Last month, Lance Armstrong boycotted the media, speaking directly to his fans in 140-character chunks. He tried to break the ban by writing a letter to The WSJ, but they "butchered it," and instead, he printed it on his blog.
The Wall Street Journal ran a story June 10 about an alleged feud between Armstrong and Greg LeMond. Armstrong called the piece "sensational," and not in the good way. He wrote a letter to the editor. The editor made some edits. Armstrong didn't like the edits. He said the editor "removed the pertinent and topical parts. Frustrating." I bet!
So what do you do if you're Lance Armstrong and The Wall Street Journal won't run your letter to the editor? You publish it on your own blog, of course. (And, in the process, negate any chance of The Journal actually printing your rebuttal.) Here's how the rejected "editorial submission response" starts:
I am writing in response to the article written by Reed Albergotti which inaccurately and ineptly described what Mr. Albergotti perceived as an ongoing feud between Greg LeMond and me. In general, the article fell far short of minimum journalistic standards on many levels. The article was egregiously one-sided, omitted essential material facts and contained many facts which Mr. Albergotti knew, or should have known, were either false or highly questionable.
I'm sure The Journal was positively giddy to be lectured about journalistic standards — especially when the preacher triple spaced between sentences — but Armstrong does go on to make pertinent points in the rest of the letter, even if some of the words are poorly used and there seems to be a superscripted "1" instead of an apostrophe. In fact, the letter is a fair response, and as Mike Kord points out, Armstrong is unique in that he responds to his critics instead of ignoring them.
In the end, all Armstrong really needed was a good editor. Hey, wait a minute...