Most of the content of my two previous blog posts were forwarded to the Jerusalem Post management. They did not reply to my stern but friendly letters. Silence gives consent.
I suggested that the daily Post was not reduced by 33% because of rising costs of paper worldwide or increased production costs (in Israel – they gotta be kidding), as it claimed but to save on salaries of writers.
The truth must be, that the Post does not receive enough revenues. I worked in the Netherlands and Israel for four Dutch national newspapers’ acquisition departments and know that most income for them comes from ads. It is well-known that so much of advertising budgets now go to TV and Internet that little is left for the print press.
They probably didn’t want to say that advertisement income had fallen again, not to hurt advertising even more, so they lied. We should not blame the editors for management’s lies, but still, it does not reflect well on the paper. What else does management insist on having or not having printed? Economic aspects of its news are often slanted to the side of the rich. Yesterday’s trimmed paper had half a page on the rich of Israel – with pictures – for crying out loud.
Today’s JPost pamphlet that I received proved the point that they just wanted fewer writers, fewer letters, and not less paper. Enormous pictures, one larger than half a page and one a full half page – with very little to see on it – “grace” the opinion section. Half of the meager five pages of opinions is so further reduced to two and a half pages.
The glorious Letters section, pride of the paper, now pushed back to the Mondays and the Wednesdays, was replaced by From our Archives (how symbolic) and the Weather – a graphic that for years already has numbers and icons that are as random as the lotto and bear no resemblance to any Israeli weather forecast whatsoever.
Management has in fact closed down the paper paper. We readers should vote with our feet. I’m sure that under a new management, journalists and readers will be happy to resume the real Jerusalem Post.