This one’s zipping about pretty fast and doing the Twitter rounds (@arusbridger and @jeffjarvis just a few of the people to pick it up.)
“Few industries in this country have been as coddled as newspapers,” begins Michael Kinsley’s realistic look at life after newspapers. Here’s one extract:
“True enough, the industry missed a whole armada of boats. If newspapers had been smarter, or moved faster, they might have kept the classified ads. They might have invented social networking. But that’s all hindsight. I didn’t think of these things, nor did you. Judging from Tribune Co., for which I once worked, the typical newspaper executive is a bear of little brain. Until recently, little brain was needed. Even now, to say the newspaper industry has no problems that a busload of geniuses couldn’t solve is essentially saying that the industry’s problems are insoluable. Or at least insoluable without help.”
“It’s true that Tribune Co. is talking about outsourcing its national and international news coverage to The Washington Post Co.,” comments Editor&Publisher, but warns that ‘big sticking points remain and the two are not close to a deal,’ as Chicago Tribune media reporter Phil Rosenthal reported in his blog Thursday afternoon. Full story…
James Surowiecki posits his analysis of the current newspaper industry crisis. Regarding the Tribune Co., he says that ‘although Zell was making excuses for his own mismanagement, the perfect storm is real enough, and it is threatening to destroy newspapers as we know them’.
Following the news that the Tribune Co. has filed for bankruptcy, ‘journalist turned activist’ and former editor of the Los Angeles Daily News, Ron Kaye, writes on his blog that this is not the end of your daily newspaper.
“It’s just the beginning of the end for hundreds of newspapers and the collapsing of many others into single regional franchises that can survive as the only source of printed news and advertising on a daily basis.”
Kaye, who was fired by the Daily News seven months ago, says ‘Let the conversation begin.’
More on this tomorrow, but just to link today’s (Monday) news that the Tribune Co. has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, as reported here by the group’s own newspaper the LA Times, as well as numerous other news sources. The group also owns KTLA Channel 5, the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun as well as nine other newspapers and 22 other television and radio stations across the country.