Saturday, February 16, 2013

Louisville | Conservative op-ed columnist quits after C-J rejects column critical of the newspaper

John David Dyche resigned this week following a decade writing freelance columns for The Courier-Journal after the paper rejected one calling for editorial page reforms and that editors and reporters disclose their political affiliations.

Dyche
Yesterday, Dyche told NPR affiliate WFPL he was motivated to write the piece because of the newspaper industry's struggles: drops in print circulation and revenue, layoffs, buyouts and more.

In an e-mail exchange with the editorial page editor, Pam Platt, he said: "Conservatives think there is liberal media bias and that old line newspapers would fare better in the marketplace if they made changes of the sort I propose." (Read the exchange and the column at radio station WHAS.)

Platt told Dyche that his column went "sort of off" what it was supposed to cover, which she described as a "conservative take on issues of the day."

Dyche was a contributing columnist, meaning he wasn't a full-time staffer. The paper has long held liberal views on its editorial page that it sought to balance in more recent decades with opposing pieces on the op-ed page.

Former C-J columnist Eric Crawford covers the Dyche controversy on his Facebook page.

Related: read selected Dyche columns.

Earlier: Two high-profile sports columnists quit C-J simultaneously.

39 comments:

  1. More thin-skinned hypocrisy on the part of the lamestream media. How dare you sauce the gander! Hilarious.

    LOVE Dyche's idea to require financial disclosure of the lamestream media's political contributions in-kind -- worth billions of dollars to the Democrats! (Or, on second thought... priceless.)

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  2. I read enough to conclude this guy is a pompous ass. Good riddance.

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    1. If newspapers eschewed pompous asses, what in the blazes would be left?

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    2. Of course, it all depends on whether the ass in question is "OUR" pompous ass, or "THEIR" pompous ass.

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  3. What a blasphemous column.

    How dare Dyche challenge newspaper Gods to actually become more transparent in how they operate as doesn’t he know that has forever only applied to those they cover?

    How dare Dyche suggest ways to attract and rebuild credibility with readers as doesn’t he know Gannett’s readers are unaware of a multitude of sources that confirm and/or challenge news and info those Gods have feed them daily without question.

    How dare Dyche be so bold as to offer any help to the Gods in this industry as doesn’t he know they’re smarter, they know more than everyone else, and that in no way have decisions they’ve made like giving away free content exacerbated newspapers’ demise?

    Frankly, Dyche should be applauded for what he attempted. More so as it seems to mirror the newfound balls Gannett so proudly flaunted and cuddled not long ago when it redesigned USAToday.

    Sadly, failing to learn anything from Dyche and ultimately sacking him proves those were just words that will ultimately leave a further bad taste in the mouths of those shrinking readers who have yet to pullout of Gannett.

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  4. For 11:33

    I didn't agree with Dyche on this one. He was so focused on what he "believed" to be the truth, that he refused to listen to any facts or data that proved otherwise. According to him, the loss of readership has nothing to do with an aging marketplace, and a philosophy that didn't meet the changing needs of our customers.

    Also, I don't think it's accurate to say he was sacked. He quit.

    I'll let you get back to your Tea Party.

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    1. Rubbish. What evidence have you that he "refused" anything? More importantly, how does this differ from any other Op-Ed piece—which invariably are polemics based on selected facts, chosen to fit the author's long-held convictions. An unpredictable Op-Ed columnist would hardly be marketable, now would she? To wit:

      http://thomasfriedmanopedgenerator.com/about.php

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    2. Tea Party 12:06? That alone says a great deal about you. Thanks for playing.

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  5. The C-J won't miss him. At the heart of his position is the idea that a piece of writing should be judged by the views of the writer more than by the quality of the reporting and, in the case of opinion pieces, the logic of its conclusions. It's not the C-J opinion page that Dyche has a problem with. It's journalism.

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    1. With all due respect, your premise that newspaper editors evaluate an Op-Ed based upon the "logic of its conclusions" is laughable.

      Moreover, only one of Dyche's proposals dealt specifically with opinion pages.

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  6. You serve at the whim of your employer. These days, it's pretty easy to get yourself run, although to be fair, Dyche chose to leave.

    But isn't it interesting that he was criticized for his "ideas". Aren't "ideas" and "opinions" supposed to be on the op-ed pages?

    Let's be honest as to what this "disagreement" was all about: Dyche suggested a change TO THE COMICS! And no publisher is going to stand for that.

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  7. Transparency is an important and necessary quality when it comes to the actions of government. But how many corporations practice that, beyond what is required by federal and state law?

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  8. Take a look at our call center and see why people are ending their Courier-Journal subscriptions. It's not digital, it's that they no longer want to subscribe to a biased news source.

    The C-J already had a reputation as a liberal paper here - Platt and Jackson just cemented that - all the other local media are having a field day.

    If anyone ever took a picture of our reporter's desks with all of their Obama and Hilary campaign souvenirs on them and gave it to the other local news outlets we could close up shop tomorrow.

    What's funny to me is that Jackson really seems to be trying so hard to bring the Courier's business practices into the 21st century, but doesn't see that running a liberal paper in a state that hasn't voted for a Democratic candidate for president in 16 years is a bad business plan.

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    1. and the few that still want it has delivery issues due to the gutting of circulation by Tony Simmons. Try to find a Courier Journal outside of Louisville, good luck. They used to be statewide.

      This paper is a mess.

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  9. Mr Pompous quit kids. He wasn't sacked. Someone dared to say no. I bet future outlets will trample each other to sign him up. By the way what happened to the sports editor in Jersey that write the infamous column? Who is he working for today?

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  10. I am so sick of that old conservative saw about the liberal media, which basically is what conservatives say when we write something they don't like. And we we write something the Democrats don't like, they call us right wingers. So if both sides are pissed off, I guess we got it right. Want to ruin a politician's day? Don't swallow their spin!

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    1. Keep deluding yourself. Bias in lamestream media coverage is real and measurable and overwhelmingly to the left. And the lack of intellectual and political diversity in most newsrooms is scandalous — or would be, if newsrooms mattered anymore.

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  11. 8:00, stick to Faux News. They'll tell you what you want to hear and make you happy.

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    1. That's right, chump, keep whistling past the graveyard. The principal factor in the mainstream media's decline is technology, but the public's disregard and mistrust — thanks to bias — just intensifies and accelerates the process.

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    2. Yes, no bias at Fox. No bias at that underground and independent outlet Fox News.

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    3. LOL. Whatever slant there may or may not be at Fox does not even remotely begin to compensate for the overwhelming liberal bias in the rest of the lamestream media. And Fox is the ONLY major news organization that even pretends to hold the present U.S. administration accountable for anything.

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  12. As a longtime Gannett employee, I am not surprised by this development. I don't necessarily agree with the columnist's opinions, but I do know how thin-skinned most Gannettoids are. And I imagine that the big dogs in other organizations are similarly intolerant.

    The most remarkable exception I've seen is the way the St. Louis Post-Dispatch allows longtime columnist Bill McClellan to occasionally jab his employer. I am surprised that the corporate owners, Lee Enterprises, permits this. Lee is not known for being so fair-minded in other matters. But, for whatever reason, McClellan gets away with jabbing the bosses every now and then.

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  13. As someone's who has had family employed by the Courier since the 1950's, this just makes me sad...Mainly for fact that there's hardly anyone local left writing for the paper...And secondly, even though I'm not a conservative, the Courier always welcomed dissenting views, and to not do so now shows how far away it is from the paper it was.

    My ties to the paper now are with those in the GPS division, and moral isn't good there.

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  14. Good riddance to him.

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  15. A conservative's solution to a product/service he/she does not like: Don't buy it.
    A liberal's solution: Pass a law to make it illegal.

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    1. Yeah, Republicans have NEVER passed a law against something they "don't like." Gimme a break

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    2. Got an example?

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    3. Abortion.

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    4. Also: same-sex marriage.

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    5. Abortion isn't some trivial thing they just "don't like." It is a religious and moral belief that it is murder. That an unborn baby has the same right to life as anybody else. Same-sex marriage has gained backing only recently, but has not been an accepted practice throughout human history. That's quite a small list and debatable at best. It's the libs that attack anything that gets their panties in a bunch, like gasoline, oil, guns, combustion engines, large sodas, food products, meat production, language they "don't like" (PC police), talk radio, light bulbs, smoking (but pot is OK), etc., etc.

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    7. I'm against bunched panties. Commando for all.

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  16. Most of the great thinkers have left the CJ. What's left are the Gannett management hacks that cant get jobs at other papers.

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  17. for what it is worth.... the cj's editorials are liberal. get used to it. the opinion page is balanced. to wit: sowell, krauthammer, gerson, will... and more. the cj's readers lose in this one because dyche added a local conservative voice. he loses because he has lost a platform for his views. regardless of whether you agree with his proposals, he went about making them the wrong way. if he had approached the paper with a plan for creating a community discussion about his views - perhaps the paper would have printed the column with surrounding context and balance.

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    1. And by the same token, if the paper had any interest in self-criticism and better community relations, it could have responded to Dyche's column with a proposal such as you suggest — instead of just retreating into its oyster.

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    2. I wonder if he gave editors a heads-up before he filed his column. Did he allow enough time for the normal give and take of editing?

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    3. Dyche had become nothing more than a Mitch McConnell sycophant (as befits an authorized biographer), with tendentiously boring views to match. That said, the C-J would have been best-served by publishing his column, side-by-side with a point-by-point response from Debbie Yetter (their very good editorial writer)and then handing him his walking papers. Oh, and making Peanuts bigger the next day.

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  18. It did seem as if Dyche was spoiling for a fight. I wonder if there is a back story here. 11:07 seems to make a clear analysis of the editorial/op-ed pages.

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