Craig Newmark: the assassin

In one of the most remarkable pieces of “commentary” I’ve ever read, The Philadelphia Daily News’ Will Bunch blames the altruism of Craig Newmark for the loss of jobs in the newspaper industry. Bunch’s whinefest carries a picture of Lee Harvey Oswald and draws a parallel.

The American newspaper is being assassinated by “a lone nut.”

And we’re going to tell you the name of that lone nut:

Craig Newmark of Craigslist (not pictured above) — a man whose altruistic vision of running a business to NOT maximize profits is now threatening the livelyhood of thousands of working men and women across this country, your neighbors who work at and publish your local newspaper, jobs that were once supported by the classified ads that have migrated to the most free (or low-cost) Craigslist.

Bunch quotes a Forbes article that seems unable to grasp the Craigslist philosophy of leaving money in the hands of users, and this fuels Bunch’s anger.

If you won’t charge customers for ads, and apparently you won’t, then at least start accepting those text ads, and funnel those millions of dollars into the newly formed Craig’s Foundation. And what will be the main benefactor of this new foundation? A scholarship fund, to pay for the college education of the dozens of displaced journalists across America losing their jobs everyday…And if there’s any cash left, how about building a retirement home for any newspaper folks who might somehow see a diminished pension down the road?

Craigslist is certainly a major disruptive force in the newspaper world, but Bunch sounds a bit like a whale oil spokesman casting aspersions on Thomas Edison. I know Craig Newmark, and he is one of the most sincere and likeable people on the planet. He doesn’t deserve this, but that’s not the point. Mr. Bunch needs a lesson in acceptance and humility, for clearly he suffers from oxygen deprivation atop the pedestal he’s built for himself.

And if Craig Newmark is a lone nut, then he’s growing into one hell of a free-market tree. It isn’t personal; it’s just business.

Trackbacks

  1. […] But then some further research landed me on this: The Philadelphia Daily News’ Will Bunch blames the altruism of Craig Newmark for the loss of jobs in the newspaper industry. The American newspaper is being assassinated by “a lone nut.” […]

  2. […] and would have given anything to be a part of the audience when Craigslist’s CEO Jim Buckmaster essentially told off a room of analysts.But then some further research landed me on this: The Philadelphia Daily News’ Will Bunch blames the altruism of Craig Newmark for the loss of jobs in the newspaper industry: The American newspaper is being assassinated by “a lone nut.” […]

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