– The journalism world was jolted by news the Times-Picayune in New Orleans is cutting staff and publishing only three days a week. Newhouse Newspapers announced the same move for papers it owns in Alabama. The company also owns the Syracuse Post-Standard, a foreshadowing of things to possibly come for that organization.
The news was startling because the Times-Picayune won a Pulitzer for its coverage of Hurricane Katrina (much of that coverage was online). The outlet led national coverage of the disaster. More recently, I’ve been awed by its amazing and disturbing coverage of the state’s for-profit prisons.
Of course, Newhouse is spinning this as a positive thing. Online coverage will be beefed up! We’ll bring you more news! Erik Wemple at Washington Post points out:
Bolded text added to highlight Latin-rooted corporate nonsense. Strikes me that if you reallocate to accelerate, you necessitate more people, not fewer people. The memo rhetoric is just another variation on the we’re-going-to-do-more-with-less cant that fools no one and insults everyone, every time.
While I agree with the assessment that cutting journalists does not lead to a better product, I don’t mourn the loss of print. I haven’t read a printed newspaper in a long, long time.
A newspaper doesn’t go away when print goes away. I often wish print would go away now. Print can force reporters to write a certain length. Print can force newspapers to hold stories because of space needs and the needs of the front page. Print can force reporters NOT to write as much as they would and could because of false constraints.
But a lot of people still read print and it’s paying a lot of bills. For now. Not publishing every day doesn’t have to be the end of the world.
– I bet a lot of newspaper reporters are sending their resumes into Warren Buffett-owned outlets.
– After reading this column in the Buffalo News, I’m convinced I’m the only person who’s not excited by the prospect of a death fall into the Niagara River.
– This is a little scary. Ohio’s governor is letting businesses draw a lot of water from Lake Erie.