Documenting The Seattle PI’s Possible Closure

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A video of Hearst Newspaper Division President Steve Swartz telling the staff of the Seattle PI about the dire situation that the paper is in is below. This is something that journalists haven’t seen much of, and that is the actual conversations that are going on in the newsrooms.

Not only is there a video of the conversation, but it’s being discussed on David McCumber’s blog.

I know, because that’s me – the guy who, as one poster put it, “doesn’t look like he’s missed any meals.” (Thanks a lot for that belly-level camera angle.)

Yes, it was an excruciating seven minutes. What that video doesn’t show, and what was the hardest for me, was the view from where I stood – the arrayed faces of an incredible staff. I hired many of them, promoted some of them, and have talked journalism at one time or another with every one of them. Their faces told much more than my fidgeting discomfiture did.

It’s a fine mess we find ourselves in – but I’m not giving up yet. This newspaper is for sale. No, it may not be the most attractive investment around (What is the most attractive investment around? Your 401k? Your house? Yeah, right) but that doesn’t mean we won’t find someone who cares about Seattle and about journalism, and sees promise where others see only loss.

If you have some time, read the comments. There are some interesting suggestions from readers of the newspaper which opens some interesting dialog. Comments can sometimes be very, very useful.

Here’s the clip:

H/T Left of the Dial


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One Comment

  1. Lindsey said January 13, 2009 | Permalink

    Egads. I am scared to death that this is going to happen in Memphis.

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