There are (still) people within Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s orbit that still think that a post-mayoral bid for the New York Times would be a worthy next-act for the Mayor, who will be term-limited out of his job at the end of next year. This, even though Bloomberg has been reasonably emphatic about what he thinks about the idea.
As I write in this week’s column, this is a very pretty notion: here comes the benevolent billionaire to ‘save’ the Times from the vicissitudes of the market and Murdoch. Unfortunately, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, and there are very strong arguments against this happening.
But a longtime reader floats a whole ‘nother notion in a series of emails:
Bloomberg should pick up Pearson's Financial Times.
everyone is looking the wrong direction at bloomberg and the nyt. the logical place to look is bloomberg and the FT. hell i can already write the ad theme line: The paper the Journal used to be.
in general i agree with you [regarding the Times being bad idea] but the mechanics of the ft acquisition offer too many benefits that are nowhere in a nyt acquisition. first you're basically taking the existing bloomberg and spreading its cost on an additional revenue stream.
Further it appears there may be a hole developing in the market for business newspaper that someone could seize on. finally there is a danger someone else could enter bloomberg's market if he doesnt do the deal. the nyt isn't for bloomberg. FT is.
I'm not wholly sold on this idea, in large part because I still see a big gulf between Bloomberg's basic business--data, not journalism--and what the FT does. (And, like the Times, the FT ain't exactly, uhm, for sale.)
Nevertheless: said reader's notion is not entirely crazy.
(Apologies to Mission of Burma, whose number evidently came up today in the pop-culture allusion bingo that was going on in my head.)