Leading the Way to Better News: The Role of Leadership in a World Where Most of the “Powers That Be” Became the “Powers That Were”

By Geoffrey Cowan Shorenstein Center Fellow, Fall 2007 University Professor and Annenberg Family Chair in Communication Leadership, University of Southern California February 15, 2008 #D-44 © 2008 President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Published by Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy Discussion Paper Series Abstract During the past several years, as traditional news operations have faced sharp declines in circulation, advertising, viewership, and audiences, and as they have begun to make a seemingly unrelenting series of cuts in the newsroom budgets, scholars and professionals have been seeking formulas or models designed to reverse…

Newspapers as non-profits? Tax savings but some big downsides

Given the fact that many newspapers seem headed toward nonprofit status anyway, it's perhaps not surprising that someone would try to make it official. Legislation introduced this week by Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland would enable newspapers to establish themselves as tax-exempt nonprofits and qualify for significant expense savings courtesy of Uncle Sam. Under the Cardin measure, they wouldn't have to pay income taxes on income derived from advertising sales. That's a big difference from existing IRS regulations, which customarily extract federal income taxes on advertising revenue derived by nonprofits. (There are a number of exceptions to this, including one…

LA Times editor

Journalists, accountants and bankruptcy experts found accord Thursday on the No. 1 issue facing Tribune Company as it begins its Chapter 11 bankruptcy adventure: It isn't owner Sam Zell. It isn't the company's huge indebtedness. The question, said Los Angeles Times editor Russ Stanton, is "whether this is a viable business." In one way, Stanton told a gathering at USC's Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, the answer is already clear. "I think big-city newspapers, the way we have known them, are not long for this world, as they're now configured."…