Monday, December 05, 2005

Score one for me ...

The other day I opined in this post that "the recent surge in [oil] profits is neither typical nor sustainable." Now along comes the International Herald Tribune with this piece, in which John Browne, chief executive of BP, is quoted as calling current [oil price] levels "unsustainably high."
To return to the theme of that original post: Why are high gas prices front page news, but a 30 percent drop in gas prices isn't? Why is it news when the price of crude rises, but not when it falls (and it's fallen about $12 a barrel since the summer high)? Could this selectivity have anything to do with a drop in newspapers' credibility (essential to their survival, if anything is)? Here is another take on the selectivity theme -- note Columbia Journalism Review editor Steve Lovelady's singularly silly response.
And why is this of interest to a book review editor? Because book revewing is one of the principal areas in which newspapers have chosen to short-change readers. At least as many people read books as watch TV. But you'd never know that from reading newspapers.

1 comment:

  1. Religion's another area. I no longer hold any brief for organized religion of any stripe, but I do for reality, and I think we ought to recognize reality. It has been observed elsewhere that many times more people go to religious services each week than go to all sporting events combined. But, to quote a certain newspaper book review editor, you'd never know that from reading newspapers. Or from viewing the relative sizes of their religion and sports staffs.

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