Watch List: Comey Hits Scorched Earth, Local News Heats Up

(Pictured: Long Island-based Newsies David North, Drew Scott and Waldo Cabrera at the Fair Media Council Folio Awards at The Garden City Hotel. Photo by Bob Giglione.)

Making the Rounds

The James Comey media tour is leaving plenty of scorched earth in its wake but in the most unlikely places. The interview by George Stephanopoulos received a drubbing from critics for its choppy editing and near-advertorial style (OK, the beauty shot of the book at the commercial break was a bit much), but the ABC newsman got some tough questions in, too.

In contrast, the ladies of The View gave the former FBI chief a run for his book money, coming down hard on the timing of a decision which may have crippled the Clinton campaign.

But Preet Bharara, who shares a thing or two in common with Comey, has been a steadfast supporter of the very tall and seemingly likable guy. The big diff between the two is the level of substance in their answers to an endlessly inquiring media. Let’s hope Comey ups his game by the time he hits Long Island.

Waldo Honored for Being, Well, Waldo

MYLITV’s Waldo Cabrera was honored Wednesday night by Dancing Classrooms Long Island, where he gave a heartfelt acceptance speech focusing on his love of family, Long Island and multiculturalism.

In an era where media needs to support media, turning out to congratulate the newsman, who is devoted to telling positive stories of Long Island, were longtime radio-turned-multimedia journalist David North, Long Island Business News’ Adina Genn and producer Vivian Hernandez Ortiz. The Hon. Tom Cilmi crossed borders to be at The Mansion at Oyster Bay to present a citation to Cabrera and pledge ongoing support for the Dancing Classrooms program, which goes into schools and teaches children life skills during a 20-week dancing program.

Growing up in a Dominican household, Cabrera recounted the importance of dancing in his family, explaining he was eight or nine-years-old when his father taught him to ask a girl to dance, and then escort her back to her seat and thank her for the privilege.

He also noted, having four people at dinner constitutes a party at his house.

More News. Literally.

Anton Media Group is expanding with weeklies covering Levittown and Massapequa, boosting its coverage with 19 weeklies with a combined average circulation of 76,000. That, according to the company, gives Anton the claim to fame as Nassau County’s largest newspaper group.

In Suffolk, digital news outlet GreaterLongIsland.com continues to lay a strong foundation, first with pulling in a couple of snazzy awards from the New York Press Association, and its eye on expansion, with its latest efforts focused on Port Jefferson and its neighbors.

While its Patchogue site is best known to date, Greater’s expansion strategy gives it a defining edge: It seeks areas it considers a suburban “city,” and provides coverage of it and surrounding neighborhoods. It’s not a new concept but, if it’s successful, it may give Long Islanders not on the East End what they’ve always wanted: A sense of place. In that regard, Greater Long Island Media Group may be much smarter than it knows.

Congrats to Dan’s Papers, which earned awards for advertising excellence, among other things, at NYPA, too. (A bit of proof that advertising isn’t dead and may actually spring back to life following Facebook’s debacle? Oh yeah, that’s good news there.)

Back to Nassau, props to LIHerald.com for a well done, easy to navigate website — an accomplishment that’s twice as hard to achieve at a legacy media company, as compared to 27east.com, which was birthed as the digital baby of The Southampton Press and The East Hampton Press.

For the record, the Herald had a record showing at NYPA, bringing home 29 awards. And The Southampton Press brought back NYPA’s prestigious Past President’s Award.

Big winners at the New York Emmy Awards were PIX11 and NBC New York with 15 a piece — results that jibe with Folio Award results, BTW. Newsday announced nine Emmy Awards, which is an important accomplishment for a print paper morphing into multimedia. Big congrats to Kaity Tong for being named the Governors’ Award winner. 1010WINS now has a National Association of Broadcasters’ Crystal Award to add to its trove, and WCBS Newsradio 880 scored multiple National Headliner Awards.

And people say local news is dead.

On the Agenda: Fake News
We’ll be talking fake news and how to navigate today’s oh-so-complicated media landscape on Saturday at Hofstra University, as part of the Public Relations Student Society of America’s Regional Conference. A few hundred students are expected to turn out.

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Jaci Clement

Considered the most influential media scholar in the world today, Jaci Clement has been working for and with news media since the fourth grade.