Denver Post journalists run away to their own little shelter. Journalism is still dead.

Columbia Journalism Review try to put a sunny spin on an exodus of clueless scribes deluding themselves into believing they can turn their corpse around:

But there is some hope for readers who still want to see the work of these journalists in Colorado: Frank and Paul are headed to The Colorado Sun—a Civil-backed platform staffed entirely, so far, by 10 former Post employees, who will be ready to cover the midterm elections in November.

Hope? As in doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome?

The current model of journalism is flawed and caused its own destruction, but this is typical journalistic narcissism: we are not responsible for our woes; it is someone else's fault. Ergo, if we strike it out on another platform, everything will change for the better.

What journalists in North America do not have the courage to grasp is simple: if their model of reporting news had any merit left, the kinds of owners they would attract would be different.

You have either asset-strippers who make money squeezing assets out of properties and selling them off...or propagandists who wish to pretend to inform people, but always through a partisan bent, Left or Right.

And if you do not change your ways, you do not progress.

So this move is meaningless to everyone else save those in the dead profession. 

Note they wish to "cover" elections, meaning this is a purely propagandistic motive.

Journalism has decided that it is going to be a social engineering profession where they tell people what to think and what to do. When you veer that way, you are a propagandist.

You use fear-mongering to rig mindsets, and right now, that is all you see right now. No facts. No logic. No respect for other people.

This venture will not do well, of course. The core is too corrupt. This is a post-last gasp from a group of people who honestly don't see that they already lost the war, and there isn o going back...

This is how journalism died: It chose narrative over reality. It chose lies over truth.

Watching two hours of 60 Minutes tonight reminds me how far journalism declined: it is a news program that is nothing but pure advertorial for various interests. Slopping an academic study or two as a visual is no substitute for actual research. They no longer can question anything in a STEM-based field. They never question academic institutions. They defer to authority. They always position their own nation as morally superior to anyone else's.

There is no difference between 60 Minutes and a late-night informercial. Vince Offer might as well be a correspondent.


Which brings us to the travails of the Denver Post and the misleading article about their woes in Politico.

I covered the newspaper industry over a decade ago. The game hasn't changed. The ignorance of those in the industry hasn't changed.

Newspaper circulation has been going down for decades. The article ignores this -- and the fact that ad revenues have been also in a free fall. If fewer people are reading and fewer advertisers are using newspapers to sell their products -- then the newspaper isn't profitable.

Unless you squeeze the assets of the newspaper -- which is what is happening.

The Politico piece completely ignores how modern-day newspaper owners are making money -- not with the actual product -- but by dismantling it piece by piece. It is a smash and grab method -- and there is not much more room left.

So what does it mean to squeeze assets?

You may notice how many newspapers have moved from their once large and prime locations to smaller venues -- selling the building and the land is an example of asset squeezing. In Canada, the Globe and Mail once had a large and prime sprawling building -- which no longer exists -- the condo market is far more lucrative, and the parent company made a profit -- not with the newspaper, but by squeezing an asset.

The problem is now there isn't much more assets left. Once you hit the physical building, it is the end of the road.

Newspapers are profitable only by squeezing assets -- so the Politico piece paints a very deceptive picture. It makes it seem as if there was life or hope left in the product -- but it is the opposite: if assets weren't being squeezed, there would be no profits. That's why vulture companies buy several newspapers, squeeze assets, and then sell them to the lower-tiered vulture company.

But the article is a perfect example of why journalism got destroyed: it chose narratives over reality. All you have to do is look at the bottom line of how companies are actually making a profit, and the reality is asset squeezing has been the method for as long as I have been studying journalism -- and longer.

But narratives are a form of dishonesty, meaning people are being given lies over truth.

Had journalism dealt with reality and truth, they wouldn't be throwing self-righteous temper tantrums.

They wouldn't be cheerleaders for businesses. They wouldn't be demonizing their owners because they would understand why their property was acquired in the first place.

The narrative did the profession in -- and it was a demise so richly earned...

Journalism's downfall and moving on from the rot of desperation.

Where did journalism go wrong?

The better question is how did it go wrong?

You do not have to look anywhere else but this profile on Ronan Farrow, one of the smattering of people who could be considered the ideal of a journalist. The fact that we had decades of women being abused in the workplace, particularly in the communications industry -- but it took a white man to make the grievance a legitimate one, tells you everything you need to know about how worthless journalism has been all along.

Or, you can look at the dysfunctional mess of the Denver Post, which is an primitive and infantile reaction to a reality that has been a long time coming. Newsweek is also a mess, but the overlords put a clamp on the public tantrums. It isn't changing the situation, but those screaming fits drown out what has been really happening: childish narratives used to distort perceptions of reality.

The problem is perception is not reality, no matter what kind of slap fight you choose to engage in. Had journalism been a healthy industry, it would attract a different sort of ownership.

But the worst of it comes the willful ignorance of that reality that demands our attention, but has been deflected by journalistic narrative.

Take this propaganda piece from the New York Times on the "renegades" of the "dark web." The piece is pure deception: here are Establishment professors and authors voguing for the newspaper. The are not renegades. They are old school and well-heeled academics who formed little online groups to indulge in the café culture of Europe. That is not news.

The same filters are present in a piece from the Conversation about the hypocrisy of Hillary Clinton and Madeleine Albright -- two women who had no trouble having blood on their hands with their Machiavellian and opportunistic political policies -- and their subsequent financial exploitations of those inhuman policies -- but then the author of the piece proves he had learned absolutely nothing of his own lesson as he believes a younger generation are somehow better.

The author -- a professor from my old alma mater who should really know better -- didn't bother reading the words of a young Hillary Clinton to see that she too was once one of those voices who seemed to preach idealism -- and yet it was all calculated dogma proving she was willing to betray those ideals for a better political position. Her own undergraduate thesis screams that we cannot merely take youthful musings for granted, especially when the methods and messages are too close to Clinton's for comfort.

The profession has proven itself unteachable. You can either waste energy trying to resurrect a dead corpse -- or work toward nurturing a new life to create something new.

The misogyny that women's issues are only important if a white man says it is won't do.

The selfish tirades won't do.

The delusional narratives won't do.

The blindness to the past won't do.

So moving on is the more rewarding option -- and the more constructive one...

Denver Post not getting their happy ending after their temper tantrum. Reality bites.

In Hollywood movies, after someone gives their righteous speech standing up to someone they do not like, everything changes as everyone changes their minds and it All Works Out In the End.

The Denver Post did that, and nothing has changed. Charles Plunkett was the editorial page editor who dressed down Alden Global Capital, the owners of the Post. He has resigned. Alden Global Capital are still there.

Journalists haven't been dealing with reality, and their reality is that they cannot get quality owners for a reason. Just look at the New York Times reporting their subscription numbers.

The problem is the numbers aren't what they appear to be. Their rivals the New York Post point it out, but when I worked as a journalist, I used to cover the business of journalism, particularly print, and one set a numbers you could never trust was subscription numbers. The definitions were getting watered down when I was covering it, and what is counted as a subscription is dubious at best. If advertising revenue is down, even when numbers seemingly look as if they are growing, that is the red flag that the subscriptions numbers are not as robust as they look.

Reality bit journalism to death, plain and simple. They are pulling out all the stops to try to make it seem as if they are reviving, and yet those stunts aren't doing anything for their fortunes.

With the US economy having a very robust streaking, media outlets should have been experiencing a real bounce -- even if their own industry is in tatters.

Yet it's not happening. The New York Times' numbers should have been significantly higher, just because more people are employed and have disposable income, and want to look informed as are willing to have a prop subscription to do it.

Yet the Times is struggling, and it's America's most well-known newspaper. This is a real shift is journalism's fortunes.

And no sunny spinning of rot is working.

The Denver Post is still collapsing, and the Times is having a harder time presenting a façade of strength.

That's the reality -- and journalism's inability to face reality explains the reason for their dismal fortunes...

False narratives, false hope: How the Denver Post keeps journalism in a coffin

You would think journalists would learn by now that every new owner is that much more removed and worse than the owner they had before it. The Denver Post is praying for a new owner, and actively trying to pretend the only problem is their current overlords.

They can be bought by someone new, nothing will change because their narrative is a false that one that is setting the industry up for false hope.

I saw it all in the late 1990s and early 2000s when I wrote about this very problem: newspapers changed owners more often than they changed their underpants, and nothing has changed. Each new master is worse than the one before it, and the product suffers.

This will change nothing. If the profession hasn't learned its lesson in the last 20 years, there will be no revelation coming to them now.

That doesn't mean the rest of the world has to be tethered to those delusions: it just means an alternative should move without the baggage of the past...

Memo to The Nation: You cannot "save" journalism. It destroyed itself. How about you stop meddling and corrupting the information stream and an alternative replaces it.

The Nation is pretentious partisan dreck that is all about meddling. the-nation-logo

And they are utterly oblivious to the point of being unintentionally funny.

Because self-serving fantasy-based sophistry that doesn't align with reality in any way, shape, or form is a real hoot.

It isn't actually funny because that very unscientific and irrationally-based form of scribbling was the big reason why journalism died.

Now that journalism has been reduced to a stinky rotten corpse, the knuckleheads at the Nation have decided that they have the ability to "save" journalism.

Oh please.

It's too late, children.

They have made their decree that the rotten Denver Post needs journalists' meddling.

No, you cannot save the Denver Post. They have imploded, and they have no one but themselves to blame.

Nor do you have the ability or morality to save journalism. That ship has sailed.

It is time to scrap an unworkable and archaic industry that refused to keep up with the times.

It is now time to bring in a superior replacement.

Because the world deserves something far better than the dead profession of journalism...

Ideological Cleansing in an Age of Propaganda

During the Civil War in the former Yugoslavia, there was a PR-spawned and media-happy buzzword used to describe the fighting: ethnic cleansing. The term was meant to show that the region had become intolerant of other ethnicities: an area that had mixed groups would were rushing to "purify" the region. We don't use the term anymore despite other international conflicts. It never actually caught on: once the optics front was won, the term faded from our lexicon.

Except the concept itself is alive and well, and thriving on various communications platforms, from legacy media to social media.

There is no tolerance. There is no diversity. There isn't even plurality.

It is Us versus Them.

With no notion of in-between whatsoever.

It is an ideological war going on, and one with the mental maturity of a spoiled and indulged two year-old in soggy underpants. Suddenly, there is no skepticism, looking at evidence, rationality, or case-by-case examination of the facts. It pure, seething, and manipulative propaganda from both the Left and the Right, nullifying both schools of thought in the bargain.

On the one side of this little game, are men such as Tony Robbins who has decided #MeToo is a bad thing, and everyone who has claimed to have experienced workplace terrorism is doing it for self-serving reasons. There is no looking at facts. He issues an opinion as if it were divine decree, and that's that.

Anyone who disagrees must be removed from our space because they are defective -- and less than human. Hence, ideological cleansing seems like a moral and rational choice. Of course, it is irrational cowardice: we fear our beliefs will crumble; and so, we build fortresses so that we do not have to perceive the reality and truth of our weaknesses. If we do not face it, then perhaps it does not exist.

The irrationality doesn't stop there. The Atlantic decides Donald Trump -- the man who beat journalists and won the White House -- is still too stupid to have his own ideas; so naturally it is not his experience with institutions that makes him skeptical of them -- he is just a hapless and passive conduit of the 1970s.

But the New York Times opines that it is a good thing that the Denver Post is skeptical of the institution that owns them, and there is not a chance those editorial writers are a mere vessel of the decade they grew up in.

Hedge funds are bad when they own decaying newspapers and have to deal with plunging readerships and advertising revenue, but hedge fund owner Madeline Albright is just fine when she writes an Op-Ed piece for the New York Times, openly plotting to "stop Trump before it's too late" -- that's up to the citizens of the US to do at the ballot when the next election comes.

Ms Albright, you may have gotten away with those barbaric games with the Serbs, but your disgusting notions of ideological cleansing are off-putting to say the least.


But in an Age of Propaganda, people behave like robber barons: greed it good, and we must buy up as much ideological property as we can to dominate the marketplace of ideas. Monopoly of thought seems like a foolproof plan: if no one objects, then truth and reality of our ideological flaws cannot possibly exist.

Except, of course, they do exist. You cannot cleanse away truth or reality. It is the reason empiricism is essential as is the never-ending search for facts: there is always a flaw that must be discovered and dealt with. Our theories must always be tested as the world changes and expands. Not everyone's life requirements are alike, and no, one ideology does not fit all.

Journalism was supposed to prevent propaganda from overtaking publicity discourse, but then it became infected and spread the disease, corrupting ideological and political debate to the point it has become useless.

There can be no right answer when the goal is ideological cleansing. It nullifies every argument on either side of the linear divide.

It is the reason why an alternative to journalism is needed: in a world filled with fanaticism, political atheism brings common sense back into visible reality, tearing down narrative, and exposing facts, no matter how upsetting those facts happen to be.

People with billions of dollars to their name are now openly clamouring for a civil war during prosperous peace times. This is no longer moral or rational thought. It is fascism.

And there is no hack or solution from either side of the line in the sand. A map is needed, but one the ignores the narratives and finds the facts to chart a productive route to better -- and more emotionally stable places...

Denver Post's meltdown out of control: Journalists still trying to issue decrees they do not have the authority to make.

The Huffington Post's manipulative spin on the Denver Post's temper tantrum is extraordinary:

In An Extraordinary Act Of Defiance, Denver Post Urges Its Owner To Sell The Paper

That's the propagandistic headline, and it is worth tearing apart to illustrate just how out of touch the profession has become.

They want to issue decrees. They want to be social engineers. They want to meddle and tell the world what to do.


The temper tantrum is no "defiance", extraordinary or otherwise. A owner can do whatever she wishes with what she owns.

But journalists are still smarting after November 2016. They told people how to vote, and they didn't listen. Then they told people it was all Russia and Facebook's fault and people should immediately delete their accounts. People kept their accounts and ignored them.

The Canadian media then demanded their government give them money so they could continue to do whatever they wanted with someone else's assets. They didn't get what they wanted.

Trump is still in power. Facebook will recover. Russia is making fun of their paranoia.

Now journalists are demanding that their owners do what their employees want, never mind those employees were actively destroying their own profession with their incessant arrogance.

They looked down on readers. They were covering garbage instead of real news. They were issuing opinions instead of facts.

Audiences were disgusted and walked away, and now what? Their owners are supposed to keep funding a dead profession. You do not own the paper -- or do you understand the political system you live in?

Or do you expect the rules not to apply to you because you'r what? Superior to everyone else? Get over yourselves.

Memo to the Denver Post: you lost the war. You can make no demands. If you do not like what your bosses are doing -- quit and walk away. You do not own that newspaper.

I walked away from journalism because that industry was broken beyond repair. It was people like you who destroyed the profession because you were willfully oblivious. You issued your decrees and thought the Great Unwashed would be impressed with your self-serving sophistry.

They abandoned you on the battlefield.

Do you understand what that actually means?

You lost the game, the battle, and the war. You are prisoners of that war, and the victors can do whatever they want.

If you were a little less lazy and arrogant, this wouldn't have happened. You ignored people who warned you repeatedly what was happening. You thought you were smarter.

Well, you're not.

Stop throwing your temper tantrums. Start writing your letters to apology to everyone whose lives you ruined. Then write to those audiences you talked down to because you wanted them to abandon their freewill to do what you wanted.

This is the reason why journalism is no longer a thing. The profound lack of respect had its consequences, and those consequences was the destruction of a once noble profession.

That's the truth and reality of the situation. Now deal with it without telling other people what to do.

You want change? It starts with losing the arrogant attitude and changing your own behaviours first.

Otherwise, shut up and deal with it.

Memo to the Denver Post: If you are going to make a case of being needed in your community, try to know your surroundings first.

The Washington Post is cutting slack to the Denver Post for putting the wrong stadium in a story. It was supposed to be the "Ultimate Guide to Coors Field," but then the picture was of a stadium in Philadelphia.

It is not a minor error. That's not even in the same state.

Why is this more important than it first appears? Because this section is soft news, and it is more advertising than actual news -- and if they cannot get a no-brainer such as this photo right, what else are they getting wrong?

If you are going to make a case that you are essential for a community, the first step is to make sure you give accurate information to said community, but panic has set in, even though journalism needs to accuracy under even the most trying of circumstances to stay relevant...

Denver Post is begging alienated readers to save them from themselves. You collapsed for a reason.

The Denver Post is begging to be saved by the very readers they turned off over the years, even going so far as using phrases such as "as vultures circle." Many people you slammed in your pages think the same way of you.

People stopped reading your paper for a reason. It has nothing to do with Trump or Facebook or Russia. It has to do with treating those readers with contempt while never improving your product in a way that connects to readers.

Newspapers ignored youth for decades, assuming they don't read. They ignored women and people who were not born white. Poor people were beneath them, too.

You let it slide for this long, and now you think of wanting to be saved?

You should have thought about it long before that.

We need facts, absolutely. We need information, not narrative. We needed to know all sorts of things, but got Kardashian backsides and the romantic life of celebrities.

It curried favour with tyrants. It turned grifters into Great Men. People couldn't make ends meet -- if they had information they could use -- they could begin to turn their fortunes around.

That's what happened. People became disillusioned, and then walked away.

We need to be informed, but the Post is not going to do it. It is too busy lobbying to see what went wrong.

But it doesn't mean it cannot be replaced with something new -- and something that has respect for readers, and not issue orders to them demanding for them to save them...

Denver Post blames their woes on Alden Global Capital. It was their own sleepwalking that did them in.

The melodrama continues with the press incessantly talking about their woes. This propaganda piece is meant to drive the point that Evil hedge fund decimated the paper with few left standing. Boo hoo. There is a video to show the bloodbath, but here is the spoiler:


If the problem was unique to The Post, that would be one thing, but this is a global problem.

Journalism collapsed. We can blame the hedge funds -- or social media or the lawyers -- but the problems are far deeper than that. Readers have been leaving and it has been going on long before that.

It is easier to blame others than to look inward, and journalists are looking for any scapegoat they can -- Russia, Trump, Facebook, readers, advertisers, and just about anyone or anything that isn't a journalist.

It's not true. Journalism never kept up with the times, and the rest of the world did. The results are inevitable, and videos like this show the journalists look at everything to blame but themselves...

The problems of journalism are global in scale. No beat is immune. No country is immune.

A recent SXSW panel discussion about music journalism was interesting, particularly these two observations:

“Nothing is real,” quipped Spin editor-in-chief Puja Patel — flying a little close to the sun for some — when asked about alliances between the major labels and playlists on Spotify and Apple Music. That association can drive traffic on sites like Genius, whose news editor, Chris Mench, explained how a track appearing on a popular Spotify playlist always drives traffic to the song’s page on his site. “You can see in real-time what people are interested in,” said Mench. The discussion also segued to Spotify’s internal playlists, like Rap Caviar, which are curated by actual experts, making the job of new-artist discovery more challenging.

For a site like Bandcamp, though, the audience dictates which new artists the site chooses to profile. “We’re catching people on the way up,” said Senior Editor Marcus Moore. “If whatever we do helps them in the long run — I’m good.”

This isn't journalism. This advertorial writing. The point is not to "help" any act through the press. It is to report on styles, emergence of new genres, cultural and social impact and trends, and the ugly side of it as well: from drug smuggling, to payola, to sexual harassment, to even the sketchy ways record labels promote and fudge numbers to inflate their impact and importance.

We don't have music journalists. We have copy writers. We have marketers.

If the problems were confined to music journalism it would be one thing. But the profession isn't weakened just because of that one glitch.

It is not just a North American problem. There is talk in Australia about how ideal of a cover journalists could be for spies.

Well, that will put a huge target sign on those in the profession in foreign countries.

But having journalists as spies is nothing new -- it has been used globally, sometimes countries will make the practice illegal, before the law is repealed.

That such talk is beginning again is interesting as the industry has collapsed, and it collapsed for numerous reasons -- trivializing important stories has been on the top of the list.

But not just in North America, but in countless other countries. We see it in India, for instance, but non-North American countries at least make their displeasure known and do not put a sunny spin on the problem.

Very few in North America have the understanding of what happened in the profession. The Denver Post wasn't in trouble because everything was function in the industry. We may have people in the profession blame hedge funds for the woes -- but that isn't the case.

Journalism's own numbness to reality did them in.

Bob Woodward seems to be one of those who can see the result of the sloppiness and hubris, but it goes much further than the lost sense of objectivity.

The problem has always been universal: the complete lack of discipline and empirical methods. Terms have never been defined in a useful way.

It is akin to building a house with stones, piling them up haphazardly, without measurement, tools, or improving methods with testing and experimenting. With the house collapses, you cannot pretend your crude methods were not to blame.

It is a world-wide problem. It is a problem for people regardless of their gender, sexual orientation, nationality, race, religion, socioeconomic status, political affiliation, and educational background. No one can have virtuous airs about who is to blame for a profession's global destruction.

That is the first revelation people need to grasp: that no one is safe and no one has got it right.

And you cannot do the same thing and get a different outcome -- anywhere in the world...

Denver Post's bloodbath. Almost a third of employees to get kicked to the curb. Whoever said this is a Golden Age of Journalism was obviously reality-numb.

The bloodbath is coming. Out of about 90 employees, thirty are getting axed. denver_post

And yet its parent company recently bought the struggling Boston Herald.

It is not a Golden Age of Journalism. Anyone who tries to ignore reality has no business covering it...