Most Portlanders are aware of the challenges facing The Oregonian. The largest newspaper in the state has been hammered by declining revenues, falling circulation declines and several rounds of buyouts and layoffs. The newspaper is expected to cut more staff and reduce its publishing schedule from seven days a week to three, following the route of other papers owned by its parent, Advance Publications Inc.But the misfortunes of The Oregonian do not extend to its owners.
Donald Newhouse and his brother, S.I. Newhouse, control Advance, the privately-held company that also publishes other newspapers and magazines such as The New Yorker, Wired and Vogue. They're worth a combined $15.4 billion, making them together the 50th richest on the planet. They moved up several notches from last year's list, in part because of the resurgence of magazine ad sales.
Meanwhile, the Columbia Journalism Review has just published its account of what has happened in New Orleans following the Newhouses' decision to cut the staff and publishing schedule of the Times-Picayune—a move seen by some observers as a forerunner of what awaits Portland.