Letters to the Editor

The Quill, March/April 2013 | Go to article overview

Letters to the Editor


Misguided advice in FOI column

In his effort to mix sarcasm with advice in his Quill column (FOI Toolbox, January/February), David Chartrand misguides journalists about the importance of covering public meetings. Inexperienced reporters who whine about covering public meetings typically know little about how state, county and municipal governments function. Being there is a way for journalists to understand community leaders and how they function in a group. Why should it matter whether the meeting conflicts with the family dinner hour or the reporter must sit on a vinyl chair? Does Chartrand really think reporters should be spared such inconveniences?

Public meetings and hearings can be boring and don't always generate news, but attending meetings will always be a useful way to cover the elected and appointed leadership. The worst way is to try to guess from the agenda what might be interesting and then call officials afterthe meeting.

There's no need for Chartrand to discourage citizens from attending public hearings; few do. That's why reporters need to be there.

PHILIP RUDELL

Retired, Central Ohio Pro chapter treasurer

Canal Winchester, Ohio

Obituary program worthy

Your feature in the January/February issue about the South Florida obituary writing contest was worthy content, and I hope it will encourage editors around the country to enhance these articles. …

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