January 23, 2009
The Seattle PI Will Probably Close Soon
Two weeks ago, the Hearst
corporation said they would try to sell the newspaper. If they were unable to find a buyer in
sixty days, they will close the newspaper, or, possibly, convert it to a web-only
This will surprise some, but I hope that the PI survives, with all its faults. And I hope that
its competitor and partner, the Seattle Times, with all its faults, also survives. Despite their
faults — and I have said much about their faults over the years — we are better off with
two major newspapers in this area, rather than just one, or even none.
Both newspapers continue to do investigative work that would hard to duplicate. Recently,
the PI did an interesting series on problems in the honey market, and the Times did a powerful series on
MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) infections in Washington state's hospitals.
Both investigations would be hard for individuals, without press credentials, to do.
So I hope both newspapers survive, though both would be better off under different ownership.
Cross posted at Jim Miller on Politics.
(You can find accounts of the PI's problems
What about the two main alternative Seattle-area newspapers, the Seattle Weekly and the
Stranger? I don't read either often enough to have a firm opinion on whether they are a
net contributors to this area.)
Posted by Jim Miller at January 23, 2009
01:55 PM | Email This
I concur, although judging from today's headlines one would be hard pressed to see how these were two papers.
A liberal press in a liberal city...they have become a self-licking ice cream cone.
2. The PI most certainly should be allowed to Die. It is a despicable newspaper tied to the Name that represents it. Why on Earth, would any sane individual want to keep the soiled memory, name and reputation alive...even under new ownership? Let the defamed paper and name die and remain forever Dead. Good Riddance! If there is room for a new daily then, let that daily start with a clean slate and new name.
3. Jim I never felt the PI (at least in relative recent times) was truly an 'investigative' entity. Yes, they would sometimes do in-depth reports on various subjects, but IMO they wouldn't attack a subject like a true investigator would. They tended to be investigative politically-correct detectives and would always shy away from subjects that could have been readily 'exposed'.
I too will be somewhat saddened to see them go however...but mostly from a nostalgic/icon point of view...and some of the sports reporting that I liked (i.e. Moore and Thiel). Lo siento mucho!
Trying to muster some sympathy. Any sympathy.
While I understand where you're coming from, Jim Miller, the P-I ceased being a viable, journalistic publication years ago. Essentially, you're saying you'd rather have two, steaming piles of feces on your lawn than one.
When an 'objective' media outlet - with a responsibility to the public - specifically goes out of its way to spit in the face of half of its potential audience - simply to prop up the politicians and policies its staff and managers support - it should die a hideous death.
The P-I has become nothing more than the same left-wing trash one can find at - as you mentioned - The Stranger and The Weekly.
I welcome its demise.
Honestly, I don't know how they would survive as a web only paper either. Are they going to generate enough web traffic to get adequate advertising dollars to pay even the people who are left? I doubt it. And if they start charging a subscription fee for what is now free, that's a non-starter as well.
Best of luck to those people there (even Connelly and Horsey, who I hope find jobs somewhere else).
And Jim, I can smell a cartoon contest about this.
6. Let the PI die. I also predict that within 10 years, we will have only 6 daily newspapers statewide, which will focus on statewide and national news. Weeklies will fill the niche for exclusively local news.
7. I hope they are closed for good. They are nothing but a propaganda arm of the Democrat party. A-holes liek COnnelly should be unemployed.
It is a sign of the times, I am afraid. I just hope the government doesn't bail out the print media and make them .... (choke, choke) nationalized like Pravda.
The Sporting News went web based with a every other week magazine. Pretty cool as I am just starting to read the daily. I hate the new printed one as, well, it doesn't do what the old one did.
And that is the key isn't it- holding government accountable and getting news out? Seeing as how my local daily doesn't have proper staffing, it just prints the government press releases, it hasn't been doing a good job either.
Sad to go, but I parted with my '58 Chevy, my transistor radio, my 8-track tape player, and my VCR.
But, be assured, something will rise in its place and it will be better than what we have now. After all, we are Americans and that is what Americans do- make life better.
I won't lose any sleap over the Pee Eye or for anyone who works for it.
The paper is totally corrupt as an entity and by extension it's employees are corrupt. I've met a heck of a lot them over the years and they are one and all hardcore leftists of the most virulent type - even those who were running the presses, back when they had people doing that.
They collectively made their bed, let them lie in it.
10. The market has spoken. One business dies only to make room for another one with a better idea. Maybe the void will be filled with a more conservative paper. Or maybe just having the PI gone and not spreading liberalism is a positive end result.
My give a darn is busted.
Watch: Media which is honest in critiquing the government and participates in actual journalistic examination will thrive.
The MSM folks today should have taken marcom jobs spinning shiny widgets to doe eyed dip stick college kids. Don't pass what the PI does as news. It stopped being insulting when everyone stopped reading it.
I have to give the Times credit- they have STARTED to show some flecks of honesty in covering Gregoire...3 1/2 years later.
Good post, Jim. I agree that a two newspaper town is preferable to one. I also agree that it is important to have differences of opinion that can be aired in public.
I would say the same if the PI were the most conservative paper in the world - two papers are better than one. A one horse town is just not the same.
13. "But, be assured, something will rise in its place and it will be better than what we have now.
" ~ Swatter
..and How! You eradicate a cancer to let the body survive. The P-I has been a cancer on the body Journalism for 20+ years now and until it has been excised, don't expect ethical journalism to survive either.
14. If they both go out of business where will my folks get the liner for their bird cages?
Well Duffie, like you the PI thinks Billary is the smartest woman in the world. Yet we all know better.
Sorry, but I have no tears for them.
16. Yeah, Medic, I had more tears when I didn't want to pay so much for my pet rock.
No fears Jim.
I have it on good authority from and unnamed source that Kemper Freeman Jr. will purchase the Post Intelligencer...
what's so bad about a no-paper city?
technology is not the entire reason; it's really content--and freedom of other choices of news & blogs & especially the other myriad of diversions like entertainment and cable; it's the mix of noise & stuff and our tendency to be lazy and not dig for ourselves (unless it's our personal issue);
once, the Model T car was only offered in black; same with papers; long ago they HAD to be good, being the only thing in town and every word was read & pondered for lack of alternatives;
that said, after staring at a computer monitor all day, it's still nice to quickly leaf through a paper or sit with a book/magazine for a mental change of pace--even if the paper's a tabloid quality rag; but---certainly not justifying a subscription's price;
PI alums will land on their feet and likely seek out their usual natural lib job-field callings; no tears here--
20. I'm sure the staff and subscribers will find comfort switching to the Seattle Weekly or The Stranger.
21. As much as I dislike Pravda Incognito, I really like the globe sign on the building. I hope someone from the Museum of Science and Industry is already making plans to restore it and find a place to display it.
Why do you care if the PI lives or dies?
It's not like one paper provides one viewpoint and the other paper the opposing one. Both papers have no distinction in their editorial boards or newsy content. In short, there's absolutely nothing to differentiate one paper from the other.
In that case, there's no reason to have a 2 paper setup 'round here. I can read liberal claptrap from one and know that the other paper is reporting the same.
23. I am tired of hidden agenda journalism, typical for the PI and Times. I canceled long ago. I believe every newspaper has a fatal flaw...they claim objectivity, but there is no way to prove it. Conservatives like myself see liberal media bias in both subtle and not so subtle ways. In my everyday life, I have to judge the worth of what someone says based on their worldview. If you are a liberal, I will listen to you but nearly never take your advice. Conservatives get more of my attention.
What should papers do? Epose the worldview of their editors and reporters. Require every one of them to vote, photocopy and then notarize the copy before sealing the original and placing in a mailbox. Keep every one on file and available for view for anyone that wants to see it. Papers should make it a point to hire a ballanced staff. On political issues, if possible, require opposing articles by different reporters, or one article if both reporters agree. Just a thought
24. Isn't this what happens to O'bama's campain staff after the election is over? They disband.