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Friday, May 04, 2007

Minneapolis Star Tribune--asks columnists to convert to reporters

"Thursday afternoon at the Star Tribune saw the paper's four metro columnists, Doug Grow, Nick Coleman, Katherine Kersten and Cheryl "CJ" Johnson called in to separate meetings...and told, in so many words, that the paper was looking to scale back the number of columnists and

  • would any of them care to raise their hands and volunteer for reassignment to the paper's suddenly thin -- and getting thinner -- ranks of street-level reporters?

There were...no immediate takers. Later it was learned that quasi-metro columnist, James Lileks, was also given the same message. ...Widespread assumption in the Strib newsroom is that fewer columnists will soon be matched with fewer theater critics, fewer film critics and

  • perhaps -- although this is very hard to imagine --
  • fewer sports reporters. (Veteran NBA reporter, Steve Aschburner, has already left the paper.)

Meanwhile, newly-arrived publisher, Par Ridder, the target of a much-publicized lawsuit accusing him essentially of industrial espionage, remains secure in his position."

(I like to keep tabs on the whereabouts of those who consider themselves superior. Not that they think it's "fair" that I should have that information). sm

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