The Cycle

Who will be the newspaper industry’s Orson Wells?

Newspapers – hit by declining revenue streams and dropping circulation – are “waiting for Orson Welles,” said Peter Kaplan, New York Observer editor-in-chief, referring to radio’s popularity explosion in the late 1930s after Welles rescued it from relative obscurity.

Kaplan, speaking October 2 at the New York Public Library, also predicted that there will be an 18-to-24-month period of increased instability in newspapers, and added that the medium “is not considered essential to [the] lives” of consumers under 30.

In another event highlight, Garden State resident and New York Times writer David Carr discussed two of his fears: New Jersey’s state government operating without the watchful eye of Newark’s The Star-Ledger, which next January, and a New York economy that is 10% to 20% smaller at this time next year. Carr added that the latter “scares the s___ out of him.”

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