Friday, May 18, 2007

"Deaf Photog and Blind Editor Overcome the Odds Together”

That was the headline of a recent story in the magazine Editor and Publisher.

What I want to know is, what’s so newsworthy about the story?

Any celeb who ever said to a photographer, “Hey, please stop stalking me,” knows all news photographers all deaf.

And any reporter or writer who ever submitted a memo for a story idea and never heard back from his editor may have suspected the oaf is blind.

Or maybe the editor was too busy sending a reporter out to the remotest wilds of East New York at 2 AM to wake up a couple, tell them their kid just got killed and a car crash, and ask, “What kind of a boy was he?”

In my big city newspaper reporting days, more decades ago than I care to mention, my night city editor did that to me. I was new at the game and did as I was told, making my way through remote slums in the wee hours.

When I came back to the city room (they didn’t have “newsrooms” in those days) of my evil night city editor’s henchpeople said, “Hey kid, you did pretty well. Those are all accurate quotes.” Sure they were. But how was he so sure, I asked.

“Because we’ve been calling the parents. We could have done the story on the phone. We just wanted to see if you had the guts.”

Don’t even get me started on copy editors, literary agents, or graphic designers who come back with complaints like, “Hey your story is too long to wrap around the picture I have in mind for it. Cut 300 words.”

Anyway, if you feel you must read the full Editor & Publisher story about deaf and blind news coverage, you’ll find it here:

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