The New York Times gets it, ok? It was too hard on LoLo Jones, so you can stop writing to complain now. That, anyway, was the message between the lines in public editor Arthur S. Brisbane's post on Thursday, which was basically just a reprint of the letter he's been sending to everybody who's complained that Jere Longman's opinion column on LoLo Jones was too harsh. Brisbane didn't say how many letters he'd gotten about the column, which took the Olympic hurdler to task for being too image-savvy ("if there is a box to check off, Jones has checked it"). But the fact that he wrote up a pro forma letter to answer those missives, then felt the need to go ahead and post it on The Times' site, suggests that he's gotten too many to answer. That's not surprising considering the media backlash The Atlantic Wire's Alex Abad-Santos documented on Wednesday. The original item isn't accepting comments, so the only way you can register your input with The Times is to write a letter. If you do, expect contrition in response, but not an apology:
I believe writers like Jere Longman, who does have a long and worthy track record at The Times, should have some room to express their hard-earned perspective. But this piece struck me as quite harsh and left me, along with others, wondering why the tone was so strong.
Read Brisbane's response at The New York Times.