9 Responses to “Sure, Newspapers Could Just Die A Painful Death; But Here’s Another Option”

  1. I've been blogging about the NYT Company going public to private in some sort of not-for-profit, or what I call, Capitalism 2.O model, for soime time now. If you'd like to follow my thinking on this, and for how long I've been blogging about it, go to the blog for readers of the NYT owned property, the IHT, called http://www.ihtreaders.blogspot.com

    You're behind the wave on this one.

    Obviously not for profit isn't a solution to long term problems but what it most certainly is is a device to keep the NYT Company solvent until they can work out what to do. It's essentially a private bail out. As I've blogged, 100 of NY's great liberal great and good stumping up $10 million each would reduce that $1.2 billion of debt for which the NYT has now had to mortgage its own home to carry on paying.

    Why is no one getting how close the NYT is to going bust?

    Wake up NYT lovers and read this blog.

  2. I can't think of a worse thing that taking a newspaper to non-profit status. One of the reasons newspapers are in the trouble they are in is the near-monopoly status most of them enjoyed in their markets over the past few decades. There was no incentive to innovate, no incentive to appeal to newly emerging groups of readers. Today newspapers are in a fiercely competitive situation, with most of the competition coming from the Internet. It is painful, and some newspapers will die. But the necessity to turn a profit and be responsive to readers and owners will provide much-needed incentive to innovate and change.

  3. There are non-profit models that exist, at least in the magazine world. Consider Mother Jones magazine and its website, http://www.motherjones.com, which are published by the non-profit Foundation for National Progress. Since its founding 1975, Mother Jones has been supported by a mix of donations, subscriptions, and advertising. This model may be the one best suited to support investigative and long-form journalism, which increasingly is no longer the province of commercial, mainstream media.

  4. There IS enough support out there for a newspaper. Management may have run the Rocky Mountain News into the ground, but their daily circulation is still 250,000. Not chump change for a paper that may have to close.

  5. Linger –

    Well said. The business model of the old newspaper organization was premised on a monopoly, and its major costs have been undercut by digital technology. There is no return to the days where newspaper profits provided returns on the level of other publicly traded companies.

  6. Newspaper and magazine firms should at least halt the hypocrisy of being publicly traded companies. Go private, re-trench to excel (not just survive) in a digital world and stop believing that re-visiting margins from 20 years ago is just around the corner.