Tribune Publishing, the Chicago-based media giant and owner of the L.A. Times and Chicago Tribune, is buying the Union-Tribune for $85 million.
Here are the facts: The deal is not quite closed. Doug Manchester will be stepping away when it is (here’s his farewell). The U-T’s new publisher is a man named Austin Beutner, who will also remain as the publisher of the L.A. Times. Former U-T editor and current president, Jeff Light, will be staying on at the paper, though Beutner told our Scott Lewis he did not know what Light’s title will be.
The newspaper’s staff will have to leave its longtime offices in Mission Valley (Manchester’s keeping that property and will be developing it into two residential towers). Beutner would not say where the company would move. “I’m not being coy. We haven’t found a space yet,” he said.
There will be layoffs. The U-T and L.A. Times will now be part of a new entity: the California News Group. “There will be some overlaps and there will be some areas we want to grow. The net of those probably means some reduction in the head count,” Beutner told us.
Lewis asked Beutner about the editorial page – how much would the U-T’s opinions change? “We’re going to remove some of the owners influence – and I’m not just referring to Mr. Manchester. I’m sure it happened with the Copleys,” he said.
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Doug Manchester's Republican influence during his tenure and especially during the elections was horrific,... giving Bill O'Reily of Fox News a run for his dark money. When the press takes political sides supporting just one conservative view, it's credibility becomes tarnished by corporate influence which serves to defeat free speech and American democracy. Silencing the truth, misrepresentation and blatant hypocrisy had replaced good old fashion journalism which became a thing of the past in San Diego under Papa Doug Manchester for far to long now, tearing at the very fabric of our Constitution. I'm still extremely skeptical about this ownership change bringing about any real journalistic change since this GOP Conservative take over of all our News Media is nationwide, as most real investigative journalist have now been persecuted, fired, ridiculed, belittled, character assassinated and jailed for exposing the truth, like Julian Assaud and Edward Snowden, but I do think any change is a positive move in the right direction at this point in time, after all, how could it get any worst. Maybe now we will learn more of the real truth behind our Ocean die offs, our tree die offs, our water shortages, the real polluters behind all our underground fresh water supplies, wealthy corporate tax dodgers hiding their billions overseas, our ramped corruption in our local law enforcement, Government and our corrupt justice system. The moral downfall of our society secretly hiding behind religious conscience is why our founding forefathers decided to separated church and state, and for good reason. As Mr Manchester so eloquently states in his farewell address, it was a real estate move for huge profits long before it ever became a noble try at community service and democracy which always becomes a distant second to any Republican corporate agenda. Who elected John Lynch and Papa Doug Manchester into a leadership role in San Diego? According to these two wealthy guys, owning a newspaper gives them that right,... That's called Fascism. Making huge profits in the United States and hiding it all overseas in the Cayman Islands may be the Republican way of doing business, but in my book it's called treason. The entire Bush/Cheney administration has brokered a backdoor deal with Argentina where they have purchased huge plots of farm land to retire,... The only reason why they are still here in the US is because many other countries around the world would go to Argentina and arrest them for terrorism and crimes against humanity. Something Republican politicians should be reminded of ever so often,.. Not that it would do any good or change their twisted ideology,... Doug Manchester like many wealthy Republicans see the writing on the wall,... Our country is in for a huge financial downturn and the rich are divesting themselves of everything they have in the US and moving to South America where the exchange rate is still huge. American Capitalism at it's finest. Millions will suffer as a direct result of their greedy actions,...
@Thomas DeSoto Welcome to conspiracy day, Mr. DeSoto. If you want the unvarnished truth, just leave your TV on MSNBC. They've got the real POOP.
VOSD has served San Diego well by filling in an important void. Namely it covered public policy without right-wing propaganda. VOSD, PBS, and a few smaller news outlets kind of formed the anti-UT (in the readers' minds). If the UT transforms to a more balanced tone similar to the LA Times, what will happen to VOSD's audience?
I may get stoned and run out of town on a rail for saying this, but I think the quality of the U-T actually improved under Manchester's "guidance". Sure, the editorial content was outrageous, but newspaper owners of every political persuasion exercise the right to vent their spleens. Check the L.A. Times for completely opposite opinions, just as left-leaning as Papa's were to the right.
Personal opinion: the depth of the reporting got better, they did more investigative work, actually breaking a few big stories, and added a couple of columnists including Steven Grenhut who, I think, does very good work on state issues. And they added back our old friend Ruben Navarette, who had departed several years ago. He's not every day but can now be considered a "regular".
All in all, Manchester's tenure was far from the disaster many Voice readers had predicted.
@Bill Bradshaw I thought ex-cops like you were already run out of town many years ago,... especially after your pro cop comments that were made,... and nullified. Still around making more ridiculous comments,... glued to a chair like most trolls hired by the Heritage Foundation. They must have given you a raise.
I for one am glad your still around, since you remind us all of the old guard,... dinosaurs hanging on to old school ideology, which has long been refuted. Without this huge contrast of ideology , how else can anyone of us learn good from bad,....Like Rush L, your a gift that keeps giving,...
@Thomas DeSoto @Bill Bradshaw I hate to tell you this, pal, but I was never a police officer. I'll admit that, after retirement, I did volunteer work for SDPD for eight years in the RSVP program. Why? Because my Daddy done tol' me that you have to put something back into your community whenever you are able. It was fun.
I'm also an occasional volunteer for VOSD. They give me the deadbeat list to call and remind people their subscriptions are up for renewal. It's fun too. Let's see, Davis, Deane, DePalma. Ah, here it is.......