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Journalists Team Up To Save Minneapolis Newspaper

April 7, 2009

In an effort to rescue the Minneapolis Star Tribune from bankruptcy, workers for the newspaper have put together an internet campaign to save their insolvent employers.

A message on their website reads: “With the Star Tribune in bankruptcy, Minnesota’s largest news source is in danger of going dark.”

“We, the journalists who write, photograph, edit and present the news every day, are launching this campaign because we believe the Star Tribune is an essential community resource that is too valuable to lose,” said the website, savethestrib.com.

“Our best chance of continuing to provide the breadth and quality of news, opinion, sports and entertainment coverage Minnesotans deserve is to attract a new owner who shares our values and who is ready to lead the Star Tribune into a new age”¦ Help us convince a potential owner that great cities need robust news operations.” they added. “Save The Strib.”

The website provides a forum for the newspaper’s readers to post comments, sign a petition in support of the newspaper and even invites citizens to offer possible business proposals to make the newspaper profitable again.

With a daily circulation of 334,000, the Star Tribune is the 15th largest newspaper in the U.S. and by far the largest in Minnesota.   Less than two years after being purchased by a private equity group in New York for 530 million dollars, the Star Tribune filed for bankruptcy protection on January 15, listing assets of 493.2 million dollars and liabilities exceeding 660 million dollars.

Increasing use of internet news sources and a lagging economy have made it difficult for traditional print newspapers across the country to remain profitable.

The Star Tribune has now joined the ranks of other major newspapers, such as the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, who have also filed for bankruptcy protection in the last year.

Other major newspaper companies, including Hearst Corp. and the New York Times Co. have warned that they will also have to cut operations or possibly shut down some daily newspapers unless unions agree to negotiate possible pay and benefit cuts as well as other cost-saving measures.

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