In light of Richard Karpel’s response to the Matt Welch article, let me share my own recent experience with CJR.
I was contacted by the magazine several months ago and was asked to tell my “story” as part of an alternative-press themed issue. I spent roughly 30 minutes talking with a reporter, retelling our short history and commenting on the alternative press in general. As the interview was ending, an often asked question surfaced: Did we name the paper Weekly Dig after the ballyhooed local highway project affectionately known as the Big Dig? I stated, as I’ve stated many times before, “absolutely not” and explained the history of the Dig’s predecessor, Shovel Magazine, and the idea of “unearthing” the untold story as well as our love for old-school phrases like “Can you dig it?” The Weekly Dig name, I explained, was born from this amalgam of journalistic idealism and retro phrasing.
I was later contacted by a “fact checker” who was verifying a few points, including the story behind the name. Yet again, I explained the origin of the name and had a quick chuckle with the fact checker about this often-asked question.
But when I received my copy of CJR and flipped to page 34, I almost choked on my lunch as I read, “… The Weekly Dig — a reference to Boston’s massive $15 billion underground highway project…”
Jeff Lawrence, Publisher, Boston’s Weekly Dig