Sunday, March 1, 2009

Die cast on Rocky as Dems gathered

The beginning of the end of the Rocky Mountain News coincided, ironically, with one of the newspaper's biggest journalistic endeavors.

As Rocky reporters and editors hustled in August to cover the presidential nomination in Denver of Barack Obama, the head of the Rocky's owner, E.W. Scripps, walked the streets of Denver, pondering the newspaper's future.

Cincinnati-based Scripps had known for at least two years that two major daily newspapers could not survive in Denver, even after a 2001 joint operating agreement intended to cut costs by combining the papers' business operations.

But Scripps family members and corporate directors had strong sentimental ties to their flagship paper, the 149-year-old Rocky. Preserve the Rocky, the corporate thinking went, and perhaps The Denver Post can be bought out or persuaded to fold.

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