Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A great blog exchange at 'Paper Tiger'

In case you missed it here's a great back-and-forth between Jim Carty and another newsman.

And here's the original post that prompted the debate.

Also in case you wondered who was to blame for the financial condition of newspapers Ad Age has an idea.

And again, thanks to JT, who really should start a blog with all the information that they find.


Anonymous said...

Everyone who wants to understand the truth about newspapers should read this article!!

It is clear to me: the anxiety we all feel in the newspaper business is really our owners' anxiety, and not related to the actual performance of its employees. It is a financial anxiety, but one can't say the actual operation is unprofitable -- there is a healthy amount of money to be made in news. Why then are we, the employees, made to feel that WE are the failure? Heck, we're the "cleaners" of their financial mess.

I've often heard that one of the largest wasteful expenses for the Flint Journal was the wrong choice of press, made by the former publisher. One man's idiocy costs artists their livelihoods. One ADs refusal to make deals with advertisers results in many lost sales; one bad IT experiment costs jobs.

Nevertheless, the overall business model/strategy, as dictated by the top, has become clear: protect your own job, your best buds' jobs when possible (and family, of course), say anything you must to please, and do whatever you must to please. Nothing pleases a master so well as a loyal, obedient pet.

So change, innovation, and risk never come. It's always the path of least resistance. It's easier to keep the loyal and eliminate dissention, and make sure that the "good ideas" can only come from you. Ideas and suggestions are threats.

This is the environment in which we live. Good, solid work is worth nothing. Good attitude, team player -- useless here. Little makes sense.

And to close out my little story, I think of this often: as my friends were being urged to take buyouts, that same publisher? He was still receiving payments on his what, 3 year severance? The priorities are clear.

Jim of L-Town said...

One of the best posts ever on this blog!

I agree with you 100 percent.

You are the reason I started and continue this blog. I just wish we could see a different outcome to help folks like you.


Anonymous said...

I remember talk of the FJ using those presses for printing outside work to make extra money. I talked to a pressman last week and he says they're not doing this. He doesn't understand why. He said "they're already paying us to be here anyways"

What was the IT experiment that went bad?