Saturday, March 28, 2009

One newspaper budget cut too many

A former roommate (from our journalism days) emailed to share a rather egregious newspaper. The dead tree LA Times Friday published a page of their entertainment section (“Calendar”) with placeholders where the headings should be:

  • “tag briefs subhead large”
  • “Tag briefs subhead”
Pictures of the pages are shown on

The general reaction by readers and pundits was this sloppiness was the result of one budget cut too many. Once the most lucrative newspaper franchise in the country, the LAT has been hurting for years.

The greedy Chandler heirs sold the paper to the owners of the Chicago Tribune, which didn’t work out well for either one. Now — as with other papers — the current owner is trying to figure out how to extract profit from the real estate without wrecking that journalism stuff.

Despite the timing, the online-only LA Observed quotes an inside source who attributes it to a run-of-the-mill computer problem. Apparently a similar result was achieved in a November letter to the editor, at least in the online edition.

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