Courier-Journal Public Editor Pam Platt announced in her regular Sunday column that the newspaper is eliminating her position, replacing the editor who interacts with readers about their concerns over news coverage with a hotline and e-mail address. Platt will fill a vacancy on the newspaper’s editorial board.
The C-J — now owned by Gannett Co. — was the first newspaper in the country to have an ombudsman, a position that, for a time, was thought to be integral to news organizations. The ombudsman was to be the watchdog of the newsroom, and would often criticize stories in the paper and the editorial decisions that led to them, although Platt rarely functioned this way of late.
The C-J falls in line with several major American papers that have eliminated these positions recently, including The Baltimore Sun and The Minneapolis Star-Tribune.