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November 14, 2005

Coincidentally, I keep by my side at all times a photo of Warren St. John. He's dreamy.

Well, gosh. From a Gelf Magazine interview with New York Times Styles reporter Warren St. John:

GM: Lately, the Times has taken a lot of flak about bogus trend reporting. Whatís your reaction to that? Do you think any of your articles would fall into that category?
WSJ: I definitely hope not. I keep by my side at all times the GQ article that Daniel Radosh wrote back in 1998 called the Trendspotting Generation. Itís a great dissection of trend stories. I personally pride myself on never—if I can help it—never writing a story I canít back up. Iím very skeptical of trend stories when I read them. Iím even more skeptical of wading into a trend story and coming up with the data I need to satisfy myself that something is happening. Sometimes I think the flaw of a lot of trend stories is simply overstating what they found. Sometimes people can find things that are interesting that arenít really trends. And thatís OK. It doesnít have to be a trend to be interesting to write about. It might be less significant and warrant A1 play less. But sometimes it just a question of dialing back the significance of what youíre saying your findings mean.


Posted by Daniel Radosh

Comments

I thought St. John was guilty of a puffed-up piece of trend reporting last year about universities changing their 'fight songs' to something more politically palatable.

Sort of fell flat to me. But he is a cutie, no?

i'm not sure what this means, but tonight's Daily Show just had a faux "Trendspotting" segment.

Sure, it seems like a fantastic shout-out, but St. John didn't even mention the time his life was saved when his personal copy of Trendspotting Generation stopped a bullet that was headed for his heart. Sheesh.

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