Wednesday, November 15, 2006

San Francisco Examiner offspring ridiculed

The SF Daily is also printing humorous blurbs in its "Town Talk" section about the new competitor. One was about a business person who threw the City Star ad reps out of her store. "She didn't break any bones, but we appreciate her attitude," the item said. Another blurb said that what felt like an earthquake was actually "William Randolph Hearst rolling over in his grave when he learned about the latest downsizing of his former flagship newspaper, the San Francisco Examiner," referring to the City Star. The SF Daily was pleased to report that San Franciscians have even given Anschutz's paper a nickname -- "the Sh***y Star."

Before the Examiner rolled out the City Star, the Examiner's editor, James Pimentel, was quoted as saying that the new paper wasn't an attempt to copy the SF Daily. If that's so, then what is the purpose of the City Star? The Examiner has suffered after it was sold by the Hearst Corp. in 2000. The first owner used the Examiner to promote candiates on the front page including family members. Anschutz bought the Examiner in 2004 and turned it into a conservative paper -- a bad fit in a city known for its liberalism. The Examiner hasn't appeared to grow much during Anschutz's watch. Maybe he's hoping to build up the City Star so he can jetison the Examiner?

Oddly enough, the City Star doesn't mention anywhere that it is part of the Examiner or owned by Anschutz. It says it is owned by San Francisco Newspaper Company, LLC., a fairly generic name. One wonders why Anschutz wouldn't want his name on his paper? You'd think the journalists at the Examiner would insist on full disclosure or "truth in labeling." Also, it's worth noting that the Examiner hasn't written anything about its new sister paper. Is the Examiner staff embarrassed by its sibling?