Blurt: Seven Days Staff Blog

NOTE: Blurt has been retired and is no longer updated regularly. For new content, follow these links:

OFF MESSAGE: Vermont News and Politics
BITE CLUB: Food and Drink Blog

« Sugar as Snow | Main | No More Daily Newspaper in Detroit? »

December 12, 2008

More Media Layoffs — Politicker Sites Go Dark

It's been the buzz of the blogosphere today: Of the 17 state websites, 12 will be shuttered. Vermont is one of those sites, according to a Colorado newspaper.

The Colorado Independent reports that sites in New Jersey, New York, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania will remain operating. Sites in Arizona, California, Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Vermont and Washington state will disappear.

Here's what Owen Thomas at Gawker had to report:

At a holiday party Thursday night for the New York Observer — pizza and a keg in a conference room — Kushner gave a speech praising Politicker "despite what it has cost," an eyewitness tells us. If he planned to cut those costs the next morning, he gave no indication. But the problem with Politicker isn't what it cost; it's how little money it made.

The problem was finding the advertising money to support all those bureaus. Local reporters, thanks to newspaper cutbacks, are easy enough to locate. But advertisers, especially advertisers willing to spend small amounts at high rates to reach tiny, localized audiences, are scarce. Building relationships with those advertisers takes time and money on its own — and may not always prove worth the investment. A cautionary tale for those who would supplant newspapers in their local coverage: ink, paper, and printing presses aren't the only things wrong with the newspaper business.

At least 70 percent of Politicker staffers nationwide have been laid off. Laid-off staffers lost their email access and posting rights within an hour of an early-morning conference call announcing the cuts, according to a report on The Stranger's staff blog, Slog.

For additional stories about Politicker's demise, check out

The comments to this entry are closed.

Stuck in VT (VIDEOS)

Solid State (Music)

Mistress Maeve (Sex)

All Rights Reserved © Da Capo Publishing Inc. 1995-2012 | PO Box 1164, Burlington, VT 05402-1164 | 802-864-5684