I was laid off in December 2010 by Sun-Times Media, and while I sorely miss my former colleagues, I do not miss the black cloud of despair in the Aurora newsroom. For 13 years, I’d worked as a copy editor, then for three as a Web content editor before I was let go. I am a good newsman.
Two weeks later, I started my blog, “Laid off at 51: Seeking joy in change” (http://tedschnell.blogspot.com/) and began writing again. Three or four weeks after that, I started working for the guy who originally hired me at the newspaper Sun-Times Media later acquired. I’m now working part-time as a digital journalist for a hyperlocal website in Elgin called BocaJump.com, which does not pay much, but has allowed me to be a reporter again. I love it.
I’m also working part-time as a copy editor for Patch.com, and my work there is well-received by the 12 local editors and regional editor I assist.
Community journalism is what it’s about and always has been about for me. I continue to seek full-time work, and that may well pull me out of what I always have described to others as a vocation. If that happens, it will hurt, but no more than anything else hurts in life, I guess. God made no promises, no guarantees that life would be happy times. If I do leave the profession, I will do so with a heavy heart but with the joy of knowing that I served a role that helped the community. And I had a heck of a lot of fun for most of the 27 years I did it.
It makes me happy when I write an article that provokes a response in people. For instance I wrote a bout a free community event. The first time it was hosted only eight people were in attendance. Once I learned about the event and wrote an article, more than 50 showed up. Everyone said they learned about if from the newspaper. It’s the little things like that I enjoy about my job.
I am happy because I have been out of journalism for a while now but I have never been able to stop thinking, functioning and working like a journalist. As they say you can take me out of journalism but not the journlist out of me. Also, I used to read the angryjournalist website. It is good to know that journalists are now a happy lot :)I have alwasy wanted to get back to journalism, who knows I might be soon getting there
I’m happy because a reader pulled me aside the other day, commented on a piece of political coverage I’d done, and said that they found it really informative and that it helped them when it came time to vote. That made the awful hell that was covering the election worthwhile.
I’m happy because after seven years of being underappreciated by a booze-addled editor and a pack of inbred owners, I leave today for a dream job at a still-profitable paper in a cool town. I feel safe saying I was underappreciated because of the outpouring of thanks and good wishes that my impending departure drew from longtime readers and sources.
Scratch my former post stating that I’m “happy because I’m only 22 and I already have my dream job in the journalism industry.” I got laid off this past February with no warning and have since moved back to my home state and switched into the higher education field. I’m actually kind of relieved about that last fact.
Good luck to all the remaining journalists out there. I’m going to go hang out on AngryJournalist.com.
The fact that I get to experience new things in new places and meet new people too and get paid for it? And to indulge and write about what I’m passionate about (movies, people and books) and get a salary for that? Well, it’s seriously not difficult to be happy! A bonus is that I have a super boss and wonderful colleagues too. Yes, I’m a disgustingly happy journalist and proud of it.
I’m happy that most of the people I work with actually care about doing a good job more than they care about whining on AngryJournalist.com. I’m also happy that I have true friends here, a great boss, and the chance to work at my hometown paper, covering my community in the best way I can. (I’m also thankful that I am allowed and encouraged to be PART of my community - not artificially set apart like some papers force their so-called journalists to be.)
Like many posters here, I’m happy someone in this industry takes enough pride in their career to set up this Web site. I was always so offended by AngryJournalist.com, especially because I thought people get into this industry because it’s what they love to do. Come hell or high water, I’m riding print journalism out till the day the ship sinks.
I’m happy because my editors are giving me the opportunity to branch out beyond court stories, and letting me write about new businesses in the community, and political stories, which happen to be my passion.
I’m very happy because the internet site of information Liberennes.fr is re-opened a few days after the management of the french daily newspaper Liberation had decided to close this door on the news of Rennes and Brittany.
After years away from my hometown and working for medium and large papers, I moved back to this tiny burg in north Texas and went to work on the little paper here. My bosses are constantly telling me how much they appreciate me. The community calls me for everything from big watermelons to government malfeasance. It’s weird and funky and I’m really appreciated here. I love it.
Why journalism is the best profession in the world? There are a few reasons:
1. As a journalist you may talk with a famous people, for example politics, sportsmen etc.
2. You also may travel to great places, be at the most important events (World Championships…)
3. You may set your own hours, it`s a great thing!
I am happy because my boss appreciates me; I can make a difference to somebody’s life at times; and I guess I’m just trying to think positive about the job - it makes the work, and life, more bearable in general.
Despite my various posts as an angry journalist, I am happy that I can work as a writer. As a kid I thought I would be a writer, but my idea about it was nebulous, like I would just think of a bunch of ideas for best-selling novels. But I really get to work with words, and I say eff that idea about not writing above an eighth grade reading level (I’ve heard the bar set lower, too) - my mission is both to inform and to edify.
After being threatened with a lay-off for blogging, Twittering and commenting on other journalism blogs, I’m happy because I quit this industry and am working towards a technical career. I’m sure there are plenty of problems with too much ‘openness’ in IT, but I won’t mind getting paid a living wage to keep mum (or at least anonymous).
I’m happy because despite my editor moving me off my favorite beat I’m still getting calls from old sources who miss me and would rather speak with me than the new reporter on my old beat;)
;PPPPPPPPP to my editor.
I am working! That’s enough to make me happy, because I’m also a mother and damn, is it hard to find a way to work and parent.
Of course, it’s piecework and for pennies, but my byline is there every week and I am enjoying it, and it’s my first reporting job. I had to drop out of j-school because it was, um, adversely affecting my baby’s quality of life.
I’m happy. As a photographer from Magnum Photos I wasn’t getting published much lately. Not that I’m bad but the market is shifting, and I’m based in Cambodia… So, with a couple of other journalists we put together “Ka-set.info”:www.ka-set.info
It is a daily updated website on Cambodia and Cambodians, in French and in Khmer (and soon in English) for the Cambodians, the Cambodians abroad and anyone wo is interested in Cambodia. We’re a small staff, all signatories of a charter which gives our readers guarantees about our independence (not a common sight in Cambodia). We’re in total control of what we’re doing. We’re free as birds and we’re doing what we like to do.
I am ecstatic! I have the one and only story on Page 1 and the main story on our newly redesigned Web site (with video.) I can’t take credit for the video and pictures, but to have the entire front page (only one story on the page and it’s mine!)for my story is awesome!
I’m happy because I had a chance to vent on angryjournalists.com. I can understand the idea of journalists “complaining” about their job being a bit taboo in our society, but there are always reasons to feel frustrated in this industry. I’m happy that I’m not the only one that feels dejected at times. I’m happy that my feelings are understood and shared. I’m happy that though I am paid very little and work long hours, I’m participating in the greater communication web of my community- local, national, global. It’s a noble trade, however unforgiving.
I am happier taking photos than writing stories although I concur that appreciation from people I write about is nice.
I am happier now not writing anything, but a book I started last week. Still taking photos is energizing.
I am happiest outside journalism after 24 years. I now own two businesses.
The best of those is very lucrative for journalists because it’s educational-based (explaining), not sales: win1energy.com
I’m happy that there are other happy journalists out there.
I’m not always happy with my job, but I’m satisfied and I can’t imagine doing anything else. Journalism is, has been and always will be a huge component of my life.
I’m a free-lancer who writes for four newspapers in East Texas when I’m not managing my elderly mother’s retail business (a weird combination, I know). I am 54 and have been in journalism nearly the entire time since age 15. I am so thankful to be able to write for four papers and to have the God-given opportunity to write things that inform the public and make people happy. Kudos to whoever started this website!
I’m not actually happy, but I’m decent, and that’s an accomplishment. Today is decent because: Today my boyfriend made three sales at a store where no one is making sales, and it’s his adoption day. Cheers to him. I’m also decent because Angry Journalist #2211 is apparently from a brain-space that I intimately understand, and is therefore qualified to make references that resonate strongly with me and my identity. Thank you, AJ #2211. And I am decent because no one is making me do anything really stupid today, and no one is arguing with me for fifteen minutes over something that should be a matter of course.
I’m happy that when a college administrator publicly issues veiled threats against anyone who cooperated with the campus paper as it investigated the disappearance of a female student, I defended the paper and called him out on it.
I’m also happy that in the course of fiery e-mails I was called a “bully” and an “ASS” for doing so.
When I got to work this afternoon, I wasn’t sure what, if anything, I’d be writing for tomorrow.
But today I wrote about FEMA disaster relief; reinstating a cut preschool program at local schools; and two pit bulls attacking a woman and an officer. Plus started some work on other enterprise stories.
What other profession allows for that much range or spontaneity in a single day? The “anything can happen” factor definitely keeps the job interesting.
I don’t have to be at work until noon, though I will have to work late tonight. I wander into the office anytime between 9 and 11, but I’m always encouraged to stay out of the office. After this, I don’t know if I could survive a 9 to 5. Who would want such strict hours anyway?
I love that I get to meet wonderful, fascinating people on my beat and then get to tell their stories. I cover international communities for The Plain Dealer and not a week goes by where I don’t meet someone unlike anyone I’ve ever met before. Plus, my co-workers are smart, talented, friendly people. The business has gotten tougher, but it’s still a great job for a curious person.
I’m happy that I found this site. I’ve just started my post grad in Journalism and am embarking on “the dream.” I read some of the Angry Journalist posts and thought, no doubt I’ll have moments like that; but it’s nice to hear that others aren’t disheartened and bitter about the wheels of commerce that sometimes dictates what Journalists cover.
Food seems to be a central theme to happiness - maybe that’s just a student thing though. We’ll all be wanting our Porsches and houses in Bondi when the day is done.
I’m happy because despite the overwhelming difficulties and discouragement, there is still no other calling that has the potential to so greatly affect people’s lives by stringing words and images together, no matter the format. And because a lot of us still recognize the great good fortune involved in being a part of that.
The “critical analysis” employed by NYT in its treatment of campaign stories is rarely as exemplary as in Patrick Healy’s “Advisers for Clinton Plan the Endgame” (March 5).
If for no other reason, it’s to be enjoyed for the sheer breadth of references used, giving you every imaginable angle to the issue at hand.
Here’s the complete list (not limited to any one campaign, but listing all the text’s references to opinions, statements etc. anyone may have):
“Mrs. Clinton and her advisers now believe…”
“She also believes…”
“Her team believes…”
“Clinton advisers acknowledged…”
“Senator Clinton is also hoping …”
“Her advisers today have been discussing…”
“While Clinton advisers have publicly opposed …”
“Some of her advisers said today …”
“They [Clinton’s advisers] believe …”
“Mrs. Clinton and her top officials continue to oppose …”
“Clinton advisers who support a new vote said …”
“The [Clinton] campaign announced today …”
“Mark Penn, the campaign’s chief strategist, predicted today…”
“[Clinton] campaign advisers said…”
“The Clinton campaign also released a memo…”
(Followed by two paragraphs of quote and paraphrase of said memo).
Here’s the whole thing (one of so many):
March 5, 2008
Advisers for Clinton Plan the Endgame
By PATRICK HEALY
Advisers to Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton today began plotting a ground game, advertising budgets and a confidence-brimming outreach strategy in hopes of both scoring a big victory in April’s Pennsylvania primary and accumulating enough superdelegates over time to even the nomination fight against Senator Barack Obama.
Mr. Obama, who had 11 straight primary and caucus victories in February, has enjoyed momentum lately in picking off superdelegates, the party leaders who have a vote in the nomination. Mrs. Clinton and her advisers now believe that with her victories in Texas and Ohio last night, she can convince superdelegates to stand with her after a Pennsylvania victory.
She also believes that a strong showing in Pennsylvania, which has 188 delegates at stake, could set up a powerful one-two punch two weeks later in the Indiana and North Carolina primaries, which have a combined 218 delegates. Her team believes she has an especially good shot at winning Indiana, where the state’s influential Democratic senator, Evan Bayh, a former two-term governor, was one of Mrs. Clinton’s earliest supporters.
Clinton advisers acknowledged on Wednesday that the delegate arithmetic still has them at a disadvantage; Mr. Obama has 1,456.5 delegates to Mrs. Clinton’s 1,370, and the upcoming primaries will award delegates proportionally to both the winner and the loser. That will have the effect making each candidate inch toward the 2,025 delegates needed for the nomination.
Senator Clinton is also hoping to get an extra boost by adding delegates to her column from Michigan and Florida, and her advisers today have been discussing ways to deal with the conundrum in those states.
The Democratic Party stripped the two states of their delegates after they moved up their primaries to January, but Mrs. Clinton remained on the ballot in both _as Mr. Obama did in Florida. She won in both Florida and Michigan and is now seeking to have the delegates counted.
While Clinton advisers have publicly opposed talk of a “do-over” vote in either state, which is possible, some of her advisers said today that they would now be inclined to support such a vote. They believe her strength with Hispanics, women and Jewish voters in Florida, and with union workers and women in Michigan, would be enough to overtake Mr. Obama’s advantage with black and young voters in both states.
Mrs. Clinton and her top officials continue to oppose such a do-over. The alternative is waiting until July for the party to consider allowing Florida and Michigan delegates to count at the August convention. But the Clinton advisers who support a new vote said they expected conversations on the issue to intensify in her camp.
In the short term, the campaign announced today that it was dispatching former President Bill Clinton tomorrow to Wyoming — which holds Democratic caucuses on Saturday — and on Friday to Mississippi, which holds presidential primaries next Tuesday. Mrs. Clinton’s upcoming travel plans are still under wraps.
As for other upcoming primaries, Mark Penn, the campaign’s chief strategist, predicted today that “a fuller vetting process” of Mr. Obama by the media would heighten concerns among voters about Mr. Obama’s candidacy and “open up a number of other states” where Mrs. Clinton could compete intensively for delegates. He spoke on a conference call with reporters.
Campaign advisers said they believed Kentucky and West Virginia could ultimately be in play. They also predicted that Mrs. Clinton would win the final contest on June 7 in Puerto Rico, where 63 delegates will be at stake.
Mrs. Clinton is not simply looking for outright victories in all of the states to come, of course, but is also looking to narrow Mr. Obama’s margin of victory so that even in defeat, she can pick up a number of proportionally allocated delegates in each state.
Harold Ickes, a senior adviser to Senator Clinton, said on the conference call that the Clinton campaign’s chief objective was not to sully Mr. Obama’s image or record, but to cast a spotlight on lightly examined or unknown aspects of both.
“This is not a question of trying to damage somebody — this is a question of trying to fully understand all the particular aspects of each of the candidates,” Mr. Ickes said. “There’s not another shoe in her closet to drop. It is clear that too much is yet unknown about Senator Obama.”
The Clinton campaign also released a memo stressing confidently that it would have enough money to compete against Mr. Obama this spring and summer, after nearly going broke in early February — at a time when Mr. Obama was raising $1 million or more a day. Since the Feb. 5 national primary, Mrs. Clinton has also been raising money at a clip of $1 million a day, mostly online.
“In February, the Clinton campaign raised approximately $35 million,” according to the campaign memo, e-mailed to reporters and supporters. “This deep level of support gives Hillary the resources she needs to compete between now and the convention.”
I’m happy because spring is in the air, the sky is blue, and I have a good-paying job as a reporter that allows me to decide when I work and what I write about 95 percent of the time with almost no oversight from management because our staff is stretched so thin (or maybe they trust me for some strange reason)
i love being a journalist because sometimes when i have time to sit back and think about it, i realise what a cool job i have. i’ve got phone numbers for heaps of people and can just call them and ask them about stuff and they don’t think it’s weird, they just accept that it’s a journalist’s job. i love knowing things first. i love the fact that it is “normal” to me to talk to politicians or musicians or event organisers or mayors or cops or whatever every day and they talk to me and often even tell me what i want to know.
and i’m a happy journalist because i don’t have to be writing front pages or huge national court things or world-changing stories to be satisfied. i work at a country daily paper and it’s all i ever wanted, and now that i’m here, yes it’s tough sometimes and there are days when i go on my lunch break and wish i didn’t have to go back to work, but then i have to be grateful even on those days that at least i GOT a lunch break! i want to stick it out here longer than the others and i honestly think i could be here for 4 or 5 years, not push myself to make it to 12 months.
It’s 9:10 p.m., I’m mercilessly destroying tasks while working on the most amazingly sweet project in the history of awesome and the random wisdom of my set-to-shuffle iPod just served up Disenchanted by For Squirrels followed by Joy Division’s Atmosphere. Life is so good.
I’m happy because I work in cable news, and not print.
Also, I have the coolest colleagues ever. I idolize every single one of them. Never have I met a group of people more willing to show a confused young writer the ropes. I hope the rest of the world is even half as accepting as my newsroom.
And I’m happy because I’m working in news during an historic election, and seriously, who could ask for better than that?
I love that I get to work from home because I’m really close to having a baby and find it difficult to drag myself out of the house. I find joy in sitting down with material to write an article, and knowing that in about an hour I’ll have pieced together something that will inform and perhaps entertain our community.
I’m happy because I a. had the sense to get out of newspapers and land at a major national Web site at a time all the Chicken Littles in newspapers thought the Web was a flash in the pan; b. latch on to a rising beat in my particular area of journalism and get my name out in the forefront while things heated up, which led to landing my current dream gig.
So while everyone who mocked me behind my back wonders when they’re going to get the ax back at the Bumblestump Daily Gazette, I’m working a beat I thoroughly enjoy and making more money than I ever would have imagined in this business. Damn straight I’m happy!
I’m happy because although I’ve been out of college only three years, I’ve been trusted with editor work and with basically running the news department at my current job.
When I reported for a newspaper, I got the chance to write a story that helped a man deal with his wife’s death. When he thanked me, just hearing that I helped him was so rewarding. That’s the kind of journalism I love, and it’s why I’ll stick in this industry until I’m torn from it kicking and screaming.
I’m happy that I conned my hayseed of a boss to pay me two times the going rate for the past 5 or 6 years because I had “internet” talents (at a time when he didn’t know the internet existed and was too lazy to figure out what I should be making) and by the time everyone figured out how overpaid I was I had a huge stash of cash in the bank that should carry me through the next 8 to 10 years. Hoping I get fired so I can collect unemployment for a year or so too.
I’m happy when I do an interview and I really connect with the person and they have a great story to tell. In trade publishing, that’s not always the case and a lot of times I interview people that just want to push their products. But then I’ll call someone up expecting that and it’s just delightful when I really learn something new or hear someone’s personal story. That makes me a happy journalist.
I reviewed a brand-new band’s CD, and gave it a very positive rating because I liked it. You could tell how hard they worked on it and it was highly creative and innovative. The singer/songwriter emailed me, thanking me profusely for what I think may be his very first review. I feel awesome. This is why I got into music journalism.
I’m happy that I found a job that lets me express myself creatively, gives me creative control, and allows me to write about the things that I’m interested in. I’m happy that the online field blew up and since no one else knew what the hell it was, they gave a kid a break. Awesome!
I’m happy that I was able to be a reporter during the past 30 years and only wish (rather wistfully at this point) that new reporters could enjoy the same lucrative jobs that we did.
But I’m also happy to be collecting my retirement check after a very generous buyout.
I’m happy because I’m in online journalism and its where I aimed to be since I discovered how much I love journalism in college. I’m also happy that I managed to find a job where I don’t have to eat ramen every night to survive and that I have coworkers I generally enjoy working with. I’m also super happy that I have such great bosses!
I’m happy being a journalist because I learn a lot about things I wouldn’t even think about if I wasn’t a journalist. I’m happy for not having to work weekends (usually) and making my own hours (again, usually). I love getting phone calls and e-mails about the nice story I wrote, especially from both sides of a sticky subject. I like that I don’t have to sit down for eight hours straight and that I am reimbursed for driving all over the place.
But now I’m a cashier. Now I appreciate the job I used to have.
Happy might be an overstatement — there were layoffs last week, and the reporter sitting next to me got the boot. But on the evening of the layoffs, I distributed an article by Ann Hull to the middle schoolers in a community education class I teach. They loved it and read aloud their favorite parts, which totally made my week.
I’m happy today because my package on A1 tomorrow is among my favorite I’ve written in the last year. It was fun to report, too, and an interesting topic. Plus, there’s a photo page and soundslides online. So it should be a fun story for the readers, too. Gotta love that.
I’m happy to see all the posts here with real names attached.
I’m happy to work with people passionate about their work.
I’m happy to work during an incredible transformation of journalism and excited about where it will take us.
I’m happy because I live in a country that still values and protects free speech and a free press. Maybe that doesn’t always seem to be true, but it’s more true here than in most other countries in the world.
I have a friggin’ job. Those people over at angryjournalist - whom I am sure the vast majority are aged 23 to 28 - will soon realize that it’s better to have a shitty job than no job at all. Whining gets you absolutely nowhere: Half the people don’t care, and the other half are glad that you are worse off than they are.
I’m a happy journalist because the industry at last seems to be ridding itself of so many of the angry, cynical, philosophically moribund dinosaurs who meekly shoved their heads in the sand for decades while our profession suffered.
I’m happy I embraced multimedia early. I am now helping to shape the digital future at my newspaper. Sometimes it feels like I’m working at an internet startup company of the late nineties. There are lots of great ideas floating around our online offices. The real work is make them reality.
Learning new things, meeting new people. My dad (himself a journalist while in the Air Force in the 1970s) would say journalists are like sponges, soaking up new things. Other journalists also make me happy to be a journalist (usually) because they also seem to always have a story.
I’m happy that my company gave me a boatload of money to retire from the profession I love and will now pay the new employees half or less of what we got.
I’m happy that this site will receive many fewer comments than AngryJournalist.com
I love that I can read an obit and feel sad about a man’s death but also know that, when he was alive, I wrote about him and his amazing character and that more people now know there are probably hundreds others who benefited from his existence.
I guess it’s kind of a sad-happy instance