February 28, 2005
The incredible shrinking op/eds

In another example of the declining value of the Joint Operating Agreement between the two major papers here in Seattle, in the Sunday paper (produced by the Seattle Times, with sections produced by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer) the formerly seperate editorial sections for each paper (with a total of eight pages), have been condensed into a single six-page section, the front from the Times, and the back from the P-I. There was seldom much worth reading in either of the sections, but the smaller format ensures that there is even less of any worth in the Sunday paper. The TV guide is now a 24-page tabloid insert, instead of a handy 8x11 booklet, and it appears that the NEXT forum (for high school and college journalists) has been jettisoned. Both the NEXTopia blog (no posts since January) and the STOP blog (which has turned into the Bruce Ramsey blog, since he's the only one who posts there with any regularity) are underutilized, and it's rumored that the powers that be are looking for further cuts in order to return to profitablility. (The price of both papers in King and Pierce counties was just hiked to 50 cents, as well.) The issue is still in court, with Hearst (which owns the P-I) suing to prevent the dissolution of the JOA, which the Times contends is bleeding it dry.

Here's a series of recent articles in the Times on the subject. I've also blogged on it several times, most recently in this post.

My take on this is that until the JOA is dissolved, we're going to have two sub-par papers. The Times is salvageable, from both a fiscal and an editorial standpoint; the P-I is a millstone that is dragging down its competition. Kill the P-I and let a reinvigorated Times flourish.

posted on February 28, 2005 05:08 PM


Post a comment

Email Address:



Remember your info?

Back to Horologium