Why Professor Greenslade is wrong to pass the ammunition

Nothing before has stirred the cardigan-wearing classes like Professor Greenslade’s ridiculous assertion that ‘most’subs could easily be dispensed with. At the time of writing there were over 80 comments on the story on this website, with another 60-plus following his slightly revised argument on his own blog.

The plain fact is that he is wrong on so many levels that his opinion almost defies rebuttal. Nothing, not a heading nor a one-par funny, should ever appear in print without someone, somewhere, checking it for legality and grammatical or factual errors – not even a greengrocer’s window.

However bright this new generation of reporters might be – and those of us at the coalface know all too well that standards are declining, not improving – mistakes will always happen. Even the cleverest, most experienced writers are often blind to their own errors.

This blog goes straight to screen; it is unchecked. And I hate it. I know that however hard I look, however many times I read and re-read, there is always a chance that a grammatical gremlin might creep in. But up with that I must put.

The real danger of Professor Greenslade’s deranged, delusionary rantings, as identified by many of those who have left comments, is that he is simply passing the ammunition to know-nothing newspaper bosses who will take his misguided meanderings as legitimisation of their dividend-chasing agenda.

Surely, they will ask, if a man as distinguished as the Prof thinks we can do without subs, why aren’t we embracing his Brave New World? And bang goes another desk of jobs in a small provincial office. And that’s very, very, sad.

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