N – Students armed with sub-editing skills

Luckhurst T. Students armed with sub-editing skills are given tools for life. Times Higher Education Supplement 5 March 2009


A former editor of the Daily Mirror, Roy Greenslade, has said that subeditors are disposable in these days of highly educated journalists and straight-to-screen copy. This article disagrees: Subs are almost always underpaid but they are only rarely underappreciated by the writers whose reputations they safeguard. Excellent subs are not disposable relics of a bygone era. They are the keyhole surgeons of journalism; fast, precise and adept at ensuring that prevention averts the need for expensive or embarrassing cures. At best they write attention-grabbing headlines and turn convoluted codswallop into plain, comprehensible English. To abolish subbing would risk inflicting on journalism damage comparable to that imposed on team sports by the sale of school playing fields.?

Thanks to Margaret Cooter