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From Ink on Paper to the Internet: Past Challenges and Future Transformations for New Jersey's Newspapers Hardcover – June 7, 2007

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From Ink on Paper to the Internet not only explores the history of New Jersey's daily and weekly newspapers, but traces the evolution of the newspaper industry from family businesses to chain ownership and assesses the competitive challenges that the newspaper industry in New Jersey and the nation faces in an era of the Internet and instant news. Professor Jerome Aumente supplements meticulous historical research with interviews with a Who's Who of publishers, editors and reporters prominent in New Jersey and on the national stage to produce a fascinating narrative. It is a story about how New Jersey's newspapers covered the major Page One stories, from the Lindbergh trial and the Hindenburg disaster to the attack on the Twin Towers on 9/11. It is a story about the Pulitzers earned by New Jersey journalists, including two for editorial cartooning won almost a half-century apart, one by an 80-year-old who remains the oldest person ever to win a Pulitzer and the other by a 27-year-old who had been a cartoonist for just a year. It is the inside story about how the newspaper business really works. Aumente tells why the Newark Evening News died, how William Deane Singleton and Richard Scudder built the fourth-largest newspaper empire in the country from a humble start at the Gloucester County Times, and why the Washington Post met its Vietnam when it bought the Trenton Times. He describes how the Burlington County Times was started to serve the new housing development at Levittown, how the Courier News in Bridgewater exemplifies the shift of newspapers and advertising from cities and downtown areas to suburbs and malls, and how the Asbury Park Press capitalized on the Garden State Parkway housing boom. Aumente talks about the painful staff cuts at papers from the Jersey Journal to The Times of Trenton to the Philadelphia Inquirer, and how newspapers and their embattled editors and staffs have attempted to cope in an era of down-sizing and media consolidation. But most of all, perhaps, it is a story of families: The Curley brothers -- Tom, the president of The Associated Press, who urges newspapers to embrace the new multimedia opportunities, and John, who rose to head Gannett and brokered the newspaper acquisitions that made the company one of the biggest media players in New Jersey. The Borgs, who in four generations built the Bergen Evening Record into the third-largest newspaper group in the state -- one with a tradition of excellence exemplified by Mac Borg's willingness to shrug off the loss of $1.6 million in automobile advertising over an investigative series. The Newhouses, the New York magazine moguls who own the largest portfolio of newspapers in the state, including the Star-Ledger, which has won two Pulitzers in the past six years under new editor Jim Willse. And how the scions of three families -- Bill Boyd of the New Brunswick Home News, Don Lass of the Asbury Park Press and Mac Borg -- fought over Middlesex County in the 1980s. From the Revolutionary War roots of New Jersey's first home-grown newspapers to the challenges posed by the Internet today, Aumente's book covers New Jersey's newspapers the way they have covered New Jersey for more than 225 years. (The book includes 32 pages of historic newspaper front pages and both historic and current photographs.)

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