Thursday, February 26, 2009

Stop the Presses: I’m Glad I’m Not a Journalist


It’s no secret that the newspaper industry is slowly dying. In the four + years since I left The Boston Globe, where I had one of the best college jobs available – sports correspondent – friends have kept me updated with round after round of voluntary “buyouts” and cutbacks.

Meanwhile I just spotted this: the Rocky Mountain News, the #2 paper serving Denver, will publish its final edition tomorrow. The paper has been around for 150 years. Since 2000, it’s won four Pulitzer Prizes (most recently in 2006).

How sad is that?

I didn’t grow up with any Woodward and Bernstein pipe dreams. In fact, I originally went to Northeastern to study International Affairs (to do what, I’m still not sure). But my fiancé and many of my friends are “journalists.” It’s depressing.

These people have had varied levels of success but none of them actually work for “real” newspapers; a couple work for online sports news sites (congrats), some work for miserable specialized publications (like say, Lawyers USA), some are out of work and some – present company included have simply given up.

If it’s not easy, it’s not worth doing.

I know that in light of our current recession, a lot of industries are in decline but the demise of newspapers is no recent phenomenon. I also know that the villainous blood-sucking reporters don’t get much sympathy. I just think it’s sad.

If you’re ever in the mood to read some real uplifting stuff, check out http://www.newspaperdeathwatch.com/.



EDIT: I should point out that I was in no way belittling the accomplishments of my friends. My fiancée seems to have taken particular offense and let me say this...

She works for ESPN and reads/edits football stories all day. I work for Thermo Fisher Scientific and build page after page on centrifuges and biological safety cabinets.

She wins.

3 comments:

  1. Not sure I really had a point there… but I felt like writing.

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  2. The idea is to realize when you're on a sinking ship before you go down with it. Or have a fiancee to point it out to you.

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  3. Yeah. I do win. Winning is not giving up.

    :P

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