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On "Journalistic Excellence"

Posted by: Jon Fine on February 14, 2006

These stories are interesting, seeing that they more or less state outright that Knight Ridder’s corporate charter could significantly disadvantage bidders that don’t meet its standards of “journalistic excellence.”
(Said stories are both written by the San Jose Mercury News’ Pete Carey, a reporter at Knight Ridder’s flagship who’s consistently broken news on sale developments.)

The term “journalistic excellence” is, of course, incredibly elastic and arguably meaningless. Today Knight Ridder’s corporate management is better known for cost-cutting than Pulitzers, and you don’t have to look hard to find lengthy screeds decrying how Knight Ridder papers are getting worse and worse. Disclaimer: It is very rare that journalists, particularly those at journalism reviews or at alternative urban weeklies, write stores about how good their local newspaper is.

Should that provision be enforceable, though, it it puts a finger on the scales in favor of a bid like, oh, this.

If such a bid were to actually happen, that is.

Reader Comments


February 17, 2006 7:21 PM

Bruce Sherman gave $25,000 to the Republican National committee in 2004. Is there any connection between his political leanings and his attempt to break up the only newspaper chain that consistently challenged the Bush administration on its conduct of the Iraq war?

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