It must be hard to be in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel newsroom right now. I know it’s been tough at the Capital Times over in Madison, and its bigger cousin the State Journal hasn’t had it much easier. I still remember talking to SJ’s beloved columnist George Hesselberg after his column got iced back in 2004 — the logic of that move was ponderous, to say the least. Eliminate one of the most-read and beloved parts of your paper? Sure…
Both Journal Communications and Capital Newspapers (nee Madison Newspapers) had the bright idea of coming out with faux alt-weeklies back in 2004. Alas, neither succeeded in the long run, and both papers are now history. Neither seems to have helped their parent company stay afloat.
As someone who has been in the publishing business, and occasionally plays a reporter in various newspapers, part of my heart is still with the journalistic community. It’s a hell of a time to be in the field now, and a far cry from the day when newspapers seemed as steady and reliable a field as you could wish for. While I’m still a foreign party to most of the Milwaukee journalist scene, part of me cringes when I read about cuts at any paper. If it’s a hometown paper, that’s even worse. People that I know — be it in person or via Facebook — are affected.
As someone who has a face for radio and a voice for print, but whose fingers ache from blogging, not many options are left. God knows Indymedia doesn’t pay. Good thing I’m a history major, huh?