Help me find the article about the column written by "We"
January 3, 2009 1:25 PM   Subscribe

I need a hand trying to hunt down an article about a column published by "We," probably in New York.

Some time ago, I read an article about a publication that at one point regularly published a column, probably as editorial or opinion, with the byline "We," giving the suggestion that it represented the opinions of the entire publication. It was well-known, however, that any given piece was only written by a single anonymous author, with no particular requirement that their piece agree or even be consistent with anything previously written.

Here are the details I've got:

* The article would have been published within the last ten years, but also several years ago, ie. probably before 2006/7. (This has been tormenting me on and off for a while.)
* Based on what I was reading at the time, there's a strong chance the article appeared in The New Yorker or Harper's.
* It would most likely have been /about/ one of those two or the New York times, though I have a definite impression this was a New York thing, so Harper's seems least likely.
* It's not too likely that the article was in the same publication that originally ran the column.
* I don't recall the main title of the article, but pretty strongly recall a sub-title of "How [publication] Killed 'We'"
* I believe part of the reason the practice was stopped involved internal conflict at the publication itself over the content of the pieces, and/or general feuding.

It's not too much, and the possible search terms suck(I've tried), but maybe it'll drag up a memory for someone.
posted by Su to Media & Arts (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: D'oh. It springs to mind that there may not have been a formal byline of "We," but that is definitely how the author referred to him/herself throughout the pieces.
posted by Su at 1:28 PM on January 3, 2009

Best answer: Well, the New Yorker's "Talk of the Town" section used to use "we" for the authorial voice. That stopped in the 90s, when the pieces began to appear under individual bylines.

Maybe this article from the Times is the one you're thinking about.
posted by neroli at 2:23 PM on January 3, 2009

Response by poster: Huh. Well, all the details are there, including the "killing." I'd actually had the Times in the list of likelies and then removed it because I don't recall reading it much around that time. Maybe the sub-title was the way I was referred to it. At any rate, thanks.
posted by Su at 7:31 AM on January 5, 2009

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