In yet another move that will likely piss-off Old Tyme-y newspaper types, The New York Times is shutting down a whole batch of its suburban outposts. One staffer writes in, "Big stuff. They are closing all of their suburban bureaus, packing up, giving up, going home to protect what is left of their base-seven 84 year-olds on the upper west side. White Plains, New Jersey, Connecticut and Long Island-shuttered, reporters brought into Manhattan and reassigned, pretty much except for one dude in New Jersey, kept there so that tri-state doesn't have less correspondents than, say, Montana. If that's not a metaphor for their dire economic circumstances, I'm not sure what is-but it's a curious decision too. Their shrinking readership base in the city is smaller than the ring outside it. Maybe they want it to be bigger again…by shrinking what's outside of it. Ah, now I get it." But another source inside the Gray Lady has a less dire take.
"I can say that your correspondent is off the mark on the substance, the drivers, the mood, and the implications. We're all pretty excited about the new direction, me included.
"I would only observe that we have a large and loyal readership in the New York suburbs, a bigger one than in the five boroughs. But those people mostly aren't reading the Times for detailed local coverage of suburban New Jersey and Connecticut. And such stories will not be what keeps Metro thriving and relevant in an era when the Times is a national and global platform.
"I know people like to dance on our grave out there, but this is a good and positive thing, not a cheap metaphor for decline."