This week the Hartford Courant women’s basketball reporter John Altavilla announced that the newspaper had hired the daughter of University of Connecticut women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma to blog about the team. Altavilla and Alysa Auriemma have a pre-existing blogging relationship. This summer they traded questions with each other via Altavilla’s work blog and her personal blogger.com account.
Alysa, 23, began her blog “Life Beyond the Postseason” this past March with a chronicle of UConn’s postseason run and subsequent championship. Her posts provided an insightful and often comical behind-the-scenes look at the lives of UConn players, staff and her family. Readers loved her commentary and writing style. Altavilla took notice and in mid-July they began their back-and-forth Q&A’s on their blogs.
- got a feeling it’s gonna be a good good night (Life Beyond the Postseason, July 15, 2009)
- Alysa Auriemma answers the REALLY tough questions (John Altavilla’s blog, July 8, 2009)
This week, Altavilla wrote on his blog that Alysa had been retained by the Courant “to write occasional and original blogs, stories and participate in question and answer sessions for us during the season.”
After spending the summer in New York City pursuing a career in acting, Alysa is returning home to possibly take a job in her father’s restaurant at Mohegan Sun Casino according to her blog and will also travel with the team when she can to gather material for her Courant gig.
The Associated Press called her for an interview about her freelance writing job. On her blog she indicated she was excited about the interview but when the story was published, the excitement turned to anger. “What I thought was a complimentary article about my writing was an ethical treatise,” she wrote.
The AP story questioned the ethics of the Courant hiring the daughter of a coach for a team that already gets substantial coverage in the newspaper.