Vincent Safuto’s Weblog

Notes and observations

Adventures in local journalism, or, Help, I’m being stalked by e-mail

I haven’t posted for a while, I know. It’s just that I’ve been busy with some big stories at The Bradenton Times. When you’re one of two reporters and you’re coming into the season, well, big stuff is starting to happen and I want to be there.

I recently violated rule No. 1 of journalism. I attempted to reason with an angry reader. Well, here’s what happened: I have been covering a certain city in north Manatee County, and a former employee of said city decided that I was going to help “clean up” the political cesspool of the city.

I am not a cleaner of cesspools but an observer, though, and after a second letter expressing dismay with a profile of an elected official in that city, I decided to respond and that triggered another response.

Then a third, because I noted in my “Fly on the Wall” political column that someone had written to me that the profile caused an upset stomach.

I have a bad history of dealing with readers. One time, before I took the sacred vows of journalism, I wrote a piece detailing my lack of belief in god and received a very angry letter forwarded from the newspaper from a local person.

I guess I write too much, when I do write at all.

In other news, it’s been raining like heck lately, and the lakes are getting high. But the cats and I are still here, and that’s always a good sign.


September 13, 2009 - Posted by | The news business | ,

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