Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Belleville voice

Another Sun Media voice has been heard from following last week's layoffs, this time Chris Malette, city editor of the Belleville Intelligencer, speaks his mind.

No names of departing eight employees, but his Chris Malette 'At Large' column says, in part:

"Sorry to curdle your egg nog so close to Christmas, but it's a Titanic struggle to paint a cheery holiday smile on an otherwise glum parade of news this past week.

"First and foremost, we here at The Intell and at some of our sister papers in the Sun Media Quinte Newspaper Group - The Community Press, Trentonian, The County Weekly News and Shopper's Market - have felt the blow of the economy shifting into low gear.

"We lost some very good people this week, we will miss them and wish them whatever comfort we can at this time of year as they cope with such a devastating blow. You're in our hearts, all of you.

"But, after 175 years of bringing the news to Belleville and Quinte, we will commit to continue to keep you informed, amused, agitated enough to take pen in hand and abreast of the goings on in your communities, as always.

"Still, it hurts to bid farewell to some very talented and committed people, but as hard as that is, all the signs point to more hurt for the province, country and continent in the coming months. Pretty hard to keep a brave face in light of those grim predictions, eh?

"You, like many of us, are just so damned tired of hearing the endless parade of woe on the TV news, on our news wires and in our own communities. But, we have committed to bring it to you, unvarnished and tough as it may be to digest - it's what we do.

"Tough as it may be for many armchair media pundits to imagine, we don't dictate the news agenda. (In that vein, a lump of coal for you sneering types out there who jeer what you call "mainstream media" for our perceived communist, soul-wrecking bent. Feh, as our Jewish friends would say, and may you get cold porridge on Christmas morning.)

"Which brings me to the issue du jour - the auto industry. Bail or no bail . . ."

That's all it takes. A word to readers about the layoffs, a word of encouragement to those who were laid off. That is communicating.

The North Bay Nugget did it. Joe Warmington at the Toronto Sun attempted to do it, but his column was spiked, leaving Toronto Sun coverage of the story at two paragraphs.

If any other Sun Media editorial writers or columnists at newspapers touched by the 600 layoffs have commented in print or online about the aftermath of the announcement, please provide a link.

No comments:

Post a Comment