Hometown newspaper drama, anyone?

The debacle continues.

After Warren Buffett and his BH Media Group purchased the Greensboro News & Record a few years ago, the paper underwent a big change in administration but was put on a supposedly more profitable path thanks to the tycoon.

Now Roy Carroll, who owns Greensboro’s conservative Rhino Times, wants to buy the N&R to bring it back to the center from leftist politics.  Whether he’s sincere in his concern or just wants to further his own agenda, I’m not going to argue here.

But I do want to offer a prediction on the situation.  When I first heard this news, I had the immediate image of Warren laughing upon reading the letter.  Why in his right mind would he consider this offer?  Seriously, this guy has bought up community newspapers across America because he still believes there is money in the business.  With all of his papers, he’s making a substantial profit for his company (admittedly to my surprise at first).  Here’s the bottom line: small communities still like their local papers with local news. And Warren Buffett knows that.

Why in the world would he stray from his successful business model and entertain Carroll’s suggestion?  No, I think Buffett knows just what he’s doing, and it’d take a heck of a lot of convincing to change his mind.  I don’t think Carroll has that kind of convincing power.  Besides, it’d be just plain silly to undo his previous decision to buy the paper. 

And besides, no one can tell the news in Greensboro quite like the N&R.


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