The front page of the New York Daily News has enjoyed a flattering week. It started with a lengthy write-up in New York magazine, posted online Jan. 26, and continues tonight with a New York Times look at the paper’s recent string of sensational, viral front covers.
Fittingly, Times media reporter Jonathan Mahler tried to put his own sensational spin on things, prompting the following response from his interview subjects:
Put another way, Mr. [James] Rich, a News veteran who took over the paper in October, seems determined to make sure that the tabloid that famously shamed President Ford for abandoning New York in its time of need will at least go down swinging.
“I think that’s fair,” said Mr. Rich, 44, of the characterization. “I wouldn’t put the accent on ‘going down,’ but we’re swinging.”
William Holiber, the chief executive, who was seated nearby, said, “The mentality is that we definitely have nothing to lose, so let’s just go for it.”
Mahler also touches on the critical issue of whether all of this social media heat is actually helping boost newsstand sales. But no issue-specific numbers are shared. (The closest thing to a quantification is this comment from NYT article reader Chilena: ‘Love the new covers. I’ve started buying it off the newsstand.’)
Rich is certainly to be commended for his candor. The editor in chief admits that while he can’t guarantee the tabloid’s current turnaround will be successful, he’s determined to “go at this with everything we’ve got.” Translation: Brace yourself for many more re-tweets of tomorrow’s Daily News front cover.