Saturday, March 4, 2023

Works in progress: Charlie Meyerson

     My pal Charlie Meyerson has been bringing Chicago the news for a long time — the last two decades in the 20th century, nearly, at WXRT and WNUA, followed by 11 years at the (turn, spit) Tribune before returning to radio for award-winning tours at WGN and FM News.
     In recent years, he's been behind Chicago Public Square, a fine aggregator site and valued supporter of this blog.
     He wrote to me, taking issue with something our fellow email columnist, Eric Zorn, said in this space last week, and I invited him to be this week’s “Works in Progress” guest blogger.
     I should add, given our declining media landscape, it's fun to facilitate a good old- fashioned Media Spat. Though if Eric wants to come raging out of his corner and whack Charlie with a folding chair, he'll have to wait two weeks, as I've got Lane J. Lubell lined up for next Saturday, writing about the movies.
     Take it away, Charlie:

     With affection for both of you — to Neil, who was kind enough to call me an “old friend” five years ago this week as he re-posted one of my favorites to his blog; and to Eric, a fellow early adopter of email with whom I love playing music many Saturdays in Oak Park—I need to set the record straight on Eric’s assertion that, in 2003, he started “the Tribune’s first blog.”
Unless one is distinguishing between “the Tribune” and “”—and I wouldn’t—Daywatch, which I helped launch in 1999, was the paper’s first blog.

     I’ll happily cede Eric the title of “the Tribune’s first print columnist to have a blog,” but I joined the Trib in 1998 precisely as a champion of continually updated web logs — with which I’d been experimenting in the weeks before my hiring there. Given that the paper’s “breaking news team” was doing this in March 1999 and given that the word “blog” didn’t materialize until “April or May 1999,” Daywatch clearly counts as a blog before blog was a word.
     Anyway, what I did for more than a decade at the Trib is what I’ve been doing daily at Chicago Public Square since January 2017: Rounding up the work of talented reporters and columnists—including Zorn and Steinberg—in an award-winning independent news briefing posted to, yes, a blog and delivered by email to thousands of people who care about Chicago and the region.
     Plus, they get a weekly news quiz!
     And I’d be honored if you Steinberg fans were to join their ranks—free—by signing up here. (Although note that Square will be on hiatus until March 13.)
     Or you can let us take care of it just by tapping this link to send an email we’ve prepopulated for you.
     See you in your inbox.


  1. As a long-time Square subscriber--hi Charlie!--I no longer really remember starting daily news browsing any other way. Thanks for doing the dirty work getting it all together, Charlie.

  2. Thank you, Cate! An honor to follow you in this Saturday space Neil’s created.

  3. Love Public Square. I never found it hard to just put in the website on my i-pad so never subscribed but just did. I have followed Charlie for many years (I worked with his wife at my first job. Indeed I heard their "meet not so cute" story on my first day of work as a lawyer. I think their wedding cake depicted the event? (I actually knew someone else who met that way so may be mixing up the stories.

    1. True!

    2. I am so glad I remembered correctly. Your wife is the nicest person I ever worked with (probably the nicest person I have ever met). That place (which was I think the first firm she worked at also) was really really weird but in an endearing way. Annie is my "name de plume" for commenting, but I don't think she'd remember me by my real name anyway. But as a terrified summer associate, she won a real place in my heart by how kind she was!

    3. She shows me that same kindness (and tolerance) every day!

  4. The last few days I have not been able to read EGD on my PC. I get the message "This page isn't working. didn't send any data. ERR_EMPTY_RESPONSE".

    1. It seems to be working fine. Try rebooting your systems.

    2. I did that and it still won't let me connect unless I turn off my VPN. Why is that I wonder.


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