Gene Johnson and Phuong Le
January 10, 2009
SEATTLE (AP) — Hearst Corp. put Seattle’s oldest newspaper, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, up for sale on Friday and said that if it can’t find a buyer in the next 60 days the paper would likely close or continue to exist only online.
If it does become an Internet-only operation, the P-I, as the paper is known locally, would have a “greatly reduced staff,” Hearst said in a statement. Hearst is a major media company that also owns TV stations, other newspapers and magazines including Cosmopolitan.
“In no case will Hearst continue to publish the P-I in printed form” once the 60 days are up, Hearst said. Steve Swartz, the head of Hearst’s newspaper division, broke the news to employees in a meeting Friday.
Seattle is one of two major cities on the verge of losing its second daily newspaper as the industry tries to pull out of a tailspin brought on by falling circulation and advertising revenue. Denver’s Rocky Mountain News recently put itself up for sale in the face of steep losses and could close if a buyer isn’t found soon.