How To Chagrin A News Reporter 101

by John Glynn on May 14, 2011

I love Martin Andelman. I read his column Mandelman Matters periodically – not religiously, because his posts can be long. But they are so tempting – he’s a skilled wordsmith.

Biggest Consumer Advocate In Mortgage Modifications?

I admire his hard-core protectiveness of the consumers’ interests. At times, a bit brash, I get the idea that every once in a while, he’s in the midst of over-selling his point just for the sake of good writing. That said, I do believe he has unbridled passion for the consumer.

He is devoutly defensive on their behalf when it comes to the core area of his focus (as far as I am aware) which is banks screwing people in the mortgage space. But often when he lets loose, there are many notes of sarcasm that serve to underscore the absurdity of the situation he’s riled up about. That’s the part I really enjoy… he is a talented writer.

Many of his articles are about loan modification absurdities. Oh there are absurdities. But “Mandelman” doesn’t take this marketplace sitting down. He’s a crusader, persistently vocal, demanding better human-to-human interaction than what typically gets reported in the nastiest corners of this housing market turmoil. I admire that.

“Oppression Can Only Survive Through Silence” (Monteflores)

He recently took Carolyn Said of the San Francisco Chronicle to task for an article about homeowners who have overcome foreclosure challenges. I’ve said it before, and I’ll repeat it here – there is no shortage of tragedy in this marketplace.

His basic gripe is that Said is far too casual in her portrayal of the bank each case. But you have to read his words. There were portions that made me feel that the reporter was getting more of a beating than she deserved. But, I’ll go back to what I said before – If Andelman wants to over-sell the point to ensure that it is clearly laid on the table, I’m fine with that.

Got my attention.

Follow the money, they say. It’s always good to remember who’s doing the talking and what might be in their agenda. I’m not so sure it’s as cut and dry as he makes it out to be, but he certainly got me thinking about it.

I’ll be interested to know if there’s a follow-up.

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