Jeff Pearlman

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Tronc kills hope and dreams, saves $35k

Emily Bloch

Emily Bloch

Sooooo … this just passed across my Twitter stream …

I am pissed.

Really …

Really …

Really …

Pissed.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel is a newspaper that’s been around forever, and has long battled (successfully, in my opinion) the Miami Herald for readership and scoops. Like all papers, it has gone through financial struggles, and years ago it was purchased by Tronc, the evil, awful, we-care-about-journalism-now-shut-the-fuck-up-as-we-fire everyone chain that, earlier this week, pretty much destroyed New York’s Daily News.

Anyhow, one of the publication’s young standouts is Emily Bloch, a 24-year-old community reporter who first reached out to me for advice a bunch of years ago. Emily is everything you’d want in a journalist—skilled, edgy, hard-nosed, relentless, fast. Seriously, she’s terrific, and a few months back she appeared on Two Writers Slinging Yang, my journalism podcast. Hell, wanna know what sort of work Emily does? This is from today’s Sun-Sentinel—a crazy, wonderful piece on political nonsense. These are the stories newspapers need. The type of stories they depend on.

Alas, Tronc has kicked Emily to the curb—a multi-million dollar company saving (and this is pure guesswork) $35,000 a year and directly hurting its coverage.

But, truly, I couldn’t care less about Tronc or the newspaper. What beats me up about this is the deflating of a young writer’s ambitions. Emily was so thrilled to be a part of the Sun-Sentinel. It was her dream, and she was working tirelessly to keep it alive, to make the publication better, to show that journalism is still journalism and the written word still matters.

I’m livid.

But at least Tronc has its 35K.

Assholes.

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Once again, Jeff Pearlman has produced an exhaustively researched, elegantly written book that re-creates one of the most colorful and memorable teams of the modern era. No basketball fan's bookshelf will be complete without it.

— Seth Davis, author of Wooden: A Coach's Life