Friday, March 11, 2011

Did we miss this?

Via Michigan Radio:
Ann laid off 14 employees this week.

The mostly web publication, which also puts out a print edition twice a week, replaced the 174-year old Ann Arbor News when it closed its doors in 2009.

Tony Collings is a University of Michigan communications professor and a former journalist. He says a lot of journalists and professional journalism organizations were looking to see whether Ann would be some kind of model for the future:

"Apparently it isn’t, or at least it doesn’t seem to be succeeding in a business way, and I don’t know whether it is succeeding journalistically either."

Strange that I didn't see anything about this on I wonder what this means for the future of journalism in the city.

UPDATE: Rumor is that is losing lead blogger Ed Vielmetti. Say it ain't so.


  1. I'm not pouring one out for Ed until you've named your sources, sir.

  2. Ah, I just saw it on A2Politico!

  3. I do find it interesting that this came out close to 5 p.m. on a Friday, right when everyone is going home from work, and right when other Ann Arbor news is flying high (UM basketball winning). It's obvious they want this under the radar.

    And yes it's true, no more Ed. He's one of the only people there with a REAL connection to the community.

    In summary, I don't know what they're doing.

  4. Yeah, this is pissing me off. I like Ed. Not only because he has linked to us several times, but I also like his esoteric articles: Argo Dam breaking, Crows in Ann Arbor, Sledding Hills in Ann Arbor. He always comes out with timely and useful information.

  5. started out badly -- I was a News subscriber and renewed once, but it was not really news. If nothing else, my kid needs solid news for middle school so we subscribed to the NYTimes.

    When I discontinued, they tried to sell me on the coupons and ads I was missing, but I never, ever, looked at those -- the whole section went straight into the recycle bin as the paper came in the house. Then they offered me a Meijer gift card -- I think I've been in Meijer five times in 15 years. They had no idea who their readers were or what they wanted.

    I liked the online version for the quirky things, like Ed's pieces, but was out off by a lot of the focus on trivial local police blotter stuff and the inevitable ignorant comments. I think it was a failed experiment.

  6. Friday is the news biz is "trash day." Stories you want to get lost come out on Fridays. I got confirmation from an staffer before I posted, and a tip from a paid contributor.

    I wouldn't wait for to report on this. The news blog didn't report on the loss of staffers to the Freep, either.

    Dearing has always been pretty tight-lipped about the site's viability. As I see it, this is a last ditch effort to turn a profit that the parent company can live with.