Robservations on the media beat:
- Can there be a greater example of greed or arrogance than the lavishing of more than $72 million in bonuses on top executives of Tribune Co. — while employees continue to suffer the consequences of bankruptcy?
- Roland Martin, the former Chicago Defender editor and radio talk show host, has his eye on a bigger prize at CNN. He’s hoping to move up from contributor and political analyst to full-time host, replacing Campbell Brown (who’s voluntarily stepping down from her Monday through Friday night show). “It’s always been a goal of mine to place Roland in a prime time hosting role,” Martin’s agent, Marc Watts, told blogger Richard Prince. Watts, a former CNN correspondent himself, is married to ex-Chicago news anchor Diann Burns.
- Back by popular demand is the “swimsuit issue” of Nostalgia Digest, the quarterly magazine and program guide for “Those Were the Days.” Featuring a ravishing Ava Gardner on the cover, the 12-page section includes swimsuit-clad cheesecake shots of such legends as Claudette Colbert, Joan Crawford and Olivia DeHavilland. Even a few male stars are depicted poolside, including Bing Crosby, Alan Ladd and Robert Cummings. Credit editor/publisher Steve Darnall, host of “Those Were the Days,” with the clever idea.
- Andrew Finlayson, who proved to be a total bust during his three years as vice president and news director at Channel 32, has been hired as senior vice president for digital media strategies at SmithGeiger, a Los Angeles-based media research and consulting firm. He recently completed a John S. Knight Fellowship at Stanford University.
- On the eve of the Stanley Cup finals, Blackhawks legends Bobby Hull, Stan Mikita and Tony Esposito join host Joel Weisman for a joint interview on “The Friday Night Show” at 7:30 p.m. Friday on public television WTTW-Channel 11.
- Ray Hanania, the free-lance journalist, broadcaster, publicist and standup comedian, will emcee the nonprofit Community Media Workshop’s roundtable on “Who’s a Journalist Now?” from 3 to 5 p.m. June 10 at Columbia College Chicago’s Film Row Cinema, 1104 S. Wabash. Free and open to the public, the forum will feature four panels of 24 experts who’ll discuss the changing media landscape in all its forms. For information on the event and other sessions during the organization’s annual two-day “Making Media Connections” conference, see communitymediaworkshop.org.
- There’s an interesting historical footnote to the news here Wednesday about the Radio Hall of Fame: Chicago radio treasure Jim Nayder, host of “The Annoying Music Show,” owes everything — everything — to “The WLS National Barn Dance,” which is among this year’s Hall of Fame nominees. His parents, Maryann and Tom Nayder, met as performers on the famed country music hoedown. His mother was a yodeling square-dancer on the show, while his father played guitar with a group called The Windy City Ramblers. Tom Nayder went on to become a highly decorated war hero.