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A newspaper’s commitment to the arts

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Those of us who live in the Greater Washington area are always complaining about the minimal art coverage provided by the Washington Post. A few years back they even renamed their daily “Arts” section and changed it to “Style.”

A while back, the former Art Editor for the British newspaper The Guardian discussed how and why a newspaper should have a high commitment to supporting the arts.

The interesting point in this article by Ian Mayes is that fact that he discloses that between the Guardian and the Observer (owned and run by The Guardian), they employ about 60 art critics backed by a similar number of editors and sub-editors!

And they made a deliberate effort to provide arts coverage in spite of the fact that “…the commitment is not simply or primarily a commercial one. In terms of revenue for the paper, many areas of the arts would not pay for the coverage.”

I would guess that our own Washington Post, which has a daily (and shrinking) circulation of around 600,000 printed papers, and gets around two million hits a day for its great website, and owns several other newspapers, is probably about twice the size of the Guardian newspapers combined.

Does anyone want to count the number of Washington Post art critics and see if they employ or use more or less than the Guardian?

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About Lenny Campello