January 14, 2006

Links: Private No, Journalism Yes, Agate No

To Be Private or Not to Be Private: Donald Graham (the Post) and Arthur Sulzberger Jr. (the Times) argue that the pressure by investors on newspaper companies to maintain profit margins at the expense of journalistic quality doesn't mean newspapers would be better off if owned by private companies. Paid Content points to Graham and Sulzberger's comments in the current CJR and highlight writer Douglas McCollam's conclusion:

"So while there is no guarantee that the private ownership of today would recognize the value of journalism, it has already been established that Wall Street does not. Maybe it's time we took our chances."

What Matters: Alan Rusbridger, editor of the Guardian, speaks in India on the future of newspapers and says (in paraphrase) "while almost everything else would change, journalism itself would still matter." Agreed. [Read: There's Nothing Left but the Journalism.] Via: Simon Waldman and Jeff Jarvis.

Goodbye Agate: I'm late on this, but the Chicago Tribune's decision to whack the inches off the daily stock listings is the sign of things to come. Expect more papers to follow as finances force editors to rearrange priorities. I think it's a good move. It's way past the time for a hard look by newsroom managers on how they use the paper's resources, both human and physical. News hole is limited. Don't waste it on something that works better online. (More here.)

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Posted by Tim Porter at January 14, 2006 08:49 AM