if you're reading this then you not seeing a lot of great images!
march 2011

This month's newsletter is sponsored by MOTHERS® Polishes●Waxes●Cleaners
Mothers Media Center
the road ahead

The rift between The Detroit News and its auto critic, Scott Burgess, (see Lane Changes) may well be resolved by the time this newsletter is distributed but it touches on the tensions in professional journalism described by NYU Journalism Professor Jay Rosen in his insightful talk at the recent South by Southwest Interactive Conference and Festival in Austin, TX. (

In analyzing the continuing name-calling between journalists and bloggers although he says the war between the two camps has long been over, Rosen reasons, "disruptions caused by the Internet threaten to expose certain buried conflicts at the heart of modern journalism and a commercialized press." One of those conflicts was evidenced when the online version of a Burgess column was rewritten after an advertiser complained. With publishers busy exchanging print and broadcast dollars for digital dimes (as Rosen describes it) the definition of professional journalism itself must change.

"Our experiment with a free press is 250 years old. Whole chapters of it were discarded by American journalists when they tried to make themselves more scientific and objective in order to claim elevated status." Yet, "No one ever says, I went into journalism because I have a passion for being… objective.' Or: ‘Detachment, that's my thing. I'm kind of a detached guy, so I figured this would be a good field for me."

Rosen says. " . . . the terms of authority (in pro journalism) have to change. The practice has to become more interactive. And this is happening under conditions of enormous stress." The story the professional press has been telling itself has broken down. It no longer helps the journalist navigate the real world conditions under which journalism is done today. Somehow, journalists have to start telling themselves a better story about what they do and why it matters. And we have to help them. We interactive people."

David Sullivan in his blog says, " We need to stop thinking that we are competing with everyone in the world. We are competing with people who do what we do to gain the readership of people who want to follow what we do. Those are our customers. Other customers will go to other types of information. With every person having a printing press, it has to be that way. There are too many options to cover every bet. We have to figure out what customers we can get and what they want, and not be worried about the customers we won't get."

That heroic view is contrasted by James Fallows in The Atlantic Magazine in a piece titled Learning to Love the (Shallow, Divisive, Unreliable) New Media. He writes "If we accept that the media will probably become more and more market-minded, and that an imposed conscience in the form of legal requirements or traditional publishing norms will probably have less and less effect, what are the results we most fear? I think there are four:

  • that this will become an age of lies, idiocy, and a complete Babel of "truthiness," in which no trusted arbiter can establish reality or facts;

  • that the media will fail to cover too much of what really matters, as they are drawn toward the sparkle of entertainment and away from the depressing realities of the statehouse, the African capital, the urban school system, the corporate office when corners are being cut;

  • that the forces already pulverizing American society into component granules will grow all the stronger, as people withdraw into their own separate information spheres;

  • and that our very ability to think, concentrate, and decide will deteriorate, as a media system optimized for attracting quick hits turns into a continual-distraction machine for society as a whole, making every individual and collective problem harder to assess and respond to."

Click here to comment online: Road Ahead


passing scene

"BMW i" is a new global sub-brand that is going to be as much about the German car maker's mobility solutions efforts as new vehicles, Karl Greenberg reports in Marketing Daily. He quotes a BMW news release about the new brand's efforts, "everything from the research on urban mobility and mobile Internet cityscapes to a venture capital arm based in New York that will fund tech startups whose products might change the way people move around cities."

Websites with shallow, low quality content provided by "content farms" are on Google's endangered species list. Thereby, AWCom trusts, increasing the demand for professional writers. A new app for its Chrome browser allows users to block specific sites. This reduces the number but improves the quality of search results. In addition to feedback from user-blocked sites, Google is changing its search algorithmics to reduce the rankings of "low-quality" sites.

Jaguar, Lexus, Lincoln, Mercedes-Benz, and Cadillac are the auto brands among the "2011 Customer Service Champions" in J.D. Power & Associates annual ranking of brands based on customer feedback. Greenberg says in Marketing Daily, one reason offered as to why auto brands do well in the survey is that automakers recognize product quality has gotten a lot better and a lot less varied, so product alone is not enough to make a difference.

Elliot Forbes Robinson on CXC Simulator

Elliot Forbes Robinson on CXC Simulator, Riverside Int'l Automotive Museum

Bobby Allison will join Bobby Unser, Lyn St. James & Hershel McGriff as well as returning Legends honorees Dan Gurney & Carroll Shelby for the Riverside International Automotive Museum's Legends of Riverside III honoring Parnelli Jones March 25-27. . . . Writing for MIN Online, Steve Smith, notes blog sites are trending away from chronological scrolling of postings in favor of a more "magazine/newspaper single lead story dominating the front page.

Freelance blogger Andy Didorsi has opened Paper Street Motors in an abandoned warehouse in Detroit-adjacent Ferndale. Mich. He rents low-cost space where small businesses can take an affordable chance to see if their venture can take root and grow. . . . . For those who think they are painstaking auto restorers, check out the results in Todd Cooperider's blog about the 25 hours he put in on a never-been-driven black Ferrari 458 Italia that had been "polished" by the dealer prior to delivery.

Click here to comment online: Passing Scene


road signs

The Newspaper Guild is calling on unpaid writers of The Huffington Post to withhold their work in support of a strike launched by Visual Art Source in response to the company's unfair labor practices. In addition, the Guild is asking its members and all supporters of fair and equitable compensation for Strike against HuffPojournalists to join in shining a light on the unprofessional and unethical practices of this company. Cherie Turner, one of the striking Visual Art Source writers was quoted: "We feel it is unethical to expect trained and qualified professionals to contribute quality content for nothing. It is unethical to cannibalize the investment of other organizations that bear the cost of compensation and other overhead without payment for the usage of their content. It is extremely unethical to not merely blur but eradicate the distinction between the independent and informed voice of news and opinion and the voice of a shill."

Gavin O'Malley, writing in Media Online says YouTube's acquisition of Next New Networks signals Google's move away from premium content and an attempt to foster more semi-professional content creators. Concurrently, Google purchased Green Parrot Pictures, a technology that improves the quality of videos . . .. O'Malley also reported that global smartphones sales topped PC sales in the first quarter of 2011.

Katie Colbin reported that a speaker at a recent meeting told of Facebook actually filtering his messages to eliminate those with subject matter he showed less interest in. She notes personalizing advertising is one thing but asks in OnlineSpin if this involuntary personalization of content is dangerous? While The New York Times just getting into an online paywall, Reuter's reports The Wall Street Journal has quadrupled the number of its tablet subscribers in the past year. . . . More Americans got their daily news in 2010 from online sources other than print, according to the Biannual News Consumption Survey from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. Also, Pew found that the Internet is now the No. 1 news source for the 18-29-age cohort, with 65% saying they get most of their news online, compared to 52% for TV and just 21% for newspapers. Ironically, the survey revealed that five of the seven top online-only news operations generate most of their traffic by aggregating traditional media.

Another Pew Survey revealed that only 6 percent of the adult U.S. population Tweet. That's 8 percent of the online population, excluding teenagers who, reportedly are not Tweeters. . . . And for astounding numbers about the Internet, AWCom refers you to Shelley Podolny's op-ed The Digital Pileup in the March 12 New York Times. A sample: "The current volume estimate of all electronic information is roughly 1.2 zettabytes, the amount of data that would be generated by everyone in the world posting messages on Twitter continuously for a century. That includes everything from e-mail to YouTube. More stunning: 75 percent of the information is duplicative. By 2020, experts estimate that the volume will be 44 times greater than it was in 2009. There finally may be, in fact, T.M.I."

For those who ask where we will find the energy to handle this massive overload, this link may have answer:

Click here to comment online: Road Signs


autowriters spotlight

Jeff Melnychuk is a partner and driving force in the eye-catching designs of Wheelbase Media's weekly auto pages that enliven the auto sections of some 200 dailyJeff Melynchuk, Wheelbase Media newspapers in the U.S. and Canada. A winner of some 14 design awards, he sees tablets as " a tantalizing new visual platform for print designers caught between the downsizing of their industry and the relatively creative inflexibility of Web pages." They are a means to achieve the rosy picture for digital communications described in last month's Road Ahead" and to offset the boring presentations that make it tough, as noted in that same article, "to curl up with a good web site."

"With fifteen million iPads sold in less than a year plus iPad2 expanding that base and, considering Apple's tiny percentage of the computer and cell-phone markets," Melnychuk says, "you don't have to be a genius to see that we're standing at the bomb-bay doors of an all-out tablet war: everyone and their dogs will come out with an iPad fighter."

That's sufficient impetus for a major shift in Wheelbase Media's initial business of selling complete articles, including graphics to other publications as they need them. The company is launching a new subscription-based weekly consumer magazine, Shift, along with a new Shift app available for free at the Apple app store. It will enable readers to see the new pub in all of its graphic glory and enjoy the work of the Wheelbase stable of professional writers and artists. Wheelbase will license the app they developed for quickly adapting content to the iPad.

As Melnychuk sees it, "The Web, as robust an entity as it is, has obvious limitations to high-impact page design since it's data driven and not graphically driven. You can't easily overlay text on a photo -- you can't even easily put text beside other text -- and the simple fact that browser preferences are such that users can specify their text size means that the effect a designer is looking to create might never be fully realized. With its high resolution display and increasing popularity the iPad platform (and other tablets coming on the market) is a natural for designers to showcase their graphically rich work. There's an audience and the pages are seen precisely as the designer intended, only better than in print since registration and the colors are not mixed from the usual dull CMYK primary colors. It's a significant advantage over long, bland columns of text on Web sites or blogs. - as well as an advantage over print with its faster navigation of pages, portability and the ability to store many issues or even volumes."

Melnychuk and his partner, Malcolm Gunn, believe people will pay for that kind of product. "Product is the key word," Melnychuk says, since a Web site, no matter how good, is not really a product. Getting "something" for your money is the way that North Americans have been trained to buy. They don't appear all that interested in paying for "access" to information, which is proven by Web sites that derive their entire revenue by being what we flippantly refer to as ‘click mills.' And, well, people who surf the Internet think everything should be free. Also, they're tired of scouring the Web only to find poorly written, unsubstantiated stories and junky advertising that's more annoying than useful.

"A product, by contrast, is the intentional binding of the content to present an experience. A regular product -- weekly in the case of Wheelbase's new magazine -- also creates a sense of timeliness, whereas on a Web site there's no way to really know what's actually new, which no doubt keeps some people from ever returning. The cornerstone of the electronic product is solid design as an extension of the content."

It is not as simple as converting content to PDF, Melnychuk says. "While magazines and newspapers could make PDF files of their pages to be viewed on the iPad, they are painfully slow to load and scroll, Melnychuk says, and, "chances are iPad owners would never know about them to find them in the first place. It all boils down to marketing."

"Although this still has to be done with an iPad app, a key benefit is that your product is officially exposed to the 15-million-plus iPad users via Apple's app store." "Apple takes 30 percent and the more you sell, the more they make, so it's in everyone's best interest to be in the store."

"As a business-to-business company, we really set out to provide an app platform for any publication to build off. Of course, the best way to validate it was to build our own magazine. Although we offer the architecture for resale to other publishers to help them cut time and expense from their own iPad programs, the iPad app was ideally modeled to get our own graphically rich content beyond print and into a new, more robust platform."

For more information on the new app go to:

Melnychuk says that as new tablets come on stream, they will be evaluated to see if Shift is a logical fit. "Of course, the ideal plan would be to have a completely universal architecture for all tablets, and if they're smart they'll want to make it easy for publications to convert and adapt."

Click here to comment online: Autowriters Spotlight


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the tom tom

Tom-Tom rants, raves, rambles and ruminations are volunteered and express the opinions of the writer. Autowriters.Com invites readers to submit a tom-tom.  Your reward: a byline and an audience of your peers.  All submissions are acknowledged, queued and used at the editor's discretion. 

Jesse Bowers is a classic example of the Internet's unlocking voices that otherwise would not be heard. He claims no experience or education as a writer but his passion for cars has raised his above The New York Times' Wheels blog (14 to 16) in one survey, he proudly reports. Retired from the U.S. Navy, Bowers has a day job and on occasion drives a cargo truck for extra pay. His blog brings in no money yet he manages to travel from his San Diego, Calif. base to 120-150 car and trade shows a year and take an amazing 50,000 to 60,000 photos. All is grist for his blog that is informed by a lifetime of reading about, tinkering and working on cars, starting at age 6 while growing up in a particularly remote part of Michigan's already remote Upper Peninsula. For this month's Tom-Tom he submits his thoughts on last month's Newsletter.

Post by Post Review

Road Signs
The innovation is the internet that author David Koretz seems to not like when it comes to Google answering any question we have, but he forgot so quickly that it has innovated such amazing things like instantly translating foreign languages online? You can use Google Translate, or instant translate on Google Chrome Browser, to read from foreign countries. That was impossible for an ordinary guy like me to do before Google made it possible, I can't read Russian, Hungarian, Portuguese, and the other languages of websites and blogs I enjoy thoroughly now. All foreign press was unintelligible, and mostly inaccessible, before the internet.

Jesse Bowers

Jesse Bowers

Road Ahead
What I feel Nina, the COE of magazine media has overlooked, is that few if any, read magazines online, yet almost all despise advertising online, and most can find the same information or photos, without paying for a magazine... you got it, online. I have linked to 4 or 5 online magazines, and yet never have looked at them since letting my readers know about them. Turning digital pages is a lousy method of simulating flipping paper pages, and who needs the simulation? I just want the feature stories, and hate the ads. Same as hardcopy.

They have a free app for blogs, and it's not much use. I'm not sure it's even working, and its not as good as Blog stats that Blogger recently added as a built in feature.

The Tom-Tom
I agree with Linda on most everything, but have no first hand knowledge of any hardcopy press being denied free entry as media to any events I attend, as SEMA, Grand National Roadster Show, Los Angeles Roadster Show, Good Guys Nationals, Coronado Speedfest, the Primer Nats, and the Beatnik Blowout have given no indication that any media people are turned away. I actually had to point out to the GNRS people when they denied my media credential that I have far more going for my blog than most newspapers and magazines... since I'm growing, popular, awarded by my peers who've reviewed and enjoyed my blog above others, and that includes the paid pros that make the New York Times auto section ( ) just one example. I further argued that as about a hundred newspapers a year are failing, and have went under and out of print, and many magazines (various levels of cultural demographics) have went down and are knocked out, the internet media are thriving. 700 billion text messages were sent last year in the US was the stat that was just on the local radio news at 100.7 in San Diego. Not that those are media, but it's digital communication in growth, and the Post Office is circling the drain.

Hardcopy was put on notice when TV journalism began, and they didn't adapt, maybe they can't... and internet journalism doesn't cost a dime. Free news, from nearly anywhere on the planet, as long as you have internet access, and libraries are converting to desktop and wifi access points just to keep people coming in the doors. Anyway, the person I was emailing talked to her boss, and he changed his mind due to my convincing facts (too numerous to copy and paste here), and from now on Bloggers will get media passes to the GNRS.

I think Linda should have stated the facts about the case of the hardcopy US media she claims was denied access to some event, her vagueness doesn't convince me, I have read far too many hoaxes that you may have guessed, are disproven by Skepticism and research are now simple, and asking neighbors about urban legends was never useful.

If he knows that a hyphen is necessary, due to another guy with the same name, he's just sending people to the other guy. Not good odds that people will remember the hyphen, but they would have remembered something well thought out like, Best Damn Sports Writer Blogspot.

American version of Top Gear
It's a flop. It's already dead but hasn't realized it's time to pull the plug. The BBC original is now about 12 years in, and still attracting a tremendous audience, the US copy stands about as much chance as the NBC copy of Coupling. Yeah, you probably never heard of it, but the BBC original was 3 seasons of brilliant comedy. No idea why they lost Jeff on the 4th year.

Pit Notes
My Compliments to Sue Mead and the Raptor. Respect!

In summation, terrific newsletter! I would add that giving some focus to individual writers and excerpts would keep my attention glued... Ezra Dyer (Automobile and Mens Journal), Dan Neil (Wall Street Journal) and Scott Longman (Mopar Action) , Ken Gross writes regularly for Rodd Report, Rodder's Journal, Road and Track, Automotive Magazine, the Mechanic at Edmunds, and lastly Chris.

Thanks for your time and patience, great newsletter, I'm looking forward to reading more of them if you'll send them but I probably won't respond again like this... takes too long and I have stuff backed up to get posted.

Click here to comment online: Tom-Tom


new roads

The new collaboration between the Automotive Journalists of Canada and the Canadian Automobile Association includes launching an online publication to "inform consumers about new engine technologies." . . . A similarly purposed quarterly magazine titled iCar will be launched in England in May. Specialty magazine publisher Future's announcement said iCar will cater to "growing consumer interest in more efficient, intelligent and technologically advanced cars. With three revolutions in engine development predicted within the next 30-years, accompanied by a myriad of innovative driver aids and in-car tech systems, iCar has an exciting future ahead building consumer awareness and driving desire.", developed to become the "Life Magazine of Vintage Automotive Photography" was launched February 10th by vintage automotive restorer, collector, and expert, David Greenlees. Rare, interesting, entertaining, mysterious, awe inspiring photographs are submitted by knowledgeable car enthusiasts, collected and categorized by expert editorial panel, and displayed on the site. For more information:  . . . One Minute News, as its name implies, is a new the online- and mobile-based news service specializing in "bite-sized" content, which it is both producing and aggregating, according to Gavin O'Malley in Online Media Daily.

Click here to comment online: New Roads


regional news

The Automobile Journalist Association of Canada
and the Canadian Automobile Association have partnered to "provide Canadian consumers with better access to factual, ethical and honest information on automotive topics that matter to them." The two organizations will collaborate on conferences and awareness campaigns about driver distractions and co-existing with cyclists on roadways.

Managing Editor Roman Mica has been elected President of RMAP replacing outgoing President Michael Cotsworth. Senior Writer and freelance automotive journalist Nathan Adlen has been elected Vice President while Sara Lacey remains RMAP Secretary.

Mica announced that RMAP's 2011 Rocky Mountain Driving Experience (RMDE) will be to a two-day event that will conclude with a stunning drive up a 14,000 foot mountain. Lacey added: "We will still be at High Plains Raceway and Colorado Off-Road Extreme for the first day of the event. On the second day, we will be providing drive routes that will include scenic mountain drives and some twists and turns."

RMAP will host a new series of monthly membership meetings in 2011 built around newsworthy automotive themes. Sponsorship of these meetings is open to any car manufacturer interested in presenting to the general press membership of RMAP. For more information on the monthly meeting, RMAP, or on the 2011 RMDE please visit: or contact Roman Mica at

Tom Appel writes: People have been asking about Spring Rally dates. Write this down: May 25 and 26. Be there. While we're at it, the Fall Rally is October 5. Our good friend Patrick Hespen is no longer with Ford. He has asked that I pass along his personal email:

The 2011 Hyundai Sonata has been named the inaugural winner of MAMA's Family Vehicle of the Year award. To qualify for the award, vehicles had to have four doors, start at less than $50,000, appear at one of MAMA's two annual rallies, and be new or significantly updated within a year of the Spring Rally, which took place in May, 2010.

New England Winter Car of 2011
is the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Winter Car class awards went to:

Pickup Truck: GMC Sierra 2500
Compact SUV: Hyundai Tucson
SUV ($25,000-$35,000): Ford Explorer
Premium SUV ($35,000-$50,000): Volvo XC60
Luxury SUV ($50,000+): tie: Range Rover HSE/ Infiniti QX56
AWD Sedan/Wagon: Subaru Forester
AWD Sedan/Wagon $25,000-$35,000 : Dodge Charger

AWD Sedan/Wagon $35,000-$60,000: Mercedes-Benz E350 wagon
AWD Sedan/Wagon $60,000+:BMW 7-Series
The Yankee Value Award went to the Suzuki SX4
The Best People Mover is Toyota's Sienna AWD
The Best All-Weather Sports Car is the Porsche 911 Turbo

While not yet graced with its own auto press association, the island state has two regular Newsletter correspondents both veterans of the stateside auto scene; the "never say die" Bill Maloney and "I'm not dead, just relocated," Bob McClurg.

Maloney writes: Since I lost the sight in my right eye due to a faulty contact lens several months ago my popular long running (312 weeks KITV) Ohana Road automotive infotainment TV show has been off the tube. Now I'm back in action with a fake eye and will reprise Ohana Road to air on KHON 2 Fox 5:30 PM Saturday's as the lead-in to the stations number one news show at 6. Huge audience. Ohana Road will also rerun weekly at 3 PM Saturday on KHON . First show is Sunday, April 3, 2011 Joining the "younger look" movement as new program hosts are American Idol's Jordan Segundo and actress-model Rachel Pacarro.

Guesting on our kickoff program will be Jim Nabors who's singing of "Back Home Again In Indiana" at the Indianapolis 500 each year is a high point of the events opening ceremonies Ohana Road will retain it's magazine format showcasing New On The Road, Car Personalities, Concepts and Classics, great automotive events and A Bunch Of Maloney, automotive whimsy. Plans for national syndication are brewing."

Legendary drag racing lensman Bob McClurgMcClurg pens: "Just a quick attachment to let you know that I haven't fallen off the end of the earth. I'm just out here on a big rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean."  From the release:

LEGENDARY DRAG RACING LENSMAN HONORED: Veteran photojournalist Bob McClurg was recently honored by the Hawaii Classic Cruisers Car Club when he was invited to display examples of his award-winning quarter mile photography at the Big Island's Queen's Market Place/Waikoloa Classic Car Museum in Waikoloa, Hawaii. The three-month long exhibit features numerous 1st through 3rd Place awards won from 1999 to 2011 competing in the Southern California Automobile Club-sponsored California Hot Rod Reunion's prestigious Leslie Lovett Memorial Photo Contest.  Photo by Ken Mitsunaga

pit notes

Willy T. RobbsWilly T. Ribbs is back on the motorports scene after a 10-year break. The colorful and sometimes combative Ribbs, will join Barbara Terry Racing for the remainder of her 2011 off-road racing "Best In The Desert Series" schedule. He is the first African American to qualify for and compete in the Indianapolis 500 and has competed in NASCAR, Formula Ford, Cart/Indy Car and other venues to claim the title of "winningest African American driver in history." Terry is competing in Class 9 which she leads after one race in her Volkswagen-powered buggy sponsored by Deltran Battery Tender and Muc-Off USA. Ribbs will join her for the Silver State 300 in April, Vegas to Reno in August, the Bluewater Desert Challenge in October, and Henderson 250 in December.

Americans are still befuddled by hybrids, according to a recent study reported by Karl Greenberg in Marketing Daily. He writes, "New research from marketing firm Synovate, based on a survey last fall of 1,898 new vehicle buyers and intenders, actually suggests that even though modern hybrids have been around since Toyota launched the first-generation Prius in the late 1990's...consumer knowledge about hybrid power trains is so low that it could prove a significant barrier to sales." For more information check:

The 17th Annual Kyle Petty Charity Motorcycle Ride will stick to the East Coast this year. Most of the previous events have been west-to-east. This one starts May 7 in Lake Placid, NY and ends May 14 at Amelia Island, Fla. AutoWeek has invited four riders to join its Team entry in the event that has raised more than $15 million in the last 10 years. For more information Solowheelcontact . . . The makers of Solowheel say it is "the smallest, greenest, most convenient people mover ever invented." A self-balancing electric unicycle, it weighs 20 pounds and has two folding foot platforms on the outside. Inside it has two gyro sensors, a 1000 Watt motor and a rechargeable Lithium-ion battery. Once aboard, lean forward to go faster, backward to slow down. Click here to see the SoloWheel in action.

SEMA has announced July 8, 2011 as the second "Collector Car Appreciation Day," which it plans to build to an annual national event to raise awareness of the vital role automotive restoration and collection plays in American society. SEMA expects collectors and enthusiasts will host hundreds of events across the country on July 8 and will proudly partner with individuals, car clubs and businesses as they organize car cruises, club gatherings and other educational events to celebrate the day. SEMA will maintain a list of events scheduled to commemorate America's time-tested love affair with the automobile. Individuals, car clubs and business owners interested in publicizing events should contact Mike Dingell, director, SEMA Action Network (SAN) at 202/7-6007 ext. 38 or . . .The Three World Car of The Year Finalists are: Nissan Leaf, Audi A8 and BMW 5 Series.

Click here to comment online: Pit Notes


Mothers: Polishes*Waxes*Cleaners
lane changes

Jalopnik editor Ray Wert reported in an exclusive story, titled "Sellout" that The Detroit News may have sold its soul but Scott Burgess did not by abruptly resigning when the paper altered his review of the Chrysler 200 after a complaint by aScott Burgessn advertiser. Burgess, the paper's auto critic, was quoted by Wert, "Yes, I resigned from The Detroit News as of today and I have been sending notes to carmakers announcing such. It's the best job I ever held. The resignation was not planned. I choose not to answer the reasons for the resignation." Burgess has since said it was the motivation behind the re-write that prompted his resignation. Sue Carney, the paper's business editor was quoted, "A car dealer raised a complaint and we took a look at the review, as we would do whenever a reader raises a flag. The changes were made to address the journalism of the piece, not the angst of a car dealer. We left the print version alone, but the the online environment offered the flexibility to rework language that should have been caught in the editing process." But the most telling quote in the Jalopnik story and perhaps an indication of where all this may be going, was from the News publisher Jonathan Wolman," Our intent was to make an editing improvement and we obviously handled it poorly. We should have let the online version of his review stand as written, as we did the print version."

MPG president James Bell advises that he moved on from Kelley Blue Book as of Feb. 28 and his new destination will be announced. In the meantime, he can be reached at: or 562.225.7400. . . . Wooden Horse News reported that Andrew Moseman is the new web editor at Popular Mechanics. Reach him at . . . . Dave Pankew has been named editor-in-chief of Performance Auto and Sound Magazine, a monthly Canadian print publication that Pankews says is "number 1 in paid circulation in the Sports Compact genre." He can be reached at: or 426-992-75626 x 3016.

Graeme Russell

Graeme Russell

Bentley Motors, Inc. has named Graeme Russell head of Public Relations and Communications in the United States, Canada, Central and South America. Previously, he was USA Brand Ambassador for Macallan Highland Single Malt Whisky. . . .Tony Cervone has returned to the Auto Industry as Executive Vice President, Communications for Volkswagen Group of America. He spent 24 years in automotive public relations with Chrysler and General Motors before moving to United Airlines as Sr. V.P and chief communications officer in 2009.

Click here to comment online: Lane Changes


- 30-

Glenn F. Campbell

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March 2011
23 GAAMA, Atlanta Int'l Auto Show Press Day, GM Breakfast, Chrysler Lunch
24 IMPA, Luncheon, 3 West Club, NYC, Auto Journalism & Social Media
29-30 CARS Conference, "Road to Renewal", Dearborn, MI (Hyatt)
31 Deadline for TAWA members to register for Texas Auto Roundup
April 2011
7 Media days, Dallas Auto Show
7 WAPA, Luncheon, Alexandria, VA, Chrysler Ride 'n Drive, 10:30 a.m. on
10 2011 PACE Awards Presentation, Detroit, MI
12 NEMPA, Dinner, Boston Globe, HAARTZ, Boston, MA
12 MPG, Luncheon, Proud Bird, Los Angeles, CA, Ford
12-13 2011 SAE World Congress, Detroit, MI
19 NADA/IHS Automotive Forum "The Road Ahead", New York City, NY, Hilton
20-21 New York International Auto Show Press Days, New York, NY
22- May 1 New York International Auto Show Public Days, New York, NY
May 2011
1-3 TAWA Texas Auto Roundup, Texas Motor Speedway
3-4 CARS Conference, Dearborn, MI, Auto Workforce Transformation
5 APA/Robert Bosch Luncheon, Detroit, MI
12 APA/Design Panel Luncheon, Detroit, MI
24 MAMA Spring Rally Manufacturer's Dinner, Elkhart Lake, WI
25-26 MAMA Spring Rally, Elkhart Lake, WI
TBD SAMA Luncheon, GM, site and date to be determined


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motoring press organizations

The 16 regional automotive press associations provide information and background not easily found elsewhere. If they are too distant for you to attend their meetings, belonging usually gives you access to transcripts or reports of these events and other benefits.


Automotive Press Association, Detroit - Joann Muller, President,

ARPALogo: Ameican Racing Press Association

American Racing Press Association- Stan Clinton, President,,


International Motor Press Association, NYC, Fred Chieco, President -,

GAAMA: Greater Atlanta Automotive Association

Greater Atlanta Automotive Media Association


Midwest Automotive Media Association, Chicago , IL-

MPG: Motor Press Guild

Motor Press Guild, Los Angeles -

NEMPA Logo: New England Motor Press Association

New England Motor Press Association, Boston, MA -


Northwest Automotive Press Association, Portland, OR, Jeff Zurschmeide, President


Phoenix Automotive Press Association, Phoenix, Cathy Droz, President-


Rocky Mountain Automotive Press, Denver -

SAMA Log: Southern Automotive Media Association

Southern Automotive Media Association, Miami FL, Paul Borden, President,


Southeast Automotive Media Organization, Charlotte, NC


Texas Auto Writers Association, Mike Herzing,


Truck Writers of North America, Tom Kelley, Executive Director,


Western Automotive Journalists, San Francisco -, Ron Harrison


Washington Automotive Press Association, D.C., Rick Trawick, President




RE: Jim Kenzie's speculation that his may have been "the first newspaper auto column."

Hi Glenn - Much as I love Kenzie and much as I hate to admit harking back to the dark ages, I wrote a dedicated weekly Wheels column, their first, for Gannett Newspapers as a reporter for the White Plains Dispatch, NY, back in 1975. Sorry, Jim!! The column was initially dubbed Hubcapsules, AND it was syndicated. At least Jim's is still going strong, while mine is not.

Jill Amadio

Re: Cathy Droz

Cathy Droz is the hardest working, loyal and honest business woman I know. She follows through with everything she takes on and does it with style and flare. She is my role model and also the best mom a son could ever ask for. Thanks, mom. I love you!


Re: Changing Lanes

fer gosh sakes, get Carano's name right!

Mike Davis

Re: Management Guff

Some more Management Guff, as sent to me by a friend in England. He noted that he was recently promoted into more responsibility when another position in his company was "disestablished."


Re: Road Ahead

The key phrase in this offering is "curling up." We (or at least the older members of the press) have often "curled up" to a good book, or even a great magazine. (sometimes even a thick newspaper)

While on-line "journalism" offers a lot of convenience, there is nothing to sit, savor and reflect involved in it. To borrow from a more crude reference, it's more like "slam, bam, Thank you ma'am."

I fear the younger generation which only knows the Internet, will avoid books and magazines as being "too slow" in their quest for information.

I hope that books and magazines don't go the way of the typewriter.

Russ Dodge

Re: Pit Notes

Congratulations to Sue Mead and Darren Skilton! It was a harrowing rally. Years ago, when Sue first decided to segue into being an automotive journalist, she freelanced for me at 4 Wheel Drive & Sport Utility Magazine. I always enjoyed/enjoy her work.

Phil Howell

Re: February Newsletter

Glenn -- I have been reading your monthly AutoWriters Newsletter for many years. This past February 2011 was one of the best yet. I especially liked seeing the news about Sue Meade and Linda Water Nelson's comments on credentialing. I agree with her analysis that long-time, proven, active auto journalists should not be shoved to the back of the line.

Keep up the good work.


Re: Tom-Tom

As a veteran auto journalist of 28 years, I have never had problems getting credentials for the three auto shows that I cover, Philadelphia, New York, and sometimes DC. What I have noticed that is quite different than it was 28 years ago, is that the automotive press is far outnumbered by the general media, especially TV reporters.

There was a time when reporters attending a show press conference could ask questions of the manufacturer's official making the presentation. There was always a back and forth dialogue. Today, the mobs that attend each press conference make it impossible to have question and answer sessions (not to mention finding a seat), and I am not so sure that members of the general media would know what relevant question to ask if they could.

Russ Dodge

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