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The intentional death of the sub-editor

The collapse of confidence in the business of reporting the news continues.

And it shows up in redundancies and the finishing of old trades, like that of the sub-editor.

Sub-editors are the wordsmiths in the business of making and reporting news. They care about things like clarity of expression, grammar and the meaning of words. They are, in the cut throat business of publicity and people with PR power, the folk who prevent publications being sued out of existence.

You might think they were quite important.

No longer. In today’s world of free content and instant information the value of the carefully considered printed word has been very much diminished. Inevitably, the value of the people who care about the words follows the same path.

Three reasons for writing this, one is an interesting story about the The Telegraph web site being sued for a purely online libel and the second, is for a former colleague who has been made compulsorily redundant for being good at his job of sub editing and the third, bad-tempered Times columnist Giles Coren. His hissy fits have had a lot of attention. Really what is the world coming too these days?

UPDATED: link to the wordsmith who writes elegantly about this subject

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