By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Tag: private equity

Jack Shafer and Margot Susca dish over media ownership

Good Jack Shafer interview in Politico with Margot Susca, the author of “Hedged,” on how private equity helped destroy the newspaper business. I reviewed “Hedged” for The Arts Fuse last month.

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In ‘Hedged,’ Margot Susca explains how private equity destroyed newspapers

The media business analyst Alan Mutter once memorably asserted that newspapers’ “Original Sin” dates back to the mid 1990s, when they started giving away their journalism for free on the internet. Margot Susca, though, argues that the real fall from grace came roughly a decade later, when Fortress Investment Group paid $530 million to acquire Liberty Group Publishing, renaming it GateHouse Media. That transaction marked the beginning of the private equity era in journalism, an era defined by hollowed-out newsrooms and ghost newspapers that lack the resources to provide the communities they purportedly serve with the news and information they need.

Susca, an assistant professor of journalism at American University, tells the sad story of how private equity wiped out vast swaths of the newspaper business in “Hedged: How Private Investment Funds Helped Destroy American Newspapers and Undermine Democracy.”

Read the rest at The Arts Fuse.

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