Of all the jobs I’ve tried in journalism, the most rewarding, most worthwhile and least necessary has been copy editing. It’s a joy to polish a great story and cap it with a smart headline. And there’s a surprising amount of typos and errors to correct. But, in my experience, much of copy editing is fixing what the reporter could have caught.
Today, Common Sense Journalism asks: Will digital media make copy editors obsolete? Douglas Fisher notes that the Internet is about letting writers speak directly to the audience, and continuous updates don’t allow for thorough copy editing. Writers have to edit themselves.
There’s still a need, though, for editors to prepare content and attract readers with headlines and images. See Slate’s “Tall, Fat and Easy” cover from Monday, featuring stories on height’s benefits, obesity, and oral sex.