Monday, April 16, 2007

Take Back the Times: First Combined Opinion And Book Review Is Mediocre

First Combined Opinion And Book Review Is Mediocre

Jim Newton's work is cut out for him. The first combined Opinion and Book Review section in the L.A. Times yesterday was bland and mediocre. It is clear that regardless of the design, it will take more imagination to make it a success.

Altogether, as a former editor of the Times remarked to me last night, the combined section represents a reduction in the total news hole devoted to these vital subjects. It represents another step in the Tribune company's cost cutting that is not in the interest of the readers. It is a depressing confirmation that the inept Dennis FitzSimons, CEO of the company, is still in charge, and continues to run his newspapers into the ground. It also shows that the Tribune appointees as publisher and editor of the Times, David Hiller and James O'Shea, are not successfully resisting his depredations at the newspaper.

1 comment:

Kanani said...

I talked about that at yesterday's meeting with Al Martinez.

I was amused/ amazed, that they'd try something like that. But then again, I looked at the dwindling number of advertisements, and can understand (in part) why. Also, they do have a lot on the website regarding books.

But, I do think it's a mistake to make the Book Review section smaller given that the LA Times is a major sponsor of the FESTIVAL OF BOOKS!

However, I did like the review of Lynn Stegner's book. You usually never find reviews of her books. She's just not that well-known of a writer, but she is good. She's a California author, and I think we need to get out of that "east coast breeds better writers" (Jonathon Safran Foer, for example who was the first story) mindset and showcase some of the talent we have here.

Well, I guess I'm just tired of the east coast mentality. I'm a westerner, third generation and proud of it.