Here's a comment from the Freedom Communications spokesman Robert Emmers, of Sitrick and Company:
"I understand your interest but I can't say anything other than that the company is continuing to review and evaluate its strategic options."
——- ORIGINAL POST, THURSDAY, MARCH 10, 5:30 P.M. ——-
So far, there's nothing to report on the day that Freedom Communications, owner of The Gazette, put its newspapers on the auction block.
One disturbing thing noted in the blog is that the buyers, whoever they turn out to be, might be looking to whack more jobs. Sorry, guys, but I think everyone would agree The Gazette can't afford to whack more newsroom jobs. They've already trimmed the staff to a bare-bones crew where most news revolves around cops and robbers or official meetings and press releases.
The big guns in the hunt are Media News, owner of the Denver Post, and the Tribune Co., which has a whole set of problems itself, including bankruptcy.
The Orange County Register is the prize. With a daily circulation of 250,000, it's won three Pulitzer Prizes for investigative journalism, photos and innovative reporting, according to the Freedom website. The Gazette won one 20 years ago, and most of the people who were there at that time have long ago fled — I mean, left — for other challenges and opportunities, or been kicked out the door with a pink slip and a severance package.
Anyway, we've asked the Freedom spokesperson for info on today's auction activities and haven't heard anything. We'll circle back when we know more.