Rupert makes his move

THE SALE OF Dow Jones to Murdoch has been greeted by much clucking in the press. Every paper, with the exception of The New York Sun and maybe the Journal itself, seems to have concluded that this is the sad, if inevitable, end to the long, lustrous legacy of a fine journalistic institution. Most columnists point to other supposedly fine papers that were ruined by the man once called the Dirty Digger. Case in point: The Times of London. No one remembers that that gray lady had become pretty frail by the end of the Thomson era. In 1981, when Murdoch took over, the bureau system (which the Times may have invented) was moribund. No longer was there a Times man in every outpost of the Empire serving as an alternative conduit to Whitehall for frustrated foreign ministers. Not that they needed one: the Empire itself was gone.

Remember the “print edition?”

HERE IS A simple question: Why don’t newspaper Web sites promote their printed newspapers more? When they first built Web sites, papers crowed about them. They were proud to have gone online, and they wanted everyone to know. There were lots of teasers in the paper about all the stuff you can get on the web. Stories point to more resources. Readers are urged to vote in polls, give feedback to the columnists, and buy cars.

The other shoe drops in Chicago

WELL, THE GOOD news is that Tribune found a buyer. The bad news, for some anyway, is that the Chicago company still owns the Los Angeles Times. Sam Zell (Forbes No. 158), the real estate plutocrat who won the auction, says that he is only in it for the money, and will leave the journalism up to others.

Soft vs. Hard

THE VERY dry public editor of The New York Times, Byron Calame, asks the question, Can ‘Magazines’ of The Times Subsidize News Coverage?

You can take so much cheese off the pizza that nobody will eat it

THE PRINT media continues to lose elevation, and now the heavy freight is being chopped up for fuel, or just jettisoned. Time Warner, Tribune have announced big asset sales. But the death grip of the stock analysts and the media buyers has not relaxed. Further cuts will be needed. Products will get thinner, pages sizes smaller.

Houston Chronicle

WHAT do you do when a great client asks you how to keep their design fresh?

The last blog

OF COURSE, it’s probably not the last blog, even for me. Wishful thinking. I am just getting started on one so late that perhaps no one can stand to read another, or to comment on it. But here we are. Late to the table is better than no meal at all. The point is to provoke a conversation about media design, and I hope you will dive in.

Keep Reading

THIS week, two new free papers sprung up in London.

Last days of the dinosaurs

HARRIS Seigel, the Nils Lofgren look-alike who is one of the stars of the SND, had a header on his slide presentation reading, “Society of News Dinosaurs.” Seigel showed work from the hilarious Asbury Park Press feature section which uses real people in large numbers to tell stories, usually involving alcohol.

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