March 21, 2016

The Dallas Snooze tries to reinvent itself again

Let's call the Snooze the Old Gray Lady of Beloville, since like to capitalize the "The" as part of their names, and have about the same level of pretentiousness, as the Morning News is, IMO, indeed one of those papers run by snide, arrogant elitists, even if current publisher Jim Monroney isn't part of the inheriting family stream.

Yours for $24.99 from the Dallas Snooze, if you're either
stupid or gullible enough to pay that much for a T-shirt,
let alone one from a business with shades of cluelessness.
Regular readers will know that I've taken the Snooze's latest attempts at being Pollyanna, in the last nine months, repeatedly to the woodshed, for Part 1 and Part 2 of "The Decline and Fall of the Dallas Morning News," accompanied by a separate post taking a steely view at Monroney's talk about a third attempt to paywall the Snooze.

And now, Poynter comes dangerously close to drinking some Belo Kool-Aid.

First, yeah, Belo probably should sell the downtown office. You know what, though? It should have looked at that idea a decade ago, when it first started swinging a real meataxe on hiring. At a minimum, it should have done that half a decade ago, when Dallas had emerged from the Great Recession.

As for Editor Mike Wilson's insights and pizzazz? I looked somewhat more skeptically at that in the Part 2 piece. That was in part skepticism about Wilson, and in part skepticism, even a bit of cynicism, about what he can do within the current power structure. Maybe Belo — since the Snooze and the related Dallas papers (which is al Dia and what else since the NeighborsGo set has been collapsed?) is all it has left, needs to get out of print media biz entirely and sell to somebody else. Maybe, under current or new ownership, Monroney needs to be kicked to the curb.

I covered ME Robyn Tomlin in the Part 1, but that was before shit-canning NeighborsGo (Go where?) and telling other the old "reapply for your jobs." Ahh, that's the neoliberal media answer to itself. Don't cut Monroney's salary, let alone have the Belo family take a smaller profit margin. Rather, reapply for your jobs, and since Texas is a right-to-get-fired state, we can pay you whatever we want, since it's technically a new job. (I am glad for those who got rehired, whatever hoops they had to jump through, whatever their new jobs are, and whatever they pay.) And, I noted that she comes from a background of less than stellar business-mindedness itself. (That said, DFM has a bullshit level about as high as Belo.)

Back to Poynter.

It then seems to tout (or at least not analyze critically) changes at GuideLive. Some of them are more than cosmetic, but others are just snazzier new lipstick on the same old pig.

It doesn't address the issue of whether hard news, instead of covering the wrong beats, has been seen as being too much in bed, even today, with old Dallas power brokers.

As for the Snooze's idea to make more money off marketing consulting for Metromess businesses, as the San Francisco Chronicle is doing in the Bay Area? First, this seemingly sets up potential conflicts of interest. Second, with any such newspaper attempts, if I'm a business, why would I go to a newspaper rather than an established advertising, marketing or PR shop? Second, specific to the Snooze, if I know how much it's struggled, and I'm a Dallas biz thinking these things have been self-inflicted, why should I value its advice? Fourth, the Chron, as a Hearst paper, has similar marketing shops at other newspapers it owns. That includes the NYC headquarters and Houston, plus a satellite in San Antonio. That means for regional or national companies Hearst can provide a reach Belo can't.

That said, the Poynter piece linked just above, about newspapers being adverse to PR? Erm, maybe editorial staff, but the corner suite folks? See my comment above about the Snooze being in bed with old time Dallas.

No comments: