Eulogy for the alt-weekly?

News & Politics

The two biggest names in the alt-weekly world, Village Voice Media and New Times have merged and will create a new entity using the name of the most famous publication in either group: Village Voice Media.

Jeff Chang writes: "It is now the Clear Channel of alt-weeklies. There is no longer anything 'alternative' about the alternative. The long goodbye to an oppositional politics and aesthetics begins now."

The New Village Voice Media's board will be stocked with venture capitalist who... well, do we really need to back over the effects of the bottom-line mentality on media?

New Times CEO James Larkin says they'll be buying out the venture capitalists in five years but I won't be holding my breath. Besides, who knows what they'll look like in five years.

Chang's concise history of the alt-weekly is a good read, and ends, as usual on an active note:

"James Larkin says, "I'm doing it because I love good journalism. I want to have newspapers in the most exciting markets in the country. This is not a financial play.'"
"You can take your Murdoch complex, take your 'newspapers in exciting markets,' and go run them into the ground."
"I'm gonna pour a little out on the sidewalk for the alt-weekly, then I'm gonna go try and find me a real alternative."
(Can't Stop Won't Stop)

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