OLD Media Moves

Family first over business journalism

February 26, 2012

Posted by Chris Roush

Katherine Rosman, a technology reporter for The Wall Street Journal, writes about why she is stopping writing the paper’s Checks & Balances about family personal finance after one year.

Rosman writes, “But it also has been a source of tension. As a writer, I know well that the only way to successfully put these columns together is by reflecting my feelings and Joe’s without any whitewashing. Yet as a wife, I know well that a marriage is inherently a trust that does not always benefit from having its private dynamics laid bare before seven million readers.

“To fulfill my responsibilities both to my editor and to my husband, I looked for everyday issues that represented my and Joe’s varying views, that I felt comfortable expounding upon with raw honesty and that might resonate with this column’s large and diverse readership. This tack produced some of the most popular pieces: Joe’s opposition to my Starbucks habit, why I didn’t change my last name when we married, and how Twitter and email have interfered with the rhythms of the home.

“However, coming up with a column idea every two weeks that serves its many masters became a greater and greater challenge. When I was feeling protective of our privacy, I would write more lifestyle-focused pieces: the importance to a marriage of having close friends, for instance, or how different tastes in food can affect family dinner.

“But my job was to write about money, and doing so began to feel overly invasive, especially to Joe. When he told me late last fall that he wanted his life to be just his, I told my editor that I was going to stop at the column’s one-year anniversary.”

Read more here.

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