Tag Archives: Greater Burlington YMCA

“You Either Die the Hero, Or You Live Long Enough to See Yourself Become the Villain.”

Hey, remember when Seven Days was the “alternative” newspaper in Burlington?

Well, if there was any doubt that the scrappy underground outfit has adulted itself into the establishment, last week’s “From the Publisher” column settled it once and for all. If you were to Google “White Privilege,” you might very well find a link to the piece.

The essay’s subject is the former Greater Burlington YMCA building at College and South Union Streets, now derelict and unused. It’s sad, but publisher Paula Routly sees it as emblematic of an entire city on the edge of an abyss.

Paula Routly is a real contributor to the city life and culture of Burlington. She and co-founder Pamela Polston are to be admired for what they have built. In a time when other print publications are shadows of their former selves, Seven Days is an invaluable part of Vermont’s media ecosystem.

But that column. Woof.

Whiny. Entitled. Fearful. Classist.

Lest you think I exaggerate, I call your attention to the last paragraph of the essay.

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The Burlington Free Press is a whore

The second third of Paul Heintz’ “Fair Game” column delivered a bombshell for those of us who follow — and root for — our dwindling media sector.

The Burlington Free Press has begun to — not once, but routinely —  publish bespoke content written by interested parties, formatted and presented as if it were actual news.

Recently I caught one instance of this disturbing trend: the Free Press ran an article on the Q Burke Resort (before it was de-Q’d) — written by the resort’s PR person. It ran as a news story; the writer’s affiliation was not identified until a small note at the end of the piece.

The timing was unfortunate, since the article was published only a few days before the SEC came swooping down on the Stenger/Quiros operation.

What Heintz has done goes way beyond my isolated discovery. He runs down a lengthy list of articles, formatted and presented as news, in space supposedly reserved for journalism, that were provided by interested third parties.

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