Wednesday, 1 October 2008

30 - NY Sun

The seven-year-old New York Sun closed its doors yesterday, adding 110 employees to the escalating U.S. unemployed newspaper workers numbers.

The broadsheet, along with Wall Street, was looking for a bailout.

As a New York Daily News story says, the weekday paper took its name from the original New York Sun, a giant in journalism that folded in 1950 after 117 years.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement he regretted the newspaper's demise.

"In a city saturated with news coverage and commentary, the Sun shone brightly, though too briefly," he said.

The collapse of any newspaper is a loss for journalism and readers. Canada has had its share of closures, including the Toronto Telegram in 1971, the Montreal Star in 1979, the Ottawa Journal and Winnipeg Tribune in 1980, etc.

The 2002 version of the New York Sun had heart, if not ample financial support after its biggest supporter, Hollinger's Conrad Black, severed ties financially.

(Seth Lipsky, the editor, took time out last year to e-mail TSF to comment on a posting about his feisty underdog paper. That is classy.)

The right-wing New York Sun reminded us of the underdog Toronto Sun in the 1970s and 80s with a scrapper, as the Daily News called Lipsky, at the helm in the newsroom.

Last month, Lipsky was telling staff and readers the plug would be pulled if the paper couldn't find new investors.

The Daily News story said the Sun was losing an estimated $1 million a month, with a daily circulation of 84,000, "with just 12,000 of those copies paid for."

New York, a city four times the size of Toronto, can't support four daily newspapers.

What's the story there?

In the expansion years of the Toronto Sun, New York was briefly considered, but insiders say the unions were too strong for an upstart tabloid to survive.

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