Wednesday, March 25

Newspaper Cutbacks Hit Close to Home

The Charlotte Observer has announced 82 job cuts and pay cuts for the rest of the staff. Unfortunately, many of those affected work in the newsroom. The vicious cycle facing newspapers is simple to understand, but hard to stop. In today's media environment, they receive reduced advertising leading to fewer employs leading to lower quality which results in... lower advertising (and subscriptions). This announcement comes just one week after the Raleigh News and Observer announced cuts of their own. In just seven days, two of North Carolina's largest newspapers have had their workforce reduced by fifteen and eleven percent, respectively.

While we've had fun with the local fishwrap before, I love newspapers. There's something special about having all the box scores on one page and that's something the current landscape of the internet doesn't allow. With most of the TV stations tied directly into the leagues they're supposed to be covering, newspapers should have filled the role (now being filled by Yahoo!) of being the watch dog. Sadly, most haven't and many have also failed miserably in making the transition to the internet for various reasons. Newspapers are important and while their medium may be changing, the people of this country should be better served by having them around. I for one, and hoping for many more great pieces out of the Observer, like this one by Rick Bonnell about Raymond Felton.

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