Milton Coleman closed up his office at The Washington Post yesterday for the final time, ending a 36-year career at the paper. I have many Milton stories, and I will always feel so fondly toward him, not least because, although Doug Norwood and Gene Robinson hired me at The Post, it was Milton, then the deputy managing editor, who sent me the letter announcing that The Washington Post actually wanted me on its staff.
In 2005, Milton was one of several editors who took part in a kind of training session for younger editors. He was deeply involved with the weekly El Tiempo Latino at this time, and of course I knew of his role as a mentor for many African Americans on the staff. So I wasn’t surprised that Milton came to us to discuss how to reach minority readers — a crucial topic in a city where minorities made up the majority. He pointed out, “The old paradigm of who our new readers are doesn’t work anymore. It used to be our children whom we wrote for, but now immigration drives our population growth.”
What really grabbed me, though, was his list of reasons why reporters of color leave The Post. It opened my eyes to a problem that we still struggle to resolve all these years later. For me, this is the best Milton story, because it touches on his willingness to share, to explain, so that we all end up in a better place, and that’s what Milton Coleman was about. That, and music.
- They’re street reporters, not process reporters
- They prefer features to news
- They pay a tax in their home communities for working for a mainstream publication (Is my newspaper gonna embarrass me?)
- “My editors don’t get excited or don’t understand my ideas” (This sends a message that the newspaper’s not for me.)
- They don’t get good assignments
- “That story is so old” — we are not sophisticated in reporting on communities
This is what happens when you’re in the car for three hours on New Year’s Day, when the radio stations want to play you the Top 100 songs you’ve never heard (nor ever wanted to) or the Top 500 classic-rock songs that you already know by heart.
So you punch off the radio, and instead for some reason you and your spouse revisit your disagreement from November, about whether “Skyfall” was a triumph or a flop. You assert again that it was a flop, which leads to the question of where it ranks in the Bond canon. And this is where things end up.
Best Bond films
1) Casino Royale
3) For Your Eyes Only
4) Tomorrow Never Dies
5) From Russia With Love
Remainder of the top half (more or less in order of preference)
Diamonds Are Forever
Live and Let Die
Die Another Day
The Living Daylights
Unrated (I’ve never seen it)
Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Bottom half (in chronological order)
You Only Live Twice
The Spy Who Loved Me
License to Kill
The World Is Not Enough
Worst Bond films
20) The Man With the Golden Gun
21) Quantum of Solace
22) A View to a Kill
[D]igital advertising growth at newspapers has been all but flat in the last six years at the same time the overall market for digital advertising (orange line) has grown explosively.
– Alan D. Mutter, “Online sales are flat-lining at newspapers“
Interesting piece from David Streitfeld in the New York Times:
Much as the Web set off the dot-com boom 15 years ago, apps have inspired a new class of entrepreneurs. … [But] only a small minority of developers actually make a living by creating their own apps, according to surveys and experts. … While people already employed in tech jobs have added app writing to their résumés, the profession offers few options to most unemployed, underemployed and discouraged workers.
It’s also worth restating that this push benefits Apple far more than it does the average developer. Streitfeld notes, “Since Apple unleashed the world’s freelance coders to build applications four years ago, it has paid them more than $6.5 billion in royalties.” Developers get 70 percent of each sale, so Streitfeld’s number means that Apple has made
more than $2.75 billion more than $1.95 billion through the App Store — and that figure doesn’t include the hardware it sold to developers.
At one point [a mom-and-pop developer couple] owned a 24-inch iMac, a Mac Mini, a 24-inch cinema display screen, two 13-inch MacBook Airs, a 15-inch MacBook Pro, two iPad 2s, two Apple TVs, two iPhone 4s and an iPhone 3GS. “We justify buying new models by saying we need them to test out the apps,” [Shawn] Grimes said.