07 Jul
Copy Editors of the World, Untie! Copy Editors of the World, Untie!

Copy Editors of the World, Untie!

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Conventional wisdom has long held that the potential danger in misusing even one letter -- such as leaving the "r" out of "friend," turning the word into "fiend" -- is serious enough to warrant the hiring and retention of copy editors, grammar and usage mavens whose collective vigilance has been known to save many a crack reporter or star columnist from major embarrassment.

So when work broke that the New York Times was rumored to be considering layoffs among its copy editing staff of up to 50%, employees at the Old Gray Lady staged a walkout protest.

And what better way to make the point that copy editors are much needed -- more so today, arguably, than ever before -- than by displaying signs with messages that underscored the need for some careful copy editing.

Mashable rounded up some of the better signs, with messages as follows:

  • "Copy editors save our buts."
  • "Without us, it's the New York Times."
  • "This sign was not edited."
  • "We all know who built the pyramids -- but only editors can rebuild inverted ones."

The walkout happened after reporters at the newspaper transmitted a latter to their superiors, Managing Editor Joe Kahn and Executive Editor Dean Baquet, which read in part, "We write to you as the saved — those whose copy, facts and sometimes the intelligibility of a sentence or two have been hammered into shape by our friends and colleagues on the editing desks. Our editors ask smart questions, engage passionately with our copy, and serve as our safety nets. Editors – and yes, that especially means copy editors — save reporters and The Times every day from countless errors, large and small."

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Read 1063 times Last modified on Saturday, 01 July 2017 13:27
Jim Lillie

Jim began writing for newspapers and designing for publishing companies at a time when both industries were just beginning to make the switch from manual to digital platforms. Jim lives in Boulder, Colorado with his teenage son.

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