New York Times To Staff: Relax, We’re Not Firing You Yet

New York Times To Staff: Relax, We’re Not Firing You Yet

Wow – even with out the Silicon Valley Insider’s snark, this is a wild and wooly bit to go out to the troops from the NYT Editor, Bill Keller.  The cattle must have been close to stampede…

Check out the Insiders conclusion:

But we have a problem with Bill’s characterization of the cuts around the industry as “short-sighted.” Bill’s business reporters would never characterize them that way, and if he wants to maintain his credibility, he shouldn’t, either.

The newspaper industry is cutting costs because it is in a permanent decline. So far, the online business model cannot support anything like the staff that classifieds and other print ads used to allow. This is a business reality, one that the New York Times has stubbornly refused to accept. The sooner it does so, the better.

Darn straight – the newspaper industry is in an utterly transitive moment, and the Times is no exception.  They know they’ve got to move to a place where they’re content providers, not content distributors, and that’s gonna be a painful process.

The problem with this transition is clear: they’re set up to deliver print.  Print is utterly expensive to produce and distribute.  Now all that expense is hanging about their necks like an albatross.

Even a year ago, while we may have discussed the decline of newspapers, who would have thought a discussion such as this was even possible at the Grey Lady.

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