Tim Rutten's Saturday LAT column about the online-vs-print future of newspapers exemplified by the redesigned Wall Street reached at least one influential reader. Times Publisher David Hiller, shaking off that defeat at the hands of the Teamsters, issued an unusual weekend memo endorsing his columnist's take and all but ordering an aggressive new approach to news down at LATimes.com. (Up, rather. The website is located a few floors above Hiller's office.) Key excerpt as I read it:
Recognizing each medium has unique strengths, we have to use each differently to best meet those reader/user needs. For us, this means breaking news, freshened all the time, coupled with data-driven personal utility on the web; while we engage a different focus of unique story-telling, analysis, and context in our print editions - with both relentlessly focused on what people can't get anywhere else.
It is very clear to me this is the way we need to go, and is the way pointed forward by all of our research and the work coming out our Spring Street project, about which you will be hearing more. Fundamental change like this will take the resources and focus of our entire company.
Considering that Hiller might be a short timer, I wonder what kind of response his call for "fundamental change" will engender in a building not all that enamored of radical solutions. Mark Lacter scored the entire memo this afternoon over at LA Biz Observed.
Also: All Bill Boyarsky wants for the Times is a Broad, Geffen or Burkle "with the with the integrity and independence of Otis Chandler."