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Thread: Jack Fiske's Revenge?

  1. #1

    Jack Fiske's Revenge?

    In today's Los Angeles Times, there is an article
    about the San Francisco Chronicle's decline in
    terms of circulation and advertising revenue.
    The circulation of the Chronicle has decreased
    sixteen percent during a six-month period
    ending last September and from 566,000
    to 419,400 during a period from 1990 to
    last September. It is thought that the
    internet has been the major reason for
    the decline. Another cited reason for the
    decline was the death of the famed columnist,
    Herb Caen, in 1997. Required reading in
    the San Francisco Bay Area for many decades,
    Caen's daily columns was packed with
    observations of what was happening in
    San Francisco for many decades.

    Jack Fiske, the famed boxing beat writer,
    wrote very informative columns for the
    San Francisco Chronicle for over forty
    years before he was put out to pasture
    during the early 1990s. Of course,
    the fight game was almost dead in the
    Bay Area by the time Fiske was let go.
    But Fiske's column was widely read in
    the boxing community in the United
    States in the days before the internet.
    After all, the column contained boxing
    scoops not found in any other source.

    - Chuck Johnston

  2. #2
    TKO Tom
    I work for a major daily newspaper. I can tell you that all newspapers are suffering similar and major, major circulation problems.

    The bottom line is that with BlackBerry, the internet, I-pods, 24-hour cable news, etc. newspapers are really taking it on the chin.

    Advertisiers are deciding to spend their ad budgets on the internet and other new media type offerings. Newspapers are the dinosaurs of the advertising world at this point in time.

    It won't be too many years before many, many, many newspapers will simply no longer exist. The New York Times company just laid off over 500 people. If you look for the stories, you'll see that many newspapers are laying off people in droves in order to keep costs down.

    I'm not sure what the future holds for newspapers - but I can tell you that unless things change radically - it will not be good.

  3. #3
    I believe the Jack Fiske articles came out on Saturday and Tuesday. They were always great. He left without much fanfare and his last column was pretty bitter and funny. I remember a reference to "England, the land of the prone heavyweights" as it was pre Lewis days and that Tommy Hearns was the only boxer to send him a christmas card. Chronicle is suffering because it lacks credibility and tends to pander to the more extreme segments of SF.

  4. #4


    I can't honestly remember when I bought a newspaper last.
    I will think that within the next decade or so, they will most all be gone or very few will exist.

  5. #5
    TKO Tom

    Re: Newspapers

    Unfortunately Karl, you are the rule rather than the exception. The younger generation simply does not read newspapers. It's all the internet and other forms of news and communication.

    Newspapers are going the way of the horse and buggy.

  6. #6
    Matt Tegen

    Re: Newspapers

    As a member of the under-30 crowd, I can attest to my generation's lack of interest in the newspaper. Very few of my friends and cohorts buy the newspaper or even read it when it is around. It's unfortunate, because frankly a lot of people in my generation nowadays are utterly clueless to the events going on around them in this country.

    I subscribe to a newspaper, because I enjoy reading it while I eat my breakfeast or lounge on the couch on Sunday morning. I think it also exposes me to different stories or points of view, than I get online, where you can have the tendency to pick and choose articles that fit your pre-set views on topics.

  7. #7

    Re: Newspapers

    I love the internet but reading text on a screen can be hard after a while. There's something about holding a book/magazine/newspaper in your hands while you read that is very comfortable to me.

    Reading the last two posts about how the younger folks don't even read a newspaper is sad. Where's the intellectual curiosity?

    I guess going through life without a clue as to what's happening around you is the way most operate. I've got a 33 year old son who NEVER reads a newspaper or watches the news.

    We're gonna have a bunch of really informed people running the world in a decade or so.


  8. #8

    Re: Newspapers

    The success of Borders and Amazon might be an indication that intellectual pusuits still exist in the US. Its a matter of habit. Newspapers or even TV network broadcasts are outdated in a world of news updates on your phone or 24hr news channels. There are options now and no central distribution of information and no dependency on limited sources of information.

    The newer generations are growing up in a world of instant access to information. No more spending hours in a library searching for information that is instantly accessible. We read our boxing information instantly and can connect with people with like interests. No more waiting 3 months for a quarterly publication or until the morning paper for your fight results. Remember what it was like waiting for soccer scores or any other non-mainstream sports results.

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