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Week in Review: Is Manchester Another Pulitzer or Hearst?

In late-19th Century New York City, newspaper owners like Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst had no qualms about using their publications for political power. The term “yellow journalism” was used to describe their attempts to use their front pages to influence public perception and the government.

Hotelier and U-T San Diego owner Doug Manchester at The Grand Del Mar on October 15, 2012.
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Above: Hotelier and U-T San Diego owner Doug Manchester at The Grand Del Mar on October 15, 2012.

More than 100 years later, some are wondering whether U-T San Diego owner Doug Manchester and his CEO John Lynch are doing the same thing. In a three-part series, reporter Amita Sharma lays out what these men have done with their expanding media empire so far, and talks to U-T staff who say even the paper’s news department has fallen under its owners’ influence.

“If you have a really good story, I don't know if it would get into the paper if Lynch or Manchester didn't like it or it was too controversial,” one anonymous staffer says. “Morale is terrible. People are distressed."

The comments section of the story has become, as one commenter put it, “a public proclamation of cancelled UT subscriptions.”

“Just wanted to add my username to the list,” sdurban writes. “We cancelled on day one of the Manchester takeover.”

Other Stories This Week

  • Our propositions page is now complete, offering you in-depth looks at each of the state propositions on your November ballot, plus stories on local medical marijuana ordinances and the San Diego school bond Prop. Z. Make sure you check it out as you decide how to vote.
  • For residents of City Council District 1, which includes Del Mar Heights, Carmel Valley, La Jolla and University City, we present your two City Council candidates. Watch and listen to their short debate over issues like traffic congestion in their district (if you try to drive through UTC at 5 p.m., you’ll know what they’re talking about), pension reform and whether they are aligned with any special interests.
  • We also interviewed the two California candidates for U.S. Senate, Dianne Feinstein and Elizabeth Emken. They both had strong positions on the round of budget cuts called sequestration, local water issues and San Onofre.
  • Need more information on the four candidates running for the San Diego Unified School Board? We’ve got you covered. There’s an open seat on the board this year, which means there’s a tight race between two newcomers to the board.
  • Lastly, women’s reproductive rights activist Sandra Fluke (who became famous when Rush Limbaugh called her a “slut”) was in San Diego yesterday for a rally. Fluke was not allowed to testify at a Congressional committee hearing on birth control, but she did testify on KPBS Midday Edition. Check out her interview.

Less than a week until the election! We are working hard to make you an incredibly informed voter, so make sure you check out our election page and our Voter Guide to stay on top of everything.

Comments

Avatar for user 'aztec69'

aztec69 | October 27, 2012 at 5:22 p.m. ― 1 year, 11 months ago

Comparing Manchester with Pulitzer or Hearst doesn't do them justice. Look closer to home. Compare him with James Copley or maybe Helen on her "bad hair" days.

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