Lee Newspapers

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New Problems Emerge with Lee Newspapers

If you read the Missoulian tonight, you might start to wonder just how big of a problem Lee Newspapers has with poor employee treatment. Apparently, asking two of the state’s top reporters, Chuck Johnson and Mike Dennison, to apply for their own jobs at lower salaries, may not be an isolated incident. (If you haven’t read the media blogger Jim Romenesko’s report on this, you should.)

In a report posted tonight that one had a hard time believing could be completely unbiased, the Missoulian is reporting that it is suing its own former employees over some advertising accounts.

A source with knowledge of the case says

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GUEST POST: We will miss democracy’s watchdogs Johnson and Dennison 

By Mary Ann and Don Dunwell

Mary Ann Dunwell represents Helena and East Helena in the Montana House. Don Dunwell is a Montana television journalist.

It’s a disappointing time for Montana’s Fourth Estate because the bylines of Chuck Johnson and Mike Dennison will no longer appear in Lee newspapers. With their years of experienced and insightful coverage of Montana’s Capitol, Dennison and Johnson held elected officials and government accountable, and held watch over our democracy.


Lee Newspapers

Lee State Bureau, RIP

Surprising news was delivered Thursday by the Great Falls Tribune. The Lee Newspapers company is shutting down its State Bureau, meaning that Mike Dennison and Chuck Johnson, the state’s two veteran political reporters, are departing, leaving the company.  Sources with knowledge of the the decision say Lee…


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Big Rally in Helena Today to Derail ALEC Land Grab Nonsense

Montanans from across the state are gathering in  Helena to oppose TEA Party Sen. Jennifer Fielder’s plans to takeover our public lands with SB 215 and a “package” of other such bills. It’s ridiculous that the Lee Newspaper story on the land grab doesn’t even mention where Fielder got the idea,…



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Today’s Must-Read Political Blog Post

Is up at Intelligent Discontent, where Don Pogreba writes another of his excellent point by point take downs of shoddy journalism. I’ve read some terrible headlines from Montana newspapers in my day, but today’s story headlined “Political practices commissioner accused of using questionable tactics to get results” has…



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Double Talk from a Right-Wing Publisher

Montanans have reacted with outrage to the lies being spread by the fake newspapers called the Montana Statesman and the deceptive mailers that arrived on doorsteps courtesy of the American Traditions Partnership. But the reaction from Randy Rickman, the right-wing publisher of the Helena IR…


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Questions at the IR

A series of strange occurrences at the Helena IR in recent days. First, a bizarre editorial was penned  Sunday by the paper’s CEO, suggesting that the very existence of the newspaper may be in doubt. Randy Rickman, the paper’s boss, wrote that “rumors of our demise have…


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There They Go Again

Responding to a Lee Newspapers questionnaire in today’s Helena Independent Record, the seven GOP gubernatorial candidates all said that Montana must “develop our natural resources” as a way to reduce unemployment and make our economy strong, and that “red tape” and “excessive regulations” are standing…


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Media Quick Hits

A Blow to Good Journalism On the same day it was announced Mary Junck, Lee CEO, received a $500,000 bonus for taking her company into bankruptcy, Lee Newspapers laid off people in Helena and Butte, KXLH is reporting. Montana Nutjobs Back in the National Spotlight…


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Today’s Must Read Political Blog Posts

Can be found at the Flathead Memo and the Button Valley Bugle, who both write on the impact of Lee Newspapers new requirement that readers pay for online content. After the New York Times put its content behind a paywall earlier this year, there was a…