Wednesday, March 25, 2009

10 papers that will survive? Or more of the same old?

Silicon Valley Insider has a slideshow on 10 papers that it and its "source" -- who is described as bullish and investing in the newspaper industry -- say will survive the current shakeout.

From the Twin Cities to the wilds of Texas, there are some commonalities:
  • The papers are non-union or are in right-to-work states
  • They largely are in noncompetitive markets or in markets that can be made less competitive (for instance, the suggestion is to buy both the Minneaplis Tribune and the St. Paul Pioneer Press and combine them).
As the Insider writes:

Our guy is convinced that underneath the mess, there are plenty of local newspapers that, after cutting newsroom bloat and R&D costs, would be plenty profitable. He says these local newspapers just need to stop "spending on trying to find their way out" and "instead run their current good business."

What does our source think of newspapers on the Web? Not much. He says local papers should have a Web site run by two people that links to international and national news and keeps all local content behind a pay wall or off the Internet entirely.

Lessee. Cut R&D. Yep, that heavy R&D spending the industry has been known for over the years. You know, the one that's produced all this amazing software and true knowledge, not just shibboleths, about how we present and select news based on what we "know" people want.

And put it back behind a pay wall.

Sounds more like this investor just wants to milk the cash cow -- oh yeah, that's what got us into this mess, wasn't it?

There's such a thing as tending to your knitting and another where tending to your knitting while the world changes around you becomes absurd.

I have my boxed set of "Back to the Future" around here somewhere. Might as well go watch it. It's about as useful.

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At 3/26/09, 10:04 AM, Blogger Tajiana said...

Continuing to enjoy your blog!

At 3/26/09, 11:01 AM, Blogger Broken Zine Blog said...

This is an interesting aspect to the Print-Is-Dead argument. Non-union... hmmm...


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