Monday, March 30, 2009

Joplin Business Journal bites the dust

Some people say that Joplin is not big enough for one business newspaper, much less two.

The Joplin Business Journal will reportedly publish its final edition Tuesday, leaving the field to Joplin Tri-State Business. The Journal, a project of the folks at Asay Publshing, has been in existence since the beginning of 2006, but has never made much of a dent with its reporting, most of which has been relegated to the "let's write a story and get someone to buy an ad because of it"type of business coverage.

Joplin Tri-State Business, started at approximately the same time by the Springfield Business Journal, has featured more actual news about the business world since its inception.

Both newspapers started about the same time, the well-established Joplin Globe was challenged by GateHouse Media's Joplin Daily, which had two things going for it, a solid concept and John Hacker, and failed to build on either of those positives.

It will be interesting to see what difference, if any, the demise of the Joplin Business Journal will have on the content of Joplin Tri-State Business.


Anonymous said...

I believe this story would've had a much different outcome if Tom Murray, first editor of the Joplin Business Journal, hadn't been tragically stricken with cancer and died. His successors tried, but Murray's solid journalistic credentials and thorough knowledge of Joplin were sorely missed.

Anonymous said...

Another factor in all this:

THERE IS NO BUSINESS...Thanks to creeping socialism, business as we once knew it is on its way out and there's no need for a publication to promote what is a dying enterprise in America. Being taxed, regulated, swamped in paperwork, and villified is the death of business in America. And the tide of socialism is just coming to our shores...when it arrives in a full force, we'll be set back about two generations...welcome to the second or third world.

Anonymous said...

This will just inflate Jeff Wells' head, which is already a huge melon. Seriously, that thing is freaking giant.

Anonymous said...

Randy, why don't you post all the comments? I sent one yesterday, but it didn't show up. It was about there being no business to report.

Makes me wonder about you.....

Brennan Stebbins said...

As someone who worked for both publications, I can easily say JTB is the class act of the two. I applied for a business writing position with the Joplin Business Journal last spring and after an interview was offered a position selling subscriptions by phone. I politely declined, but Roger Asay asked me to come back and talk to him and said he wanted me to be a reporter first and foremost, and make some phone calls on the side.
It was surprising, to say the least, when I showed up on day one and was given a desk with a phone and a list of 1,000 businesses to call. Weeks later, when a staffer died, I was allowed to write in the mornings and sell subscriptions in the afternoons. During that time, I was routinely asked to chuck ethics out the window. "This business wants to buy an ad so we need to do a story on them" was a common assignment for me. I was also told to visit the Pittsburg Morning Sun online edition, find a business story and rewrite it so it didn't look like it had been taken from them.
The advertising and editorial sections of the paper were one in the same when I was there and the editor at the time frequently dealt with advertising. After a couple months I couldn't take it anymore and quit; my name was removed from the masthead immediately, even though I had filled two pages with content for the next issue.
I say good riddance; JTB is and was always the better publication. I sold around 15 subscriptions in my two months there, despite thousands of phone calls. Most people said they preferred the "green journal with the glossy front page."