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Afraid of Romenesko?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Cadet, Sep 24, 2008.

  1. Cadet

    Cadet Guest

    Recently I've heard the excuse "We don't want that to end up on Romenesko" to explain why and how newsroom decisions are made.

    What's really going on here? Is Romenesko that much of a powerful force? What is the true fallout when something ends up on Romenesko? Why do we seem to be afraid of a blog?
  2. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Newspapers should have paid attention to BLOGS! long ago, apparently.

    God, I sound like A_F.
  3. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    I've cleaned up my language in the SportsJournalists.com football poll for that reason.. .
  4. pallister

    pallister Guest

    The problem with newspapers is that too many decision-makers are afraid to make decisions they may have to be accountable for. So they find reasons not to make decisions. Add Romenesko to their list.
  5. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    To a degree, yes, editors and publishers are terrified of anything that will make them look bad.
    Screws up their chances at another gig if they have a bad rep.
    I don't have time to google, but AJR or CJR did an article on the Romenesko effect in the industry. It wasn't pretty.
    On second thought, it might have been Portfolio.
    Anyway, it was a helluva read.
  6. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    One of the things I enjoyed about Brill's Content (a magazine that covered the media about a decade back) was seeing how media companies responded to reporters looking into their business. Surprised me how poorly "first amendment champions" responded. They didn't like it much and frequently resisted.
    You'd think people in the media biz would have some appreciation for what they are asking their employees to do on a daily basis.
  7. CM Punk

    CM Punk Guest

    And anyone who would really believe that is bat-shit crazy.
  8. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    God, I loved Brill's Content. I have no idea who actually read it--not too many, apparently--but the idea was so great.

    As for Cadet's last line, 'Why do we seem so afraid of a blog,' I'm not sure why it matters that we're talking about a blog. It's a widely-read industry site, and no one wants to be ripped/exposed/examined by the entire industry.
  9. At a recent staff meeting I attended, the editor made it clear that he didn't want the subject of the meeting to appear on a particular blog. I had never heard of the blog before, but his comments made me and several other people check it out. If he'd just kept my mouth shut, I would never have read all the shit people were saying about our paper on there.
  10. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I was another big Brill's Content fan. Would love to know what put it under (low circ., obviously, but lots of trade journals are).

    Publishers are definitely afraid of anything that makes them look bad. Lay off 20 people at 10 a.m., roasted online by noon. I'm sure they long for the old days when bulletin-board material could only go as far as an actual bulletin board.
  11. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    For decades, newspaper management wasn't really held accountable at all. They were patted on the head by the owners for staying close to budget while the 20 percent profits rolled in, and they got to make their little journalism decisions in an artificial, hermetically sealed, near-monopolistic and subjective environment. They moved staffers around like pawns, paid consultants for re-design and newsroom "restructuring" proposals that generally were ignored or abandoned soon after the consultants' checks cleared, played favorites with raises, promotions and assignments and generally acted like the overgrown children they were.

    Now they get held accountable by pretty much everyone -- advertisers, readers, ownership and yes, Romenesko's site and others of its ilk -- and they just about piss their pants to avoid having memos made public or to otherwise have their decision-making questioned. These morons, by and large, couldn't lead you out the side window of a submerged car if their lives (never mind your piddly-ass life) depended on it. Mostly a bunch of passive-aggressive, hand-wringing, out-of-touch, upward-managing, PC-genuflecting, non-dynamic bureaucrats scared shitless about their own jobs and resumes.

    I reiterate: Most newsroom managers, in a time of war, would be shot by their own troops, they're so lame and lacking in leadership skills. (And for those who believe that they themselves are, or that they work for, bosses who don't fit this generalization, gee, no shit, Sherlock. That's what generalizations are about, allowing for exceptions. Someone once got an Edsel that drove like a dream, too. Didn't change anyone's opinion about that scrap-iron piece of crap Ford overall.)
  12. ondeadline

    ondeadline Active Member

    I think more and more newspapers are going to try to avoid e-mailing memos to avoid having them show up on Romenesko.
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