Monday, June 02, 2008

Trouble at HT Media?

You don't have to make up stories about HT anymore. Not that I ever did.
The Resident Editor of the Delhi paper is off to Dubai and this fact has been written about by a Gulf newspaper. (EDIT: Link corrected) The RE of the Bombay edition runs off for a three-month holiday with his wife, who heads the weekend supplement of the group's financial paper by threatening to quit. Increment's are so bad at the main paper that tens of more people are leaving to join anywhere they can find (now, apparently Sakaal Times is the latest destination - Sharad Pawar's not so bright political fortunes aside), and it seems people on the edit page of the paper have no idea of the term 'copyright'.
Of course, these poor increments are offset by the fact that Papermint is handing out huge salaries, though after the recent shuffle at the top, is supposedly looking for a new new boss - though that appears peculiar. This coupled together with the fact that James, a son of the Murdoch is coming to India to discuss a potential tie-up with another paper group for launching a general paper is even stranger. And there is that little thing about Papermint, have you seen their 'video reports' on their website, these are the rudimentary beginnings of their proposed business TV channel.
And as I asked in my previous post, what on earth has Vinod Mehta been smoking lately? And to answer one commenter. Yes, tech is a lot cheaper than before, and spending collosal amounts on hardware to service small numbers of customers is not a big deal anymore, leasing tech is quite common and the incremental cost of serving new customers is pretty close to zero, but you still need to spend on a decent content management system as well as some amount of fairly expensive hardware. There is a cost, and while you can set up a website for next to nothing, setting up a decent website with content coming in fairly regularly, and one one that can handle a good amount of traffic and stream videos and what have you will still cost. Of course, the cost of tech is probably lower than the cost of an overpaid and idiotic manager, but that is another story.

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