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The Burbank Leader goes after a blogger

UPDATE: June 20, 2010 — A new version of that controversial post is up on Semichorus blog and, you know, it’s more hard hitting than the first. Also, some pretty interesting comments on that post as well.  Check it out here.


Competition in the news biz is fierce, no doubt about it. Nevertheless, I was surprised to see the “Takedown Notice” posted over on the Semichorus blog last night. That notice is from The Burbank Leader and its parent company, The Los Angeles Times.

Be warned, if you click over to check out the notice, some of the language in that post is rather, ah, descriptive. Apparently, someone got upset about a post on that blog criticizing the Leader’s coverage of the Burbank cops recent arrest of a father whose 2-year-old daughter was found wandering around.

This is worrisome for a couple reasons. First, Jim Carlile’s blog has scooped the Leader a number times in the coverage of the Burbank Police mess, city hall misdeeds, and so on. Also in the past, Carlile has used material from the Leader website to make a point about the newspaper’s coverage. So is this an effort to silence a competitor?

I read another blog called LA Observed. It’s a huge popular site. Kevin Roderick, the editor, has used material from the Los Angeles Times website to write some scathing critiques of the newspaper’s coverage, personnel changes/layoffs, and business operation. So why is it okay with The Los Angeles Times for LA Observed to do this and not okay for Semichorus to criticize a paper it owns, The Burbank Leader?

Lately, I got the impression the Leader has been attempting to improve its reputation and standing in the Burbank community with better reporting, a new look for its newspaper and website. In my opinion, this attack on a local blog/blogger is a serious setback for whatever progress the Leader was making.

Update on political feud

I have more on those incidents involving local photojournalist Peter Musurlian, 43rd District Assemblyman Mike Gatto, and some of his supporters. Burbank Police Spokesman Sergeant Robert Quesada confirmed to me complaints have been filed as a result of two incidents.

The first complaint was filed against Musurlian on March 25, 2010.  Sgt. Quesada says:”It involved a confrontation between Mr. Musurlian and two other individuals that occurred March 24th in the area of the city council chamber.” From what I heard, Musurlian, who doesn’t mind being called a guerrilla journalist,  was chasing down then 43rd Assembly Candidate Mike Gatto and things got ugly.  Sgt. Quesada wouldn’t release anymore details because it’s “… an ongoing investigation.”

The second incident, reportedly happened at McCambridge Park on Saturday, May 22, 2010. Quesada says:”The information police received was that it was (a) disturbance between Mr. Musurlian and another individual. However, when police arrived, all involved were gone.”  But that was not the end of it. “Mr. Musurlian then came to the police station on June 2nd to file a battery report for what he said took place at the park.” No more details because this police investigation is also, “ongoing.”

Burbank town hall meeting coming up in August

Photo: Buena Vista Burbank Library from the Burbank Library website

The Burbank Police Commission is inching closer and closer to putting on that long-delayed town hall meeting.  From the discussion at last Wednesday’s June 16 police commission meeting, the only details that are solid are — the date, August 18, 2010 and the place, the Buena Vista Library.

I won’t go into the convoluted town hall agenda plan proposed by two of the commissioners, Ray Adams and Elise Stearns-Niesen. To exhausting. This town hall meeting is supposed to be about HEARING FROM THE CITIZENS OF BURBANK. You don’t need folks to submit questions ahead of time for that.  Week after week, people speak at the Burbank City Council meetings by showing up and filling out a name card. It’s that simple.  Also, this is the way public comments are handled at the Burbank Police Commission meetings as well.

If the commissioners want time for city hall officials to promote themselves or city programs — let this occur BEFORE THE TOWN HALL MEETING.  That was the arrangement at the two city council-sponsored town hall meetings at the Buena Vista Library back in 2008. That worked. Why not just use the same format? That way the commissioners can put this town hall meeting on a fast track where it belongs.  It’s now about two months away — and the commissioners are still fumbling around over the format.

Dodgers’ Annual Father’s Day Catch event this Sunday

Photo: Courtesy L.A. Dodgers — The kicking Dodger Ticket truck will be on site at Dodger Stadium this Sunday, June 20, 2010, for the Father’s Day Catch event

The Los Angeles Dodgers organization is inviting families to come out and spend part of their Father’s Day at Dodger Stadium. The Seventh Annual Father’s Day Catch is a free event, which will run from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday, June 20. The parking is free and fans can enter through the Sunset and center field gates. This is a rare chance for families to play catch right on Dodger field.

The first three thousand people get free Dodger dogs provided by Farmer John. Other freebies include Sparkletts water bottles and PowerAde supplied by Coca Cola.  Also, there will be music, Dodger fan clubs, the Dodger Ticket truck, and possibly some surprise guests to mingle with the crowds, too.

Lakers Victory Parade

There will be a celebration for the Los Angeles Lakers NBA 2010 Championship win on Monday, June 21 — however, it will not be the blow-out seen last year.  Even so, the price for the victory parade is expected to be around $2 million. The Lakers have volunteered to pick up the tab. Between 500,000 and two million fans are expected to line the two-mile parade route from Staples Center to the edge of the USC campus. Click over to the Lakers website for the details on the parade route and the celebration.

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One Response to City Buzz

  1. Oy Vey Monday, June 21, 2010 at 12:51 am #

    I think you are giving Semichorus blog a little too much credit. A lot of his blog stories and postings are not entirely factual. You are not too far behind but that is my opinion.

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