I’ve recieved the first feedback to my ‘Inside the Daily’ series:
“just wanted to let you know that i’m looking forward to your daily manifesto. i wrote for arts from [late 1990s] and while arts is certainly a different beast than news, edit and sports (who, of course, segregated and made it a different beast), the politics within the section and endemic to the paper at large often bothered me. that, and the utter lack of control, and worse, lack of teaching and nurturing practiced by editors there. (have they brought back a copy desk? they should. valuable skill that i wish i had.) but i often wonder if the daily is really any different than any other university paper, and the truth is i don’t know; politics are everywhere, but quality can exist independent of internal catfights.
ignoring the rest of the paper, i believe that the arts section has been comprised of utter horseshit and poor writing for years, including the time i spent there. it’s probably equal parts lack of writing talent and lack of encouragement on the part of management, whose job it is to bring up the next wave. i suppose i have a little bit of guilt for never editing when i know i could have spread at least some bit of knowledge around, but i was so disgruntled by most of what i saw that i was content to pump out my stories, babysit them so the editors didn’t screw them up, and get the fuck out. arts was pretty much a joke anyway, which is too bad. i took pride in the things that i did.
it’s a university-level problem too; where’s the journalism department? oh, it got trashed almost a decade ago. (a professor of mine once intimated that there was some sort of scandal independent of the party line that the program just wasn’t competitive and didn’t deserve any further encouragement, but i don’t nkow any of the details.) with regards to that, i do think it’s impressive that the daily isn’t even worse, and that its reporters have gone on to good positions large and small. but without a journalism program supported by the university, the daily should and *needs* to be a learning environment. and in my experience, it’s failed miserably at that.
keep em coming.
[name withheld at request of author]”