So let’s say you’re a cool alt-weekly. You rage against the establishment for a living… and then you get bought out by them. That’s what’s happened to Baltimore City Paper, which was recently bought by The Baltimore Sun Media Group.
So how can City Paper establish their editorial independence from The Man? With an awesome first cover, that’s how. Today’s front page is a spot-on replica of The Sun. Although, if you look closely, they’ve changed a few key things.
Instead of “Light for all,” The Sun‘s optimistic moto, City Paper went for a more realistic one: “Jobs for some”. The jump teases themselves are a riot: “MORE CURSE WORDS”, “PANIC”, “EVEN MORE CURSE WORDS”. The reporter’s bylines are a hilariously amalgamation of confusing media ownership, like this one: “Special to the City Baltimore Paper Sun Whatever The Thing Is, We Give Up”. The tiny print slogan at the top might just be my favorite: “Informing more than 1 million Baltimore readers weekly in print and online, give or take a million.”
The fact that City Paper published this as their first cover says a lot. It’s obviously gonna take more than a buyout for these guys to truly sell out. Although many are worried about City Paper losing its distinct voice (including the editors themselves) this self-deprecating front page should placate die hard fans for now.
What do you think? Will City Paper be able to remain editorially independent? Or will it become a subsidiary to The Sun‘s dominant voice? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!