Monday, June 8, 2009

The new boss/different from the old boss

I have been here before.

Not the UAE--it is thoroughly new, even now--but in a newsroom with changing leadership. Today this guy announced that he was moving upstairs to the publishing side, and that this guy would be the paper's new editor.

At the Tribune when this happened, it was scary. People with years of experience and serious journalism credentials were replaced with... well... the opposite. Predictably, their direction did not cover the Tribune in glory; besides laying off scores of talented people and chasing readers with a barrage of Entertainment Tonight journalism, they led a ballyhooed (and poorly conceived) redesign that was followed a few months later with a giant apology for mucking up a perfectly good newspaper. 

Here it feels different. The new editor has Arab roots and a solid background in Western journalism. Perhaps more important, the new publisher (Director of Editorial Operations, actually) has serious chops, which is always welcome in the publisher's office.

So I am hopeful. I have been accused of optimism before. But I think it is warranted here.

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