We all know the economic factors that are assaulting newspaper advertising: loss of classifieds to the internet, etc. But this post about the LATimes — and especially the comments following the post — point to a little-discussed reason for the newspaper industry’s loss of readership. It’s the relentless push for an agenda not shared byÂ a large segment of itsÂ community. If, as one commenter puts it, 40% of LA readers are conservative and 20% don’t care, howÂ can a newspaper surviveÂ trying to reach onlyÂ the remaining 40% ? (Use your ownÂ estimates to translate those percentages to Dallas).
I bring this up because I had breakfast yesterday with a Dallas civic leader about a project, and he mentioned that the editorial board of the DMNÂ is supportive. I was surprised at my own reaction, and I almost tried to cover it up. But the fact is, I winced. And it dawned on meÂ for the first time while I was sitting there that the DMN’s support may hurt more than it may help.Â Â That was an astonishing revelation to me. I realized then that I share the perception of many in Dallas thatÂ the “good” causes that the DMN supports are too often Â “liberal” causes, that toÂ DMN editors, reporters, and columnistsÂ the words are synonymous. And that’s a reason why I have come to pay less and less attention to what it says.