Saturday, November 26, 2016

Viva Miami Herald with Fidel Finale

Glory Days Long Since Passed, but South Florida's Faded Prime News Source Still Owns Story

An editorial in today's Miami Herald is headlined "Damage Done, Fidel Castro Was Irrelevant Long Before He Died."
True enough and well put, from a newspaper that has struggled to stay relevant itself.
Not long ago, the Herald routinely showed up on lists of 10 best newspapers in the U.S. Until the mid-90s, the paper was fat with ads and ambition, with reporters spread over Florida from Key West all the way up the Treasure Coast to go along with overseas bureaus stretched from Jerusalem to Managua.
Of course, the Herald was not immune to the malaise that afflicted all newspapers as the web swallowed its content creators whole. But the paper's problems were magnified by the fact that as its core readership went elsewhere or died off, they were being replaced by a Latin diaspora that didn't read English papers if they read any at all.
In 1973, the Herald had a weekday circulation of nearly 405,000. By 2013, it was down to about 130,000. It fell off the list of the nation's 25 largest newspapers six years ago and is third or fourth in circulation just in Florida, depending on how you count.
Fidel may have gotten a final middle finger in the air by dying late enough for his demise to be announced after the Herald had gone to bed. In more flush times, this news would have warranted an extra edition.
These are not flush times.
The Herald's been down for the count for years, but got off the mat when word came that El Presidente had breathed his last. Given that the Herald had been unrelenting in chronicling the many abuses of the Castro regime and, along with its sister El Nuevo Herald, had served as the media lifelines for the hundreds of thousands of Cubans in Miami-Dade, you would expect nothing less. But the way newspapers have shrunk, you've learned to expect less.
Fortunately, the Herald delivered today, while it still can.

No comments: