After I began recruiting for the Detroit Free Press in 1990, I noticed that some questions come up over and over again. It seemed that we newspaper editors do not explain ourselves very well. After hearing similar questions from so many people, I felt there must be others with the same concerns who could not ask me personally. So, I decided to put some answers online.
The JobsPage has always tried to be an honest and encouraging guide to newspaper careers. Today, with the newspaper industry in transition to more and more online news, that kind of help is more important than ever.
When the JobsPage was launched at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists convention in 1997, it was aimed at beginners. They had more questions and were more comfortable with the Web. The JobsPage has grown up with its early users, adding articles and answers for people well beyond the start of their careers.
The JobsPage has spun off a number of successor services.
In 2003, at the instigation of the Poynter Institute's Bill Mitchell, I turned the Ask the Recruiter feature I had been doing into a blog. After almost three years and a thousand posts on my own, Poynter.org adopted it for its new Career Center.
After a student at the National Association of Black Journalists said she had broken her printer making copies of JobsPage articles, I decided to reverse-publish part of the JobsPage into a book for internship seekers. Of course, that required a lot more writing as I filled in gaps. I also invited 20 other recruiters and journalists to help me cover the subject. The book, called "Breaking In," was published in 2007.
I had tried to keep track of Free Press alumni in a section of the JobsPage that I called "Club Freep." It was always a chore, as people moved around, and it lacked depth. With the development of better social networking tools, I spun off a Detroit Free Press alumni club in 2007. If you ever worked at the Free Press and would like to join, please visit www.clubfreep.ning.com