Tuesday, February 24, 2009
San Francisco Chronicle to be sold or closed—Yikes!
by Larry Geller
(thanks to Shannon Rudolf for the pointer to this article)
It’s hard to believe. One well-known paper after another could end up on the chopping block. Sometimes, as here, it seems that the problems are related to takeovers that generated large amounts of debt which cannot be sustained.
The article mentions several other well-known papers that are in bankruptcy or in deep trouble.
The article Shannon sent me reminded me of the two segments that wrapped up last week’s On The Media (WNYC). The second one raises the intriguing question: are newspapers worth saving?
The newspaper industry is in a frenzy trying to figure out how to save itself. Kachingle, an online service that will launch next month, offers yet another possible solution: encourage online readers to voluntarily contribute to newspapers and other websites they like. Kachingle CEO and founder Cynthia Typaldos explains why she thinks people will pay for content they can get for free.
Getting lost in the frantic search for a business model to save newspapers is a simple question: why? Would the death of the newspapers as we know them really be apocalyptic? Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Steve Coll and political blogger Matthew Yglesias take a step back to consider if newspapers are worth saving.
Both I remember were good discussions. You can click over there to read their transcript or to listen to the segments or to the entire program.