Are they hiring in Brisbane?

Dateline: Tue 04 Sep 2007

A reader lightens our loads with the news that the Fairfax Group in Australia has taken the lead and launched (in March) a newspaper that is exclusively on-line, the Brisbane Times.

Mark Potts, consultant and entrepreneur, had this to say on his blog, Recovering Journalist:

"It's probably not surprising to see this level of innovation: Australian publishers are much more aggressive and imaginative than their U.S. counterparts, and Australia in general is far more online savvy than the U.S., it's perhaps the most wired (and wireless) place I've ever been."

The paper, Potts reports, does not exist in print form; there are no presses or trucks. But the enterprise is "professionally staffed" and it looks and reads smart.

The consensus is that Central Indiana and beyond would like to see the Fairfax Group, a major media outfit down under, turn its sites on Indianapolis.

"Indy is ready for this type of venture as the Star continues to morph into irrelevance and noncoverage. It would take so little to exceed the value of Star," says blog reader Dave Bash.

Here are some other thoughts to share: Gannett is a bottom-line company. That's why the newspaper men and women employed by Gannett, no matter how much grease they put to the elbow, or shine to the story, will end up frustrated; the news will be sliced and diced, and reporters will be strung out with trivial pursuits.

I am still having Gannett nightmares, 15 months after leaving the place. Last night's involved editors taking elevators to nowhere meetings while reporters languished in Gannett-induced twilight sleep. As I came out of my stupor, in the dream -- I'm still working press in my head -- I said (I may have said it aloud): "Are they hiring at NUVO?"

The better question in the light of day is: Are they expanding in Brisbane? Could they please offer the Midwest a decent free press?

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And thanks for reading.


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