Media Moves

WSJ editor Murray to staff: Your work has been extraordinary

March 22, 2020

Posted by Chris Roush

Wall Street Journal editor in chief Matt Murray sent the following to the staff on Friday afternoon:

Dear All:

As we come to the end of the first full week with virtually the whole organization working from home, I hope all of you are doing well and taking care of yourselves and your loved ones. Our thoughts are with those of you still under quarantine. They are also with our colleagues in China, who have endured another tough week—while continuing to cover this important story. They inspire us with their fortitude and fantastic journalism.

Your work on the biggest global story in many years continues to be extraordinary, under what I know are difficult circumstances. I am not objective about these things, but I believe we are right now the best news organization in the world. The coverage is rich, informed, smart, exclusive, factual without being hysterical, and incredibly varied across markets, business, global coverage, sports, features, US news, economics, politics, professional areas, health and investigations. The website is constantly informative, the papers are snapshots of history, the podcast keeps charting new highs and we are finding new ways to connect with readers, viewers and listeners every day. I know of no other newsroom  that could cover so many facets of this story with such depth and insight. Thank you all.

Looking to the weeks ahead, its is imperative that each of us takes care of ourselves and that we all manage our time. Every manager has been asked to work directly with their team to understand their needs and help organize their time. I deeply appreciate the adrenaline we all feel on a big story, and the passion you are bringing to our mission of providing needed facts and news to readers. I’m confident that will continue, given the significance of this story. At the same time, many of us have very real logistical and other challenges that require us to forge new ways of working. It is really important to pace ourselves and maintain a work-life balance.

If you have concerns or questions on these or any other issues, please raise them with your boss or a senior editor. On many tech, logistical and personnel issues, Kate Ortega and Karen Pensiero are standing by to help, as are our colleagues across Dow Jones.

Finally, it is worth noting that readers, viewers and listeners are turning to us like never before—both subscribers and new customers, in every metric. We’ve heard from many this week and I thought I’d share a few comments:

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First may I say what a joy it is to read your paper every day. It is always interesting, informative and educational. In these strange times we also find it oddly comforting. My husband and I live in rural western Colorado and our print edition arrives in the mail on the right day, every day. Being newspaper junkies who read the WSJ, the Denver Post, the Grand Junction Sentinel and the Montrose Press daily, we definitely prefer an actual paper—one that rustles in our hands and that we can cut an article out of if we want. Our together time each afternoon is spent in our sun room gazing at the San Juan Mountains and sharing the WSJ. Kudos to your entire team, especially in these very challenging times.

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Just wanted to drop you and your staff a line and tell you how much I appreciate Wall Street Journal’s devotion to clear unbiased reporting. I pay for this subscription, to help  provide me with insight to business news that is objective and current. The WSJ delivers  on this and more. With the digital stuff be a very big plus.. love the website and the access to stock information…

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You and your journalists are doing a superb job. Stay safe!

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I can not thank you enough for your calm/concise and very informative e-mail news summaries, and especially now, so reassuring that thoughtful journalism (without, or with a minimum of editorializing) is still available. Thank you very much indeed, on all counts, sincerely appreciate your truly professional communications.

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Hi. I’ve been getting The Wall Street Journal for 30 years, and I just wanted to say THANK YOU VERY MUCH for this wonderful supplement you put in for how to navigate the coronavirus. Absolutely fantastic! Hopefully you can get a hold of people on TV so that they can read this thing and can get educated on it instead of all this fear. Thank you so much.

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Thank you for the excellent article, “America Needed Tests, The Government Failed.” It answered many of the questions I had been asking since the coronavirus overwhelmed the airwaves with sound bites of “information” devoid of context. On topics such as this, TV news fuels fever and does little to help prevent it.

You folks have once again provided a great service for people who really want to know what’s going on and are willing to take the time to understand the challenge.

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I cannot tell you how important the WSJ has become to me and a group of retired CEO’s as we seek the truth in reporting which is difficult to find in these times when politics overrules the truth. I continue to value the WSJ as that one place where I can read and evaluate the story without worrying about the basic factual support for the story.

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For my part, I am already climbing the walls and looking forward to seeing you in person soon. Have a restful weekend.

Matt

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