Really interesting and fair article on Axis Philly today containing candid interviews with Inquirer reporters about what the fuck is wrong with the paper.

Somewhat surprisingly, most of the staff seems to get that the web is important and an area in which ownership and management is clueless. None better demonstrated that view than this anonymous reporter:

“There is immense confusion among our readership as to who the Inquirer is and who is. We have three different websites, all purporting to be the newspapers. You don’t have that at the New York Times. You don’t have that at theWashington Post. You don’t have that at the Chicago Tribune, either. Here the Inky is behind one pay wall, the Daily News behind another, and nobody reads those, then there is this amalgamation of real journalism and complete bullshit on the website. Eagle cheerleader stories. Teasers about snipers on the freeway, but it’s in Sacramento from a week ago. Hyped stories about snow coming. Just drawing clicks. It’s incredibly stupid and frustrating because the people who run the joint defend it. They don’t see it as something that needs to be changed. They see it as something that has added value, like getting poked in the eye is added value.”


Could not agree more. Sure, I’m the guy who writes about players partying and saying dumb things on camera. But I’m also not the main website for the two biggest newspapers in the city. is easily its most well-read and well-known site (and it’s probably not even close). So what did the Inquirer and Daily News do with this valuable URL? Separated themselves from it to form brand new, subscription-based websites. The result is a post-nuclear blast grab bag, which features a mix of halfway decent work from the Inquirer and Daily News… and a whole bunch of rubbish (British accent). One doesn’t need to explain. Just have a look at some of the top stories today:

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Those look more like junk sponsored links (of which I’m not above…) than actual news articles.

Obviously, there’s a place for that stuff. It’s entertainment. But that place isn’t the homepage of the biggest print and online media outlet in the city. People going to are looking for real, actual, useful news and information, not SHIT. Shit is fine, and entertaining. In fact, I love bathing in its pageviews. But it needs to be accompanied by some unique or humorous commentary. There’s little of that at, partly because you can only push the envelope so far at a mainstream website… and partly because they hire people who literally aren’t writers. Some (of the real ones) are good – I like Mike Bertha and Matt Mullin – but most are pretty terrible. And all that is setting aside the fact that the people who go to WANT actual, boring news. With some shit mixed in.

Anyway, it’s nice to see an old school reporter who gets all that.