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Mike Peterson

Not a bad analysis of this moment in time. Longer range, the problem newspapers face is that they were taken over by marketers who conflate printing papers with making dishwasher detergent and don't recognize that there are considerable factors in newsgathering and publishing that don't fit on a balance sheet. At the same time, there arose the digerati, who were only too happy to declare solutions that had nothing to do with basic immutable rules of the marketplace. So you've got one group producing a product that increasingly fails to thrill, and another group declaring that the only way to save it is to stop trying to make money from it.

Which wouldn't matter if they hadn't been in an odd partnership that also has no place in the real world. What a long, strange trip indeed.

I predicted a decade back that, by now, the major papers would all look like USAToday -- form with no content -- and the small town papers would look more like neighborhood shoppers, with more pictures of Cub Scout awards ceremonies and wedding anniversaries. Which has essentially happened, except that the small town papers are owned by big town companies, which provides one-size-fits-all management edicts to kill the service that is at the heart of their mission.

But there is hope. Especially if they'd bite the bullet and revamp their comics pages, right?

Frank Zieglar

You should listen to this episode of 'Tall Tale Radio' podcast - http://talltalefeatures.com/ttfradio/?p=298

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