Outsourcing the News: A Sad Day for Journalism

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I remember when I was studying journalism at the University of Southern California, the editors of the Los Angeles Times would take turns coming over as guest lecturers. The foreign bureau editor, whose name slips me, voiced supreme pride that his newspaper was vigorously staffing every major capital in the world with its own people.

Not anymore. Reality (lack of advertising dollars and huge debt) has caught up to the once-proud (but now I would say haughty) Los Angeles Times.

The parent Tribune Company, according to the Wall Street Journal, is busy cutting a deal with the Washington Post to pay them for all foreign AND national news coverage. All I can say is, "Wow!" That’s going to cost a lot of people at the Times and the Chicago Tribune their livelihoods. Maybe the senior people can bump those below them, but still, "There will be blood," to borrow a movie title.

As I said in my title, this is a sad day for American journalism.

(The Tribune papers are not alone. The New York Daily News has signed onto a service called GlobalPost that uses PART-TIME foreign correspondents who already live in the capitals.)

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