In the current issue of The Seattle Weekly, Knute Berger complains about the public’s tendency to “kick the crap out of the news media” [E Pluribus Stupid,] suggesting that people have themselves to blame for their own ignorance.
“Well, here’s an idea: Instead of shooting messengers, why not do America a big favor and tackle your own ignorance? “
I think somebody needs a hug.
In his despair, Knute has overlooked one of the great things about being a journalist in this country: Americans generally don’t actually shoot messengers (even the ones that truly deserve it.) We criticize. We complain. We occasionally curse. But we don’t shoot.
And we do it because we know you can do better. Think of it as tough love.
Personally, I happen to have great respect for the media, and I think the reporters who know me can sense that. (You wouldn’t know Knute, because The Weekly has never deemed my activities as worthy of coverage as, say… Tim Eyman. I guess calling someone a “horse’s ass” is less respectable than being one.)
In fact, it is because I respect the press so much, that I occasionally kick the crap out of it. And even if I didn’t, what’s the big deal? My blog averages maybe 80 readers a day, whereas The Weekly claims a circulation of about 100,000. (Twice that, when they try to sell me an ad.)
And if you’re really so bothered by all the negative “watercooler conservation,” I’d say you’re spending way to much time sneaking around watercoolers. It’s a little creepy.
The point is, don’t take it so personal Knute.
And stop shooting your audience.