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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Another Sign of the Times

posted by on April 2 at 8:55 AM From the AFP:

They’re angry at their demanding editors. They’re angry about the mushrooming workload in shrinking newsrooms. They’re even angry about other angry journalists.

But these angry journalists are happy they can now vent their frustrations to the rest of the world, courtesy of, a sort of online complaint board allowing ink-stained wretches to gripe anonymously.

Ironically, their anger is partly fueled by the Internet, which has forced newspapers and television networks to reinvent themselves with painful consequences for their staffs.

I did a quick search for the word “Seattle” in the angry entries (now numbering near 3,000) and found only one that mentions this city—and then only as a reference point for someone who actually worked 70 miles away from here. Which means Seattle journalists are perfectly content? Or just being careful? Here’s angry journalist #1372:

I’m unhappy because there are too many daily newspapers, such as my last about 70 miles from Seattle, that feel about reporters the same thing Hitchcock felt about actors — they’re cattle. The paper brings in young journalists, asks them to churn out three to four stories a day until they burn out, and then sends them on their disspirited way while awaiting the next victim. Money for training? Nope. Coaching while on-site? Nope, just rewrite and criticize. Good pay? You’ve got to be kidding! And you wonder why journalism is in a world of hurt.

RSS icon Comments


Posted by Mr. Poe | April 2, 2008 8:59 AM

Do journalists really want to find out how little the public cares about them? No good cam come of this.

Posted by elenchos | April 2, 2008 9:33 AM

Journalists ARE like cattle, aren't they? The reason they don't get paid more is because there's a limitless supply of them. And what most journalists do can be done just as well by thousands of others.

On the other hand, when you allow the market to turn you towards the lowest common denominator, you get garbage. Newspapers are turning into garbage. Magazines aren't, though.

Posted by Fnarf | April 2, 2008 9:34 AM

I was a newspaper reporter for eight years. To be truthful, I really wasn't all that good at it ... I had a hard time reconciling the amount of time and effort it took to do a fantastic job worth feeling proud of, when in return you were paid pennies on the dollar.

Posted by superyeadon | April 2, 2008 9:55 AM

Journalists at large metro dailies are paid a decent salary. I think the angryjournalist types are at small-to-medium papers, which traditionally have demanded long hours at low pay, with the idea that people will move on to bigger papers and the paper can replace them with the next crop of j-school grads.

Posted by BobH | April 2, 2008 10:12 AM

WE are so proud we don't have angry jopurnalists here in Seattle. We are the Nicest People inthe World. Why look at our local journalism today: local sports star has a dream of a stadium; Indian curry shouldn't be prepackaged; a columnist who is "mad" that someone called environmentalists a bad word.

Of course, this also means our journalists are nice to those in power, too. Wonderful! This keeps the powerful happy, the public happy, we are all so happy.

Posted by Lars Nativson | April 2, 2008 10:28 AM

Oh Eli, you think I'm nuts? I work at the same paper you used to work at - I dare not even mention its name here. I've posted on angry several times as have my pals here at work, but nuh-uh, no way, no how am I going to use my real name. Maybe when I quit...

Posted by And I won't here either! | April 2, 2008 10:30 AM

fnarf, you are consistently idiotic.

Posted by Harry Callahan | April 2, 2008 11:42 AM

I love how the Internet is the answer--why should there be newspapers now since we have the Internet. So of course media organziations no longer need journalists becuase there's the Internet. Umm, who is supposed to write the content for the Internet?

I'm sorry but I think there is still value in having local people write about local events. And, not to put too fine a point on it but journalists have blown the whistle on some of the major events in the last 30 years through their research and reporting. Perhaps there's some value in their work after all.

Posted by PopTart | April 2, 2008 11:50 AM


Magazines are hit hard by this too -- They're losing ad revenue and cutting staff as a result. Staff that wrote a small number of quality pieces a week are now expected to churn out blog posts daily. Fact checking and copy-editing aren't as much of a priority. Paper quality is being reduced too.

So, it's really not just newspapers, it's print media in general.

Posted by Dawgson | April 2, 2008 12:50 PM

How does one do a search on the site? I can't wait to get the scoop from Dallas Morning News insiders.


Posted by Marky | April 2, 2008 3:03 PM

omg lol lmao www -- I used to work at that paper 70 miles from Seattle, and I bet I can pinpoint the little whiner who posted that crap. I'm sorry to see his stuff immortalized here.


All these reporter dudes got big heads after the last season of The Wire.

Posted by H0RATI0SANZSERIF | April 2, 2008 4:48 PM

@3: The word is "toward," not "towards." And you don't know what you're talking about.

Posted by H0RATI0SANZSERIF | April 2, 2008 4:52 PM

Unhappy journalists? Naaaw...

Posted by CP | April 2, 2008 8:47 PM

@ 13 ... listening to assholes correct grammar in a snotty way ... that makes me angry.

Posted by superyeadon | April 2, 2008 10:08 PM

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