Posted in Breaking News, Human Interest, Trending

TMZ’s Van Lathan’s message to Kanye West taught the world don’t be afraid to tell the powerful, rich, and famous they are wrong

 

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Screenshot: TMZ Youtube

 

TMZ producer Van Lathan has taught the world especially people of color to speak up.

BE UNAFRAID to take on people who have power, fame and money when they are wrong, even Kanye West.

Lathan was not going to allow the Grammy winner to walk out of the TMZ newsroom Tuesday without telling him he was wrong for saying 400 years of slavery was a choice.

West had shouted in the TMZ newsroom “Do you feel that I’m being free, and I’m thinking free?” It looked like most people were stunned, and not sure what to say or respond.

That’s when Lathan had enough. (Video 1:46)

Lathan’s reaction:

I actually don’t think you’re thinking anything. I think what you’re doing right now is actually the absence of thought, and the reason why I feel like that is because Kanye you are entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to believe whatever you want, but there is fact and real world, real life consequence behind everything that you just said. While you are making music, and being an artist, and living the life that you earned, by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our live.

We have to deal with the marginalization that’s come from the 400 years of slavery that you said for our people was a choice. Frankly, I’m disappointed, I’m appalled and brother, I’m unbelievably hurt, by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me that is not real.

Kanye West apologized to Lathan who told him “You have to be responsible…”

IF SOMEONE IS WRONG, SAY SO

Shout out to TMZ and Lathan, because this is why diversity in the newsroom is important. Here is an African-American producer who was not afraid to take on one of the most famous and powerful African-American entertainers in the world.

I’m like Lathan, there is no way I would have allowed West to walk out that newsroom without telling him he was wrong in what he said.

Too many people today are afraid to speak up. They are afraid to tell a person they are wrong, because they fear someone will get angry. They fear being criticized or judged. They fear not being liked and many are afraid to lose their jobs.

Don’t let all that stuff mess with your mind when you can correct a wrong.

I don’t think Lathan had one ounce of fear when he confronted West, and look who we are talking about today.

My message to all of you:

The next time you hear someone say or do something that is WRONG, say something, do something, because silence does not make the world better.

Source: TMZ YouTube

 

 

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Posted in Breaking News, Journalist, News Now

Cox Media Group plans to shutdown Mundo Hispánico, several journalists face losing their jobs

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Update 4/27/2018
Cox Media Group posted a statement on the company website about plans to sell Mundo Hispanico. It was posted the day I posted this blog.

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Sources with Mundo Hispánico say they need to start looking for jobs, because the digital site faces a shutdown. They got the bad news in an email Monday morning from the President of the Cox Media Group (CMG) which owns Mundo Hispánico.

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The announcement came from Kim Guthrie, President of Cox Media Group. Her email partly reads…

CMG is focused on overcoming the disruption in our industry and competing to win in the markets we serve. To achieve that, we are focusing our resources on businesses that have clear paths to profitability and long-term growth.

She goes on to say…

…After careful consideration, we’ve decided to sell or sunset both the Mundo Hispanico and Southern Kitchen businesses.

Her email mentioned CMG is looking for the right buyers.

…we will work to find the right owners for Mundo Hispanico and Southern Kitchen. If we are unable to find a buyer, we plan to close Southern Kitchen and the national Vertical portion of Mundo Hispanico by the end of the quarter.

You can read the rest of the email provided to me from a few sources.

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Reporters in Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Los Angeles, Orlando, and one in North Carolina are expected to lose their jobs. There are also other journalists at the headquarters in Atlanta who will also be shown the door.

According to a source, the national correspondents for the digital site could be out of work by the end of June and the ones in Atlanta may get a few more months on the job.

I hope a good media company buys Mundo Hispánico, because the digital site has a good following on social media. More than four million followers on Facebook. 

I have contacted CMG for a response. I’ll keep you posted.

If you have any job openings please send them my way.  Let’s help these people out before the possible shutdown.

Other sources:
Cox Media Group

Mundo Hispánico

Posted in Breaking News, Latino Community

Entravision’s Las Vegas employees let go with little notice, Vegas news will be produced out of El Paso

Sources started telling me early Friday that Entravision Communications was going to have massive layoffs at television stations around the country.

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Screenshot: Juan Juarez Twitter

It happened at the Univision station in Las Vegas which is owned by Entravision.

Reporter Juan Juarez confirmed it in his goodbye video he shared on Twitter. Here are parts of his video translated from Spanish to English.

Hi friends on Facebook and all my social media platforms. I wanted to share in person and on this video that they just let us go. Entravision Communications, the station in Las Vegas decided to let go of just about everyone including me, and many of my colleagues. Now they’re going to do the produce our local news from El Paso. I just wanted to say thank you, thank you because I know many people trusted me in the past two-and-half years while I worked at Entravision Las Vegas.

You opened your hearts in front of the camera that I carried in the heat and in the cold, it didn’t matter, and many people trusted in me. You supported me and you opened your hearts and homes to share many of your stories.

…This is not easy, because it’s a hard situation. There have been many tears and feelings now that this corporation make these kind of decision, and don’t take you into consideration. The truth is they do it suddenly without letting you know. We can only push forward…

Juarez was one of the many reporters who covered the Las Vegas Massacre in October 2017. He had grown very fond of Las Vegas and the people he served. Unfortunately he says the loyalty and commitment meant nothing to Entravision.

Thank you to all the viewers who share your stories with me and my co-workers. We leave knowing we did great work, we dedicated ourselves to the community, and unfortunately this did not matter to Entravision Communications.

Sources say Luisa Collins, Vice President of News Social Affairs and Wellness at Entravision Communications flew to Las Vegas to give everyone the bad news. According to an insider, she told the staff in news, radio and sales something about “difficult time and we have to do this.”

A total of 13 people from news were shown the door. They included a technical director, editor, three MMJ’s, a female anchor and two engineers. Two photographers and two male anchors remain and may gather news for the El Paso news production.

Reporter Jasmina Gonzalez fought back tears in her goodbye video she also posted on Twitter.  Here’s part of it translated from Spanish to English.

I will no longer be working for Univision, but I want to tell you that I take a little piece of all your hearts, they are right here with me. Thank you for your trust. Thank you for your support, for opening the doors to your homes, for always being there for us. I want to say I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart.

 

I have contacted Collins via Facebook to find out why the company made this decision, and how many other employees at other Entravision stations face termination. Will this save Entravision millions of dollars? Stay tuned.

ENTRAVISION BACKGROUND Entravision_logo

According to Entravision’s website:

Entravision Communications Corporation is a diversified Spanish-language media company utilizing a combination of television, radio and digital operations to reach Latino consumers across the United States, as well as the border markets of Mexico. Entravision is the largest affiliate group of both the top-ranked Univision television network and Univision’s UniMas network, with television stations in 20 of the nation’s top 50 Latino markets. The company owns and/or operates 58 primary television stations and also operates one of the nation’s largest groups of primarily Spanish-language radio stations, consisting of 49 owned and operated radio stations. Additionally, Entravision has a variety of cross-platform digital content and sales offerings designed to capitalize on the company’s leadership position within the Latino broadcasting community. Entravision shares of Class A Common Stock are traded on The New York Stock Exchange under the symbol: EVC.

If the company is having money problems, it is not showing at the top. According to Salary.Com. CEO Walter F. Ulloa at Entravision Communications, made $4,751,204 in total compensation. More information on Salary.Com 2016 Report.

Posted in Breaking News, Discrimination, women's rights

Big win for mothers, EEOC finds North Texas bar liable for pregnancy discrimination

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The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has settled a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit against Off the Air, II, Inc., which does business as Nick’s Sports Grill, a sports bar in Rowlett, Texas.

The EEOC says Off the Air will pay $24,000 to a former female bartender.

An EEOC investigation revealed Taylor King was forced to leave her job after she changed the bar’s mandatory wardrobe to something different. Nick’s requires female bartenders and waitresses to wear hot pants and tight tops. King who was pregnant decided to change her wardrobe to something more comfortable. She replaced her hot pants with Capri pants, and wore loser tops.

The EEOC says a General Manager told King the owner would not like what she was wearing and that’s when she was asked to leave. King filed a complaint with the EEOC.

The lawsuit settlement also requires the bar owners to:

  • Pay a $24,000 financial settlement to King.
  • Prohibit future discrimination and retaliation for complaining about it.
  • Disseminate specific parts of its employee handbook to all employees.
  • Provide annual training on pregnancy and other forms of discrimination.
  • Report all complaints of discrimination to the EEOC as agreed as part of three-year settlement.
  • Impose discipline up to termination on any manager who discriminates based on sex or permits such conduct to occur under his or her supervision.
  • Post a notice on employee bulletin boards about the decree, explaining procedures for reporting discrimination.

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EEOC Trial Attorney Toby Wosk Costas says…

Even bars and clubs with provocative uniforms cannot discriminate by using the dress code requirement to oust a pregnant employee…When the short, tight outfit no longer worked, Taylor King no longer had a job. She could have continued to work at Nick’s had she not become pregnant. Under civil rights laws, that’s pregnancy discrimination, which is a form of discrimination based on sex.

Taylor King, the former bartender had the last word.

Just because you look different as a pregnant woman, it doesn’t mean you can’t do your job. I want people to know that if you feel you are being discriminated against, you should do something about it.

MY OPINION, YES I HAVE ONE 

Taylor King is a brave woman. Now her bravery has changed the way pregnant employees are treated at bars and restaurants where they are required to wear sexy clothes on the job.

Her discrimination lawsuit should also teach male bosses to have more compassion for pregnant women, and realize they want to work.

Also kudos to the EEOC that is always fighting to rid the world of discrimination.

IF YOU ARE BEING DISCRIMINATED, FILE A COMPLAINT

If you believe that you have been discriminated against at work because of your race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information, you can file a Charge of Discrimination. A charge of discrimination is a signed statement asserting that an employer, union or labor organization engaged in employment discrimination. It requests EEOC to take remedial action. >>Filed a Complaint.

Source: EEOC Press Release

Posted in Breaking News, Fellowships, Human Interest, Journalist, News Now

You’re fired! The two words that changed my life for the better

Ten years ago today I was fired.

After almost fourteen years at KDFW-TV in Dallas, I was let go.

But guess what? I wasn’t devastated, hurt, sad or even afraid about my future. I didn’t think the world had ended.

The Fox station took my job, but not my talent, years of experience, many awards and my circle of trusted friends.

I knew I was going to be OK.

THE ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES

If you ever get fired, remember you’ll be fine. Don’t blame yourself. I sure didn’t.

Don’t be embarrassed to tell people. It’s part of life.

Don’t be afraid to be judged. I never worried about what people thought of me losing my job.

Surround yourself with positive people you trust.

Stay positive and set goals.

Get out there and share your talent.

IT’S A NEW BEGINNING FOR SOMETHING BETTER

Getting fired was the best thing that ever happened to me. The opportunities I found and created have been endless.

I decided on four main goals: mentor, volunteer, consult and lead. Those goals have led me to jobs, opportunities and a paycheck. Here is some of what I have accomplished so far in ten years:

-I’m a successful freelance reporter/writer/producer. AARP was my first client.
-Served as Vice President of Online for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists better known as NAHJ. Volunteer position for four years. I sat on board for a total of six years.
-Currently serve as Vice President for the Society of Professional Journalists, Fort Worth Chapter
-Founder of Wise Latinas Linked, the largest Latina networking group on Facebook and LinkedIn with combined membership of 10,000 women.
-Founder of Latinas in Journalism, the largest Latina journalism group of 1,800 women on Facebook.
-Public speaker on Latina and journalism issues. My favorite is “Surviving the Unexpected.”
-I’m a media and diversity watchdog. I fight for the rights of all journalists and push for more diversity in newsrooms across the country.
-Learned how to build websites from scratch.
-Learned how to code. Yes I know CSS and HTML.
-Continue to mentor girls in high school.
-Continue to mentor dozens of journalists at different levels in their careers.
-Served as social media manager for three years for NAHJ while VP of Online.
-Social media columnist for Latina Style magazine, a national publication.
-Social media consultant for nonprofits.
-Video producer for nonprofits. Thanks Rafael McDonnell for my first job.
-Offered $10,000 scholarship to get my Masters in Journalism at the University of North Texas. I am in my first year.
-Traveled to Israel on a journalism fellowship with Fuente Latina, a nonprofit news site.
-Serve currently and in the past as moderator and panelist on numerous journalism and social media panels around the country.
-Nominated in 2015 for Lone Star Emmy for “Best TV Commentator.”
-News consultant. Thanks Charlie Haldeman for my first gig teaching reporters how to report.
-Awarded two national awards for “Social Networking Leader” in 2011 and 2013 by Latinos in Social Media also known as LATISM.

Gathering with Wise Latinas in Dallas

KEEP GOING

I keep thinking how much I would have missed in life, stuck in the same newsroom, covering another crime or telling viewers as I stood on the side of the road “It’s cold out here.”

Don’t get me wrong, TV news is important, but sometimes you need a shove out the door to find something better. Today I continue helping people and telling stories.

More importantly, I also got to see my son grow up and go to college. I don’t know how many journalists have missed seeing their kids grow up. I’m lucky my son and I have great memories of me picking him up from junior high and going to McDonalds to talk.

I may not make the six-figure salary I earned during my TV days in Dallas, but then I was never motivated by money. My experiences as a TV reporter and a fired reporter have been priceless.

Thank you to John Boos, the best husband in the world. Thank you to some of my former coworkers like Saul Garza, Todd Eastman, and many others who stood by my side. Thank you to Rafael Olmeda who was president of NAHJ at the time and defended me. Thanks to many NAHJ members and a gazillion friends and fans who have been my support system since my firing. You helped me survive. Gracias!

Freedom feels good! Happy Anniversary to me.

FYI if you want the back story on why I was fired, go to Unclebarky.com. It’s was unfair, but I’m still standing.

Posted in Breaking News, politics

Shame on NRA’s Dana Loesch who defends organization by claiming the media ‘loves’ to cover mass shootings for ratings

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Dana Loesch at CNN Town Hall/ Screenshot

Dana Loesch, the NRA’s spokeswoman is paid big bucks by the organization to defend it. I understand that it is her job to “spin” information and protect the image of the National Rifle Association.

Once again Loesch did her job by moving the focus of the Parkland, Florida school massacre and the gun control issue from the NRA to the media. This time Loesch said the media “loves” mass shootings for ratings.

It’s called spin. Her spin.

I have covered too many murders in my 36 years as a reporter that I have lost count. They are the most difficult assignments to cover. I have only been to one mass shooting, but a death is a death.

I have shed tears on assignment, because it hurts to see people hurt. On the other hand I know that I have a job where I can help people understand, cope, and sometimes solve murders. I have never covered a murder for ratings. In fact, television viewers have often told me they turn the channel, because they are tired of hearing “bad news.”

Now please listen Anastasiya Bolton. She’s a crime and justice reporter in Denver. She has a  strong and powerful message to the NRA. “I’m an expert in mass shootings. I’m a journalists in a war zone here at home.” >> Commentary: I’m an expert in mass shootings

 

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Let’s be honest, Dana Loesch found her way to get more TV time and ratings by making a malicious statement. As journalists we can take it. She won’t be the first “talking head” to attack us for our work and definitely not the last.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Breaking News, immigration, Latino Community, Uncategorized

Politico, immigrants are people not commodities, ‘Get your own immigrant’ story insulting and insensitive

Give two professors time to come up with a ridiculous answer to the U.S. immigration issue, and you’ll get what Politico Magazine has just published.

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Screenshot: Politico

The headline said it all, “What If You Could Get Your Own Immigrant?”

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Eric Posner

Eric Posner, a Chicago law professor and Glen Weyl, a Yale professor think immigrants should be matched with Americans who need cheap labor. Their idea is to have an  international website where Americans can find an immigrant they can sponsor in exchange the immigrant can live in a basement and get paid $5 dollars an hour for work.

Can we say indentured servitude?

I am a fan of many reporters who work for Politico, but it is shocking that this article got by several gatekeepers at the magazine.

Do you really think immigrants should be treated basically like slaves? Do you really think they should live in a basement?

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Glen Weyl

Sure, some could say an immigrant can turn down the job, but still…live in basement? That’s how these professors think we should treat newcomers. How heartless!

Shame on Posner and Weyl who proved they think immigrants are commodities. Why not use your knowledge on “an idea” that can help immigrants live a decent life in the United States and be treated with respect?

Also shame on Blake Hounshell, Politico Magazine’s editor-in-chief who gave these guys a platform to insult the immigrant community. He also tweeted the story early because he was proud of it.

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Screenshot: Hounshell Twitter 

This is why more people of color are needed in managerial positions in newsrooms. I would love to know how many editors are Hispanic at Politico Magazine. If I was an editor at Politico this story would have been tossed out.

As the daughter of immigrants, I can’t imagine my parents shoved in a basement and paid five bucks an hour to feed their kids.  As a journalist, I am ashamed that an editor would look at this story and not realize it only encourages people to look at immigrants as property not as people.

No matter how you feel about immigrants, whether here legally or not, they still deserve respect.

As I was writing this blog, Politico changed the headline. They are getting backlash on social media for the story and the headline.  Now it reads “Sponsor an Immigrant Yourself.”

Too late the damage has been done.