Battling Editor: The Albany Years

Battling Editor: The Albany Years


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Recounts the transformation of two daily newspapers in the face of economic downturns and sweeping technological change.

In 1978, Harry Rosenfeld left the Washington Post, where he oversaw the paper’s standard-setting coverage of Watergate, to take charge of two daily papers under co-ownership in Albany, New York: the morning Times Union and the evening Knickerbocker News. It was a particularly challenging moment in newspaper history. While new technologies were reducing labor costs on the production side and providing ever more sophisticated tools for journalists to practice their craft, those very same technologies would soon turn a comparatively short-lived boom into a grave threat, as ever more digitally distracted readers turned to sources other than print and other legacy media for their news. Between these boundaries, Rosenfeld set about to do his work.

Picking up where his previous memoir, From Kristallnacht to Watergate, left off, Battling Editor tells the story of how Rosenfeld and his colleagues transformed two daily publications into alert and aggressive newspapers even in times of economic downturn. Bringing the investigative habits he had honed in his years at the New York Herald Tribune and the Washington Post, Rosenfeld’s objective was to tell the fully rounded stories of the region’s cities, suburbs, and rural towns, with awareness of both their achievements and their shortcomings. Furthermore, the misuse of power, whenever it happened, whether in city hall or the state capitol, in courtrooms or prisons, or in hospitals, corporations, community organizations, was to be exposed, and those accountable were to be held responsible.

More importantly, however, Rosenfeld’s account is enlisted in the growing call to arms for all who cover the news and all who consume it. Written at a time when the credibility of news organizations is under attack by those at the highest levels of government, Battling Editor is a full-throated defense of fact-based journalism and hard-hitting reporting at the local as well as national level.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781438473758
Publisher: State University of New York Press
Publication date: 01/01/2019
Pages: 274
Sales rank: 544,826
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Harry Rosenfeld’s award-winning book, From Kristallnacht to Watergate: Memoirs of a Newspaperman, was praised by Tom Brokaw as “a great American story … the inspiring saga of Harry Rosenfeld, arriving as a refugee and rising to the inner circle of journalists who uncovered the greatest scandal in the history of the Presidency.” Rosenfeld lives in Albany, New York, where he is Editor-at-Large and a consultant at the Times Union, and also a member of the newspaper’s editorial board.

Table of Contents


1. Getting Started

2. Settling In

3. Legal Confrontations

4. Synergy of the Cutting Edge

5. The Copious In-Basket

6. New York’s Unalike Governors

7. The Hunt for Elusive Truth

8. Ends of Life

9. Standing Up to City Hall

10. Scandal and Methodology

photo gallery one

11. Medical Examinations

12. Heavyweight Advice

13. Innards of the Craft

14. Courts v. the Press

15. Unsettling Political Cartoons

16. East Coast, West Coast Editor

17. Finding Bits of LA in Albany

18. Momentous Events

19. Changes and Challenges

20. New Publisher, New Era

photo gallery two

21. The Irrepressible Conflict

22. Deep Cuts, Hard Times

23. The Inevitable Ax

24. Milestones and a New Role

25. The Homestretch

26. Poignancy of the Finale

27. Travels in a Restless World

28. A Book Takes Shape


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