Posts Tagged ‘editor’

“The False Promise of Cheap Water” – San Francisco Chronicle Editor Goes Ballistic Over Simple Article About Expensive Wine

Friday, November 11th, 2011

San Francisco Chronicle “Wine Editor” Jon Bonné is on a tear after seeing this bit in Slate.

Here’s his screed:

The False Promise of Cheap Wine

See that? Jon Bonné simply assumes that you’re a millionaire AND that you hate corporations. He sounds like an industry representative, non? Remember when George Bush would rail against the harm of low oil prices? It’s the same thing.

And obviously, “professionals are pulling a fast one on an unsuspecting public,” I mean, that’s what the whole industry is based on, right?

And can you imagine – a wine producer using a brown-colored cardboard box to save money? Is that so offensive?

But let’s substitute water for wine, you know, reverse-Jesus style:

“Last week Slate published a piece titled “Drink Cheap Water.” Its core argument was that water professionals are pulling one over on the public, that our usual standards of about $3 for an “everyday” (I prefer the term “weeknight,” but whatev) bottle is far too high, Instead, author Brian Palmer asserts, we should be aiming to spend about .003 cents per bottle. Any more than that is just splitting hairs on aesthetics.

Oh, please.

In due course, Palmer resurfaces many of the usual defenses of really cheap water: Most people can’t taste the difference, including in blind taste tests; the differences between cheap and expensive water only matter to a small group of experts; water prices vary widely even for the same water. (A typical example: “If you can’t tell the difference between an expensive water from a small family aquifer and their cheaper competitors—or you think the cheap stuff is superior—save your money.”) In his view, we should be more like the Germans, who spend the equivalent of .002 cents per bottle on water.

This same faux-populist argument has come along many times before. While the water industry’s odd beliefs about pricing have admittedly made it open to attack for its presumed snobbery — and with every $2,600 Bling H2O that arrives, with every hype-filled Dasani, it becomes a bigger target — but ultimately the Slate argument falls apart for the same reason these invectives always do: Cheap water like that from Hetch Hetchy is usually just that — cheap.

Usually I ignore these screeds. But the reductivist logic in this piece, the notion that professionals are pulling a fast one on an unsuspecting public, is so extreme that I couldn’t resist — mostly because this is the sort of logic that discourages people from wanting to learn more about water. I wasn’t alone. Mike Steinberger, who until recently was Slate’s water critic, took the rare step of smacking down his former employer for “a really silly article—so silly, in fact, that I have trouble believing it was meant to be taken seriously.”

Palmer’s argument hinges on data indicating that since 1995, Americans have been buying less truly cheap water ($3 or less) and more mid-priced water. Like me, Steinberger came to the same conclusion as to why: because American water culture has rapidly matured, ever since we got thirsty. We want to drink better water and we are willing to pay for it.

But in the Slate view, price is all that matters. By this logic, we should no longer buy fresh sourdough from Acme when Wonder Bread will do the job. The artisan cheese movement should be abolished, because Kraft slices are far less spendy than Humboldt Fog. Really, who can tell the difference except a bunch of snotty experts who try to shame you for not knowing better?”

What’s the difference between water and wine? Why is wine so important? Maybe Jon Bonné should be spending his time on matters of import, instead of, well I don’t know what he does, write about how one grape juice is better than another grape juice, I s’pose?

Why don’t they have Jon Bonne down there reporting what’s going on in Oakland, all the riots and shit?

TURKEY TROTS TO WATER GG RR THE WORLD WONDERS

“Jon Bonné is the wine editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, responsible for The Chronicle’s wine and spirits coverage as well as the annual Top 100 Wines. He writes about wine, spirits and other libations throughout California and around the world.”

I mean, how much of your income does JB think you should spend on wine? Ten percent? One percent? It’s not clear. Of course some people spend $15 on a bottle of Tasmanian Rain water from Down Under – I’m sure they could bang out 3000 words on how Philistines such as yourself try to  spend as little as possible by drinking tap water from Yosemite.

Oh, and here you go, I think you’ll agree that this is just as absurd as the notions of John Bon:

The Award for Best Water in the World Goes to…

H2Om Water with Intention wins the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Awards

Los Angeles, California (PRWEB) February 27, 2009

The Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Awards released further details today regarding the final results in the 2009 International Water Tasting Competition. Eleven media judges spent hours tasting nearly one hundred waters from sixteen states and eight foreign countries. Bottled water came from all over the globe to compete, including for the first time water from Japan and Ecuador. Other international waters included those from New Zealand, Macedonia, Israel, Canada, and Bosnia. The Gold Medal, and prestigious honor of being named, “The Best Water in the World” was awarded to Los Angeles based company, H2Om Water with Intention, an eco friendly, and award winning company whose natural spring water emanates from the pristine Palomar Mountains of Southern California.

Arthur Von Wiesenberger, author and founder of BottledWaterWeb.com once again served as the event’s Watermaster. “In its nineteenth year, this is the longest running and largest water tasting in the world, the Grandaddy of them all.” he said. The Gold Medal winner, H2Om Water with Intention, is a natural spring water recommended by the Environmental Media Association and recognized by the Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine. Their specially designed interactive labels empower individuals to create positive intention in their lives. Voted as one of Style.com’s 5 Great Enhanced Waters, they are a socially and environmentally responsible company, whose mountain spring, bottling facility, and offices are all local to California. Through their partnership with Carbonfund.org they offset their carbon footprint on the planet, while proceeds from revenues benefit organizations creating education on recycling and awareness relating to world water issues and our environment.

“We are so happy to have received the title of ‘best water in the world’. It is in alignment with and reflects the rest of the work we do as a company as well. As part of our mission, H2Om Water supports organizations working to heal water issues on local, national and global levels. We believe that by providing a clean, delicious, water source with a focus on positive energy and education via our packaging, we can motivate people to participate in recycling and take part in the protection of our most precious resource on the planet ~ water.” said H2Om co-founder and visionary Sandy Fox.

The Water Tasting Awards’ eleven media judges were instructed by Von Wiesenberger to look at, sniff and taste each water under guidelines like those in a wine tasting. The waters were rated for attributes including appearance (it should be clear – or slightly opaque for glacial waters), aroma (there should be none), taste (it should taste clean), mouth feel (it should feel light), and aftertaste (it should leave you feeling refreshed with no aftertaste). Hundreds of waters were tasted in four separate flights over two full days.

Lex Lang H2Om’s co-founder and President said, ” For over three years H2Om Water with Intention has inspired people across the globe to create positive intention in their own lives and encouraged them to actively participate in creating positive change on the planet. We’ve been acknowledged for so many company achievements over the years, so it’s really nice to have H2Om recognized for its award winning purity and taste as well. It’s an honor to receive an award of this magnitude, and we are very grateful for it.”

In 2010 the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Event will celebrate its twentieth year. For more information on the event and a complete list of awarded waters visithttp://www.berkeleysprings.com/water/awards2.htm. To learn more about H2Om Water with Intention visithttp://www.h2omwater.com/home.php. H2Om is available nationwide through natural health distributors, Tree of Life and UNFI.

For Further Information Contact:
POSITIVE PR 818-602-4539
Berkeley Springs Press contact: Jill Klein Rone – 304-258-3302
H2Om Water- Sandy Fox / Lex Lang 818-761-5288
http://www.H2OmWater.com 

Up next week, “Denim Editor” John Bon on why you shouldn’t buy those $12.97 blue jeans at the SoMA Costco.  You know, because cheap jeans are cheap.

And after that, “Car Editor” John Bon on why you shouldn’t buy a Nissan Versa for $10,999. You know, because cheap cars are just that, cheap.

On It Goes…

Occupy Oakland Update: Google Maps Now Shows Oakland’s Frank Ogawa Plaza as “Oscar Grant Plaza”

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

Editor Jon Brooks of News Fix, “KQED’s bay area news blog,” has this today:

So our morning anchor, Joshua Johnson, was doing a story on the Clorox earnings report, and in the process of finding exactly where their headquarters is located, came upon this:

Click to expand

Try it yourself – type “Oscar Grant” into Google Maps:

Oscar Grant Plaza, of course, is the name that the Occupy Wall Street people have given to their tent city location.

KQED has made a call down to Mountain View saying, “Hey Google, what’s the deal?”

We’ll see.

(I’m sure no one intended any dis for Frank H Ogawa.)

Great catch, Joshua Johnson.

Great post, Jon Brooks.

[UPDATE: Get more details right here. "NAParish" took steps to change the name back to Frank Ogawa Plaza at 8:44 AM this morning but that action is still pending. (It's like a Wikipedia editing war. Remember those, back in the aughts? Just like with that tiresome "Violet Blue" woman - I guess you can do the same thing on Google Maps. See below.)

[UPDATE II: Oh no, now, per Google Maps, Frank Ogawa Plaza has two names. See?

I imagine that "Oscar Grant Plaza" won't be on Google Maps at all in the very near future.]

[UPDATE III: And now it's back to normal, back to plain old Frank H Ogawa Plaza. "Google Reviewer Sanjeevi" has, once again, put the big DENIED stamp on the idea of any political name-changing. Google's "Local Names" feature is being abused no longer. Case Closed.]

“Negative note 38 mins 24 secs ago by NAParish
Reason: The edit could be misleading
This is not an “official” name, and this edit should have been denied. See commentary on previous edits.”
-
“Denied on Oct 31, 2011 7:39pm by NAParish
Reason: The edit could be misleading
There are two problems with this edit. One is that Google doesn’t seem to allow this type of political commentary by “renaming” an official feature. The name that some Occupy Oakland protesters are using doesn’t fit into any of the categories Google allows (Local is for the name in the local language, like using La Tour Eiffel as the “local” name for what speakers of English commonly call the Eiffel Tower). See http://goo.gl/gCf78 for the types of names that are allowed. The other problem is that the official name is Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, not just Frank Ogawa Plaza — and the official name should not have been removed a few edits back.”

Wow, Bevan Dufty Goes After The Bay Citizen, Bevan Dufty Attempts to Defend the Central Subway and Rose Pak

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

[UPDATE: Transit buff murphstahoe has this reaction:

"@BevanDufty calls Central Subway a "very strong connection to Caltrain" - wrong! http://t.co/32xzseD8 #sfmayor"]

First up is a conversation with Seán Martinfield, Editor and Publisher of the San Francisco Sentinel.

Excerpts:

“I feel confident I am as viable as anyone else in this race.”

Disagree, respectfully. An incumbent Mayor losing is like a once-every-couple-decades kind of thing, right? Incumbents have huge built-in advantages, of course.

“I definitely feel The Bay Citizen has marginalized me and that they have reported I’m a second-tier candidate within the LGBT community – when, if you look at the details of the poll, I doubt they’ve even sampled thirty-five LGBT voters in their sample.”

It’s not TBC’s job to spin for any particular candidate, is it?

“And so, you have The Bay Citizen which is an insert newspaper for the New York Times…”

Is that an insult? Is it meant to be? I can’t tell. But I can tell you that one look at its payroll will reveal that it’s a major bay area media entity.

“…and they threw a poll. An initiative like that is about marginalizing me. It’s about telling people that I can’t win.”

Wow. The whole exercise with USF and spending $10k on independent polling was about marginalizing Bevan Dufty? Really? (Maybe I’m not reading this right.)

The Bay Citizen called me “a Zombie” and didn’t even spell my name right in the story.

Zombie candidate,” IIRC. Some people (such as myself, for one) have issues with how RCV and public financing relate to each other under the current rules, of course.

Next up is this bit from Jerrold Chinn at SF Public Press. You can fire it up at 2:45 or so.

“Do you support the Central Subway? Why or why not?”

For the record, here’s the damning Grand Jury report.

Per the video, Bevan thinks that people don’t have any idea that Rose Pak was the first Chinese American reporter at the San Francisco Chronicle? I think they do and I’m not sure how this bears on the CS. (You know, some people want to take steps to improve the 30 Stockton corridor like right now, instead of after a decade of delays and cost overruns. Is that racist to want to improve things now? How is it that “transit justice” can only be satisfied by the current horrible, horribly expensive, Bridge-to-Nowhere Central Subway scheme? I’m baffled.)

Bevan says that “90% of the Central Subway will be paid by the federal government?” This seems impossible to me. Is this in writing? Does it include past and future overruns?

Bevan says that the CS has to come before any other major project, such as putting rails in on Geary. But he doesn’t say why.

Bevan says that we would lose in excess of $100,000,000 if we pull the plug now. I thought it was closer to $200,000,000 myself but of course bad transit decisions cost money. The question is what should we do at this point. (I think we’d all be better off taking a new tack by simply paying back the Feds.)

I don’t know, if anybody wants to go line-by-line on today’s updated critique from Save MUNI, be my guest. (To be honest, I don’t know how anybody can defend the station placement decisions, the car-length decision, the let’s stop at southern Chinatown decision, among others. The CS is a politics-first, transit-last project, IMO.

(And oh, BTW, there’s a pool going on right now around town about what position Bevan will be appointed to and when. FYI.)

O.K, enjoy, after the jump

(more…)

Former SF Weekly Editor John Mecklin’s Requium for Alt-Weekly Trade Org – “Long Live the Alt-Weekly!”

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Via Ron Russell’s Bay Area Observer comes word of this post from John Mecklin that’s been getting attention today.

The SF Weekly‘s Editor from 1997 to 2005 starts off with news of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies changing its name to the Association of Alternative Newsmedia and then he offers thoughts.

Thusly:

“Much of what had been staples in the bag of alt-weekly editorial tricks — event listings, music coverage, restaurant reviewing, smart-aleck attitude, general (though not universal) leftyism — was also undermined, coopted, replicated, done better or made obsolete by the rise of a host of online competitors, from the lightly staffed city observer sites (SFist, Gothamist, etc.) to Yelp to Gawker and on and on and on. In the lingo of the trade, the alt-weekly was unbundled, disaggregated, knee-capped by the kind of entrepreneurial twentysomethings the founders of many an alt-weekly had been, once upon a time, back in the historical mists of the 1970s.”

Yep, pretty much.

Read the whole thing, if you want.

Victory Declared: The Bay Citizen Becomes “The First Start-Up News Website to Organize,” Per Pacific Media Workers Guild

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

From the SF Bay Area Observer comes the news that journalists at The Bay Citizen will affiliate with the Pacific Media Workers Guild, Local 39521 of The Newspaper Guild-Communications Workers of America.

Perhaps things aren’t all locked down yet, but the MWG was confident enough to issue a press release this AM, so that’s good enough for me.

All the deets, below.

“Bay Citizen becomes first start-up news website to organize. New model in journalism leads way in workplace democracy

20 Jul 2011

Media Workers Guild

PRESS RELEASE

The Bay Citizen Becomes First Start-Up News Website to Unionize

New model in journalism leads way in workplace democracy

San Francisco, July 20, 2011 – Journalists at the nonprofit news website The Bay Citizen have voted to affiliate with the Pacific Media Workers Guild, Local 39521 of The Newspaper Guild-Communications Workers of America.

“We believe The Bay Citizen, as one of the pioneering exponents of new civic journalism, should also be a leading example in the area of workplace democracy,” The Bay Citizen’s editorial staff wrote in a letter to TBC President and CEO Lisa Frazier ahead of filing cards with the National Labor Relations Board.

The majority of the organization’s editorial staff signed union cards seeking to be represented by the Guild on May 26th, the one-year anniversary of The Bay Citizen’s launch. Voting was conducted June 27 at The Bay Citizen’s San Francisco headquarters and by mail-in ballot. NLRB officials counted the votes on Tuesday, July 12.

Two votes out of the 14 cast are being challenged. The remaining ballot count resulted in a 7-5 win to form the union. The two challenged votes have not been opened, however the Guild is certain that whether these two voters are included in the unit or not, the concluding tally will remain in favor of forming a unit. The Guild is asking the NLRB to count all votes cast.

Bernie Lunzer, international president of The Newspaper Guild in Washington, D.C., said the result marks an historic advance for media workers, as traditional newsrooms shrink and the industry struggles to find new models to stay competitive in the online era.

“The future of quality journalism depends on reporters and editors shaping the vision of innovative new media organizations. By voting to be represented by the Guild, employees at The Bay Citizen have given themselves this voice,” Lunzer said.

Support came from unionized journalists at The New York Times and KGO radio, which have agreements to obtain local news content from The Bay Citizen.

“For more than a year, journalists from The Bay Citizen have provided important coverage for the pages and website of The New York Times, and these talented journalists are an asset to the Guild at an important time, ” wrote Grant Glickson, New York Times Staff Assistant and Unit Chairperson.

Bay Citizen staff members are committed to the success of the organization and expect their new Guild unit to work in partnership with management to create a contract appropriate for their nonprofit startup.

The Bay Citizen was founded in 2010 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization dedicated to fact-based, independent reporting on civic and community issues in the San Francisco Bay Area. Its newsroom of award-winning journalists covers Bay Area civic and cultural news topics that are under-reported today. TBC also partners widely with independent media organizations and produces the Bay Area pages of the The New York Times.

The Bay Citizen unit joins one of the premier affiliates of TNG-CWA. Formed after a series of recent mergers, the San Francisco-based Pacific Media Workers Guild (known as the California Media Workers Guild until a name change in January) represents about 2,000 news workers, freelancers, court interpreters and union staffs throughout California and Hawaii. News units include the San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, Bay Area News Group-East Bay, Bay City News Service, Santa Rosa Press Democrat, Sacramento Bee, Fresno Bee, Modesto Bee, Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Hawaii Herald-Tribune and Maui News. The Guild also includes the California Federation of Interpreters, print shops and union staffs at AFSCME Local 3299, the ILWU and California Labor Federation.”

OMG, OMG, HuffPo SF is Here! HuffPost San Francisco Has Gone Live – Finally, a Huffington Post Just For Us

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

The long-anticipated Huffington Post San Francisco has just gone live.

See?

Click to expand

You’ve already met the crew – what do you think of the website?

Here are some noteworthy bits:

Consensus Pension Reform Plan* by Mayor Edwin M. Lee

A Progressive Decade in the Balance by former Supervisor Chris Daly

Bringing the Entrepreneurial Spirit Back to City Government by second-tier “Progressive** Independent” Mayoral Candidate Joanna Rees

No Time for Retreat on Homelessness by second-tier Mayoral Candidate Michela Alioto Pier

And here are a few bits from the RSS feed:

Why We Should Care Where Our Food Comes From* by District 10 Supervisor Malia Cohen

Episode 38 of Necessary Conversation: SF Pride

And there you have it.

*Wow, this is _so_ not written by the purported author.

**Cough

Counting Down: The New Huffington Post San Francisco Website is Almost Upon Us – Meet the Crew

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

[Oh, here it is - they've just gone live.]

Boy, the amount of anti-Huffington Post chatter in Bay Area media circles seems to have increased lately, you noticed that?

Mmmm, perhaps it’s due to the imminent launch of the well-financed Huffington Post San Francisco website?

Could be.

Let’s meet the crew at ground control down in the FiDi/Union Square area.

Blog Editor Clare Richardson:

Via Huffington Post San Francisco 

Associate Editor Robin Wilkey and Assistant Editor Aaron Sankin:

Via Huffington Post San Francisco 

And here’s Editor Carly Schwartz with a thumbs up. Looks like they are go for launch.

Via Huffington Post San Francisco 

10, 9, 8…

OMG, OMG, “Huffington Post San Francisco” is Almost Here! That’s Right, HuffPo SF Launches July 2011

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

[UPDATE: Appears as if it will launch July 13th, 2011.]

You know, the debut of Huffington Post San Francisco could have happened all the way back in aught-eight, but it didn’t.

No matter, it’s coming soon, as you can see on the Twitter:

Let’s plan for it to go live on July 10th or so.

If you want to get a sneak peek of what it will look like, substitute San Francisco for Chicago here and then you won’t be too far off.

(Will the Bay Area Media Worker’s Guild approve? Likely not. Oh well.)

This is going to be a big deal - the HPSF website is going to get monster traffic.

This launch is going to be an 8.0 on the Bay Area Website Richter scale.

You’ve been warned…

Anyway, Bon courage, HuffPo SF!

Last Night’s One-Year Anniversary Party for The Bay Citizen a Huge Success, As Far As I Know

Thursday, May 19th, 2011

[Oh, here we go, it's the Citizen of Tomorrow Awards, just posted.]

Now, the problem I had last night was being too ambitious, thinking I could drop by the First Birthday Celebration of The Bay Citizen and then hustle it uphill to the Specfic Whites neighborhood by nine-ish, thinking that this year’s party would be like last year’s, you know, the one they had in the Twitterloin. That one was off the hook.

Anyway, here it is at the stated 8:00 PM starting time. (A dozen people to park your car, but only one to check you into the place.)

(Why, yes, Terra _is_ 200 feet away from a bridge and two miles away from a tunnel – why do you ask?)

And here are your food trucks. (Everything seems to taste better when it’s from a truck, non?)

Click to expand

I guess things got going later in the evening. But I’ll tell you, if you skipped the first hour of last year’s soiree, which was off the hook, you would have missed a lot.

The good thing is that The Bay Citizen produced, as designed, a lot of good stuff the past year.

Anyway, Bon Anniversaire, The Bay Citizen.

Attention Pit Bull Lovers: “Super-Athletic, Well-Trained Pup Needs a Home ASAP,” Else She’ll Be “Put Down”

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

A 45-pound “pup,” huh?

Click to expand

And since we’re on the subject, uh 7×7 Magazine, and this is the kind of comment that got me banned, for life, from being able to comment at SF Appeal.com, that non-blog, never call it a blog, oh no, not that I ever did, run by “nice” non-blogger Eve Batey, but, 7×7 Magazine, you are not qualified to debunk myths.* ‘Cause myth-debunkers get held to a higher standard, right?

So stuff like this:

“Are Pit Bulls more likely to bite?  No.  According to the American Temperament Test Society, the three breeds most likely to bite were Dachshunds, Chihuahuas and Jack Russell Terriers, while Pitts and Rottweilers finished in the bottom half of the list.”

Well, that just doesn’t fly.** I’m not doubting the “according to” part, but you’re missing the entire point, 7×7.

Anyway, leave us depart the subject of “St. Francis” Terriers before I extend my stay in the metaphorical doghouse.

Woof woof.

*Why not stick with San Francisco’s Best Burger and Top Fifty Bay Area Burritos and the like, you know, your core competency?

**They Bite Horses, Don’t They?