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Posts tagged: newspaper journalism

Another one bites the dust…

Good afternoon Netizens…

The picture of the newsroom doesn’t really do it justice, but Friday will be the last day the Rocky Mountain News newspaper prints, as it is closing its doors.

Rich Boehne, chief executive officer of Scripps, broke the news to the Rocky staff at noon today, ending nearly three months of speculation over the paper’s future. He called the paper a victim of a terrible economy and an upheaval in the newspaper industry.

“Denver can’t support two newspapers any longer,” Boehne told staffers, some of whom cried at the news. “It’s certainly not good news for you, and it’s certainly not good news for Denver.”

Much the same fate faces several other major newspapers around the country unless someone comes up with a solution.

I suppose the Rocky Mountain News is somewhat different since I grew up reading it on a regular basis since childhood, and thus some may say I have a bias on their behalf.  However, I also have a profound fondness for both the San Francisco Chronicle and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, both of which are facing possible closure within the next few weeks. How about, for the sake of clarity, if we simply assume I am enamored of the dying art of journalism, and leave it at that?

I spent some time this afternoon talking with the Spokesman-Review’s Doug Floyd and he made what I think is an interesting and challenging observation about journalism. If you walk down the aisles of your favorite grocery store and reach the magazine racks, you will be confronted with a plethora of new glossy magazines that apparently are having no problem connecting with their readers. We are seeing a serious problem with getting the same people who buy these magazines and/or their subscriptions, to go out on their front porches in the morning and pick up the morning paper. Do you think this is true?

Don’t look now but we may see two more award-winning newspapers go under next month, and it remains to be seen if we even understand the nature of the financial model that is killing them off like flies.

Or perhaps it is we no longer need printers ink to print a newspaper, given all the tears that inexorably have already fallen in news rooms this lean winter.


The funeral for journalism?

Good morning, Netizens…

In this morning’s David Horsey cartoon from the Post-Intelligencer, he asks a question perhaps no one in the Blogosphere wants answered, that being what will the press conferences of the future look like when all the newspapers have closed and shuttered their doors? Will there be a band of bloggers asking the questions? Will any newspaper reporters survive the economic downturn to perform the hard research and ask the hard questions?

So much of the news we read in this blog comes from well-established traditional news sources such as the Associated Press, McClatchey and various other news wires. Even the news we obtain about our City Government comes traditionally from local and regional sources. If, as the Seattle Post-Intelligencer closes its doors in March, as it appears possible, who will stand up to ask the hard questions?

I submit that perhaps President Barack Obama is too quick to embrace the alternative forms of the news media, for inherent in the existing news media, even a cursory examination of its history, bespeaks decades of experience, acumen and the absolute adherence to the principles of good journalism that formulate the basis for news reporting as we once knew it to be.

As more major news sources shutter their doors for good, who will stand and ask the relevant questions of the future? It is both sobering and a sad commentary on our lives that there was no economic aid for failing newspapers in the Economic Stimulus Package. The news, particularly the print news media, it seems, cannot compete with the list of crooked bankers, dismally-performing auto manufacturers and mortgage companies, all of whom will receive handouts from the Stimulus Package.

Don’t look now, but our national priorities are on review, and I submit they are tragically wanting.


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