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Arkin's Role

| 17 Comments

I may be offbase in characterizing Arkin's relationship to the Post. Because I read the Post online, I ass-u-me that what's online is also what's in print.

Here's a comment from Arkin's post "The Arrogant and Intolerant Speak Out":

Seems that the WaPo ombudsman (Deborah Howell) was kind enough to respond to me today:

"Arkin is a columnist only for washingtonpost.com. He does not write for the newspaper. I am the ombudsman only for the newspaper. I suggest you write to jim.brady@wpni.com"

So...The paper disavows it's relationship with their own online edition and it's writers?

Posted by: LAH | February 1, 2007 04:58 PM

I'm not sure how this changes my reaction, or whether it does.

17 Comments

This idea that the website is a separate organization, rather than just the website of the organization that publishes the paper, seems endemic among newspapers.

But I doubt that I'm alone in thinking that sounds as absurd as a claim that nike.com is a separate organization than the one that designs, manufactures, and ships shoes. Even if the nike.com site contains articles that don't appear on shoeboxes.

Shockingly they throw their erstwhile fellow traveler under the bus.

Buh Bye Billy!

Cordially,

Uncle J

Me ole granpa used to say "there just ain't no point arguin' with an idiot, boy. After a while, anyone who's watchin ain't gonna be able to tell who's who.

That's a great quote there, Jerry.

Using the Arkin controversy to address the Equal Time issue coming to the bloggosphere, the Edward R. Murrow of our day has taken blogging to the next level.

Equal Time: The Arkin Controversy

H/T LGF

Of course, the idea that "The Washington Post" is an entity that possesses inherent credibility - that its very name invokes feelings of trust or institutional security - is a bogus relic of the fallen and debunked MSM paradigm.

She may be correct that the online edition is a separate entity from the print edition, with its own legal status, employees and chain of management, and that she is not the person to direct complaints. That does not mean that the online edition is seen as separate from the rest of The Washington Post, and if the Post's management has any smarts, they'll be working long hours to fix this.

They have to, the Post is read in D.C., and a lot of people in D.C. work for the DoD, have relatives working for DoD, or friends there. The Post just insulted the employees of one of the town's largest employers and a large chunk of readers. Not terribly smart, really.

Recalls that episode during Rathergate when someone with Sixty Minutes explained that its program had nothing to do with Sixty Minutes II.

Howell previously set off a firestorm on the left side of the blogosphere when she wrote that Dan Froomkin's Wapo.com column, "White House Briefing," should be marked as opinion, to clarify that it is not a news account. She may be avoiding Arkin in order to avoid getting torched again.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/12/10/AR2005121000938.html

http://www.cjrdaily.org/blog_report/the_froomkin_follies.php

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/discussion/2006/01/20/DI2006012001237.html

"Don't blame me, it's not my department."

"Don't blame me, it's not my department, too."

"Don't blame me, it's not my department, three." ...

They eventually agreed amongst themselves to put strips of tape down the corridors outlining the departments ...

Days later middle management decided to put the copiers on the center of the line to quell the fighting ...

Finally, "Mr. Bubblehead" had a problem with the plumbing in his private bathroom and came out of his office to use the ...

Office life was now back to normal. Then that afternoon ...

Tom, I remember that, and I bet she does too. Lileks covered part of that because he had worked for her, and described her as a no-nonsense sort of person. And I bet also that she was laying down smoke, big time, to get herself out of this free-fire zone. "You want to get burned? Fine, you pull the chestnuts out of the fire, not me."

Heh.

And that newspaper burned through about $100 million in setting up its web presence.

I do not endorse flame-throwing as a tactic to draw an audience, but is certainly works.

Arken is probably more popular now than he was before he applied a little mild heat to the sacred cow military.

Good for him. I am sure I will have plenty to criticize him for as his body of work expands but I will not criticize him, or anyone else, for breaking a pc taboo.

He is right. Policy cannot be made in fear of hurting some soldiers feelings. And those in the military who think safeguarding the soldiers 'morale' is more important than protecting American moral authority are simply out order.

Ken:

What PC taboo?

What is this about hurting soldiers feelings?

The argument is that the Post is giving vent to a rabid anti war activist in the guise of a defense correspondent. Then the Post denies any connection to the blog.

ken, like Arkin you are defending the indefensible with strawmen.

The Left's over-all motto for Adventures in Life: "defending the indefensible with strawmen".

"...protecting American moral authority..."

Can somebody please tell me exactly what moral authority is good for? Please? Because as far as I can tell, having a lot of it pretty implicitly means you're letting the rest of the world go to hell in a handbasket.

Geez, I can't stand holier than thou people, why should I want it from my government?

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