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F.A.Q. - Frequently Asked Questions

How Leasing News works---

Christopher “Kit” Menkin, editor

Leasing News is not a “newsletter.” Leasing News is a web site that posts information and entertainment for the leasing industry, primarily in the United State; The news edition is generated normally three times a week, Monday-Wednesday-Friday, with up-dates, if needed, or new “editions.”

It is part of the web site. The e-mail notification connects to the web site. Over half of those who read the news edition go direct to the web site rather than the e-mail notification sent by Constant

The web site has a lot of useful information and sections, much more than the news edition. It is up-dated Monday through Friday during regular business hours.

The news edition is started at 11pm, PST. At this time, the next day United States paper newspapers and their web sites are available. In addition to reading over 30 newspaper front pages and business sections, other sources are also read. The news edition is then organized, written, compiled, and banner ads placed by the editor. The goal is to have it ready to be converted into HTML
code; 1:30am, PST, “drop dead time.”

A brief discussion is had about the edition with Brian Wong, the webmaster, who then converts the news edition into HTML. He posts on the web site.

After the main web site edition is complete, the archives section, consisting of the headlines to the story are also coded and put into the archive section, a method to insure that the links are
correct and working. They also link to “top stories” and other collections on the web site.

The third step is to construct the e-mailing announcement. This is then sent by Constant Contact from 3am to 4am, PST, depending on the length and when the original material was received.

At 10:00am, the web site is reviewed for corrections, as this is the first time Maria Martinez-Wong is available. Top Stories, This Day in American History, cartoons, poems, and other “up-dates”
to the web site are made.

It is not unusual for stories to be expanded, or cut, pictures added, and the point is during the day Maria is up-dating the web site sections as needed. If there is a “serious correction,” an announcement is made in the next edition, at the top.

The 1:00am goal is to reach the East Coast before they get out of bed, and to also try to reach European, the middle-east, and India before the end of their work day; otherwise, the news would be one day behind for them. It takes Brian three hours daily to complete the postings, so the goal is to call him that it is ready to go at 1:00am. Sometimes it goes past the "drop dead" point at 1:30am and goes into 2:00am. Neither the editor nor the webmaster are happy about being that late to start.

Web Trends tells us we have readers at 6:30am, EST, and 12:00pm, EST. Most read the edition in the morning.

The purposes of the e-mail headlines sent to readers on the mailing list are to notify those on the mailing list the stories that appear on the web site, and to let them know they are “posted.”

Sometimes there are “extra editions” on a breaking story. The headlines click to the story on the web site, and bring the reader to the web site itself.

Tuesday, Thursday night, Saturday morning or day, other features and stories are researched, assembled, and drafts written. When it is not football season, several hours on Sunday are taken to catch up. Leasing News is a part-time effort by the editor, who is a principal in a 35 year old leasing company, American Leasing, Silicon Valley, California.

During the week, the editor generally opens incoming e-mail at noon, PST, working his lunch hour on Leasing News. E-mail is opened from time to time during the rest of the day, depending on time available. It is not kept open.

Follow-up is made when possible during the afternoon; sometimes the morning, if it is a story not complete. Most of the work is done after 11pm for the news edition. The goal is to be the first with the news, including reaching as many readers on the East Coast and the time zones that will find the news “fresh.”

It should be noted, the Leasing News telephone number is not posted on the sight on purpose. This reduces the many questions from students, people who want to go into the leasing business, want to promote a press release, from attorneys or lessee or those with complaints, other reporters who have questions or information to share. There are hundreds of e-mails daily handled by one person. These are processed by e-mail which gives the ability to provide the specific information requested, to obtain information in writing rather than “verbal to writing,” and makes it a more efficient to produce a news edition; hopefully more accurate, too, as everything then is in writing.

Why do I see yesterday's or an older version, and not today's issue?

If you are on our mailing list, we send out the headlines and notify you that today's issue is posted. If you have received this, you should be able to view "today's" issue. Sometimes
users forget to clear their "cache," which normally is done when the program is exited ( most have this feature marked not to save cache.) It is best to hit "refresh," and see what
happens. Sometimes hitting the F8 key will also "referesh," such as if you are using AOL. The reason you are seeing yesterday's version may be that you have not refreshed this

Why didn’t you print my e-mail message?

You may have wanted it “unsigned” and we have a policy regarding that, published “on line” and often in the daily newsletter. We also may have not considered it newsworthy or an “out and out advertisement.”
Please refer to our “on line” policy.

Where do you get your mailing list.?

Readers have to ask to join. We do not spam anyone. To be added to the mailing list, you must request it. We do not send anything about our company or personal e-mail or jokes to the leasing news list. We do not share our mailing list with anyone.

We follow Internet Netiquette at all times. Our sole purpose is to provide communication to improve our profession.

We reserve the right to deny sending the newsletter when requested.

How often do you publish?

Leasing News generally has an edition on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  From time to time there are "extra's" or "flash" news, considered important to send out.  Depending on the last date of the edition, we often sometimes will publish on a holiday, but usually note.

We follow Internet Netiquette at all times. Our sole purpose is to provide communication to improve, and entertain, our profession.

We reserve the right to deny sending the newsletter when requested.  The majority of our readers reach us direct at as the news edition is basically an "announcement' that the edition is posted.

How Do You Handle Accusations About Advance Rentals?

Leasing News does not want to print accusations. We confirm all information given to us before publishing. We verify all information given to us. We want to be "fair and accurate." Our role is industry news. We encourage your communication, but we have an adopted policy from the date of our inception.

 We also invite all readers to utilize our "Customer Complaint" Bulletin Board.

We will post all verified complaints of fraud, unethical conduct, and this may serve as a warning not to do business with this specific company. The experienced professionals write

in all the time, "know who you are dealing with." We hope you don't find out the hard w ay and our "Customer Complaint" Bulletin Board is one way to be alerted.

We do not want to discourage you from sending us "on" and "off the record," information, but we will not publish accusations. We will report the "inside" news and hope we are of sometimes entertaining, but always--- of educational benefit.


Do you know who funds ATM machines?

We have started a program for a bank network; it has a UNL agreement with teeth and they are a strong credit.

Rick Frank
Fleetwood Financial Corp.

We have the ability to fund ATM deals, as you described, that fall within our parameters.

John Turnacliff
Merrimak Capital Company LLC
415-884-4646 ext 229

The dealer has a leasing plan where they get paid by the funding source.
Isn’t that illegal?

No. Lessors can pay a referral fee.  Several dealers are major publicly traded  companies who “force” the lessee to use their “own  leasing company.”  It is common.  Many offer five percent to the vendor company  who pay salesmen, if they like, part  or all.  It is not uncommon for US Bancorp, for one, to offer a vendor a five percent referral fee or “commission“( we have copies of the offer ). His is done at Dictaphone, among others. 
Many will not even  deal with a leasing  company without copies of the lease contract, like CDW, or money in advance  ( which many vendor related lessors have  programs for this ).

They skirt the Personal Property License or Finance Law calling it a referral fee, and it is often paid to the company, who disburses it the sales staff or group involved in the “sale.”  Many even have a written agreement to validate the arrangement.

We Print Everyone's Viewpoint

We don't say just because we disagree with you, we won't print what you have to say.  Or you are in the minority, so we won't print what you have to say. We want to be fair ( and accurate ). You don't have to be part of the "in crowd" to get your opinion  heard...or to give us some "insider news."  We print criticism about ourselves.  We always strive  to be "fair and accurate." We care about every reader, no caste system here. Yes, we are provocative. That is one of our jobs.  We also want to be informative, and entertaining, too.

"Bias" and "Unfair"

When a writer signs his or her name to an article, they may be "bias" and have an opinion. It is their opinion. It is their viewpoint. They are then "bias." They also may appear "unfair" as they are expressing their viewpoint and opinion in the article. They are the writer of the article. They may be viewed as a “columnist” as in a printed newspapers.


When Christopher Menkin signs his name as publisher, it is considered an editorial of Leasing News. It represents the view of the publisher of Leasing News.

"Letters to the Editor"

These are published once a month, sometimes more often. They are generally printed in chronological order when received. Often they have a response from the Editor, and so noted. Rarely are they edited, and if so, for netiquette. Letters that are longer than "usual," may be put in pdf format.

Please send me your media kit.

Sorry, don't have a media kit. It is on our list of things to do. People generally submit news releases in word as an attachment, if it has pictures or a logo directly to Often it is included in the e-mail itself. We do like photographs of
the person, if the release is about an individual. We also do consider articles written by others, especially if we think it will be of interest to our readers. If it is an "out and out" advertisement, we will not use it. Best to make an inquiry. Often, we reject "news releases" when they are strictly promotions disguised as "news."
In our edition on line, we always notify readers that the article was not written by us, but sent
to us. We put #### Press Release #### at the top and bottom. We also are a "morning edition," so if we do not get it the day before with a "hold" until that date, it may not be used at all,
as we may not publish for another day, and if so, we place them in chronological order, unless it is very newsworthy. Often, if so, we will investigate it and add to what was sent to us. We may do that anyway, as we have found many press releases to be a "spin" or the exact opposite of what was sent to us. To sum it up, we do not automatically print "news releases."

Leasing News Archives Search---up-date

There are two buttons under the masthead. One will take you directly to the current month archives of news editions. At the bottom, the archives are placed by year and month and go back to April, 2000.

The other button under the masthead will “search” the archives. It is free. Most archives are not free for stories over a month or so old. Our archives have been cumbersome at over 5,000 pages to say the least.

Recently we have spent more time and money to get the archives to perform better. In the past, the news search was by the most read, as Google does theirs (with the most recent posted
at top, but it changes.) Our new indexing is by chronological order, as Yahoo does their news searches. It is our guess that readers are more interested in current news on what they are searching
rather than older news.

In trying to tweak this, we ran into stories that are not linked by chronological date, but other links we have created, such as “top stories,” “the list,” “funder.” The good news is there are basically still in chronologically order as they appeared. The bad news, some may be duplicates of ones with a date. This has been a long term project to clean up, whenever we find the time for this chore. Luckily they only go back three years or so.

Readers can define the search with an “advance search.”

We intend to spend more time up-grading the system. If anyone has any suggestions or comments, please send to

Leasing News Cartoons

Readers often ask if they can “copy” cartoons that are published here. If it is for personal use, to send to a friend, that is okay.

If it is a cartoon created by Leasing News, yes you may copy it and use anywhere. Leasing News does not copyright its articles, cartoons, placards, and expressly gives permission to anyone on the
internet that they may be copied.

Any cartoon that is copyrighted cannot be distributed or utilized in another publication, including the internet, or for any commercial use, including non-profits. The copyright notification is included at the bottom of these cartoons.

Leasing News purchases the rights to the cartoons for use on We recently purchased 52 new ones from the New Yorker magazine to run this year. Your editor is now choosing 20 new cartoons from Sydney Harris and a dozen or more from Dan’s Cartoons. We may purchase the rights to other cartoons from commercial distributors to fit specific articles, too.
Leasing News, Inc.
Saratoga, California