Valley journalists: Pencil it in (OK, it’s 2017, so enter it into your smartphone calendar): Our annual (and on its way to becoming legendary) Valley Media Holiday Mixer, 5:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 5, at Bliss ReBAR, 901 N. Fourth St. (just south of Roosevelt), named by USA Today as one of the 10 Best Nightlife Destinations in Downtown Phoenix. Get your Yule on, celebrate the year gone by and the year ahead with your media peeps, colleagues and competitors alike, in this must-be-there holiday event! Your friendly neighborhood Valley of the Sun SPJ chapter will put out a spread of free appetizers (drinks are on you) and give away door prizes. Admission is free, so say your “Going” today on our Facebook event page, Valley Media Holiday Mixer ’17. The event hashtag: #getyouryuleon
Valley media people: Put some journalistic spirit into your October. Visit with some old fiends, er, friends — and new blood is always welcome!
There’s no program. Just enjoyable conversation with fellow journalists in a beautiful setting. Halloween attire is not required, but the scariest attendee may have a drink paid for by the chapter president! See our Facebook event page!
At its regular meeting on August 27, 2017, the board of the SPJ Valley of the Sun Pro chapter in Phoenix reviewed and discussed the proposed changes to the national SPJ bylaws. They then voted unanimously to instruct its delegates to the upcoming convention in Anaheim to vote to approve those proposed changes. If approved by delegates, these amendments would reduce the size of the national board and restructure regional representation.
Our board’s decision comes after much consideration and dialogue. We’ve engaged in group and one-on-one discussions with national leaders, local members, and our Regional Director. Those conversations included online web-based conferences offered by SPJ – as recently as Tuesday, August 29 – in which leading SPJ proponents answered questions and addressed concerns.
Members may disagree about elements of strategy, but the goals of the bylaws changes are admirable ones. An oversized board of 23 people is unable to execute and implement important steps effectively. Reducing the board to 9 individuals makes much sense. Deliberation and dialogue have also addressed our concerns that regional needs may be undervalued on a board where Regional Directors no longer sit. We are confident that this change will protect SPJ’s commitment to journalists throughout the country while improving the board’s ability to act efficiently and effectively.
In an age when the creation and dissemination of journalism are changing at a rapid pace, these proposed bylaws changes are a worthwhile attempt to streamline operations and ensure SPJ’s voice is being heard in a coherent and timely manner. As SPJ leaders have said, this is an experiment – but it is a well-considered and commendable one.
We urge all delegates to the convention who have not already done so to visit https://www.spj.org/governance.asp to read the proposed amendments and important supplemental information found there to make a fully informed decision on supporting them at the convention.
President, SPJ Valley of the Sun Pro Chapter
Join us as we hear a panel of distinguished journalists discuss the issue that has both media people and the public talking and wondering about the future of our democracy.
This FREE program, “Fake News: Why We Click It, How to Stop” is 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15, in the Community Room (L162/163) at the South Mountain Community Library, 7050 S. 24th St., Phoenix.
This discussion is presented by Valley of the Sun SPJ in partnership with the SMCL, a partnership between the Phoenix Public Library and South Mountain Community College. The library, which opened in 2011, is a beautiful copper, concrete and steel structure containing 50,000 square feet.
Lauren Gilger, host/producer, KJZZ, Phoenix
Mary Jo Pitzl, state government reporter, Arizona Republic, Phoenix
Jessica Pucci, Ethics and Excellence Professor of Practice, Data Analysis and Audience Engagement, Arizona State University Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Phoenix
Allison Rodriguez, multimedia journalist and anchor, ABC15, Phoenix
Topics will include:
- What do we mean when we say fake news?
- Red flags to help you know if you are viewing fake news
- How do be a more media-savvy news consumer
- How our own news-consumption habits worsen the problem
- Do fact checkers and “Pinocchio”-like ratings systems work?
- How Facebook and others are trying to fix the problem
- How mainstream news organizations can better engage wary audiences
For further information, contact chapter president Tim Eigo. Eigo, editor of Arizona Attorney magazine, will moderate the discussion.
Celebrate another 12 months gone by with us on the longest day of the year — a perfect reason if you live in Phoenix for an ice cold brew! Once again our Summer Solstice Soiree expresses our thanks to our members and all Valley journalists is to be celebrated 5:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 20* in the Brewer’s Den at SunUp Brewing at 322 E. Camelback, a short walk from the Central Avenue/Camelback Road light rail station.
All Valley media people are invited and admission is free. Appetizers are on us; the beers (or non-alcoholic beverages) are on you.
At this event the chapter will also take about five minutes to hold its annual elections for chapter officers for a one-year term from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018. Chapter members on hand will vote. The nominations committee has recommended a slate of candidates:
President: Tim Eigo, Arizona Attorney magazine; Vice President: Debra Utacia Krol, freelance journalist; Secretary: Kaely Monahan, KJZZ-FM; Treasurer: Teri Carnicelli, North Central News.
Any chapter member in good standing may run for chapter office. If you are interested, please contact Mark Scarp at email@example.com by Thursday, June 15.
Come on in! It’s too hot to be outside. (*The summer solstice actually begins June 21 this year, but who’s counting?)
A former Arizona Republic journalist who is now chief political correspondent for The Jerusalem Post in Israel will give a free lecture at Arizona State University in Tempe.
Hoffman will speak on the topic, “Peace, Politics and Plutonium: An Insider’s Look at the Mayhem in the Middle East,” at 7 p.m. Monday, March 20, in Room L1-20 of Coor Hall, 976 S. Forest Mall, on the Tempe campus.
Hoffman’s presentation is sponsored by the Hillel Jewish Student Center near ASU, Hasbara Fellowships, Jewish Arizonans on Campus, and Stand With Us Supporting Israel Around the World.
About Gil Hoffman (provided by Hillel Jewish Student Center):
Gil Hoffman is the chief political correspondent and analyst for The Jerusalem Post. He has interviewed every major figure across the Israeli political spectrum, has been interviewed by top media on six continents and is a regular analyst on CNN, Al-Jazeera and other news outlets. Called “the most optimistic man in Israel” by Israel Television, Hoffman provides a behind the scenes look at the intrigue and humor in the Israeli political arena. He was raised in Chicago, graduated magna cum laude from Northwestern University’s School of Journalism, and wrote for the Miami Herald and Arizona Republic before moving to Israel. A reserve soldier in the IDF Spokesman’s Unit, he has lectured in every major English-speaking country in the world. He lives with his family in Jerusalem.
From the University of Arizona School of Journalism in a March 9 post on Facebook: “Need help in spotting ‘fake news’ and judging sources? Check out this new guide put together by Mary Feeney and University of Arizona Libraries.”
The UA libraries have created an online guide to spotting fake news, or hoax news. Several reliable, helpful resources for news consumers are provided, including a helpful 3 minute, 22 second video from FactCheck.org called “How to Spot Fake News.”
The Valley of the Sun Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) offers a $500 scholarship for the fall term beginning August 2017. The scholarship is open to all community college and university students in Arizona, studying journalism, mass communications or a related field. To learn more, visit our Scholarships page on this website!
The best Saturday morning in PR-media relations, the 14th annual Valley Publicity Summit, presented by SPJ, returns to Arizona State University in Tempe at Barrett, the Honors College, on Sept. 16, 2017.
So save the date! Journalists seeking to volunteer to give their story-pitch preferences at the Summit may send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information about the Summit is here. More details will be coming soon!
SPJ’s 5th annual Valley Media Holiday Mixer is Thursday evening, Dec. 8, in the Colangelo Room at the Half Moon Windy City Sports Grill‘s Biltmore location, 2121 E. Highland Ave., Phoenix, three blocks east of the Highland Avenue exit off the 51. All Valley media are invited. We’ll have a business card drawing for some door prizes, and the first couple of generous rounds of appetizers are on us! (Drinks are on you.)
Share some holiday cheer with fellow journos, colleagues and competitors, and toast a brighter and better 2017. Tell us you’re coming on our Facebook event page.
Presented by your Valley of the Sun chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.