Evening Standard sale leaves Paul Dacre red faced
‘I have commented before on of what I have dubbed the “subsidariat” – those media outlets who cannot connect with enough readers to be commercially viable, and whose views and journalism are only sustained by huge cross-subsidy from profitable parts of their owners’ empires or by tax payers’ money.’
– Paul Dacre, editor of the Daily Mail and editor-in-chief of Associated Newspapers, November 2008
Just a couple of months ago Paul Dacre, editor of the Daily Mail and editor-in-chief of Associated Newspapers, used a speech to the Society of Editors to condemn a branch of the media he dubbed the ‘subsidariat’; those outlets that are not commercially viable and require support from elsewhere.
The BBC provides a home to ‘the high priests of the subsidariat,’ the Guardian is its ‘traditional soul mate’. The BBC is obviously funded by a form of tax, while in its last annual report the parent of the Guardian, and its sister the Observer, revealed those papers lost £14m.
This week we heard that following reported losses of £10m a year, Associated plans to sell London’s Evening Standard to a Russian oligarch who says this: ‘has nothing to do with making money… This is a good way to waste money.’
It seems that the Evening Standard – of which Dacre is editor-is-chief – is at least as much a member of the subsidariat as the BBC or the Guardian.
According to Dacre, subsidy ‘ultimately perverts everything it touches’. Those who work in the subsidariat are unable to achieve commercial viability because they have no idea of how ordinary people live their lives or what they’re thinking. Commercial failure, stems from being divorced from shared British values.