“Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one.”– A.J. Liebling
Rob Davis of VoiceofSanDiego.org reports on the new owner of his local daily:
Doug Manchester, the new owner and publisher of the San Diego Union-Tribune, wants his new media outlet to be a booster.
The newspaper’s new CEO, John Lynch, made that clear in an interview with me after Manchester bought the paper November 17. Lynch said he wanted the newspaper’s sports page to advocate for a new Chargers stadium and call out opponents as obstructionists. He’s since revisited those remarks, telling a Union-Tribune reporter that he was “acutely aware” of the importance of an independent newsroom.
Lynch’s original comments are in line with how many media owners have viewed local sports, as Neil deMause reported in Extra! in 1999. And as FAIR noted in 2001, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch was editorially opposed to building a new baseball stadium–that is, until their parent company got a stake in the team. Why go to the trouble of owning a newspaper if you don’t use it to advance other business interests?