Nick Kristof has middle initials to spare!
The New York Times columnist has boldly decided to drop the middle initial from his byline in order to be more down with the common folks:
Let’s let Kristof explain, shall we?
I think in the Internet age, the middle initial conveys a formality that is a bit of a barrier to our audience. It feels a bit ostentatious, even priggish. If my aim in my 20’s was gravitas, now I want to reach people and connect with them, and I wonder if the stuffiness of the middle initial isn’t a little off-putting. I doubt if it makes much difference, frankly, but at the margin I think that we’re moving to a kind of journalism that is more casual, more informal, more personal, and a very formal byline seems as out of place as a three-piece suit in the newsroom. Speaking of which, when I started at the Times in the business section in 1984, I wore a business suit and the middle initial was a nice accoutrement to pinstripes; now I wear an open collar, and I don’t need the middle initial any more than a necktie.
A big shift toward even more stupid, self-important dreck? Great. Looking forward to it!
We’ve got an initial for Kristof: M. For mockery:
If Nick wants to open his collar, that’s cool with us. But he might wanna think about shutting his mouth.