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The Press Loves a Hero, but . . . (Dinosaur Media DeathWatch™)
The Washington Post ^ | August 17, 2009 | Howard Kurtz

Posted on 08/17/2009 5:21:06 AM PDT by abb

Dan Rather is wrong.

Barack Obama should stay out of it.

We don't need no stinkin' presidential commission.

It's not that the former CBS anchor has delivered a flawed diagnosis. The news business, as Rather wrote in a Washington Post op-ed, is in deep trouble, particularly the print side. But his prescription -- that only high-level White House involvement can draw sufficient attention to the media's plight -- badly misses the mark.

This president may be able to bring Henry Louis Gates and James Crowley together for a beer. Obama might even figure out how to get Congress to cough up a health-care bill, or Americans to understand what on earth cap-and-trade is. But rescuing the news business is beyond his power.

Actually, by giving interviews to Katie, Brian, Charlie, Meredith and Robin -- not to mention "60 Minutes," "Nightline," the Sunday shows, Jay Leno, ESPN, major newspapers, columnists and bloggers -- Obama has helped prop up the news business and demonstrated that it matters. But the challenge here is not as easy as dropping by Five Guys and boosting its burger business. The journalism racket needs more than some spicy mustard to lure customers.

To be fair, Rather isn't suggesting that Obama do anything, exactly. He doesn't want a cash-for-clunkers bailout. He doesn't want federal control. The Detroit papers wouldn't become another General Motors, with some information czar picking the font size.

Yet Rather has great faith in the illuminating power of the blue-ribbon commission, which for Beltway denizens is a classic bureaucratic substitute for doing something, with a thick report destined to gather dust on a shelf, if that still happens in the digital age.

Besides, the media's problems have been endlessly chewed over by the chattering classes at forums, seminars, discussions and panels...

snip

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: advertising; dbm; mrskippy; newspapers; rather
Howie's right. A stopped clock and all that.
1 posted on 08/17/2009 5:21:08 AM PDT by abb
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To: 04-Bravo; aimhigh; andyandval; Arizona Carolyn; backhoe; Bahbah; bert; bilhosty; Caipirabob; ...

ping


2 posted on 08/17/2009 5:23:26 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/17/business/media/17ft.html?ref=todayspaper&pagewanted=all
The Paper That Doesn’t Want to Be Free

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-et-rather16-2009aug16,0,4127770.story
Dan Rather, dogged plaintiff

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/greenslade/2009/aug/16/us-press-publishing-national-newspapers
Would US papers do better if they were more like ours? I’m afraid not


3 posted on 08/17/2009 5:25:08 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb

“Kenneth” Rather for Media Czar! He knows the frequency!


4 posted on 08/17/2009 5:25:31 AM PDT by jmaroneps37 (Conservatism is truth. Liberalism is lies.)
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To: abb

How about we get someone in Congress to propose a TAX!

A TAX on NEWSPRINT!

Whereas the production of newspapers causes trees to be cut down, hauled by polluting trucks to polluting paper mills, and hauled from paper mills to publishers and

Whereas the production of newspapers requires toxic ink and solvents and energy wasting machinery and

Whereas the distribution of newspapers requires the use of dirty internal combustion engines and

Whereas a large portion of every landfill is used for discarded newspapers,

Therefore:

Be it resolved that a Newsprint tax, of $1,000.00 per pound, be charged to EVERY newspaper with a daily subscription, within the United States!
________________________________________
We should get some Republican to propose THIS as an amendment to any “cap and trade” or “carbon tax” proposal that comes up!
Maybe we can make it like “Cap and Trade” and use the revenue generated, from this tax on dirty dinosaur newspapers, to subsidize a tax credit for home computers and digital devices?
Or, we could use the money to subsidize talk radio! Well, those guys really don’t need any help!


5 posted on 08/17/2009 5:27:56 AM PDT by Kansas58
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To: abb

http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/327676-Analysis_Summer_Still_Hot_For_Cable_As_Key_Premieres_Loom.php
Analysis: Summer Still Hot For Cable As Key Premieres Loom
USA on record-setting track, TNT decides originals’ fates, while broadcast sweats season

http://www.johntemple.net/
What I’m doing on my sabbatical - perhaps a lesson for other editors


6 posted on 08/17/2009 5:52:50 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb
Dan Rather is wrong.

Dan Rather is a discredited propagandist who is trying to resurrect himself by calling out to the progressives/socialists that he propped up.

Actually, by giving interviews to Katie, Brian, Charlie, Meredith and Robin -- not to mention "60 Minutes," "Nightline," the Sunday shows, Jay Leno, ESPN, major newspapers, columnists and bloggers -- Obama has helped prop up the news business and demonstrated that it matters.

Propagandists prop up progressives/socialists and progressives/socialists prop up propagandists. Why the disinformation propagandist Howie?

Rather is right that aggressive reporting is crucial to holding government accountable.

LOL! Not only an idiotic statement "aggressive reporting"...but more evidence of a propagandist propping up a propagandist.

Journalists got themselves into this mess by clinging to the past as technology threatened to pass them by.

Icing on the waste-of-your-reading-time cake. Sheesh.

7 posted on 08/17/2009 6:00:22 AM PDT by PGalt
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To: abb

http://www.thewrap.com/article/part-1-thewraps-series-television-we-know-it-finished_5215

Television — As We Know It — Is Finished, Part 1

“It’s the beginning of a structural tailspin. The total collapse of the model.”

Tomorrow, Part 2: Writer/critic Bob Garfield’s doomsday scenario for the network TV business.

Network TV may be a cyclical business — but for bruised and battered broadcasters battling the worst economy in a generation, there’s little evidence to suggest a bounce back is in the cards anytime soon.

If anything, things could get a lot worse before they get better. Some observers are even beginning to question whether there will ever be a turnaround, predicting that business model which has sustained broadcasters for close to 60 years has begun an irreversible decline.

The latest blow: A disastrous upfront advertising market that saw revenues plunge an estimated 15 percent from last year, dropping from $9.2 billion in 2008 to around $7.8 billion, according to estimates by several publications.

“This is a turning point,” argues Bob Garfield, author of the just-released media doomsday tome “The Chaos Scenario” and the long-time critic for Advertising Age.

He believes networks will continue to bleed ad dollars, which will lead them to reduce original scripted programming, thus causing deeper ratings declines.... and even further drops in ad revenue.

snip

Obviously the author of this article has been lurking here and reading our threads...

abb


8 posted on 08/17/2009 6:04:04 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125046605103135399.html
Thick Fashion Magazines Are So Last Year

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118007284.html?categoryid=1009&cs=1
Television’s killer app
New HD TVs equipped with internet connection

http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20090816/FREE/308169970#
Jeff the Plumber
NBC’s Zucker puts Leno in prime time to plug hole in schedule. Another short-term fix for a CEO short on vision

http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSTRE57F1O920090816
Is Comcast poised to do another Disney?

http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=111738
Consortium Blind Sides Nielsen Execs, Raises Big Questions For Future Of Media Measurement


9 posted on 08/17/2009 6:13:30 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb
The news business, as Rather wrote in a Washington Post op-ed, is in deep trouble...

They, the MSM, have made their own bed, now they'll have to lie in it, and almost certainly die in it. IMHO two things are killing them, and I don't see them backing away from either.

First, is their obvious bias. The MSM is so biased to the left it hardly seems accurate to call it bias. The MSM has become basically one big propaganda machine for the left. Naturally this drives away right and centrist people to other news sources. Witness the wild success of FOX news, conservative talk radio, and Internet news sites. I believe the MSM's "bias" is so bad they are beginning to drive away even many people on the left. Listening to or reading cheerleaders for your side is fun - for a while. But even people on the left want and need real news too. If they truly consider themselves "enlightened" ... well, they need real news and facts too. Of course, when they don't fortify themselves with real facts, we can ambush them all the more easily. Great sport, but ill-informed lefties still make bad decisions that hurt everyone. It is in all our best interests that even lefties get the facts. Of course, when intelligent people get the facts, often they abandon much of their leftist idealism in the harsh light of the real world.

Of course that leads to the second thing that is killing the MSM. Sensationalism. Many a lead-in to a story announces it with great fanfare as catastrophe, terror, etc. etc. -- wildly exaggerating the importance or intensity and impact of what really is, well, just news. I believe this is due to pressure from the Internet. The Internet makes it very easy to get a message out, get the word out on hot topics and issues. The MSM saw this instant, high-bandwidth "channel" to their customers and knew they had to respond. Instead of applying their considerable resources to provide what the bloggers couldn't - in-depth, fact-checked, stories and analysis... The MSM tried to compete and beat the Internet bloggers et. al. at their own game - quicker, wilder, more sensational and attention-grabbing. Quality, analysis, and credibility plunged. The nightly news is now more of a carefully orchestrated show than anything else. Get some good visuals, sensational copy, and run with it, get the talent on air now! No time to check sources or look for a second source to confirm, we gotta beat the Internet sites...we can always apologize later (maybe) if we get it wrong and someone holds our feet to the fire.

These are the two things killing the MSM. Government backing will only make it worse - rewarding bad behavior and bad decisions. It will also destroy the last remaining shreds of credibility anyone in the MSM may be clinging to. With government backing, the MSM will become little more than Pravda from the cold war era. Although they are not far from that now, it would seal the deal as they say. I believe the MSM needs to die. In its current form it cannot compete with the Internet, and shouldn't be trying. The MSM needs to get back to what the Intenet cannot provide - on scene reporters, thoughtful, professional analysis (unbiased), interviews with subject matter experts, and the like. If the MSM can't or won't... Well, maybe some of the Internet news sources will grow enough to begin providing these kinds of things.

10 posted on 08/17/2009 6:30:06 AM PDT by ThunderSleeps (obama out now! I'll keep my money, my guns, and my freedom - you can keep the change.)
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To: abb

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1914976,00.html
Ann Arbor Kills Its Newspaper — To Save It

http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/sns-ap-us-ap-on-tv-hot-fox,0,440757.story
With Obama in office, Fox News on pace for best ratings year since it first went on air in ‘96

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/17/business/media/17carr.html?ref=media
AOL Blossoms as Print Retreats

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/17/AR2009081700649.html
myYearbook Turns A Profit By Getting Users To Pay


11 posted on 08/17/2009 6:36:49 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: PGalt
Why the disinformation propagandist Howie?
I don't know. Perhaps Howie wants to ensure that the dimmest socialist knuckle draggers keep paying for Weymouth salons to schmooze the left leaning mass media choir.
12 posted on 08/17/2009 6:58:42 AM PDT by Milhous (Confusion to our enemies.)
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Comment #13 Removed by Moderator

To: ThunderSleeps
provide what the bloggers couldn't - in-depth, fact-checked, stories and analysis...
With all due respect, you got that backwards. Virtually all intellectuals from every discipline now publish directly to the 'Net for the sake of peer review if nothing else.

Limiting your comments to the political domain, different citizens read every single word of the bills before congress as evidenced by their wild success at townhalls. OTOH it's hard for me to name a single mass media ad hominem pitching "'pro" who can accurately recite the title of a single bill, let alone its content.
14 posted on 08/17/2009 7:37:33 AM PDT by Milhous (Confusion to our enemies.)
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To: abb

Dan Rather is out of the loop. But you can bet that the top executives of the companies that own the networks have been talking to Obama about some sort of cash-for-clunkers program.

The thing is, Obama has the press over a barrel, and they are licking his toes anyway. He gives them a daily kick, and they say “Thank you, oh Holy One.” So, why should he give them any more, when he has a dozen other trillion dollar programs with higher priorities?


15 posted on 08/17/2009 7:56:38 AM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: abb
I think you really have something here. If the libtards try to force Beck and Rush and others off the air they will just jump to "apps" or whatever so that you can watch their show over the internet or listen over satelite or whatever. I'll bet Rush doesn't miss a show if they try to push him off the air. It would kill PBS and AM radio. They would stop putting AM radios in cars cause the only thing over there would be PBS and nobody listens to that (except a few libtards). If they try to move against talk radio and Fox TV it would just push the voices into new tech further polarizing our country.

Μολὼν λάβε


16 posted on 08/17/2009 8:10:01 AM PDT by wastoute (translation of tag "Come and get them (bastards)" or "come get some")
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To: Milhous

Here’s a howler.

http://www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=131&aid=168434
The Iron Core of News is at Risk: An Excerpt from “Losing the News”

http://books.google.com/books?id=K7NhhNVDG2cC&dq=Losing+the+News+Jones&source=gbs_navlinks_s
Losing the News: The Future of the News That Feeds Democracy
By Alex Jones


17 posted on 08/17/2009 9:58:16 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb

http://www.ajc.com/business/ajc-moving-from-downtown-117372.html
AJC moving from downtown to Perimeter Mall area

http://www.poynter.org/forum/view_post.asp?id=13977
AJ-C memo explains move out of downtown


18 posted on 08/17/2009 11:19:51 AM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: ThunderSleeps
Instead of applying their considerable resources to provide what the bloggers couldn't - in-depth, fact-checked, stories and analysis..

A statement countered in it's entirety by the empirical evidence.

Many "blogs" are written by industry, sport, and hobby insiders. Their facts are impeccable, and their knowledge of the topic is encyclopedic.

This is not a minor point. A "Journalist" no matter how much he tries is not going to write as good an article on say, a new racing engine as the lead design engineer who has a minor in business communications will.

Far from having a lack of depth or tenuous facts, the best blogs raise the bar to levels the legacy media never began to approach. And many of them are writing entirely for free - posting on sites they pay a small fee to have.

Good bye PC magazine. Good bye Popular Mechanics.

19 posted on 08/17/2009 12:21:51 PM PDT by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: abb

http://newsosaur.blogspot.com/
How did newspapers lose Everyblock?


20 posted on 08/17/2009 12:42:48 PM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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To: abb

http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2009/08/future-of-local-news-about-more-than-paid-content225.html
Future of Local News About More Than Paid Content

http://paidcontent.org/article/419-salon-lays-off-six-from-edit-about-20-percent-of-staff/
Salon Lays Off Six From Edit, About 20 Percent of Staff

http://www.magazinedeathpool.com/
Marked for Death: PlayStation The Official Magazine?


21 posted on 08/17/2009 4:44:26 PM PDT by abb ("What ISN'T in the news is often more important than what IS." Ed Biersmith, 1942 -)
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