|Illustration by Quickhoney|
Name: Arthur Sulzberger Jr.
Job: Publisher of the New York Times
Why he’s brave: In the face of collapsing stock prices, he’s avoiding staff cuts and expanding online presence.
Quote: “We do care. I care very much. But we must be where people want us for our information.”
The Times employs 11 people to moderate online comments, more than twice the number of reporters on the masthead at The Huffington Post. One might mistake such quality control for timidity, or for an anachronistic journalistic indulgence. But even as Sulzberger has aggressively led The Times onto the Web, he is betting that his paper’s dedication to high-quality journalism is its most valuable asset, however costly it now seems. He has resisted deep newsroom cuts even as the company’s stock has collapsed, and he has risked alienating the younger generation of Sulzbergers, who may sell their premium shares (and the voting rights they confer) to the highest bidders. Such a sale could lead to ruin: one need only browse a recent edition of the Los Angeles Times or the Chicago Tribune to see what happens when putatively savvy capitalists insist on slashing news budgets to increase profit margins.