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Sunday, July 31, 2005


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I guess I should feel more excited by conferences and maybe I would if I were blogging all alone, rather than having a partner in crime. It just makes me squeamish when any group gets together and one of the topics is how the rest of the world unfairly lumps them together.

Clearly, I'm a huge fan of talking and sorting and finding pattern. But at some point, the FORUM becomes the topic not the issue.

It's a curse of the modern age: We talk more about HOW something should be done than what we want to accomplish by doing it.

Hold on one sec, while i get on my soapbox ...

Frankly, it all started going to hell in a handbasket when colleges started offering specialty degrees like early childhood education and journalism. And I can say that because I have a B.A. in journalism.

The point is not to teach "journalism" but to teach why journalism matters. Sure, you can teach the skills of a job like how to gather data and interview people and use proper grammar. But to organize into a group that becomes an institution just seems wrong. We have created our own place in the establishment.

Oh, I know it's more complicated than that and there are advantages to sharing expertise and standardaizing ethics and honoring the good among us ... I like awards. But when the conversation ABOUT journalism edges out the actual DOING of journalism, something is waaaaay wrong.

Sometimes I just want to say "shut up and go write a good story."

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