Friday, November 18, 2005

Fighting Back

Knight-Ridder reporters are fighting back. They aren’t going to stay silent while one of the nation’s best newspaper chains cuts staff levels and quality journalism. They have written a letter of outrage and circulated to media outlets around the country.

"We have watched mostly in silent dismay as short-term profit demands have diminished long-term capacity of newsrooms in Knight Ridder and other public media companies. We are silent no more. We will support and counsel only corporate leadership that restores to Knight Ridder newspapers the resources to do excellent journalism. We are prepared collectively to nominate candidates for the Knight Ridder board. We wish to reassert John Knight’s creed."

Some of the signers to this letter, which was distributed to reporters today, include Buzz Bissinger, a former Philadelphia Inquirer reporter and the author of Friday Night Lights; Thomas Kunkel, a former managing editor of the Mercury News, a biographer of Harold Ross, the founder of the New Yorker and the dean of the school of journalism at the University of Maryland; Steve Lopez, a columnist for the Los Angeles Times; and more.

Way to go.

In related news, Mercury News reporter and Pulitzer Prize winner Pete Carey decided at the last minute not to take his paper’s buyout offer.

And former Mercury News reporter Joanne Jacob’s new book on a charter school in San Jose, Our School, received a glowing review Thursday in the Wall Street Journal, pushing it to # 683 on Amazon.

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