Monday, July 21, 2008

You don't say

Well, well, well. It looks like all these cutbacks that news organizations (specifically newspapers) have been forced to go on actually have a downside, as well. Sure, we figured that it would just give the staff that was remaining a bigger incentive to work harder. After all, with fewer people on the clock, there would be a higher chance of getting your stories run.

Well, thanks to some good old fashioned research (done by the Project for Excellence in Journalism, because newspapers don't have the funds or staff to conduct their own research anymore), we now know that by cutting staff, the papers were also cutting their ability to produce quality content. Boy, how wrong we were. We really were figuring that the result of a trimmer staff would be just like Arena Football in comparison to the NFL. You know, fewer teams, fewer players, and less exposure to the country and world as a whole?

Honestly, a part of us is a little shocked that this was even a potential study. After all, it's not like the newspapers were trimming off the dead wood from their staffs. When the decision comes down to keeping a newer reporter who's starting to get their legs under them, or the completely superfluous gossip columnist, well, gossip gets to run another few columns per week in the paper, while the kid is out lucky if he can deliver a product door to door.

Maybe that's the catch. We understand that newspapers are having difficulties in the current economy (and that they were even before we hit the financial skids), but maybe they've been making the wrong cuts.

Besides, the last thing we want to see next to an article about a candidate visiting a local farming community is a detailed synopsis of what they were wearing the entire time.

But we do want to know if they liked their lobster.

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