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Archive for July 18th, 2005

Owners win; newspaper readers lose

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The Seattle Times ownership’s decision to shrink the width of its newspaper — and editor Mike Fancher’s July 17 column explaining the rationale — demonstrates a commitment to maintaining financial return rather than providing news to its readership.

Beginning this week, the Times‘ broadsheet pages will be one inch narrow; its tab sections will be one inch shorter. Fancher says that newsprint prices have climbed 40 percent in the past three years and will likely go higher.

That’s a sound rationale, of course. The First Amendment may protect newspapers from government interference, but newspapers must be financially healthy to do their jobs. They must make a profit. (We’ll leave for another time a discussion of what amounts to appropriate profit.)

But this shrinkage comes at a cost to the reader. Read the rest of this entry »


Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

July 18, 2005 at 4:30 pm

Posted in Uncategorized