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From sports column to Editorial Board to ... ???

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Bruhman, Jul 11, 2009.

  1. Bruhman

    Bruhman Active Member

    For those who might have an interest, this ran in today's Fort Myers, FLa. News-Press ...


    Deron Snyder: My time here was great, but it's time to say ‘farewell’
    Looking forward to adventure in D.C.

    Twenty years ago, I left USA Today for a job with Gannett’s newspaper in Binghamton, N.Y., and soon thereafter began dating a friend and former co-worker, Vanessa, who was a copy editor in the building I left behind.

    We married in September 1990 and spent six months as a long-distance husband-and-wife.

    And that was enough of that.

    I left the Press & Sun-Bulletin and returned to Washington, D.C., not knowing if I’d ever again work in journalism, just six years after graduating with a degree in the subject.

    Now, I find myself in an identical situation, leaving a Gannett newspaper for Vanessa's hometown/my adopted hometown, not knowing if I’ll ever work in journalism again.

    Everything worked out great the first time. I landed at USA Today Baseball Weekly within a couple of weeks and had doubled my Binghamton salary within six months.

    We had a lot of faith back then.

    We have even more right now.

    Much has changed in the interim. Vanessa is an educator — she’ll teach at John Philip Sousa Middle School in the fall — and we have a pair of gorgeous daughters. I worked my way up to the best writing job in newspapers (columnist), and transitioned from sports to the Editorial Board, a fantastic opportunity.

    But perhaps the most significant change has occurred within the industry, where thousands of journalists have been laid off and bought out recently, as the stocks crashed, the revenue plummeted and the circulation drooped.

    Just this week, hundreds of Gannett employees across the nation — including some at this newspaper — suffered the latest round of “involuntary separations.”

    Yours truly? Vanessa had secured a job in D.C., and I was looking to do likewise. Better if the newspaper cut me instead of an employee who really wanted to stay.

    Some readers will be dismayed to learn that I wasn’t on the original list. But I spelled out my situation to the powers-that-be and this is the end result: a farewell column.

    To me, this is the first fruit from my seed of faith, the opportunity to save a colleague’s job while simultaneously departing with a little something to help tide me over.

    That’s a win for me and a win for that co-worker.

    Whether my exit is a win for the newspaper depends on your perspective. I’ve always heard from both sides of the spectrum and always appreciated the feedback, be it good, bad or ugly.

    The nasty comments upset my friends and family, but not me. I understand that it comes with the territory, a virtual badge of honor.

    I read each one and never lost a minute’s sleep. As a columnist, it’s better to be read than not read, and definitely better to evoke some response than none at all.

    Staying here for nine years was never part of the plan. I thought it’d be three, five at the most, before moving on.

    Over the years, plenty of folks have asked why I was still here, why I wasn’t at a bigger newspaper.

    Unfortunately, none of them were ever in hiring positions at a bigger newspaper.

    But I leave with zero regrets. I had a great job and worked with great people. The winters here are to die for. And I’m trying to figure out a way to attend the City of Palms every December.

    However, I’m extremely excited about the adventure ahead, not knowing what the future holds, but knowing full well Who holds it.

    If there’s a chance to keep at least a toe in the media, I’ll take it. There’s also a sweet-looking graduate program at American University (Saturdays, 9-5 p.m., 18 months) that I’d love to enter if there’s any financial aid to be had.

    The list is too long for me to mention all the people I’ll miss. So I won’t try.

    After this, those who are interested can find me. I’ll still be around in cyberspace, if not on news-press.com in particular.

    It has been an honor and a pleasure to write a column in Southwest Florida. Thank you for your time, your feedback and your consideration.

    Here’s wishing each of you love, peace, joy, and blessings.

    I’m out.
  2. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    Good luck with whatever the future holds.
  3. no idea who this is, but the guy is basically telling readers, "Hey, I thought I'd be outta your little hellhole five years ago but nobody would hire me so I was forced to stay. Had no other choice!"

    yeah, that would piss me off if I lived there
  4. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    The guy is a long time SJ member, Deron Snyder, who started the thread.

    Good luck, Bruh. 8)
  5. Writer33

    Writer33 Member

    Wow. The comments at the end of the piece were brutal.
  6. Jersey_Guy

    Jersey_Guy Active Member

    Yeah, those comments ... jeez.
  7. WriteThinking

    WriteThinking Well-Known Member

    I don't think that's what he was saying at all. It's a great farewell column.
  8. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Good luck, Bruh. May your faith be rewarded handsomely.
  9. Bruhman

    Bruhman Active Member

    Thanks, SixToe, 21, WriteThinking and Girl.

    As for the comments, they're par the course since I began writing an op-ed column. It amazes me how one person (yours truly) can be so misread by so many readers. Angry? Hateful?

    Oh well...
  10. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    Don't sweat the comments, sir.
    People that post comments are anonymous pieces of shit. Period.
    Newspaper higher-ups allowing anonymous comments on the paper's internet website is like a car dealer allowing people to post comments on his/her website saying what a lemon they just bought, how the folks in repair are awful, etc.
    All in the sake of "clicks." What a crock of shit.

    Your mistake was ever reading those comments. Now if person puts his/her real name and address, like a letter to the editor, read them.
    Newspapers allowing anonymous commentary has been one of the worst decisions ever made in the business world. It's just another example of this horrid business model.

    --And to those of you believers in our great great Internet Websites and the oh, so important anonymous reader comments, you tell me why in the hell this comment was allowed to remain on his farewell column thread???
    The comment from some anonymous asshole was ...
    Goodbye and may you take your rascist attitude with you. You have never displayed any social honor and are a disgrace to your profession, race and country. You should be writing your rascist dribble for Al Sharpton. You are an example of the divisive cancer growing and flourishing in this country. You shall answer to a higher authority at your demise, and I therefore wish you only my sympathies."

    And this wasn't even one of the WORST! Newspapers' support of their employees is disgraceful. Those anonymous comments have truly made me want to puke and want to punch those in charge who allow these anonymous assholes to have a forum. My God!!!
  11. sportsguydave

    sportsguydave Active Member


    Congratulations on a very classy move. I am sure the employee whose job you saved is very thankful. I have the feeling that there's very much an "every man (and woman) for himself" mentality out there these days, out of necessity.

    Refreshing to know that there's someone out there who not only thought of their fellow man, but was in a position to help and did so.

    As far as the comments ... it comes with the territory. Some of these people have no life, and whatever life they do have consists of hiding behind their keyboard and sniping at real people.

    Best wishes to you.
  12. Matt1735

    Matt1735 Well-Known Member

    Congrats on the move, Bruh!
    Good luck in DC!
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