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Charlie Sykes: Sykes Writes

"It Isn't Very Newsworthy"

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Touchy. Touchy. Mayor Tom Barrett hilariously blames the credit downgrade of his own city on.. Scott Walker. Meanwhile, the Journal Sentinel loudly proclaims: Nothing to see. A 'slight downgrade".... Lest you think the newspaper is not in a completely defensive mode, here is an email from the editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel pooh-poohing the story about the City of Milwaukee's downgrade last week and the paper's failure to report it until today. He seems a bit unhappy that I talked about it this morning. BTW. Here is the Tribune/Reuters link.


Sent: 4/16/2012 .   

Subj: Re: Milwaukee Bond Rating

Dear XXX:  

Actually, it isn't very newsworthy.  I am told that a Milwaukee  entertainer -- not my definition, but his bosses who say his show is entertainment and not news and information -- said it was an important "news"  story that all local news outlets missed. We don't track what all the entertainers say on the radio, but here is what we know about Moody's rating.   The story was not in the Chicago Tribune newspaper as I am told the entertainer said it was on his show. It was a Reuters wire brief that automatically rolled through the Tribune's wire service news on its web site   last week.   The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel does not subscribe to the Reuters news service.    

Neither AP or Bloomberg -- our two business wire services -- reported the story. Because of the complaints we received about the "missed story" that was   in the Tribune, we assigned a reporter to find out what happened.  It's   highly unusual for Bloomberg to miss a story of ANY importance at all to investors.

Turns out Bloomberg decided the Moody's move was so slight it would have   no impact on interest rates and wasn't worth a reporter's time. AP did the same. Standard & Poors held their rate steady and little-to-no impact on interest rates is expected.

Here is what we posted on our web site.


Marty  Kaiser


Flashback... notice that it WAS considered newsworthy when the US credit rating was downgraded one notch last year: 


Standard & Poor’s announced Friday night that it has downgraded the U.S. credit rating for the first time, dealing a symbolic blow to the world’s economic superpower in what was a sharply worded critique of the American political system.

(Notice that the word "slight" was not used.)



As for kaiser's gibe that I am merely an "entertainer"... I wear it as a badge of honor:



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