All Things Media Addendum
For Washington to say this has been the week that changed everything would be an understatement. Arguably, the two more significant players in Washington media for decades have been the Allbrittons and the Grahams. Individually and simultaneously, they have both walked away from their legacy media – in the same week. It might be a bit extreme to say, but it is like the communist authorities in Czechoslovakia walking into the negotiations with reformers and saying, as they did, “Okay, you know what – it’s all yours. We’re done. Good luck!”
What will happen to the Washington Post is going to be fascinating. The Post faced a number of huge questions and challenges. And now it gets really interesting. New owner Jeff Bezos is playing the “nothing will change” game, but everything will change. Post publisher Katharine Weymouth may or may not step aside, as she is part of the former ownership. The Post is still struggling to unify its print, video and web personas, Now, with an internet pioneer owning it, does that help? Will the new building, wherever it is, force more than define the future? And those are only two of the most obvious questions. If you are media watcher – you just hit the jackpot. Buckle in: Washington media just got really interesting.
The Graham family did more than run and develop the Post and Washington journalism. They protected it. The Grahams along with the Sulzbergers of the New York Times were the grand families of American journalism. They have given some explanations of why they did it. Yet another question persists: what really happened? Why did they really decide to walk away?