Friday, February 19, 2010

Hot Off The Press! (Not)

Nearly a full week after I first broke the story, the News-Press finally has an article in today's (Friday's) paper on the lawsuit between Independent owners Marianne Partridge and Randy Campbell. What took 'em so long?

I have a pretty good guess: Partridge filed her complaint in Santa Barbara Superior Court on Thursday February 11, the day before a four-day weekend. (The courts were closed on Friday, Lincoln's Birthday as well as Monday, President's Day.) Of course just because a complaint is filed doesn't mean that it's available immediately for inspection by the public. It usually takes a day or two to process documents before they hit the file. So Tuesday was the first working day after the filing of the complaint. But that was probably too soon for it to be available.

To save money, the courts close the third Wednesday of every month, which was this past Wednesday. So if it wasn't in the file on Tuesday, there would be an additional day of delay. More than likely, the first day the complaint could be obtained was Thursday, which meant the earliest they could read the complaint and get the story into the paper was today.

Without a complaint, the only other option for reporting the story would be to cite Craig Smith's Blog (which was what the Daily Sound did) or the Indy itself (which later had the story on their website) as a source. I think it's safe to say that Wendy would rather die than cite me as the source of anything.

Given the choice between acknowledging the blogosphere or making her readers pay for stale news, the choice for Wendy was easy: Give 'em stale news!

So much for "hot off the press."

So, how did I get the story before the "mainstream media?" I was briefed on the contents of the complaint by someone who was familiar with the dispute (not one of the parties I might add) and tipped off to when the lawsuit would be filed.

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Down the road apiece, the Ventura County Star is moving copy editing functions to Corpus Christi, Texas. Well, at least they'll be closer to Randall Van Wolfswinkel.

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Middle Men, the closing film of the just concluded Santa Barbara Film Fest has found a distributor. Paramount has picked the film up. Details at Deadline Hollywood.

The Festival's third weekend, which features free films for locals, kicks off at 7 pm this evening at the Riviera Theater with a showing of Exam, the top film from the Fest.

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Former Mayor Marty Blum and husband Joe are vacationing in Auckland, New Zealand. They report that the Kiwis are big on bulbouts and traffic circles. All this without citizen complaints!

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The Santa Barbara County Democratic Central Committee has asked all 2010 Democratic candidates to sign the Fair Campaign Practices Pledge. Among other things, the pledge requires candidates to not distribute false “negative messages,” and demands integrity on specific points. Congressional candidate Tim Allison has signed it. No word on whether Susan Jordan or Das Williams have. Details at

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And finally, I wish I'd spent more time in the library when I was in college. According to the Daily Nexus' "Best of UCSB 2010," UCSB students have voted the Davidson Library as "best place to have sex on campus."

I wonder if that makes your bed in your dorm room the best place to study on campus?
© 2010 by Craig Smith and