Veteran media executive Charles Warner, the former head of interactive marketing at AOL and an emeritus chair at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, blogs at the Huffington Post his take on Sam Zell's recent interview with the editor of Portfolio.
Tribune Companyís owner Sam Zellís ideas are so old and decaying that they are beginning to smell rancid. Heís playing a hindsight blame game similar to another old, rich dinosaur, Rupert Murdoch, and to bloviating, self-promoting Internet guru Jeff Jarvis.
You remember Sam Zell, the real estate billionaire who bought the Tribune Company in what turned out to be the Brooklyn Bridge of media deals. For years radio stations, TV stations, and newspaper companies sold for escalating prices based on the greater fool theory. In April, 2007, when Zell bought the Tribune Company, he proved to be the greatest fool of all -- the mark the Tribune Company shareholders had been praying for....
It's inconceivable to Zell that he was a fool to buy the Tribune Company in April of 2007 when anyone under the age of 45 (Zell was 66 at the time) could have told him the newspaper industry was toast because of the most disruptive of all technologies -- the Internet. He can't conceive of admitting, "I was a fool." He has to lash out and blame someone else -- common scapegoating behavior -- not himself.
More there and at his own blog, Media Curmudgeon.