So, Jeff Bezos of Amazon fame is the new owner of the Washington Post:
The Washington Post Co. agreed Monday to sell its flagship newspaper to Amazon.com founder and chief executive Jeffrey P. Bezos, ending the Graham family’s stewardship of one of America’s leading news organizations after four generations.
Bezos, whose entrepreneurship has made him one of the world’s richest men, will pay $250 million in cash for The Post and affiliated publications to The Washington Post Co., which owns the newspaper and other businesses.
Seattle-based Amazon will have no role in the purchase; Bezos himself will buy the news organization and become its sole owner when the sale is completed, probably within 60 days. The Post Co. will get a new, still undecided name and continue as a publicly traded company without the newspaper.
The Washington Post, like many major newspapers, has been hemorrhaging subscribers for years due to a number of causes. First, the Internet and access to news sources at will has reduced the importance of a hardcopy resources delivered to one’s door. The nature of hardcopy is that it’s almost guaranteed to be reporting news that’s been updated with new information by the time you get it. Those issues can be rectified with a new business model. Subscribers can be lured back by catering to access methods they prefer. Another issue is more thorny: subscribers have dropped the paper not because of the medium but the content.
I dropped the Washington Post a couple of years ago because I was tired of the continually-slanted writing and the frankly poor investigative reporting. The paper was little more than a marketing department for whatever Democratic or leftish narrative line being pushed and I get more than enough of that on most of the broadcast television networks. If Bezos can take the advice of several experts out there and actually return the newspaper to reporting the news and not parroting the current Administration’s line, then I would consider buying the paper again. There’s been some signs, lately, that people at the Post are willing to actually do what they did for 8 years of the Bush Administration and actually ask the tough questions, not taking the latest Carney-lies as answers.
I’ll wait and see.