Subscribers to the News & Record may think that Greensboro’s daily newspaper couldn’t get much thinner.
But a hedge fund known for laying off journalists, selling real estate and cutting newsroom budgets is making a play to buy Lee Enterprises, which owns the News & Record, the Winston-Salem Journal and about 90 other publications.
The letter to the Lee Enterprises board of directors states, “Alden Global Capital, LLC (‘Alden’) is a significant investor in American newspapers, with platforms including MediaNews Group, Inc. and Tribune Publishing Company (collectively referred to as ‘we’) that are committed to ensuring communities nationwide have access to robust, independently minded local journalism. Our goal is to provide valued news and information to local subscribers nationwide, led by a talented team of seasoned newspaper executives who have worked in journalism for an average of more than 30 years.”
In response to that letter, Jon Schleuss, president of the NewsGuild union, tweeted, “Alden continues to lie about caring for local news as it makes a play for Lee Enterprises. The vulture fund should not be allowed to own any newsrooms. Period. #SaveLocalNews”
Alden purchased the Tribune newspaper chain a couple of months ago despite desperate efforts by journalists to find another buyer.
Lee had already made major cuts in the number of journalists it employed but, according to those in the industry, Alden will slash the newsroom budgets even further.
One thing Alden won’t be able to do in Greensboro is sell off any real estate.
Lee Enterprises originally had a contract with Berkshire-Hathaway to manage BH Media and, in March 2020, Lee bought the News & Record and over 70 other newspapers from Berkshire-Hathaway, but the 6.5 acre News & Record site on East Market Street was not included in the sale. The property is currently back on the market after a contract to purchase the property fell through last summer.
The News & Record is currently housed in a leased office at 3001 South Elm-Eugene St. and is printed in Winston-Salem.
I have no remaining affection for the N&R, and I hope it becomes owned by the asset strippers. It has become a meagre jejune little Left wing rag and it has earned its decline. For years it has mocked and excoriated the values of conservatives – ever since editor Ned Cline described us as Neanderthals.
To be fair, the current Editorial Page Editor, Allen Johnson, has always been agreeable and reasonable, despite being a dyed-in-the-wool Leftist. He & I disagree but manage to remain cordial, and there might even be a soupcon of mutual respect…
The rest of them could get fired tomorrow and I couldn’t care less.
If the N&Rgets thinner that will probably be a good thing, as it might reduce the amount of propaganda and yellow journalism they spew out. Let the rag die.
This is actually a good thing. The news and record is nothing more that a leftist communist propaganda machine. The National Enquirer has a stronger journalistic reputation. Let’s hope this fake news source gets carved up like Thanksgiving turkey
The demise of the local Democratic organ. Expect no tears from many corners.
Unfortunately, Guilford County has become a backwater for all hometown media coverage. When the focus becomes overwhelmingly about narrow segments of the population and their political views and interests, it signals the process of a slow and tortured decline. And yes, yellow journalism is a bad thing, not an acceptable standard. Long live the Rhino!
Remembrance of “Chainsaw Al” Dunlap, and Danny DeVito. Buy it, break it up, and sell the pieces for a profit. Does Berkshire still on this socialist rag?
No. He sold it a couple years ago
I tried submitting the following comment to 3 separate Lee Ent newspapers (Hickory Daily Record, Winston-Salem Journal, and the Gso N&R) to comment on an article introducing their new climate columnist. Not one of them printed it but there sure were a bunch of comments in favor of his bias toward man being the problem when it comes to climate change.
The HDR is owned by Lee Enterprises. Recently, Alden Global Capital expressed interest in buying the News & Record, a Greensboro publication also owned by LE, to which LE released a statement saying they would flood the market with N&R stock in order to make it harder for AGC to obtain a majority share of N&R stock. LE cited its commitment to independent, fair-minded journalism and the fact that AGC has a history of buying newspapers then slashing headcount. Fair-minded? LE hasn’t recently cleaned house? btw the new climate columnist is also the ‘new climate columnist’ at some other LE publications. You can read more about the purported AGC takeover in the Nov 23 online edition of the Rhino Times (an independent Gso publication). Funny how now that the N&R has had to slash its budget and are in danger of being taken over, LE brings on this new climate columnist. Is this an attempt to move farther to the left and solidify their reader base in light of the AGC threat? In the interest of fair-mindedness, can I assume that LE will be hiring a columnist with an opposing point of view on climate change?
I believe you. I submitted my Letter (of Nov. 9 in the Rhino) to the News & Record and the Editorial Page Editor was mirthful that I thought he’d print it.
The News & Record has been very Leftist for years, and it has become ever more leftist with each passing year, so that now it’s just an anodyne left wing echo chamber.
And they still think they’re journalists.
With the demise of local news coverage, there’s never been a better time to be a corrupt legislator, public official, court officer, regulatory official or industrial polluter. No one left to ask you pesky bothersome questions, like the corpses in your county jail, the homeless population begging at streetcorners, the sweatshop workers locked in your basement or the PCBs you’re dumping into the Haw River. Now we can concentrate on the IMPORTANT things like HS sports scores and the Junior League benefit, and everyone’s favorite, CARTOONS!