Sunday, December 14, 2008

Print news — dead but somehow walking … and talking

Stephanie Salter writes:

What’s black and white and completely over? Newspapers.

— John Stewart,

The Daily Show

Among a slew of angry e-mails I received this week was an unsigned missive from an e-address that would not accept my reply. (It’s the ultimate in passive aggression. Drop your cyber load and retreat behind an unbreachable wall.) Included in the long, link-laden message was a snipe about the financial woes of the Tribune Co., and the New York Times:

Maybe the shallow, biased, non-factual reporting and opinion-rendering of the mainstream media finds more people — who are educated and who probe for facts with the wonders of technology, discernment, and sufficient skepticism — laughing up their sleeves at how people with journalism degrees think they have the corner on truth or “valid” opinion, ready to dispense it to a public less gullible than they imagine.

Such people have a name: Canceled subscribers.

At the rate that hack journalists are seen for what they are by ever-dwindling readership, they’ll have a name as well. Unemployed.

What I wanted to tell the Unsigned Person — besides “Write shorter sentences” — was this:

If only your cause-and-effect explanation of our money crisis were true. Thousands who toil in the newspaper industry would welcome such a simple answer. Really we would.


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