• News Ticker alerts

In its "People" feature on page A-2 today (June 23), the Union-Tribune blue-penciled the name of its owner from a gossip item. The paper was reporting on La-La Land celebrities playing unlicensed poker games in upscale Beverly Hills hotels. Lawsuits have been filed against those allegedly involved in the games. Here's the sentence from the Associated Press: "Also being sued is billionaire businessman Alec Gores, who along with his brother, attempted to buy Miramax Films last year." The brother is Tom Gores, whose Platinum Equity owns the Union-Tribune. For the item, the U-T edited out the words "who along with his brother."

Alec and Tom, both billionaires, have an interesting relationship — now cozy. In 2008, the Los Angeles media reported extensively on an alleged love affair between Tom and Alec's then-wife.The information came out in the government's trial against private eye Anthony Pellicano. The ex-wife testified in court on the matter. But soon, Tom and Alec made up and they have done business together. They did bid unsuccessfully for Miramax Films, but were successful recently in their joint purchase of Alliance Entertainment.

(Thanks to Matt Potter for checking the paper edition of the U-T to read me the edited version, which I couldn't find online.)

  • News Ticker alerts


Visduh June 23, 2011 @ 3:59 p.m.

It is a wonder that the U-T printed it at all.


Don Bauder June 23, 2011 @ 5:26 p.m.

Yes, there is lots of other titillating L.A. gossip -- every day -- that could have gone in that space. Best, Don Bauder


Submariner June 23, 2011 @ 9:03 p.m.

It's no surprise that this is the only kind of editing — the wrong kind, of course — going on at the U-T (Uncaught Typos) these days.


Don Bauder June 24, 2011 @ 7:50 a.m.

Definitely, one of the U-T's major problems is bad (or no) editing. It was a deliberate decision. In chopping heads, the U-T essentially wiped out the copy desk and said that reporters would have to get their copy correct the first time. Then the newspaper, as a further economic measure, went out and hired very young, inexperienced reporters. The result is the plethora of grammatical errors and typos every day. Best, Don Bauder


Visduh June 24, 2011 @ 8:31 p.m.

Don, what you describe is just about the same thing Harte-Hanks was doing with some of its San Diego area weeklies back in the 70's. "Reporters" who could not spell (or type for that matter) posted stories that were massively misspelled, un-punctuated, and grammatically disastrous. Nobody edited the work, or if someone did, he/she should have been shot. That's what the paper printed for all the world to see. Just some hick-town style efforts that failed almost immediately. H-H was trying to take on Copley and set up something to rival the Tribune and the Union. Their business plan was a total flop, and those amateurish weeklies they started didn't help.

Then here in Vista we had our own hometown paper, the Vista Press, with a small paid circulation. It was sold to some chain of papers which installed a series of editors who could neither edit nor report, and then put out a weekend "oldpaper" filled with stories that were days out of date. It had its share of misspellings and grammar errors too. The VP went away for good about 15 years ago.

Will the U-T suffer the same fate for the same reasons? Could be.


Don Bauder June 25, 2011 @ 7:45 a.m.

Good points, but remember that Harte-Hanks was taking on COMPETITION. The U-T does have competition, both online and in print, but it and its predecessors have had the solid market position for well over a century. The print editions of the U-T and other metro dailies have another generation or at most two to survive. But the online editions will have a good market share. Bad grammar and annoying typos, along with sloppy reporting of vapid stories, can drive out a publication that starts with a weak market share, but won't kill numero uno for a long time. Best, Don Bauder


SurfPuppy619 June 23, 2011 @ 10:28 p.m.

That is an interesting case. The guy who lost all the money-and was appearantly an AWFUL poker player- ran a hedge fund that in reality was a ponzi scheme, and Toby McGuire alone took him for over $300K according to new sources. Who would have guessed!

I have to laugh that these high flying big buck celebs are caught up in this scam. Of course you won't see any criminal charges filed against these "connected" celebs! Two sets of laws in America today-those for the connected few and those for everyone else-the rest of US.


Don Bauder June 24, 2011 @ 7:55 a.m.

You are correct on that: the wealthy and well-connected can get away with almost anything. Prosecutors and regulators concentrate on getting the little guys who don't have the money to hire expensive attorneys. If you're going to steal, steal big. Best, Don Bauder


Twister June 24, 2011 @ 1:40 a.m.

The laws are to protect them from us (and escape responsibility, of course).


Don Bauder June 24, 2011 @ 7:58 a.m.

That's been one of my themes for years. In the 1930s, for just one example, the government set up the Securities and Exchange Commission to protect the public from Wall Street predators. In time, the agency's mission became protecting Wall Street predators from the investing public. Best, Don Bauder


Twister June 24, 2011 @ 8:59 p.m.

Becuz nobudy givez uh dam.

RE:By Visduh 8:31 p.m., Jun 24, 2011


Don Bauder June 25, 2011 @ 7:49 a.m.

You are saying that the younger generations -- actually, the most desirable markets for advertisers -- don't give a damn about grammar and aren't impressed by good writing. I am afraid you may be right. Maybe the U-T is counting on that strategy: save money by not fusspotting the grammar and composition, because the young readers don't give a hoot anyway. Best, Don Bauder


Twister June 24, 2011 @ 9:03 p.m.

All law exists to protect the wealthy from the serfs--that's how it got started. Maybe a few crumbs incidentally can be used by US, but if the SCOUTUS decision in the WalMart case is any example, the noose is tightening.

Re: By SurfPuppy619 10:28 p.m., Jun 23, 2011


Don Bauder June 25, 2011 @ 7:51 a.m.

I wouldn't say "all" laws, but generally speaking, you are correct. The current Supreme Court really isn't "conservative" as such. It is merely in the pocket of business interests. Best, Don Bauder


Twister June 24, 2011 @ 9:13 p.m.

You can still get sucked up, but on balance, it’s probably safer to stay small and hidden.

The Überhucksters are moving up the food chain, largely because they’ve run low on small fish, but also, since they are getting bigger, so must their prey. The value for the least of us is that we’re too small to bother with (except for the big filter-feeders line AT&T, Verizon, and the bottom-feeder wannabees in training who can serve as poster-boys). Madoff would never have gone to jail had he not bitten some of the biggest sharks in the pond.


Don Bauder June 25, 2011 @ 7:54 a.m.

Biting the biggest sharks will get you in trouble, while feasting on the helpless ones generally will not. Agreed. But I don't think that applies to Madoff. He confessed his sins to his sons, who went to the authorities immediately. They HAD to do something, and did. Best, Don Bauder


Twister June 24, 2011 @ 9:28 p.m.

Check this out: http://www.kansascity.com/2011/06/22/2967677/toby-maguire-and-others-sued-over.html

Re: By Visduh 8:31 p.m., Jun 24, 2011

PS: As a fellow computer-Luddite, I suppose I am the only one having trouble with the Reader site, as no one else comments or offers suggestions. I observe that, whilst the posting numbers have been removed, the same problems exist with citing the post relevant to your comment; please note this as an example of how I am circumventing the problem. However, be it known that it has recently become impossible for me to use Internet Explorer or Google on the Reader site. Perhaps my computer has been compromised? But why? And why the Reader?

I must add that I do appreciate the character-shift problem having been solved.


Don Bauder June 25, 2011 @ 7:56 a.m.

All I can do is repeat what I have said before: the Reader is working on the problems. Best, Don Bauder


HellcatCopley June 25, 2011 @ 7:27 a.m.

What a relief to know that the UT continues the Copley traditions! Thou shalt not make the owners blush.


Don Bauder June 25, 2011 @ 7:57 a.m.

Another way to say it: thou shalt not make the owners blush or mad. Best, Don Bauder


gekko June 26, 2011 @ 12:48 p.m.

Don, Remember when David Copley's name was kept out of the stories during the Andrew Cunnanan saga? Some things never change.


SurfPuppy619 June 26, 2011 @ 1:24 p.m.

I dont recall who broke Cunnanan being at David Copley parties, it was either the UT or the Reader-one of the two, but that was put out in public by someone.


Don Bauder June 26, 2011 @ 2:38 p.m.

I don't know who broke that aspect of the Andrew Cunanan story, but my guess is that it was Matt Potter of the Reader. Best, Don Bauder


Don Bauder June 26, 2011 @ 2:35 p.m.

Yes, David's name didn't come up during that period, with at least one exception: he was interviewed, with lawyer Hal Fuson by his side, for a U-T story on the topic. Someone whose name escapes me wrote a book on that saga. I was interviewed, as was Kelly Thornton, one of the U-T's all-time great reporters. She had followed the whole story. I had really had nothing to do with it; I suppose the author called me because somebody said I couldn't keep my mouth shut. My quote was innocuous, really, but Kelly's was fairly long and damning. The book came out the day before I was leaving for Chicago to see my favorite opera, Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg, and one of my favorite symphonies, Mahler's Third. I had no idea if I would have a job when I returned from Chicago. Kelly, of course, was even more worried. But neither one of us heard one word -- at least, that's what Kelly told me at the time. Best, Don Bauder


gekko June 26, 2011 @ 4:22 p.m.

Don, Were you able to come up with more names regarding the latest layoffs at the U-T?


Don Bauder June 27, 2011 @ 6:16 a.m.

I haven't come up with any names beyond those already printed. I have lines out. Best, Don Bauder


Don Bauder June 27, 2011 @ 6:17 a.m.

An exclamation point sums up the Cunanan saga. Best, Don Bauder


Sign in to comment

Win a $25 Gift Card to
The Broken Yolk Cafe

Join our newsletter list

Each newsletter subscription means another chance to win!