A few weeks ago, several sports managers and I met to talk about our sports section/online starting from Ground Zero. If

Lynn Hoppes

we had to start a publication in print and online, what would we do? How many people would we have? How much space would we have? And what would be the distribution?

That’s what APSE needs to think about. If we were starting today, what would we do differently?

How would we start from Ground Zero?

1. Membership: Who can be members? What about bloggers? What about each company? If they pay one membership, does that mean their whole organization can be part of APSE? What about students and past presidents and officers? What about public relations people? What about people tied to teams and athletes?

2. Contest: Will there be a contest for the print product? As we’ve already seen, the web contest will take time to get off the ground. But what about individual people submitting their entries? What about eliminating the sections portions of the contest?

3. Outreach: We’re so swamped with our daily job, but what about making a difference in the sports media world? What about taking stands against sports teams and leagues who try to limit our access? What about reaching out to the young to talk about the future?

4. Conventions: Do we really need a judging convention anymore? Is there any purpose to the commissioners meeting in New York? OK, we need a national convention but the cost is prohibitive for many to attend so if most people can’t come, is it right to charge so much at a convention?

5. How much should you pay to join an organization? Should you pay for entries to contest? Should you pay for information not available to others?

Most newspaper companies are using the phrase "digital first," but how does that translate to APSE?

We need to rethink the purpose of our organization and come up with a new:

— Mission statement
— Ethics policy
— Bylaws

With a president serving only one term, it’s very hard to accomplish these big sweeping goals. Should the president serve more than one year? I believe so. By the time you get up and running with your ideas, it’s time to pass the baton on to the next person.

So I will pass this on to Garry Howard, Tim Wheatley and Toby Carrig.

APSE needs an overhaul, and we need it now.

At the SND national convention, everyone was asked this question:

When will newspapers be dead?

One person said, "Yesterday."

What if someone asked that question about APSE?