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Thread: In case it matters to you . . .

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    12

    Arrow In case it matters to you . . .

    I have been asked by a subscriber to disclose that I have endorsed Gordon Cliff for Selectman. I have made no secret of that, with a Cliff sign in front of my house (regrettably, as I loathe lawn signs), a letter to the Crier (which apparently did not make it onto its website) and an endorsement on our Endorsements page (along with many other members of the public endorsing any one of the candidates, including the complaining subscriber’s endorsement of Tony Boschetto).

    I have to wonder why I am singled out for special treatment. I don’t “control” what goes on the website or in the newsletter any more than our other editors do (I am one vote of three). Is it because I don’t agree with his views? Does he criticize folks who have written for WVN or the two sitting Selectmen and the School Committee member who have publicly endorsed the same candidates that he has?

    Well, I certainly hope that he does not criticize them. They have a fundamental Constitutional right to express their personal political opinions, as I do. One of the reasons why this right is important is that there is so much emotion involved in its exercise that it can drive people to attempt to suppress its exercise by others.

    If the subscriber is concerned about our Thursday newsletter that made mention of the controversy surrounding Mr. Boschetto’s campaign, Mr. Boschetto drew attention to that himself with his Patch column; and there was a substantially similar entry in the Crier written by one of his supporters as a letter to the editor.

    If anyone has any public documents or meeting videos relating to any of the candidates that contradict their stated positions, they are welcome to post links to them in this forum. I will certainly support noting them in our next newsletter and will pledge to advocate that to the rest of the editorial board. We endeavor to treat everyone the same.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Wayland MA
    Posts
    1,431

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    Ian, well said. What I like about WaylandENews (WEN) and the WEN Discussion Forum (DF) is the lack of bias displayed.

    To be sure, the WEN editors have made endorsements and posted them on the DF. This is no different than what numerous major newspapers do. Arguably, WEN is less biased than these newspapers, since it doesn't product other editorials or news stories (the way, for instance, that the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times do).

    WEN typically publishes on Mondays. Exceptions include when the Monday is a holiday or when there's something time-sensitive. Election news falls into this latter category. Sometimes the non-Monday releases are via the WEN email list. Much more frequently, they are via Facebook posts (and perhaps other social media).

    WEN simply links to local news items published by someone else. To my knowledge, WEN has never intentionally elected not to link to such an item. As you note, Mr. Boschetto and one of his supporters published items in Wayland Patch and Wicked Local Wayland, respectively. What would have been biased would have been NOT linking to those items.

    Ian, I'm guessing that you meant to write that you were asked by a subscriber to disclose ON THE DF that you have endorsed Gordon Cliff for BOS, since you had already disclosed this elsewhere. While I would think that you would have no objection to doing so (after all, the idea of an endorsement is to influence opinion), what I don't see is why you would have some external compulsion to doing so.

    Your disclosure would have been better if you had agreed to do so with the inclusion of the subscriber who asked you to do so.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    12

    Default

    I had the impression that he meant it "should" have been noted in the newsletter that already been sent (which obviously we couldn't accommodate), or perhaps on the website. It wasn't entirely clear to me. Apparently, this is a sensitive issue for him and it didn't seem necessary to publicly call him out on it, especially since we would like to maintain a civil tone. Besides, I have no objection to posting here. I'm certainly not hiding anything.

    We do solicit feedback from subscribers, and we give their comments serious consideration. However, in this instance I am acting without the input of the editorial board, because this involves me personally.
    Last edited by Ian Hecker; 03-30-2013 at 07:50 PM. Reason: unnecessary verbiage

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