US perspectives on the newspaper crisis ring many bells over here. Editor & Publisher is asking on its blog: "What is mainly to blame for the newspaper crisis?" You can read the responses here. Among things blamed for the crisis are consolidation in the industry, giving away content on the web, ignoring readers, unrealistic profit margins and crippling debt taken on by newspaper companies. I liked these comments:
"It's a perfect storm: the Internet, loss of circulation and the worldwide recession, big newspaper companies swallowing other big newspaper companies at far greater prices than the properties were worth and unrealistic profit demands. the papers that will survive and thrive are those from small and medium markets where they are providing the best source of local news. these are the papers that have suffered the least pain so far." Posted by: conniec
"The combination of two things pushed us toward this. First, there was an insistence by many companies for profit margins that were unrealistic and unsustainable. That could be combined with newsrooms and journalists that got all giddy because they were given access to the power brokers and, as a result, forgot who their readers were and what their readers cared about." Posted by: Steve
I am a freelance journalist based in the UK and was deputy editor of Press Gazette, the journalists' magazine, from 1993 until 2006. I want to give an independent view on media matters.
You can contact me with stories, ideas and comments by email at firstname.lastname@example.org You can also follow me on Twitter @jonslattery