I mean, sorry for the cynicism, but this is an obvious conflict of interest. Retail, distribution, infrastructure, and now politics & media.
The man can do what he wants but the public probably shouldn't applaud this.
Doesn't mean we can't raise awareness of it each time it happens. That is, not applaud powerful people getting even more powerful.
There are also alternative forms of ownership, but that's a more complex subject not fit for a message board.
At the very least it is a situation ripe for misunderstandings leading to bad end results and at the worst is fertile ground for lobbyists and special interests.
I've read here a hundred times complaints that mainstream media don't cover tech news as it should and I tend to agree.
Bezos is a rich, powerful man. But it's "our" rich, powerful man, so I for one, am happy with this acquisition.
We happen to be a thoughtful community and a decent newsreader without (a lot of) hierarchy. If it migrates elsewhere, I will as well. I find many of Graham's old essays amusing in the abstract sense (they're Austrian Economics rehashed in the language of computer science), but question his intentions.
I suspect it's a power grab for influence in the long-term. Big media shapes the discourse, debate, and policy of the country. He can be a much more effective broker of business and societal matters now that he manages "the truth."
I think, at least :/
It's possible this is an elaborate ruse to fool the Graham family into selling their crown jewel (reputationally, at least. The Kaplan test preparation unit is the tail that now wags the profit dog at Washington Post, Inc., as I understand it.). However, that seems like a stretch. I'd much rather have a paper run as a hobby by a man (even a profoundly eccentric one) who can afford it than a board desperate to maximize quarterly earnings.
And sure, people can be intellectually lazy and only read sources that they agree with, but the fallacy of unbiased journalism is that a handful of media outlets will end up providing that anyway, just with the illusion of impartiality.
It's all that matters. :P
I kinda disagree with you on this one. Not only will something like the Kindle and Kindle apps benefit, but this is a huge win since the old style of media wasn't capable of figuring out how to stay in business. The reason why the Kindle, iTunes, Google Play or any other store is succeeding while the rest are failing is because all the rest didn't have monetized digital distribution mechanisms. All media was given out for free and now you can't stay in business if you decide to pay-wall your website. They weren't smart about it. However all other walled gardens are thriving because they are monetized from the get go and an effort has been made to make them simple to use.
The public is the winner here, and the Kindle. The only loser is probably B&N.
I submit that there was no possible set of actions the newspapers could have taken, including worldwide oligopolistic collusion, which could have produced a market in which any but a few "luxury" brands can charge media consumers directly. The basic service of telling us what happened over the last 12 hours is one that wants to be free.
Also, what about all the TV and radio networks? Their ownership is wider than the three people you list.
So I guess there's Kerry Stokes. And whoever is looking after 9 these days.
That is a convenient position to hold. You can't be wrong!
Parent's point is that WaPo/Bezos shouldn't be damned either way in this case.