Metro News Network’s virtual move over to our newspaper The Metropolitan Sentinel is proving to more challenging then we originally anticipated. But, we also want to take this time to thank everyone who has been very patient with us during the transition.
“This unavoidable delay couldn’t have come at a worse time,” says Dustin Alexander-Pérez, Chairman & CEO of the network. “Concert season is right around the corner and we’re sort of caught with our pants down.”
How concert season and parts of the website being unavailable is tied together very simply. “We apply for photography and reporter credentials to the promoters of concert venues and tours,” said Bill Stephens, Vice President of News Operations for the network.
“In order to provide immediate, accurate and on-the-scene coverage of these events, we have to ask permission to be there to do our job,” Stephens said. “You can’t just walk into a venue with your equipment and set up and start shooting photos. It just doesn’t work like that,” said Stephens.
Each year for the past several seasons, Metro News’ Chicago and Milwaukee bureaus have been covering events like Summerfest and Country Thunder, both located in Wisconsin. There is also a rather large cost factor involved too. The gaining permission and access to media passes for these venues is something the network doesn’t take lightly.
But, part of the application process from start to finish also lies in the ability of these promoters being able to log on to a photographer’s website or in this case his news agencies websites and see his work. Some of Bill Stephens material is still in limbo during the virtual move and although it will be done soon, it’s causing quite a nervous stir within the Chicago newsroom because the articles proving Stephens is an active, on-assignment and current reporter is nowhere to be found.
Alexander-Pérez said, “I want to apologise to our colleagues, viewers and readers of our publication for this transition taking so long and certain materials simply not being available. I am personally taking on this task and will be adding more IT support to remedy this problem as soon as possible.”
Metro News Network plans to have everything completed by 15th May 2018 and will then advise their various news teams and event applicants to contact their respective event promoters and let them know that their work is once again available to everyone.
-by C.J. Coty, Sr. Assignment Editor, Metro News Wire Service