Yet, from the IT department, to former sports editor Ron Ramos to Swartz, the AJC squandered precious dwindling resources chasing a meaningless dead-end story; one it sought to manufacture from one of a thousand sentences Whammer wrote in an e-mail the AJC should never have traced.
In these tough times, there is a premium on good judgment.
While I'm not a fan of Levenson, kudos for admitting his self-interest in writing that up front. I am surprised Levenson doesn't at least bring up (to then beat down) the reason why newspapers will tell you they don't filter out reader comments. It's because legally if they start doing that, they become liable for them. If they leave them completely unfiltered, then they can't be liable. The lawyers tell them to do this.
We don't have reader comments at the bottom of articles at Hockey's Future, it's just bad news. Instead, we invite readers to discuss the articles on the message boards, which have strict, enforced rules. You shouldn't need the traffic that badly to have to resort to having crap on your site. Having quality content drives traffic. This doesn't seem to be the AJC model though.