Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

January 9, 2009

Seattle P-I Up For Sale With No Buyer Expected And Shuttering Imminent?

Editor & Publisher has a concise summary of a widely-traveled report that the Seattle Post-Intelligencer has been put up for sale in advance of it being closed down. A contractual obligation says that a shut-down precede in that manner -- the general expectation is that there's no buyer out there, or even the rumor of one. More news should be forthcoming.

I've been trying to figure out how exactly how to put the significance of this story if true. The P-I has been a good friend to comics, especially under the influence of editor Janet Grimley, one of those rare newspaper editors with a special interest into what goes on the comics page. They've run two pages of comics for years now, carried and paid for comics that they couldn't run in the way that two newspaper towns frequently will, and offered one of the five best and most dependable on-line newspaper site sections for quite some time. They've also employed David Horsey, one of the modern editorial cartooning stars. A move from a two-newspaper town to a one-newspaper town is bad enough, because you lose the editorial cartoonist or cartoonists, the comics the paper held, and all of the comics held but not run by both papers to keep them out of their rival's hands. When you're talking a two-newspaper town sharing a Sunday color section and both offering up two pages of material, it's worse.

If this moves forward, it wouldn't be unexpected -- when the Seattle Times pushed its size and resources into mornings from afternoon publication it became likely that the P-I would eventually fold. It's still sad, and a bad day for comics.
posted 11:00 am PST | Permalink

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