Monday, November 29, 2010

Jim Naughton mourns the loss of newspaper obits for average and not-so-average Joes

Jim Naughton, president emeritus of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies, wrote a compelling piece titled "A Death Notice for Obituaries?" that appears in today's (Nov. 29, 2010) edition of Obit magazine.

Your thoughts?

2 comments:

steve miller said...

I thought that piece was so bad it wasn't even wrong. The writer happens to know some guy who died too young, and because the big papers don't publish his obit it portends the death of the newspaper obit. WTF is he talking about? This is self-indulgent nonsense.

Alana Baranick said...

I totally disagree with you, Steve.

Many of us obit writers are out of work precisely because editors at major newspapers don't appreciate obits for folks who were neither rich nor famous.

I for one would have loved writing about Jim Naughton's friend, who accomplished so much while flying under the media radar.

It's different for you because you generally write about prominent individuals.

Another thing: I have found that most journalists, who do not write obits on a regular basis, do not become aware of the state of newspaper obituaries until someone close to them dies.

As for Jim Naughton: Do you have any idea who he is?