Churnalism and Its Discontents

My first job out of college was writing a travel column for an American newspaper as I backpacked through Southeast Asia, China, and Korea. I took my assignment seriously and wanted to write once a week, taking time to edit each piece.  But the newspaper had a different plan for me. When a week passed after my first entry and I told my editor I was still editing my second, he patiently advised, “Olivia, this is a blog. We would rather you write less well and more often.” I was reminded of a shrill late-night television commercial for used cars or cheap electronics — “How do we do it? Volume, volume, volume!”

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