Tuesday, January 5, 2010

E&P in Exile

Thanks to Blogspot you can find the crew of Editor & Publisher here -- at least temporarily. A note on the Kirkus Review web site shows that the staff is still hoping something can be worked out for that publication but as far as I've heard both the E&P and Kirkus staffs have cleaned out their desks. Cross your fingers.

Personal note: I've never actually been involved with a closing, and for that I'm grateful. I worked for Hearst's property in L.A., the Los Angeles Herald Examiner, which closed a few years after I had left. The next paper I worked for was Copley L.A.'s Santa Monica Outlook, and for reasons I still don't understand, that paper was closed a few years after I moved to Northern California.  The paper there, the Valley Times, part of the Contra Costa Times Group, was eventually bought by Knight-Ridder, and then Dean Singleton's group (now the Bay Area News Group). And now the Valley Times is also gone.

The newspaper business has been brutal. But the trade magazine business has not been much better of late. Although most people who talk about E&P blame its demise on the state of the newspaper industry, the simple fact is that I can not think of a worse combination: a trade publication talking about newspapers. If E&P had been owned by a foundation, or was held (in the interests of supporting the industry) by a company like Gannett, I doubt it would have been closed.  I also think that the magazine might have survived if it had been owned by a smaller publishing company, though I am sure they would have insisted on a much smaller editorial staff.