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Sunday, October 26, 2008

MSM In Depression

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Via Breibart

NEW YORK (AP) - The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J., will reduce its newsroom staff by nearly half through voluntary buyouts as New Jersey's largest newspaper seeks to return to profitability.
Jim Willse, the Star-Ledger's editor, said Friday that the newspaper accepted 151 buyout offers from its news staff, or about 45 percent of its 334 editorial employees. He said 17 buyout applications were rejected.

Some staffers already have left, and others are leaving by year's end, many after the elections.

Faster please.

This followed hard on: NY Times Profits slide, downgraded to junk status

And underscores: Editing Their Way to Oblivion: Journalism Sacrificed For Power and Pensions

Picture yourself in your 50s in a job [editor]where you’ve spent 30 years working your way to the top, to the cockpit of power . . . only to discover that you’re presiding over a dying industry. The Internet and alternative media are stealing your readers, your advertisers and your top young talent. Many of your peers shrewdly took golden parachutes and disappeared. Your job doesn’t have anywhere near the power and influence it did when your started your climb. The Newspaper Guild is too weak to protect you any more, and there is a very good chance you’ll lose your job before you cross that finish line, ten years hence, of retirement and a pension.

In other words, you are facing career catastrophe -and desperate times call for desperate measures. Even if you have to risk everything on a single Hail Mary play. Even if you have to compromise the principles that got you here. After all, newspapers and network news are doomed anyway - all that counts is keeping them on life support until you can retire.

And then the opportunity presents itself: an attractive young candidate whose politics likely matches yours, but more important, he offers the prospect of a transformed Washington with the power to fix everything that has gone wrong in your career. With luck, this monolithic, single-party government will crush the alternative media via a revived Fairness Doctrine, re-invigorate unions by getting rid of secret votes, and just maybe, be beholden to people like you in the traditional media for getting it there.


Anonymous said...

Journalism used to be such a noble and respected profession. The best journalists were known for informing readers by objectively reporting both sides of a story and then letting the reader decide what their opinion is on any given topic.

I think that the wheels came off the bus when journalists stopped reporting the news and started to editorialize it. Look at most newspapers today and their feature stories look like the editorial pages of the papers of old. Each story carries such an ideological bent that they're almost impossible to read. The profession which so prided itself on objectivity has transformed themselves into monolithic mouthpiece of subjectivity. It strains most peoples intelligence when they are basically being told what to think as if they don't have a mind of their own to figure things out. You can blame the internet, but I say blame the newspapers themselves. It obvious that people aren't buying the tainted goods they're trying to peddle.

Anonymous said...

The MSM is screwed no matter who wins next month. To wit:

If Obama wins, more than half of the country will never again trust the MSM because of its favoritism towards the Democrats.

If McCains wins, more than half of the country will never again trust the MSM because of its favoritism towards the Democrats.

Get my drift? I suspect most people now realize that if Obama gets into office, the MSM will be little more than a government cheerleader. After all, to paraphrase FDR, The Anointed One will be a bastard, but he'll be their bastard. Shucks, I'm sure the MSM secretly wants to get in on the government bailout action too.

Conversely, whether McCain wins or not, conservatives will acknowledge that even if the Dinosaur Media collectively accepted Jesus Christ as its Personal Savior, it's simply beyond salvation. This will quicken the Right's march toward building a truly independent, hard-hitting, and objective media apparatus of its own.

An Obama victory in November may be sweet to the MSM, but it will be its "last hurrah." Dare we remember that, 65 million years ago, the dinosaurs were riding high...right up to the day they all looked up and saw that asteroid streaking through the sky.

Zerosumgame said...

If Obama gets into the White House, I can assure you that he will do everything he can to shut down conservative media, as a favor to the propaganda outlets who got him into office.

We will get:

a) The Unfairness Doctrine to shut down talk radio.

b) Net Neutrality to shut down conservative websites.

c) Hate speech legislation to shut down criticism of political correctness, multiculturalism, and Socialism from any source.

d) The justices appointed to the USSC that will uphold all of the above.

e) Efforts by the Justice Dept. (under AG Deval Patrick) to harrass and silence critics.

f) Generous subsidies to left-wing media outlets (beyond those already given to PBS & NPR).

The "MSM" expects that it will be saved by becoming the only game in town, and thus regaining its pre-eminence by default. People will simply have nowhere else to go.

Anonymous said...

Journalism used to be such a noble and respected profession.

It's not that journalism was ever "noble and respected," just that without independent, unfettered inquiry (internet blogs, etc.) the magnitude of journalist venality and corruption was not grasped.

In recent years a bright light has been shown on the cockroaches of the MSM and they're now running for cover.

Anonymous said...

The state of journalism reminds me, in a metaphorical sense, of the scene from “Wizard of Oz” where Toto the four-legged blogger pulls the curtain open to reveal the small, impotent journalist who tries in vain to keep pulling the levers of power even after being exposed.

Look at what is required to be a (print) journalist these days:

1. Ability to talk on the phone or email a lot and ask questions.
2. Willingness to tell anyone who will listen what you were told but with no apparent requirement to keep from putting your biased spin on it.
3. Ability to write to an 8th-grade level, the standard for newspapers.
(for TV journalists, substitute:
3. Ability to use make-up effectively and to read competently.)

In other words, a journalist must have the same skill set as a normal 8th-grade girl (no intent to demean 8th-grade girls). The fact that the internet has allowed many people who have other full-time professions and no formal journalism training to show they can do a better job than the “professionals” in analyzing and reporting events of the day points to the notion that journalism should be seen for what it is: an activity and not a profession.