Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Good column on newspapers

Great column on the demise of newspapers.

Tidbit follows:

-Leadership collapsed under the weight of these forces. A generation of managers that would go along with these dictates rose, while those with other ideas were pushed out or aside. These surviving managers – of course with honorable exceptions – were singularly incapable of dealing with the historic turning points facing newspapers. Every day they came in hoping to not make a mistake, to merely preserve the business they had, or to push through artificial, top-down, one-side-fits-all formulas, usually backed by questionable research. At some chains, the jobs of editors became little more than gathering stuff for graphic do-dads and implementing the content rules cooked up at headquarters. These were once the front-line leaders who made the biggest difference in the quality of a product based, inexorably, on the written word, well told. The simple creed of "get a great story and put it in the newspaper (or online)" went away. For example, experienced police reporters went away -- even though it's clear that well-done cop stories draw readers. In their place was a 21-year-old taking dictation from a police public-affairs announcement.

Man this guy has it soooo right. To read the rest go here:


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