Thursday, August 25, 2011

Racist editor points finger

Downtown PatersonImage via Wikipedia
A white Paterson teacher is being disciplined after a 6- or 7-year-old student hit her
and she referred to that boy and other disruptive students as "future criminals."

On Page 1 of The Record today, Editor Francis Scandale makes an example of a white teacher who was accused of being a racist after she said on Facebook: 
"[I]'m not a teacher -- [I]'m a warden for future criminals."

At a hearing, Jennifer O'Brien explained what prompted the comment: Six or seven unruly students disrupted her lessons in the Paterson classroom, one first-grader hit her and another pupil struck another student. Is that really racism?

And why doesn't Staff Writer Leslie Brody's teacher-performance stories ever discuss the role and responsibility of parents when their children misbehave in the classroom?

Racism editor

Scandale should know what racism is. After all, he dumped the paper's only black and Hispanic columnists, leaving the daily with only white columnists.

Even if you argue that's ancient history, why didn't Scandale ever replace Lawrence Aaron and Miguel Perez, especially after John Cichowski and other white columnists went off their rockers?

The top of A-1 today is devoted to a story on the "9/11 family" that has little general interest.

Let's hope this is not the first of an unbroken string of 9/11 stories in the run-up to the 10 anniversary next month. I'm sure the anniversary coverage will make readers sick of reading about the disaster and the families left behind.

Blow up that photo

The front-page photo today is a shot from The Associated Press of a non-fatal turnpike accident that caused a 7-mile backup way outside of the paper's circulation area.

Scandale and head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes continue the daily dissing of their talented photography staffers, who have been reduced to ambulance chasers, forced to capture minor accidents so Sykes can fill columns in the Local section.

Today, the front of Local carries a big photo of a non-fatal fire from firetruck chaser Tariq Zehawi. 

This is not breaking news. This is breaking down readers. This is breaking the spirit of the photographers. This is breaking wind.

Flag burner

Of course, Scandale will never live down relegating to a back page staffer Tom Franklin's incredible, exclusive, flag-raising photo on 9/11. The coming anniversary will only rub salt in Franklin's wounds.

Editor Liz Houlton continues to confound with photo captions from the news copy desk she supervises, like the one on Page A-4 today that introduces readers to a new species in Manhattan. The caption reads:

"Pedestrians starting their morning as surveillance cameras monitor the scene in Times Square."

At the end of the day, where do the "pedestrians" go? Into the manholes? Now, that's a story.

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  1. What is the story with the site and it's new set-up for posting comments? Please let your readers know about the facts and your opinions of this issue in one of your future articles. It appears the old Comments posting system was eliminated this week sometime around Wednesday. It appears that all comments, which were posted with previous news articles, are no longer viewable. It appears that one can no longer log in to with their existing username, which typically was anonymous, in order to post comments. When clicking on the "Most Commented" tab, it no longer shows a list of articles. The "Most Read" and "Most E-mailed" tabs still bring up a list of articles. It appears that the new system requires you to have a Facebook account and log in to Facebook before you can post a comment. Currently, all comments appear to be only from Facebook users. Obviously, posting anonymously is much more difficult since most people with Facebook accounts use their own names, along with their pictures. It seems that the Record may have gotten tired of allowing some of the anonymous posted comments, which in some people's opinions may have been objectionable or controversial. While this new policy may be politically correct and an attempt to weed out the "controversial" anonymous individuals, who posted, I believe that it is a bad policy since it will restrict free speech and the free flow of information, will invade people's privacy by opening their Facebook accounts to unwanted public scrutiny by others, and force people, who have absolutely no interest in joining Facebook or any of the other social media sites due to concerns about privacy and identity theft. The number of posted comments with this new system has dramatically decreased. If you happen to find out anything that dramatically contradicts the facts that I have stated, I would appreciate an individual response to me. Otherwise, feel free to take the lead and alert your readers to this new situation.

  2. Thanks for your comment. I noticed the change on Thursday, when I was able to post two comments using the Facebook link and it was automatic: A comment box appeared under a story with my photo and my name from Facebook.

    I posted two comments and included the Web address for "Eye on The Record."

    You might recall that my comments under the moniker "eyeon" were blocked a couple of weeks ago by North Jersey Media Group.

    Now, I am going to post your comment on

  3. My comments on, under the moniker "eyeon" were first blocked on July 29, 2011.

  4. I was able to post the comment from Anonymous under a half-dozen or more stories on NJMG Web site.

  5. It doesn't restrict free speech, anonymous. You have no constitutional right to post whatever you want on a newspaper website. You have a constitutional right to start your own newspaper website.

  6. I don't agree.

    Of course, it restricts free speech.

    A newspaper Web site is a public forum.

    The newspaper invokes its constitutional right to gather the news and comment on public policy. It can't then turn around and deny readers their constitutional right to comment on the newspaper and the stories it publishes.

    The Borgs treat The Record and as their own personal property.

    If you don't want the public to comment, then go into another business.

  7. Thanks for the feedback on my original post. If you find anything further on this big news story on why and who at The Record changed their online comments posting policy, which I don’t believe was publicized anywhere on their site, please let your readers know in future articles. It’s kind of ironic, but not unexpected, that a news gathering organization like The Record did not provide some news alert to its readers. Let your readers know if you are aware of any other online newspapers that restrict posted comments to Facebook or other social media site users. Whatever strange reason caused them to change their policy, it really is a disservice to the free exchange of ideas and the many different points of views for the vast majority of those who were posting and who may not to continue to post under the new system. I enjoy my privacy and would no longer post comments as a Facebook user. It will be interesting to see if the Record posts in their Opinion section of their daily newspaper any readers comments (Your Views) about this troubling new policy.

  8. Hilarious? What, did you look into the mirror?

  9. A few months ago, I noticed The New York Times no longer allowed comments on all of its stories on its Web site, especially the food and travel stories I look at.

    I didn't keep the e-mail I got in response to my questioning that, but recall a spokeswoman for the paper confirmed that there were fewer stories allowing comments than before, but there was no change in allowing people to use pen names and so forth.

    The Record doesn't print letters to the editor unless the writer's name and town are supplied, as well as a phone number so someone can call for confirmation.

    I don't agree with restricting comment to people who identify themselves via Facebook, but did think some of the vicious stuff I saw in the past should have been removed by the site.

    Monitoring of comments was non-existent.

  10. Of course, "Eye on The Record" still allows Anonymous commenting, though not all will be published.


If you want your comment to appear, refrain from personal attacks on the blogger. Anonymous comments are no longer accepted. Keep your racism to yourself.