David Carr

David Carr, who describes himself as “a journalism junkie and an optimist,” writes a weekly column called “The Media Equation.” Last week, he wrote about several buyers of metropolitan newspapers, whom he put in the category of “newspaper barons.” Carr observes that big-city newspapers may be returning to an ownership pattern that was common before World War II:

People like William Randolph Hearst and Robert McCormick wielded their newspapers as cudgels to get their way. It was only when newspapers began making all kinds of money in the postwar era that they were professionalized and infused with editorial standards.

Carr suggests that perhaps the new owners of the two dailies in Philadelphia “could catch the journalism bug and access the angels of their better natures.” Newspaper readers all over the United States will be rooting for their success.

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