Friday, November 19, 2010

We've Finally Cut the Cord

It is with some sadness that I announce the termination of our subscription to The Globe and Mail, a paper that we have subscribed to continuously since our return to Ontario in 1988. Prior to that, in the 70's my wife was a Globe reader.

This was not a spur-of-the-moment decision, since we wanted to give every chance to the 'new and improved' Globe. Unfortunately, our vision of a good paper sharply diverges from John Stackhouse's, in that it has become obvious to us that the paper is trying to ensure its long-term viability by appealing to a younger and more politically conservative demographic. The most recent inkling of the latter came with the dismissal of long-time columnist Rick Salutin, who had a unique and original perspective on the people and events that make the news. With his dismissal came the elevation of Neil Reynolds, whose libertarian views seem tiresomely repetitive and predictable - he clearly lacks the wide-ranging intellect of Mr. Salutin.

In terms of the Arts and the Life section, the fact that most of the topics are of little interest to my wife and me seems to confirm the shift to a younger demographic. Personally, I think the Globe's strategy is a mistake, given that it is we baby boomers who have the most disposable income. It also ignores the fact that young people today tend to get most of their news from the Internet in general and social media in particular.

On a final note, I think we also recognize that as we get older, we inevitably have less and less influence on the world around us. That is, I suppose, the natural progression of things, and while I hardly begrudge younger generations the opportunity to exert their own influence on things, I wish, in the case of the new Globe and Mail, a better balance had been struck.

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