Saturday, July 11, 2009

Star public editor takes paper's writer to task for post on blog

'Gay' blog post was just not fair

Kathy English

Capturing about 900 hits daily on the Star's website, Antonia Zerbisias's Broadsides blog is seen by a fraction of the people who read her twice weekly column in this newspaper.

I'm aware then, that by drawing attention in this column to a controversial comment that emerged this week on Zerbisias's blog, I am alerting a far larger audience to what I think is an unfortunate misstep on Zerbisias's part and an embarrassment for the Star.

First, this column is intended to address publicly the valid concerns of the Canadian Jewish Congress, whose chief executive officer, Bernie Farber, was the subject of a Zerbisias blog post that was tasteless and fell short of the Star's standards of fairness, accuracy and civility. That's a view shared by publisher John Cruickshank.

Second, this incident underscores the pressing need for clear "rules of engagement" for Star journalists using social media tools such as blogs and Twitter, where a no-holds-barred style of "new journalism" is emerging.

(For the full story, please click on the title.)

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