Monday, July 6, 2009

I Am Running Out of Patience

People in the newspaper business ought to know better than this:

Restructure the newsroom. Half of the journalists are involved in the “processing” of news – copy editing, writing captions, laying out pages – as opposed to the generation of journalism. Concentrate on journalism that matters. And, “focus on good writing. Tales well told.”

Focus on good journalism. You betcha. And how does that happen? Do all those "processors" just sit around playing with the editing system while all the hardworking journalists are cranking out "journalism that matters." ? With "good writing. Tales well told." ?

No, sorry to say to those deluded by something someone told them. Over the last several years, people running newspapers started eliminating their blue-collar jobs: printers, photo processors, etc., in favor of transferring that work onto the newsroom, in an effort to save money, eliminate jobs, etc. That meant putting a lot of crap work onto the copy desk through pagination systems and so-called editing systems publishers ordered up whose main function was to produce the newspaper with as few steps as possible.

Who could have foreseen that someone would then think copy editors were doing little else other than "processing" copy? In fact, they do perform lots of production work. After all, someone has to. But they also edit. They stop reporters from putting stories that don't make sense, that have misspellings, factual errors, lopsided perspective, etc., into the paper where readers are then subjected to factual errors, misspellings, nonsense, lopsided perspective, etc.

No comments:

Lijit Ad Tag