Last week the Chicago Tribune told employees it was eliminating 20% of the newsroom staff. A story on the move reports the Trib last month "mixed copy editing, page design, graphics, imaging and
some photo editing into a single department, creating new job
descriptions that will combine copy editing with graphics and photo
editing with design."
Let's play that back: Copyediting with graphics … and photo editing with design.
I suppose I can imagine one person being good at photo editing and design. But … copyediting with graphics? (I once wrote on the birthday card of a graphic designer, "It doesn't matter what I write here because you never read the copy anyway." Did that make her mad? No, because she never read it.)
To a combination football player/editorial hand like me, that's like combining "place kicker and offensive tackle."
Well, wait a minute. Maybe we're going back to a time before super-specialization, when everybody had to know a little about everything. And maybe, in the long run, that's not all bad.