"Decades of high profit margins have shielded papers from hard decisions involving unions, printing costs, the rise of online readers and a decaying demographic for their products. Looking for future of the newspaper? Look to the past - when there were no monopolies and the advertising business was harder - papers worked to build audiences, and were amongst the most competitive and cutthroat businesses out there - not above making the story to sell papers and not above having a point of view to keep audiences."
"About five years ago, I went to the Herald and I told them, 'I've got this blog and maybe you'd like to run it.' They said, 'It's a what?' But then they had a committee meeting or something and now they want everybody to have a blog. They want the security guard to have a blog."
"Our consumer-driven society is about a lot of things besides hard news," Decherd says. "Americans spend a tremendous amount of time focused on their lifestyles. We have to listen to our audiences to some extent."
Publishers may not control the distribution of content, or even its creation, but they still have brands that people trust. I guess at the end of the day it's all about control. If you don't control the creation or the distribution of the content, what do you control? I may not want journalism delivered in a static print publication. But I also don't want to be awash in a sea of stories. Even in a town hall meeting (or any meeting), you don't accomplish much when everyone talks at once.