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Pale Blue Dot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:59 PM
Original message
Tribune Co. files for bankruptcy protection
Source: MSNBC

NEW YORK - Media conglomerate Tribune Co. has filed for bankruptcy protection.

The owner of the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Cubs and other properties has $13 billion in debt.

Severe reductions in advertising this year because of the recession has put pressure on the company. Most of its debt comes from the complex transaction in which the company was taken private by real estate mogul Sam Zell last year.

Read more: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28101775 /



This is likely to be the first of many media companies to take this step.
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Newsjock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
1. Still somewhat shocking to see this, even after yesterday's warning
But, I have to say, the wounds are almost entirely self-inflicted.

As a former newsroom manager (but not for Tribune Co.), never have I seen an industry so utterly out of touch with the real-world concerns of its customers. There are, of course, many fine individuals who work valiantly to overcome these obstacles, and there is still great journalism being done in America, but the corporate pressures simply are too much.

I don't know what form journalism is about to take in this country, but the civic participation of everyday Americans is at stake.
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closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. I think you are part of the 'new media'. Seriously. I get virtually ALL my news from here
and news.google.com - maybe that makes me dumb, I don't know, but I seem to be able to hold my own.
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BootinUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. but you don't really get it here
you find it here. The original journalism generally is done elsewhere, blogs and the msm, wouldn't you agree?

It seems to me the answer to the problem in old media is that there are too many resources being spent on covering the same news and that a greater share of the total will need to cover local news. Also a great downsizing of these news outlets so they can be viable of course.
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Joe Bacon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:27 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. I Do get my news here
Edited on Mon Dec-08-08 02:28 PM by Joe Bacon
The Corporate Controlled Conservative Press has lied too many times for me to believe anything they print!
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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. If you get any news from LBN, you get it from major newspapers and wire services. Look down...
the list of sources. I post a lot in LBN, and know where it comes from. Until blogs have foreign bureaus, etc., we will continue to get a great deal of our news from these newsgathering organizations.

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Joe Bacon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:06 PM
Response to Reply #5
21. I've gotten to the point that I read the Guardian and the Independent.
I read them online and it is just so amazing to see major articles on a daily basis about things that the American CCCP just ignores!

CCCP =

Corporate
Controlled
Conservative
Press
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closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:41 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. You have a point, but much of what the mainstream papers post is also from AP wires.
and given how little real investigative journalism they do anymore (and the Trib used to do amazing investigative journalism), I don't know why anyone feels they need a real newspaper now.
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sti08dem Donating Member (2 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:48 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Not good for employees
Im pretty sure the way this was structured a big chunk of the equity was from the ESOP, so they're now wiped out. Sam Zell is as well, but he only put in $300MM, which is chump change for him. Thought it was foolish for the ESOP trustee to approve the amount of leverage at the time, now the employees will be paying the price.
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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:52 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. That's right. I know L.A. Times employees. These journalists are people, liberals...
overwhelmingly, talented, not that well-paid, workers like any others, and in danger of losing their jobs every day, as hundreds of their colleagues have.

Welcome to DU, sti08dem!!!
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Joe Bacon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:04 PM
Response to Reply #8
20. The ones who drove Gary Webb to suicide?
I do not believe the Lies Angeles Times. The last straw was when they joined with fellow propaganda organs the Screw York TImes and the Whoreshington Post to cover up the CIA's involvement in Contra Cocaine

They deliberately lied to destroy Gary Webb. Meanwhile, Chickenhawk Jonah Goldberg clucks like a capon in that disgusting propaganda rag...
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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 01:26 AM
Response to Reply #20
22. Uh, no. No one I know there drove Gary Webb to suicide. As for Contra --
I believe they were toddlers to elementary schoolers at that time.

Jonah Goldberg is vile, but Rosa Brooks, for example, is not.

But, hey, I hear where you're coming from. I'm a frequent critic of the MSM. We have different perspectives on this particular issue involving workers, employment, benefits, etc., in a time of economic distress.
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Newsjock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. Local newspapers do local civics like nobody else
At least they do when the papers are run well. DU et al. aren't intended to tell you what's going on with your local city council, school board, and the like. Newspapers traditionally have provided a necessary local watchdog over these organizations, but such work usually isn't especially glamorous or profitable.

But one of the ills in our society is the steep decline in local civic involvement -- and I'm hard-pressed to see what can replace the role of local newspapers.
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closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. And though this is sort of off-topic, the reason people don't get involved much now is overwork.
Esp. in Minnesota, I've heard. Where, Michele Bachmann tells us that she is proud that her constituents are the workingest people in the nation, with two - sometimes three - jobs each.
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rvablue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #9
15. Me, too....it's scary to think of a democracy
and what it would be like without local papers.

But, at least where I live, the local paper already does a horrible job of covering local stories and many independant bloggers have stepped in to fill the void.

Nonetheless, if all of these papers shut down, who will be watching the leaders, businesses, police, etc.????
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roseBudd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:27 PM
Response to Reply #2
19. You may be gtting your news online but it still originated in a newsroom somewhere
All LBN is, is scraping of news.

There are 2 things that suck if you don't click through to the originator of the article.

Your page views don't count if you don't click through. Page views means that DUers could be a roving band of Nielsen's indicating interest in good journalism.

And if you don't click through the originator of the article does not get the page views so they can try to get online advertising dollars to compensate from the disruption of Craig's List and Ebay.

Without newsrooms, there would be no LBN and no Google or Yahoo news.
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AngryAmish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 03:09 PM
Response to Original message
11. Well there goes this season
We are in the middle of the winter meetings and jake peavy trade is still out there...and then we get frozen by the bankruptcy automatic stay.

God is cruel and most likely a White Sox fan.

Jesus wept.
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Bette Noir Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 03:38 PM
Response to Original message
12. They shouldn't have bought, and ruined, "The LA TImes."
I used to love that paper, but they wrecked it.
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katty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. they sure did-yesterday's headline was bizarre - a story
from 2007---they are cracking up at LAT.
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Freddie Stubbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:10 PM
Response to Original message
14. Will the newspapers be the next to ask for a bailout?
:shrug:
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russspeakeasy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:37 PM
Response to Original message
16. No doubt about it....we should bail them out...
and give BOA some more money and give the oil companies
another break....keep those printing presses going...and
while we're at it lets give that sob at merrill lynch another
10 million bonus...We are all going under and we just keep
adding water...before I forget ...Poor Dow 
chemical......where, oh where will we get our agent orange
now???
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Tinksrival Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:05 PM
Response to Original message
17. Dirty stinkin Repub owners
So how do you like your 04 endorsement of Bush now?
That's when we canceled this shit. Democratic progressive city and the Trib push the Bush bullshit on us and said EAT IT. Corporate whores, I said a big FUCK YOU in a letter which I still have a copy of along with the one from them begging me to come back. Happy now Trib? Hows it working out for YOU! Look at all those lives you helped to ruin! Who am I kidding.....they probably blame it all on Barney Frank and the Democrats. :mad:
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onenote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:17 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Not that they aren't all repubs, but the folks who owned tribune in 2004 sold out in 2007
to Sam Zell.
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Amonester Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 05:43 AM
Response to Original message
23. Tribune Co. files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection
Source: Los Angeles Times

Tribune Co., the owner of the Los Angeles Times, KTLA Channel 5 and dozens of other daily newspapers and television stations across the country, filed Monday for bankruptcy protection from creditors, in the latest indication of deteriorating economics for the news business.

The company's ills, which stem principally from declining advertising revenues, have been exacerbated by the heavy debt load of $12 billion it incurred a year ago when it was taken private by Chicago real estate entrepreneur Sam Zell.

But they parallel troubles afflicting many other newspaper and broadcasting companies nationwide: In recent weeks, the McClatchy newspaper chain put its Miami Herald up for sale, the Christian Science Monitor said it would abandon daily print publication in favor of Web operation, the Philadelphia Inquirer and Minneapolis Star-Tribune have flirted with or entered default, and the New York Times said it would mortgage its headquarters skyscraper in midtown Manhattan to help cover operating costs.

But none as yet has gone so far as to file for bankruptcy, which could add a new dimension of uncertainty for Tribune and its 16,000 employees. During a bankruptcy reorganization, major management decisions are subject to the approval of a bankruptcy judge, and the ultimate fate of a company -- including whether it remains intact or is sold off in pieces -- could be decided in part by its creditors.


Read more: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-tribune9-2008dec0...
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Phredicles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 05:43 AM
Response to Reply #23
24. So just how much more sucky will this make the LA Times?
Ever time I think they can't possibly make it a bigger embarrassment, they find a way. So I just can't imagine why they're not making more money. :sarcasm:
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nolabels Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 05:43 AM
Response to Reply #23
25. Selling it off in pieces would be nice
The monolithic conservative right wing message machine is falling apart. Why is this not good news :shrug:
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MrModerate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 05:43 AM
Response to Reply #23
26. I still prefer having a daily paper to go with my online news sources . . .
Partly because of the eclectic mix (which I might otherwise miss, being fixated on political news as I am); partly because of the local ads, which frequently induce me to buy stuff; and partly for the packaging of local, national, and international headlines in one tidy package, which naturally support reading each other.

And my local paper is able to support itself through advertising (I live in a metro area with about a million people and the only other major competitors in the morning paper space are the "national" paper -- a Murdoch product -- and a pair of "serious" papers from two major cities down south.)

But no question the news model has changed and will continue to do so. Newspapers are evolving and dying, in true Darwinian fashion.
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freedomnorth Donating Member (237 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 05:43 AM
Response to Reply #23
27. duplicate topic
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