Wednesday, 11 July 2007

Sun's strangers

Have you ever had your day begin with a mate telling you: "It's like I don't even know you?"

Great way to start your day, eh?

Well, Toronto Sun readers who have been buying the tabloid since the 1970s have been waking up to a lot of strangers in the past few years.

For almost three decades, faithful readers were considered part of the Sun family and they considered Sun reporters and columnists part of their family.

Over the years, readers came to know and appreciate Peter Worthington, Paul Rimstead, Max Haines, John Downing, Gary Dunford, Bruce Kirkland, Eric Margolis, Andy Donato, Jim Hunt, Michelle Mandel, Bob Pennington, Joey Slinger, Rita Demontis, George Gross, Jim Slotek, Mark Bonokoski, Lorrie Goldstein, Val Gibson, Rob Lamberti, Thane Burnett, Joe Warmington, Linda Leatherdale, Jerry Gladman, George Anthony, Liz Braun, Joan Sutton, Ted Reeves, John Colborne, Jane Stevenson, Jim MacPherson, Scott Morrison, just about everyone in the sports department and others.

Readers felt comfortable with the multi-talented Sun family members and when staffers moved on, retired or died, readers let the tabloid know they felt the losses.

There was a genuine, two-way connection.

Not so much these days, with new names and faces frequently appearing out of nowhere throughout the paper. No bios or introductions.

Just who is P.J. Harston on the Your Money page? Or Ann Marie McQueen and her Trends column? Who are Entertainment's Kevin Williamson and Michael Rechtshaffen and how did they arrive at the Sun?

Waking up to strangers.

Who are all of these op-ed people and assorted columnists? Ajit Jain? Donna Marie Artuso? Kathleen Harris? Salim Mansur? Mindelle Jacobs? Rachel Marsden?

A lot of new names and faces with little bonding going on with readers. What are their roots and their credentials as journalists?

This out of the blue crowd, are they products of Quebecor's centralized ballgame? Columnists from other Sun Media papers?

All readers know is they are strangers in our midst and that is a most alienating experience.


  1. I share your wonderment about some of the new people Sun readers have been waking up to. But I've been waking up with Mindelle Jacobs for the last 15 or so years. Believe me, she's no stranger (certainly, no stranger than most of the Sun staffers I've known and/or worked with over the years.!!) Mindy has been a Sun staffer/columnist (Edmonton, Toronto, Ottawa and Edmonton now and forever) for more than 20 years -- the last 4-5 years as "The Thinking Man's Broad."
    She's about to embark on her second (and, sadly, last) much-delayed sabbatical. She's a multiple Dunlop winner. She knew Doug Creighton long before PKP even learned how to ravage English-language newspapers for fun and profit.
    Please fix this egregious error ASAP before people start wondering just how well you know your own "family."

  2. my goodness, someone's either jealous or bitter. as much as you'd like the Sun to be your own personal circle-jerk, some of these new people are the best in the business and have sky-high profiles. get over yourself.