On tossing out the baby with the bathwater: Jill Abramson fired from the NYTimes

I'm old enough to have had the NYTimes delivered daily to my door and to especially savor Sundays when the paper arrived with all of its bulk and I knew that a good part of my day would be devoted to the Book Review and the Magazine and one of Will Shortz' crosswords, all while sipping many cups of coffee. And then the digital age happened...I get the NYTimes, as I do most everything I read, online. Digitized. And we all know the order of the day is different, as is the order of everything we read. No more beginning to end. We jump around. Like bees on flowers. There's another flower. And another. 

How does a newspaper respond to this? That's the question the New York Times set out to explore and here is a link to their findings, as reported on Buzzfeed:

Exclusive: New York Times Internal Report Painted Dire Digital Picture

It's a tough business, no doubt. Amidst all of this turmoil, the NYTimes quite unceremoniously showed Jill Abramson the door. Mere readers will never know any, or all, of the machinations that went into the decision of tossing out the first female executive editor in NYTime's history, but I can say, most definitely, that the way it was done stinks to high heaven. They do want to assure everyone that her firing had nothing to do with gender discrimination or equal pay issues:

Times Seeks to Reassure its Staff After Abramson's Ouster - NYTimes

For the first time ever, I'm thinking of cancelling my subscription to the NYTimes. 

For sheer genius, there is nothing better than this instagram photo of Jill Abramson posted by her daughter the day after the NYTimes tossed out the baby with the bathwater:

A Story of Disruption: Life After PI

The movie industry is being faced with the same global economic dynamic hitting many industries. Uncertainty doesn't strike me as the basis for a good long term outcome, and yet, that is just what the current business model of disruption guarantees. Chasing lower prices around the globe will only work for so long. We need business models that take into account the dignity of the human being producing the work along with consideration of the community that supports the industry and the work force. The disruptive dynamic attempts to destabilize or destroy industries deemed bloated with inefficiencies, but does so with a machete and not with surgical precision. Much is lost...too much. The grave mistake of reducing humans to human capital, made to fit a working space in spreadsheets, would be a good place to start the rethinking.  

Life after PI  documents the human impact of old business models hitting new global economic realities. The new models tend to economically reward the founders and funders at the expense of everyone else down the line. That's not sustainable; we need to create a better way.