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Monday, October 31, 2005

Chron editor is too busy for customers

As I've been reporting over the past couple months, Chron editor Jeff Cohen has been dodging questions from his customers. When I asked Chron reader representative James T. Campbell about it, he had this to say:

Well, since agreeing to do it, we've had two hurricanes and a World Series. I know he was close to finishing the questions I submitted to him but he got sidetracked by work.

I've got news for you, James: Keeping up good, honest relations with the people who keep you in business is work. It's certainly part of your job, and Cohen ought to consider it a big part of his job, too. It's not incredibly convincing to say "Gee, news got in the way." It's just bad business to promise something to your customers and fail to deliver. Besides, it's not like the questions were all that hard. Here's a smattering of the readers' inquiries:

  • Why doesn't the Chronicle have an on staff convervative columnist to balance liberal Casey?
  • why is it that the water level of the main river is never posted? Rio Grande River!!
  • Why is it that the majority of business stories are AP/syndicated and not about Houston or written by Chronicle writers?
  • Why don't you have someone in Iraq covering the war? Seems like a pretty Big Story.
See, those aren't too tough. Not a single math question in there. CORRECTION: The original headline misidentified Cohen as the Chron's publisher. Cohen is actually the editor and executive vice president. The real big enchilada is publisher Jack Sweeney. Sorry 'bout that, and thanks to Evil D. for setting me straight.


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