Daniel Convissor's notes on:

Death in the Afternoon

America's Newspaper Giants Struggle for Survival

by Peter Benjaminson

Andrews, McMeel and Parker, 1984.


Afternoon papers went under for a combination of reasons:

CH 1 A Bigger Slice of the Brie

p1. Post bought by Dorothy Schiff in 1939 for her husband. They divorced and she took it over. The paper was very liberal and associated with the New Deal.

p2. Newspapers were having a harder and harder time making a profit, so mergers were rampant. In 1966, many papers which had already merged went through a massive consolidation in which Hearst's Journal- American and Scripps' - Howard's World-Telegram & Sun combined with the Herald-Tribune to become World Journal Tribune dubbed the Widget.

pp4-5. Near the end of her tenure, many people proposed buying it from her, but she was not interested. By the time she was ready to sell, in 1976, Rupert Murdoch was the only one looking to buy. Murdoch was a big publisher in Australia, while in the United States he owned the National Star, now known as the Star.

p8. Murdoch bought the Village Voice, New York Magazine, and New West shortly after purchasing the Post.

p13. He then bought the subscription list of the Queens based Long Island Press when it was going out of business in 1977.

pp13-15. There was a strike in 1978 against all the city's major papers, then the Post, Daily News and Times. Murdoch was put in charge of joint negotiations for all the papers. He settled the Post's dispute on the side and left the other two papers on strike. Murdoch then scooped up many of their advertisers.

p17. 1919: Capt. Joseph Patterson formed the Daily News with the help of his cousin Colnel Robert McCormick of the Chicago Tribune. McCormick also helped Patterson's daughter, Alecia, found Newsday. 1970: Newsday sold to Times-Mirror based in Los Angeles.

CH 2 Death Moves to the Morning

p35-45. Chicago Tribune looking to sell the Daily News around 1982. Prospective buyers included:

No buyers could pass Tribune and/or union muster, but Albritton came close. He demanded major union concessions that they were unwilling to do. In 1983, Tribune realized that closing it down would have tremendous costs due to severance pay arrangements already in the union contracts. Tribune decided to continue publishing the News if they could obtain major layoffs and early retirement from the unions. The unions figured it was their only hope at keeping their jobs, so relented. In return, Tribune planned to give the employees 24% of all profits over 6%.

[Subsequent to this book's publication, the News was sold to Mortimer Zuckerman.]

Herald (1899) ----------.
               |-- (1934) Herald Tribune (1950) -------.
Daily Tribune (1902) ---'                         |
                                        |-- (1966) World Journal Tribune
(1933) Sun (1948) ------.                         |
               |-- (1950) World Telegram and Sun (1950)'
(1922) World (1926) ----.                    |
               |-- (1931) World Telegram (1947)'
Telegram ? -------------'

Frederick Shaw. The History of the New York City Legislature, pp 11, 68, 72, 91, 101, 138, 206, 222, 227, 248
Benjaminson p 2.


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