Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Today's Word—Local News?

Outsourcing Newspapers?

“Fond memories of dead newspapers will do nothing for our communities. . . . One thing we’re exploring is having one news desk for all of our newspapers in MediaNews ... maybe even offshore.”

—Dean Singleton, CEO of MediaNews Group (54 dailies, including The Denver Post, The Detroit News and The Salt Lake Tribune) and chairman of the board of the Associated Press, told the Southern Newspaper Publishers Assn. last week that newspapers might have to send news operations overseas to survive, 10/20/08 (Click here for story.)


  1. This says more about irrational owners than newspapers. Sure, the industry is struggling, but so are many industries. But newspaper owners got caught up in the leverage game just like the folks in the housing circles, and when revenues erode you're left grasping at straws.

  2. So, your answer to eroding circulation is to further dilute the product? Brilliant!

  3. That’s my boy Dean. He knows better than that. Yeah sure, a guy in Bombay or Singapore can write about the board of education in York. Nonsense and destructive babblespeak! Z

  4. Wondering why newspapers are dying? Look no further than Dean Simpleton. He deserves to be unemployed. I feel bad for the people who work for him and will soon be out of work.

  5. Sahila ChangeBringerOctober 28, 2008 at 11:31 AM

    I've been very unpopular all over the place for suggesting that newspapers cant compete in the media industry and so should form a new business model to survive...

    Now, you aint gonna get that initiative from current newspaper ownership who are so invested in the profit motive (profit measured solely in dollars and share values, rather than in social capital), so maybe its time (and why not in bad economic times - what have you got to loose if your job's in the firing line anyway?) those actually at the coalface - editors, reporters - broke away and started new news organisations.

    Its not the only way, but perhaps they might build them on co-op models, with memberships, subscriptions and advertising to help with funding...

    And if they do it well enough, with a quality, relevent 'product', these newspapers will grow and flourish, attracting significant numbers of the current 'cynics' who wont read newspapers anymore, as well as pull in those people who have never been attracted to reading newspapers ...

    I dont believe that this latest group dismisses newspapers outright - in my opinion, their absence as a readership is because newspapers are trying to beat/compete with other media which they cannot possibly do successfully. And so why would anyone expect these people to spend their time on a 2nd-rate option when the net, for example, is just a click away?

    Maybe its time to prove to the world that we're willing to walk our talk and live our values about a free and independent press, by creating a free and independent press.... duh!!!!!

  6. Whoa. We’re definitely down the rabbit hole now. How glad I am that I did my time with real newspapers in the 60s and 70s, when city editors kicked ass, the editorial writers knew who they were and your colleagues in the News Room appreciated a well-crafted enterprise piece. RIP the Good Old Days. Who knew.


  7. It's going to be left up to us former daily news reporters and editors to roll up our sleeves and do it ourselves if we want the job done right. I'm a daily newspaper refugee covering my beat by myself via my own company and web site. It CAN be done.

  8. Hey, refugee. Tell me more. How do you get it done? Post or email me directly.

    Inquiring minds want to know.