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When Editors Sound Like Politicians

The San Antonio News Express quotes Dallas Morning News Editor and President Robert W. Mong Jr. as follows:

“Revenues at major metros in the last five or six years have been fairly flat,” Mong said. “Our news staff is the largest in the Southwest and we went through an involuntary reduction in October of 2004. Now we have decided to get the staff more in harmony with the revenues. We’ll still come out of this with the largest and most experienced staff in the region.”


“Despite major cost-cutting, including canning a bunch of folks two years ago, we’re still not sufficiently profitable for the executives who run our parent company, who take their orders from Wall Street. So we’re getting rid of a bunch more folks, except this time we bought them out. Everyone else is cutting, too, so we’ll still have the biggest staff in the region. So shut up and enjoy our diminished product.”

Reporters and editors snicker when they hear PR-ish statements like Mong’s from politicians and other business people. The ones left at the Morning News probably aren’t chuckling this time, though.

If any business should speak directly, it’s the journalism business. But it’s just another enterprise where corporate-speak substitutes for clarity.

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