WSJ reporters get, dig change

December 4, 2008

We and the rest of the media world that covered News Corp and Rupert Murdoch’s acquisition of Dow Jones & Co had no shortage of reporters at The Wall Street Journal telling us how bad life was going to get. Among the complaints was the paper’s increasing focus on politics and non-business news. Wasn’t this “diluting the brand” as they say in mediaspeak?

Not so, according to Robert Thomson, the former Times of London editor who now edits the Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. Business news now is concentrated in the B section of the paper (B for Business, yes, it works.), and Journal reporters are not only with the program, they’re showing a willingness to try things differently.

“It’s been fascinating. There was a presumption that people would be unwilling to change,” Thomson told us at the Reuters Media Summit. “There has been an innate enthusiasm to develop the paper, particularly to develop the relationship between the paper,, Dow Jones Newswires and Marketwatch.”

It’s also a good attitude to take when nearly every other news outlet you might work for is cutting jobs.

(Photo: Reuters)


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It would be nice if the contributors of this blog weren’t so naive and if they took a little more time to think about what the executives are saying. A lot of it is spin…For example, it’s well known that Dow Jones has made cuts at Dow Jones Newswires and it’s also well known within the company that people have been bought out or forced out. As for Thomson’s sentiment that people are “enthusiastic,” I think you’d get a different take on things if you bothered to talk to any of the many veteran WSJer and DJers who now find their roles marginalized. C’mon, Reuters, stop repeating spin and do some digging and reporting. We need knowledge and analyiss in today’s post-whatever-they-say-and-don’t-questio n-it-world.

Posted by ronald | Report as abusive

Ronald, all the points you make here are things that we have reported. It’s also fairly well known that I spent a very short, six-week part of my career working at Murdoch’s Journal, so you might find that my digging is more informed than most people’s.

Also, this is a blog, and sometimes it’s OK to throw things up there and let people like you comment. We also have a wire that is full of analysis and digging and where, if you do some digging, you will find that what you think we lack is actually out there.

My telephone number is 646-223-6012. If you are as informed as you sound, you must have good anonymous tips to give me. Help me help you.

Posted by Robert MacMillan | Report as abusive