News Corp. making mistake by not resigning Mossberg/Swisher
Richard Morgan of The Deal writes about the decision by News Corp. not to renew the contracts of technology journalists Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, who had been running its All Things Digital site.
Morgan writes, “Newspapers have been the target of so many potshots in recent years it hurts to see the best of them shoot themselves in the foot. Yet it has already happened now that ‘All Things D,’ rather than cut a new deal with the newspaper that birthed it, The Wall Street Journal, has been cut loose not only from the Journal but from its News Corp. parent. And with ‘All Things D’ forced to find new and most likely better sponsorship, what’s to keep The New York Times’ ‘Dealbook’ from seeking the same?
“Both niche but high-profile websites began more than a decade ago as journalistic versions of brands within brands. Or, in the parlance of Madison Avenue, they began as ingredient brands of the sort ‘Intel Inside’ popularized. Only these one-time ingredients of America’s premier newspapers have since earned such authority, identity and prosperity that neither remains beholden to its benefactor.
“Even before given the boot by the Journal on Thursday, ‘All Things D’ had taken to flaunting a sense of free agentry by retaining boutique bank Code Advisors LLC. The bank’s brief, according to Fortune, was ‘to find outside investors at an enterprise value that could exceed the $25 million that [AOL Inc.] reportedly paid in 2010 for rival site TechCrunch.'”
Read more here.