Peek Inside Telemundo's Houston Offices and Their Play for TV News

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Photo by bluepoint951
Telemundo dares you not to learn Spanish.
Who isn't familiar with Telemundo? As the second largest Spanish language network, Telemundo has a huge following in Houston. There are over a million Hispanic people living in Harris County alone.

As part of my Spanish for Global Professions class at the University of Houston I was able to take a tour of their local headquarters. I was looking forward to learning how the station is keeping up with competition and the make-up of their audience in Houston.

Just like any other news station Telemundo had to reinvent themselves and introduce new programming to be able to keep up with a changing media landscape, and most importantly attract viewers. But what surprised me the most is how news stations work together sometimes.


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Houston Chronicle Deals With Sperm Jokes When 29-25.com, Girl Dick Come Back to Haunt

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It's a good thing we have Google's cache feature to keep these guys honest.

The Houston Chronicle had to come clean this week and quickly try to erase the last bits of its defunct 29-25.com website after media site jimromenesko.com got a hold of a post on chron.com.

The Chronicle reportedly took down a review of a book about sperm-flavored desserts posted four years ago after it was resurfaced this week by the media website.

The original post went into sticky details on the tome:

Semen is inexpensive to produce and is commonly available in many, if not most, homes and restaurants." Which is a coy way of saying "Available at a dick near you, baby!"

Just because something is "commonly available" doesn't mean that I'm going to want to mix it into Aunt Lisa's chicken and dumpling recipe; lots of things are "commonly available": motor oil, toothpaste, pencil shavings ... and none of those require ten to thirty minutes of "harvest time" per batch.

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Oh No! Houstoric Project has been cloned! And an Edit Must Be Made

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Photo by Abrahán Garza

After receiving a few messages from friends over the weekend congratulating me on "my print piece," I had to remind them that I worked for the Houston Press and that we don't have a weekend print edition. Confused, I had to find out what they were messaging me about.

(I also mentioned my latest blog wouldn't be up until Monday morning.)

It was an honest mistake. After all, I've been doing it in Houston for a few years now.

Although the effort is appreciated, it needs to be noted that the above image (taken this morning) was actually originally taken at 812 Main Street, not on Travis Street near Rusk. I felt it was my duty to mention it since the Houstoric Project is so dear to me.

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Check Out the Houston Press's New Digs at 2603 La Branch

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All photos by Abrahán Garza
No more dealing with parking meters when picking up your free prizes.
There are always snags when you move. Moving bins, broken items, misplaced belongings, miscellaneous computer power cords, mishandled packages, no coffee machine. Heck, you might even forget to forward the mail. The Houston Press made its move into its new building (2603 La Branch at McGowen) over the weekend and is almost settled in. Most of the moving bins have been emptied and all the wrinkles are being ironed out.

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The Houston Press Moves to New Digs, From Downtown to Midtown

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Photos by Abrahán Garza
Our home for the past 15 years and how it looked even before that

The Houston Press is moving offices this weekend. We've been located at 1621 Milam Suite #100 for the past 15 years and a lot has certainly changed. Moving from the Galleria area off of the West Loop to Downtown was a pretty big deal in 1998. Downtown Houston was just beginning its rebirth, long before the light rail, before Midtown was considered Midtown and when Metro buses still operated up and down Main Street.

Built in 1927, the Houston Press building was originally the home of Shelor Motor Company and later Gillman Pontiac in the 1960s. The historic building itself hasn't changed much. Its signature 50 x 240 foot mural that wraps around two sides of the building was painted by artist Suzanne Sellers in 1994. The trompe l'oeil mural can be seen from Milam, Leeland and Travis Streets.


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Built with distinction

Story continues on next page.



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Chronicle Names New Editor, Executive VP

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Meet the new boss, not remotely the same as the old boss.
It would appear the Chron has a new head boss. Nancy Barnes, the former editor of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, will take over as Editor and Executive Vice President on October 15. Barnes, 52, replaces Jeff Cohen, who is taking over the Editorial and Op-Ed sections of the news division. Though she has been in Minnesota for the past ten years, starting in the business section and taking over as Editor in 2007, she should be comfortable with the heat in Houston, having gone to college in Virginia and North Carolina.

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UPDATED: Richard Justice Says Chron Getting Rid of Nonessential Blogs

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We're still trying to figure out the details, but if one of Houston's more notable (former) writers is to be believed, the Houston Chronicle is shuffling back from its unencumbered foray into the digital age. Richard Justice, who worked for 11 years as the Chronicle's pre-eminent sports columnist before heading to MLB.com in 2011, Tweeted Wednesday that the paper would be "ending blogs."

At first glance, it appeared that Justice meant that all blogging platforms would be axed. But when contacted by Hair Balls, the former Houston columnist clarified.

"What they're cutting is non-staff blogs, [and] trying to figure out what to do with others," Justice said. "They're going to have one common blog -- Ultimate Astros, Ultimate Rockets, Ultimate Texans -- and I think they're a little foggy on what to do after that."

Justice noted that the mandate came from the Hearst Corporation, which owns the Chronicle.

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Less Sports, More Boobs: Guy Talk and the De-Evolution of Sports Talk Radio

I'm a native Houstonian. I grew up a fan of Houston sports teams, and I spent a lot of time as a kid listening to sports talk radio. There were no sports-only stations in the 1970s and 1980s. Multiple stations aired games (am I the only person who remembers the Astos games once being on 104 KRBE). And most sports talk radio was limited to weekends and for a few hours in the evening.

One of the top sports hosts, and the one I listed to the most, was Anita Martini, and I followed her from station to station -- 790 and 950 being the primary radio stations I remember her at. She also worked as a weekend sports anchor at Channels 2, 11, and 26 at various times. Martini was quite the trailblazer. She was the first female sports reporter allowed inside a MLB locker room when Dodger manager Walter Alston opened his locker room to her following a game at the Astrodome.

I didn't listen to Martini because she was breaking down doors. I was a kid. I didn't care about any of that. I listened because I enjoyed her shows, I learned a lot, and I didn't get treated like I was an idiot.

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Updated: George Flynn, Who Worked for the Houston Press and Both Dailies, Dies at 65

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George Flynn, a veteran newspaperman who worked for the Houston Press, the Post and the Chronicle, died of a heart attack at age 65 Saturday.

Flynn experienced chest pains and was taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital, where he died about 4 a.m. April 20.

Flynn grew up in Dallas, graduated from what is now the University of North Texas and spent most of the '70s covering courts and cops for the now-defunct Post, where he also became an editor.

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Another Death in Journalism: Texas Watchdog Finished?

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The end of the watching?
Texas Watchdog, we barely knew you. After four years of some stellar muckraking, but so-so writing, that exposed malfeasance in the HISD, dredged out some waste in stimulus dollars (who-woulda-thunk-it?) and exposed "gaping lapses in Texas ethics law," Texas Watchdog may disappear into the ether in two months.

Its funding from Franklin Center for Government & Public Integrity, a libertarian organization, has run out and it hasn't found anyone to fill the void. Editor Trent Seibert, like some weary coach, took some of the heat. "We've done some really good stuff and I just wish I knew how to pay for it," he said. "I've loved following the money when it comes to dirty officials, but I'm not good at getting the money to run the organization. I'm not a businessman. Part of this is my fault. If I was better at the fund-raising side, maybe we'd be around a little bit more."

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