“Only in Premium”

The Minor Format Change introduced last week brought a lot of positive comments. Just one example: “Love, love, love the new way you tease the ‘missing’ Premium stories.” —Mark in New Jersey. That’s awfully nice. But, of course, there were protest unsubscribes last week because I stopped gathering all the “stories you missed” summaries into a large paragraph, and instead left their story slugs up among the full stories, and included a brief summary of the story there. A few examples:

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Premium Readers Suggest Improvements

I surveyed Premium edition readers to see what they might come up with to improve This is True — what would make it more of a “must-read” for them? This page reports on the results of the 3-question survey …and they had a lot to say — it’s long! There were a lot of comments, and a fair number of suggestions.

In all, there were nearly 1,100 survey responses, which represents a very large percentage of the Premium audience — certainly very “statistically valid.”

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Because They’re Not Capable of Defending Themselves

What’s more patronizing: making a joke at someone’s expense, or the contention that the subject of the joke is not capable of defending themselves?

This week it’s war veterans who are not capable, or so some readers seem to be saying. Let’s start with the story — from True’s 8 February 2015 issue:

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Florida: Really? Grief?

Tom in Nevada asks, “Given the amount of grief you give the well deserved Floridians, is there an disproportionate number of subscribers from Florida or maybe a disproportionately low number that might be turned off from the constant, once again well deserved, coverage of their exploits? Just curious.”

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Provoking Thought: Child Support Division

It’s nice when someone else goes on a rant, so I don’t have to!

A story by Mike Straw in last week’s (30 December 2012) issue went for the laugh in the tagline. A reader — Wayne, in the U.S. military and deployed to Afghanistan — thought Mike should have gone more for “thought-provoking.” Let’s start with the story:

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Asking the Right Questions

After my previous blog post, the response from readers was fantastic — the clarity, the different ideas, the stating the problem without blaming or exonerating guns. But Rob in Sydney Australia didn’t seem to “get” what I was saying that in the national “debate” about mass shootings, we’re asking the wrong questions. It came to a head after this comment, by Tyler in Massachusetts:

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Sorry You Weren’t Offended

This is True has tackled the issue of people choosing to be offended on a number of occasions (such as in the tagline of this story).

Most times, of course, the offended are complaining about a story, not embracing it. On most of those occasions, when someone is writing to complain how they’ve chosen to be offended by something I said (or, often, didn’t say!), I’ll often get an amusing response from other readers — the ones who don’t unsubscribe in protest.

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