Wednesday, July 08, 2009

My journalism gold star of the week

As weird as it may sound to some, I have a serious passion for media. It goes back as far as I can remember.

It probably started as a wee lad, when my parents used a massive TV as my primary babysitter starting around the age of 10 or so. But there's something about being as close to the source of news as possible that is genuinely thrilling for me.

Being at the L.A. Times as news of Michael Jackson's death broke was huge. I have the distinction of writing the first post for the Times confirming that he was indeed dead (it paid to be the one music writer in the building at the time when everyone else was out on various assignments). It was a minor piece in the grand scheme of things, but it was the first official confirmation of the story (TMZ can suck it).

Yesterday, an old friend posted a link on Facebook regarding a band (Sons of Maxwell, pictured above) that was taking United Airlines to task for thrashing their very expensive Taylor guitar. Since I work right next to the Travel department (and very cool Travel writer Chris Reynolds), I forwarded the link to Chris in case he could use it.

Chris (a guitarist himself) ran with the lead, calling UA for details. When all was said and done, he came up with this story.

Since then, the piece has generated a ton of clicks, and was even picked up by the Huffington Post, where it's gathering even more steam.

So now the piece is a huge win for the Times, and page views are going through the roof.

I'm not the best at blowing my own horn, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I was particularly pleased with myself right now. I feel like a real journalist or something.

And that's how I earned my journalism gold star of the week.