For a time today, the Star Tribune's "Most Read" and "Most Emailed" article was a story about the newspaper's own bankruptcy filing.
By 5:30, the story had fallen to No. 2 on the "Most Read" list, supplanted by this AP story about the pilot who ditched in the Hudson River. One doubts that the Strib's crash will have quite the same happy ending.
Is this good news or bad?
It's good news because it shows people still care about the daily newspaper of Minneapolis.
It's bad for the obvious reason that the Strib is in bankruptcy and everybody knows it.
How will this affect subscriptions? Are readers likely to re-up with a paper that may not exist, at least not in its present form, through the duration of the contract?
How will it affect advertising? If I were a local business, I would be very hesitant to get into bed with a paper that is defaulting on its obligations.
This has been one crazy week at the Star Tribune and loyal readers are eagerly anticipating how the paper will handle the story on Saturday and especially Sunday's paper (the latter of which is still an extremely profitable print enterprise). Minnpost's David Brauer and Sharon Schmickle (who was a Strib employee not so long ago) have provided excellent coverage, as has our own Emily Kaiser. Graydon Royce has been invaluable as the public face of the editorial workers at the Strib. But I would love if Nancy Barnes would assign Jon Tevlin to do a frontpage takeout on what the hell happened at 425 Portland Ave.
Will Minneapolis be the first American city to lose its daily newspaper?