Newsweek Wonders If Obama Can Save Print Media
"Barack Obama, have mercy on us!" cried the lepers of the newspaper media unto the president-elect. And lo, he spake unto them, saying, "Go, and print some more."
Noticing heavy demand for post-Election Day editions of major daily newspapers, Newsweek wondered of President-elect Obama, "Can He Save the Media?"
The subheader to Newsweek's front page tease promised a look at "[h]ow Obama has reinvigorated newsstand sales."
In his 7-paragraph November 13 Web exclusive, writer Johnnie L. Roberts offered a Magic 8-ball-like -- "reply hazy, try again" -- answer to the question posed in the headline, heralding the demand for historic November 5 newspaper reprint as "at least a temporary reversal of fortune that the print industry plans to bank on up to and beyond the inauguration":
Spikes of this nature, while rare, aren't unique. And experts agree that even Obama's journalistic appeal won't solve print media's decline in the long term. "You see spikes whenever there's a historic event," says John Morton of Morton Research Inc., the veteran newspaper analyst. "This was probably at least the equivalent of the ones for the end of [the world] wars." Unfortunately, he notes, "it's not the golden bullet that saves the industry." The print media is still looking at the same tough economic picture, but at least Obama has brought a temporary reprieve.
Left completely out of consideration in Roberts's piece, however, was the role the mainstream print media's liberal biases have and will continue to play in alienating audiences and driving them to the ideological and journalistic diversity available on the Web.