This is a sad day for the University of Oregon.
Diane Dietz deserves more than a little credit for the turnaround in the honesty and competence of the UO administration that we’ve seen in the last few years. When I came to UO in 1995 the RG’s coverage of UO amounted to reprinted press releases about our wonderful administrators. You know, like what Tobin Klinger types up for “Around the O” every day.
When the RG gave Diane Dietz the UO beat, things started to change. She actually held UO’s administrators to the high standards they claimed they had. When they screwed up, she reported it on the front page. Eugene is a small enough town that your neighbors notice when you are on the front page. That pressure made the UO administration better – not that they’ll ever admit it.
Diane’s announcement is on her Facebook page here:
If you read The Register-Guard today, you may have seen my last byline. I was one of at least two reporters laid off in the latest round. It was a little sad to leave like this on a weepy, gray day. But this is journalism circa 2017 and there’s no one to blame. Quite the opposite. I was lucky to spend 30 years as one in the last generation of newspaper reporters — and to make a comfortable living doing so. I was paid to go out and pitch my heart and intellect against the rough edges of this era and to tell it as truly as I could. I saw much, learned so much and worked with spectacular people along the way. We must do all we can to bolster and to comfort the young reporters who — while caught in the squeeze of news economics — must nonetheless provide us with the fruits of their work, the facts that we so desperately need.