Ask the Editor

Why didn’t The Tribune talk to Jackson Browne?

February 7, 2013 

Editor’s note: Today, we bring back Ask the Editor as a regular feature in Opinion. The column by Executive Editor Sandra Duerr will run biweekly.

Q: I heard Jackson Browne criticize The Tribune during Monday night’s concert at Cal Poly for not contacting him regarding The Trib’s Sunday front-page story about his role in the Diablo Canyon anti-nuke protests. Shouldn’t his input have been included?

A: We would have loved to include comments from Browne, but multiple requests by reporter Patrick S. Pemberton to interview him were turned down. Pemberton first contacted the firm that handles Browne’s publicity on Dec. 31, asking to interview him for a preview story in Ticket. A few days later, we discovered the show was sold out. Since we don’t normally preview sold-out shows, Pemberton said, “I decided to pursue a different angle, which we thought many locals wouldn’t know about — Browne’s arrest here during a landmark nuclear protest in 1981. On Jan. 15, Jan. 27 and Jan. 28, I contacted his publicist again, informing them about our plans to pursue a different angle and asking again if we could interview Browne. Iwas told he would not be available due to his busy schedule.”

So Pemberton wrote the story without Browne, interviewing local residents and using Browne’s previous comments, including one from 1989, in which he told the Associated Press, “I have more interests now.” Pemberton also included the sentence, “Browne, now 64, was not available to comment for this story despite several attempts to reach him.”

If Browne — or his publicist — is reading, the invitation’s open; we’d be happy to publish your comments in Opinion.

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Q. Why can’t I find reports on my favorite high school sports teams in The Tribune when they played the night before?

A. On games that The Tribune doesn’t cover in person with a reporter, it is the responsibility of the head coach to report game results to the sports department by phone (preferred method), email or fax as soon as possible, according to Sports Editor Ashley Conklin. It is fine to have an assistant coach or designated statistician with the school team report the results, but it must be someone connected to the team other than a parent.

The Tribune will not accept game reports from high school athletes; the news must be reported by an adult. The Tribune sports department can be reached at 805-781-7916, by email at sports@the tribunenews.com   or by fax at 805-781-7979. The deadline to report results to The Tribune is 9 p.m. on games that start before 5:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. for games that start after 5:30 p.m.

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Do you have a question about the newspaper, our website or our coverage? If so, please write me c/o The Tribune, P.O. Box 112, San Luis Obispo, CA 93406-0112, or email me at sduerr@thetribunenews.com. Follow me on Twitter @SandraDuerr.

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