Monday, November 12, 2007

Critic slapped

Tim Page, the Pulitzer Prize-winning music critic of The Washington Post, has been subjected to "disciplinary action" – placed on leave, apparently – after firing off an intemperate (albeit dead-on-target) response to an e-mail from the "media consultant" of ex-mayor, now DC Councilman Marion Barry:

Page already was due to take a sabbatical from the paper to teach next semester at the University of Southern California. Anne Midgette, now at The New York Times, will join the Post on Jan. 1 as interim classical music critic. (Still interim? Stay tuned.)

Bending my self-imposed rule against public comment about life in daily journalism, I’ll observe that newspapers increasingly compartmentalize expressions of opinion. Critics venture outside their designated enclosures – or even too close to the borders of their boxes – at their peril. (Page broke out of the box completely, although not in print, and has apologized for doing so.)

Ionarts blogger Charles T. Downey comments: