Smart Businessmen Still Buy Newspapers

NY Times from 1960. (Flickr Creative Commons: The U.S. National Archives)

The New York Times recently reported that New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg might buy The Financial Times.  Why are billionaires thinking of investing in newspapers, the dying breed of media?  AdAge suggests it may be because several papers (including The New York Times) are doing quite well.  The piece also says that struggling papers don’t dissuade shrewd buyers either, as evidenced by Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev’s purchase of The Independent.  The AdAge compiled graphics showing some of the current winning and losing papers.

Longform Print Journalism Adapts to Success of Longform Online Journalism

An old issue of The Virginian Pilot. (Flickr Creative Commons: Jesse757)

While most of the media world considers the ethics of the New York Post’s recent front-page photograph, Mallary Jean Tenore at Poynter meditated on “longform journalism.”  By all accounts, longform has found a home online despite original worries it would be killed by readers’ unwillingness to read it on a screen.

Tenore’s piece (“Longform journalism morphs in print as it finds a new home”) looks at how The Virginian Pilot has stretched longform journalism across print, online and booklet formats.  The Pilot apparently found a way to make money from this technique.

NY Post and Tampa Bay Times Get Blamed for Deaths

Another tasteful NY Post cover. (Flickr Creative Commons: extrabox)

The New York Post came under fire Tuesday when it published a front-page image of a man about to get run over by a subway train.  The front page had the Post-style sensationalized headline: “Pushed on the subway track, this man is about to die / DOOMED.”  The photographer was criticized for not helping the man, while the Post offended many with what they deemed to be distasteful editorial treatment of a sensitive image.

Though these kinds of journalism ethics have been around since before the Internet was even an idea, the story raises questions about how the web will perhaps provide different ethical standards for photojournalism.  The kind of outrage that the Post’s editorial board faces will probably pale as more publications learn to coexist with the (mostly) censor-free online world.

Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Times has been blamed for the suicide of a 39-year-old woman with “persistent genital arousal disorder” the paper ran a profile about last week, according to Jim Romenesko.  “The moment I read this story I questioned why it was being published by the Times,” said a frequent Tamba Bay Times critic, “other than the story’s obvious ability to drive readership and online traffic.”