Creativity amidst the destruction?

While camping by the Santa Barbara coast I played hookey for a while at a wirless hot spot and picked up a copy of the local six-day-a-week paper, the Daily Sound. The Sound is a 2-year-old rival to the self-wounded Santa Barbara News-Press. To summarize that story, Wendy McCaw, owner of the News-Press precipitated a rash of resignations and firings of the paper’s former journalistic staff.  I blogged about this a time or two in the past because one of my former editors, Jerry Roberts, has been an unfair casualty of McCaw’s capriciousness. (See the Ametrcan Journalism Review article on that saga.)

So it was with that knowledge that I picked up a copy of the Tusday, May 13th, edition of the Sound to read a page three story honoring two newly laid-off News-Press staffers being honored by the Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table. This local body was saying thanks to sports editor Barry Punzal and reporter Kyle Jahner who were laid off May 1. “It’s so hard to understand why this happened,” Punzal is quoted as telling the  local sports community he had heretofore covered.

That quote was captured by Peter Dugre, sports reporter for the Sound, which I decided to subjct to a cursory curiosity check.

The Sound’s  primitive blog says the paper was founded in March 2006 by Jeramy Gordon who operates the paper/blog through Nodrog Publications. I found a funny, informative and generally flattering report on the Sound’s first 18-months at Blogabarba, which appears to be an anonymous but semi-filtered local discussion place (guidelines).

That reports concludes by saying:

“this Blogabarbara posting is about local political news coverage, not the maturity of Daily Sound Publisher/Trust-Fund-Baby Jeramy Gordon.”

And who is this anonymously maligned benfactor of local news? For that I reached into a long but fascinating Wikipedia entry on free newspapers (pioneered in 1947 in Walnut Creek, California, by Dean Lesher!) to learn that:

In March of 2006 former Palo Alto Daily News managing editor Jeramy Gordon launched the Santa Barbara Daily Sound in Santa Barbara, California.

But not a word about the trust fund! But fascinating to me nevertheless to see continuity in the turmoil that is local news coverage. Good luck to Gordon and his crew who have had their legal battles with the News-Press and local law enforcement (see Sound Wikipedia entry for details).