Warning: Constant ABSPATH already defined in /home/public/wp-config.php on line 27
Interesting — Why Now?
On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
Random header image... Refresh for more!


Via Atrios, a New York Times business piece: Owner of Orange County Register May File for Bankruptcy

Freedom Communications, owner of The Orange County Register and 30 other daily newspapers, is expected to file for bankruptcy this week under a plan that will hand its publications to its lenders, people briefed on the matter said on Sunday.

The majority of Freedom is still owned by the Hoiles family, whose patriarch, R. C. Hoiles, founded the company seven decades ago as an outlet for his libertarian philosophy…

Among the papers published by Freedom Communications are: the Santa Rosa Press Gazette, the Crestview News Bulletin, the Northwest Florida Daily News [AKA Local Puppy Trainer], the Destin Log, the Walton Sun, the Washington County News, the Holmes County Times Advertiser, the Panama City News Herald, the Port St. Joe Star, and the Apalachicola Times. With the exception of the Gannett-owned Pensacola News Journal, that is pretty much every newspaper on the Panhandle in the Central Time Zone. If you look at a map of Florida, it is the western section South of Alabama.

And people wonder why people in this part of the state seem so “uniformly uninformed”.

Update: They filed today 9/01/09.


1 Bryan { 08.31.09 at 2:37 pm }

There no way for you to know, but back from the strip along the coast the bulk of the area was electrified under the Depression Era Rural Electrification Act, and power is still supplied by cooperatives, because it isn’t commercially viable for the local power company to service the area. Where landline telephone service exists, the switching is still analog, so that none of the telephone features that most people take for granted exist. There are few cellular telephone towers, so coverage is spotty at best. Television service requires a satellite dish, as there is no cable in the area, and no broadcast television coverage.

There is no DSL, or other wired broadband available, so like television viewing, you would need a satellite dish to connect to the Internet. The cost of a leased line to provide a connection for an Internet Service Provider is prohibitive, and anyone with the money and knowledge to be interested in the Internet, would get a satellite system. There is a lack of radio service in the area.

Newspapers really are the news in this area, for people who don’t live along the coast.

Just as everyone in Britain doesn’t live in London, everyone in Florida doesn’t live in Miami. We have a lot of very poor rural areas in Florida who do not have the infrastructure that a lot of people take for granted.

2 Steve Bates { 08.31.09 at 8:34 pm }

Rural Electrification Act… that was a SOCIALIST bit of legislation, right, David? You probably think those [expletive deleted] country folk should have simply done without electricity, rather than accepting (gasp) federal funding.

Seriously: my grandparents lived in a community so small that the telephone “system” had one operator and the phones themselves had cranks (no offense intended, David). Thanks to the REA, they had electric power, and in turn, a radio capable of receiving several stations. They were farmers… and also educated people to whom it mattered a great deal to be connected to the world. In today’s world, having a satisfactory ‘net connection is similar to having a telephone in the 1930s, 40s and 50s… no one really wants to be without one. “Netification” is, for our day, a good example of an important social function unlikely ever to be fulfilled by the profit motive without government help. Only a fool… oh, wait; never mind…