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The QM's obituarists

By Patrick West   May 2002

Many people still find the idea of stock obituaries ghoulish, at least those outside the newspaper business. I was editing the Daily Telegraph’s letters page shortly after the death of Princess Margaret, and opened a letter that read: “Although I was pleased to see so many accomplished television appreciations of Margaret, it was obvious that they were recorded years before she died. Do these people have no respect? Yours, disgusted, etc.” But most people appreciate that some obituaries need to be written in advance: it is a rational calculation for a future event that will happen.

This is not to…

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