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Saturday, July 28, 2018

New York Daily News Cuts 50% Of Its Staff, Leaving Authors & Citizens In Limbo




The New York Daily News, a top ten circulating newspaper with a rich 99-year history, just fired half of its editorial staff in a cost-saving measure.  It could mean the end of the newspaper or at least a major dilution in its ability to accurately and comprehensively report the news of the day.  It’s an epidemic that’s been spreading across America.  

It should concern all of us, as citizens, who rely on a strong, free press to hold others accountable.  But it also should concern authors on what they can do to get more coverage from the shrinking editorial pages.

So what happens when a newspaper cuts staff?

·         Fewer stories get covered.
·         More fluff fills the pages -- opinion pieces instead of hard news.
·         More syndicated stories appear, meaning less original, local coverage.
·         The overburdened staff is bound to take shortcuts, make errors, and be too stretched to give tender, loving journalistic care to all.
·         Fewer pages are left to cover books.

Will new opportunities arise?  Could the axed staff, equal in size to the remaining staff, form its own newspaper?  Will the rival NY Post get bigger and stronger as a result – or will it follow suit with a weakened competitor that it will no longer have to keep up with?

It’s simply not digital vs paper, here. It’s about journalism vs. self-published opinion acting like news.  We need traditional journalism to survive and thrive.  But when low-budget tabloids struggle it doesn’t bode well for others.

New York City used to have so many dailies.  Now it’s down to three and one’s broken.

Authors perhaps can help their own cause.  Instead of seeking book reviews from newspapers who lack the pages to cover books, authors should seek to get a by-line article published so they can mention their book in the piece or at least at the bottom with the author credits.

Newspapers need to find a way to survive.  Some try pay walls.  Others cut ad rates.  Many look to make money from their subscriber lists.  But newspapers will need donations and volunteers to help them, turning the once-proud press into a non-profit enterprise.

Or maybe newspapers should be paid for by our tax dollars.  It wouldn’t be state run, but state-funded, similar to a college newspaper that gets automatically funded by student dues but its editorial coverage is not controlled by the school administration, student government, or any students but the paper’s self-appointed editors.

The Daily News is making headlines for all of the wrong reasons.  Let’s hope it can stop bleeding red ink.  We have too much at stake, especially authors.


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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America and participated in a PR panel at the Sarah Lawrence College Writers Institute Conference.

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