Non-profits would not be“saving” newspapers from financial ruin:
unprofitable business” and warned me: “It doesn’t matter whether you
organize as a for-profit business or a non-profit business. If the
inflow and outflow of money are not appropriately balanced, that
enterprise will fail.”
Emphasis mine. Becausehow unprofitable are newspapers?
2000 and 2007, the industry’s margin this year may average no better
than 20%, says William Drewry, a managing director of the global media
group of the UBS investment bank. Average earnings before interest,
taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were 24.6% in 2007,
according to UBS.
Emphasis mine again. Jesus. Do you know what you and I would do with 20 percent profit margins? If, after we paid everybody and paid our bills and mortgages and rent and stuff, we had 20 percent just laying around? We’d … well, first we’d buy some REALLY expensive booze, and then we’d see who we could give raises to. I don’t know what the problem is here.
The reason I keep such a close eye on the discussions of the nonprofit model is that I’ve seen first hand how it strips the bullshit out of the conversation. You have the money you have, and if you have more than you need then you sock it away or you expand your operations or you invest in infrastructure or people … I’ve never in my life met a conversation more in need of simplifying than this one, right down to how much money there actually is, and what you’re doing with it.