Editorial Board Pen Names at the Wichita Eagle

Some comment-writers to this blog make very good points that deserve more visibility. This is the case with the following comment left anonymously to the post In Wichita, let’s disclose everything. I mean everything.

It looks like Wichita Liberty has broken another unreported story and has exposed the fact that a portion of the Wichita Eagle’s editorial board operates under a pen name.

Perhaps “Ms. Holman’s” editorials should be placed next to the equally anonymous opinion line comments. I must note that the anonymous comments appearing in the Eagle are usually much more pointed than the signed editorial commentary.

I wonder how conflicts of interest by employees and their families are handled by the newspaper? If “Ms. Holman” was married to a school administrator that might be a very useful fact to know when evaluating her credibility on government school spending issues.

What if she was married to an attorney involved in suing the state over school finance? Full disclosure can lead into a number of interesting places.

There was very little publicity provided to the very salient fact that the Wichita Eagle was a donor to the group backing the 2000 Wichita school bond issue with a sizable donation. I’ll have to ask Wichita Liberty to look into any news media contributions to either side of the 2008 Wichita school bond issue campaign.

In response to the question posed at the end of this comment: The campaign finance report for groups involved on both sides of the Wichita school bond issue in 2008 showed no contribution by the Wichita Eagle.

Is this issue of Rhonda Holman not using her real name a substantive issue? My name was in the Wichita Eagle quite a few times last year in my role as an opponent of the Wichita school bond issue. What would have been the Eagle’s response — in both the newsroom and editorial board offices — if I had used a pen name? What would the use of an assumed name indicated about my willingness to be held accountable for the things I said and wrote?


One thought on “Editorial Board Pen Names at the Wichita Eagle”

  1. I am a rwandan citizen living in wichita,after reading the story about the case linked to rwanda,i thought i should say something.
    I think the lawyer kurt kerns should go to rwanda and get more testimonies because that’s where the crime happened and many of the people involved in genocide in 1994 are there,the country is safe now,safer than neighboring countries;i went there twice last year,the only place i was asked an ID was the airport,in and out;this country is rebuilding and needs help from investors,why not wichitans.
    I have to let anybody know that i lost arround 100 relatives during the genocide,rwanda has put discipline,law and order more than anywhere else arround;before the lawyer call it dictatorship he should go there,and verify it is safe and peace corps is back.

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