Religious Issues. Worcester Magazine took home six awards, including first-place finishes in the Personality Photo, Social Issues Feature Story and Local Ad: Color categories. Boston's Weekly Dig won four awards, finishing first in Educational Reporting, Infographics and Transportation/Commuter Reporting. The Portland Phoenix also won four awards, and placed first in the General News Story category.

Continue ReadingFour AAN Members Win Scores of Regional Press Awards

Three alt-weeklies have recently cut back in freelancer-generated content areas. SF Weekly theater reviewer Chloe Veltman writes that the paper's weekly Stage setion "will drop from three plays -- my 1,000-word column plus two 200-word capsule reviews -- to just my column." Over at sister paper the Nashville Scene, books contributor Maria Browning says on her blog that the book page has been eliminated from that paper altogether. And up in Massachusetts, Worcester Magazine will stop running the local bi-weekly comic "Action Geek."

Continue ReadingPapers Continue to Cut Freelance Costs