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Strib Might Change Name; Rebrand Awarded to Board Chair’s Company

Plus a scoop from a new hyperlocal news source, Macalester shops for a new mascot, and Liz Collin does her Liz Collin thing in today's Flyover news roundup.

Ken Lund via Flickr|

The future TikTok Glow Up Rizz Era Tribune?

Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily digest of important, overlooked, and/or interesting Minnesota news stories.

Strib Hires Colle McVoy for Rebrand. We Have Questions.

Extra! Extra! Did you hear the upper Midwest's largest media organization will soon have its brand "re-invigorate[d]"? Leaders of the Star Tribune Media Co. announced Friday that Minneapolis-based ad firm Colle McVoy has been tasked with "branding work that is foundational to the future of our organization," Strib CEO Steve Grove tells Adweek.

That means, per Adweek, that Colle McVoy's "remit is a complete reimagining of the Star Tribune’s tone of voice and how it visually represents itself. Even the name of the media outlet is up for discussion." The company's boutique division, 10 Thousand Design, will assist with the rebrand (see examples of its work here). The article goes on to note that the Strib is exploring "novel content formats" like AI (yikes) and in-person events (not that novel).

Curiously, Colle McVoy's CEO, Christine Fruechte, happens to have another high-profile job: board chair of Star Tribune Media Co. That got us thinking of three specific questions, all of which we posed to the Strib's newish VP of brand communications, Chris Iles.  

  • Any comment on the perception of a conflict of interest, considering Strib board chair Christine Fruechte is also the CEO of Colle McVoy? 
  • Was there a bidding process for which firm would handle the rebrand job? 
  • Can you share a ballpark figure for what the Strib will pay Colle McVoy for this project? 

Here's what he was willing to share: "With full board approval, we selected the agency we know will be able to produce the best branding product for the Star Tribune to fit our timeline."

Hm, we can probably scrap "Transparency Tribune" from the rebrand discussion...

How Much Would—Would a Dogwood Expand, if a Dogwood Would Expand?

Happy launch day to Longfellow Whatever, the Twin Cities’ newest hyperlocal news source! With all due respect to the outlet and its tagline, “neighborhood news so specific, it’s only interesting to us,” this non-Longfellow resident was quite interested in its first scoop.

Longfellow Whatever reports that after 10 years on Lake Street, Dogwood Coffee is planning a big expansion involving the takeover of an adjacent vacant lot. They'll break ground this summer on a mixed-use space with two stories of apartments, with Dogwood on the first floor and an expanded Coven East Lake coworking space on the second. The short story is that Dogwood's owners have found themselves in possession of two buildings with the lot in between; this redesign will bring everything together and give them more space to work with.

A bit more about Longfellow Whatever, in case you're hearing about it for the first time: The news source is founded by Trevor Born, a former AP reporter and freelancer who’s done some work for your friends at Racket. It promises to deliver "frequent, brief updates" on neighborhood happenings to the good folks of Longfellow, Cooper, Howe, and Hiawatha, with "a tone somewhere between a local newspaper and dispatches from a plugged-in friend." If you're a fan of supporting independent news outlets—and you're reading this, so we assume you are—you can sign up here and become a paid supporter here.

Damn, These Potential Macalester Mascots Go Hard

Say goodbye to “Mac the Scot,” Macalester College’s "man in a man suit" school mascot since 2002 (before then it was just “the Scots”). The St. Paul undergrad college is considering new mascot options and, to be quite frank, these are pretty bad-ass. 

FB

In keeping with the college’s Scottish background, we’ve got a mix of cryptids and a real animal from the region. Candidates, imagined here by branding agency Skye Designs, include a shaggy highland cow, the iconic Loch Ness monster, an aggro unicorn, and a kelpie, a horse-like water creature known for drowning its adversaries. (A scottie dog and an albino squirrel were also suggested, but didn’t make the cut.)
 
So, what’s going to happen to ol' Mac? Will he be crossing the “mascot rainbow bridge” soon? “His final appearance will be at the college’s reunion festivities in June for his annual water balloon toss,” says Julie Hogan-Underdahl, co-chair of the mascot committee. “After that, in August he’ll join alumni on a trip to Scotland where he will retire.” In the meantime, students, alumni, and faculty are invited to vote for their fav replacement, and the winner will be announced this fall.

Liz Collin Mad That Jason DeRusha Is Sad

Was former WCCO anchor turned Alpha News nonsense-peddler Liz Collin at one point an actual journalist? It seems hard to believe now that she spends most of her time promoting the roundly debunked propaganda flick The Fall of Minneapolis. And as with her reporting, Collin’s online behavior doesn’t seem far removed from that of your regular right-wing conspiracist. Today she angrily tweeted a screenshot of an email from Jason DeRusha in which her former CCO colleague (ccolleague?) wrote “I’m sad this is what you’ve become” and said he’d defended her in the past. (The email was sent on February 17, so for some reason Collin spent nearly two weeks before lashing out.) In her tweet, the wife/mom/truth-teller/author/ producer/believer said DeRusha “defended protests against me, sat back as I was canceled-& continues to push lies about LE." Collin also declared “I will never spend a second on the George Soros station.”

For those you not attuned to every last twitch of fear-mongering in the right-wing media infoverse, Soros recently bought about $400 million worth of debt held by Audacy, WCCO’s parent company, no doubt with the nefarious intent to purge it of all conservative voices. Without imagined oppression, after all, what’s the right wing got to run on? Collin's followers piled on in response, including Michele Tafoya, another former mainstream figure who has careened to the far right, who retweeted Collin in support. One Collin stan called DeRusha a “literal demon” and though I wish I thought they meant “figurative,” the right is full of Q-pilled Christian nationalists these days so you never can tell.

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