Public Editor

Readers' thoughts about The Star and KansasCity.com

‘Buzzing’ no longer

11/12/2013 7:20 PM

11/12/2013 7:20 PM

An emailer posed a question I’ve heard only a scant few times recently:

“I have noticed over the past couple of months that the Sunday paper no longer carries The Buzz. It was always entertaining to read that column especially when our elected officials are providing so much raw material for comment. Is it gone for good or might we look forward to its return?”

He’s correct. The last regular “Buzz” ran at the end of July. For those who don’t recall it, the column was a roundup of usually oddball or embarrassing stories about the world of politics — the kinds of items that provide fodder for the late-night comics.

I’m sure there are others who counted themselves fans like this reader, but I’m struggling to remember any other single feature in the news sections that drew as many objections regularly as “The Buzz.” People on the right thought it made fun of Republicans too often, and the left thought it demonized Democrats.

I thought it generally did a pretty good job of choosing targets from multiple sides, but I also definitely understood why people would object to it. I discussed its being dropped with the senior editor over the Metro desk, and he and I were pretty much on the same page about it: Since the news operation strives to remain fair and neutral in its reporting, “The Buzz” stood out as the lone piece of voice or commentary that the desk was producing. He, too, understood why so many readers have complained about it through the years and decided not to continue it.

But now that it’s gone, some of its fans miss it. I’ll put in their vote as well.

The name, though not the same spirit, lives on

in KansasCity.com’s Buzz.

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