Claim: Aaron Kushner Losing "Millions and Millions" of Dollars on OC Register

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There is a very good source of mine at the Orange County Register who tells me things that all turn out to be true. He predicted, for instance, that the Reg would buy the Riverside Press-Enterprise, that Lorri Galloway would announce her Anaheim mayoral candidacy to columnist Frank Mickadeit, and other things. Unfortunately, the source will not reveal who they are, or offer any concrete proof to back up their claims--but they all become true.

For months, the source has been insisting that Reg owner Aaron Kushner has been losing millions of dollars on his paper, one that has been the darling of media watchers for expanding instead of contracting, hiring up instead of laying off, and for its feel-good approach to comforting the comfortable. I never doubted the source--but I couldn't confirm this fact. Well, now someone else is publicly making the same assertion--and they're doing it from Kushner's Boston base.

This Tuesday, the publisher of the shuttered-down Boston Phoenix told a panel that his sources are telling him Kushner is floundering big-time. "They are having a horrible time," Stephen M. Mindich said, as reported by Commonwealth Monthly. "They are losing millions and millions of dollars."

Media critic Jim Romenesko tried to contact Kushner to confirm or deny such a bold statement; Kushner sent his minister of information, Eric Morgan, to say "Freedom does not wish to comment." UH-OH...

Hey, source of mine: what else ya got?

Email: garellano@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @gustavoarellano.

Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!



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29 comments
alpacarules
alpacarules

From all current accounts, Kushner & Spitz continue to lose millions. Friends who work there say vendors cannot get paid, no expense reports are getting re-imbursed and their top sales reps have all left. Sad end to such a storied newspaper.

Aimee Monahan
Aimee Monahan

Haha, love it. His PR kit disguised as a legit media source was bound to come to a screeching halt.

sweetliberty17761776
sweetliberty17761776 topcommenter

this is another reason why the msm want to shut down message boards and blogs


message boards, while bringin in the eyeballs /d rev are actually creating their own competition


people can now get news from all over the place and the real money is in the comments



shawnmiars
shawnmiars

You see its days like this, when an Iconic figure like Mandela passes away, that seeing the comments on the register would sustain hours of entertaining fun. Just imagine the number of people who have heard of paul walker asking who Mandela is? Hell we may even see the boot licking queen himself Gordon Dillow comment. Damn you Aaron and your paywall and that trashcan liner you call news paper.  

tongue_twister_for_t
tongue_twister_for_t topcommenter

"We just want and need a daily OC paper that we can read for free", right fellas.

Do I hear a HELL YEAH!

tongue_twister_for_t
tongue_twister_for_t topcommenter

and I just went to a job fair today where they charged the vendors over $800.00 for a booth with a sign, table and a curtain and lunch for 2 and there were only 12 to 14 employers there and only 10 showed up, the other 2 tables were empty so I guess those vendors wasted thier money, two of the employers were cemetaries, is that a bad sign or what?

But I guess it's not as bad as Todd Spitzer (not showing up) at his own sponsored job fair a few months ago in oc where they had over 50 employers there and not a single one of them called me, so it makes you wonder what they're doing with your info, the table for Orange County was empty. 

tongue_twister_for_t
tongue_twister_for_t topcommenter

Hey Gus: "Avenge Yourself Die in debt".

If you do then where are they gonna get the money from?

They're the one that made it and printed it and it's fiat money anyway.

It's that paywall that they put up because it's draining thier revenue sources when they didn't have any money in order to pay for the lousy news anyway, 3/4 of the paper is trash that can't be used and goes in the trash anyway. Unless you're a businesman then you can't use most of the info that's in it anyhow, I keep applying for jobs on thier wesite connected to Monster.com and I never hear back from anyone. I'm still out of a job over a year later after losing my last one.

Rocky Neidhardt
Rocky Neidhardt

I told them they need an environmental package - NO Print copy - ALL Online - FREE - Have Ad's Everywhere!! they suck! Hire a real sales team!!

ted.mendez
ted.mendez

I hope the Register isn't foundering. Of course I wish it wasn't such a right-leaning paper but it's still a long-time local newspaper and I hope it doesn't die out.

shawnmiars
shawnmiars

Well thats just too bad. The problem is the Reggie will never die. It will not go away and so long as there is someone in the media world with money to burn and some horribly concocted ideal, sub par journalism will continue to flood most of the OC readers out there. I could barely make it through viewing the online edition and I was glad when they made it a paywall because my temptation to go the site just to see the zoo animals commenting was cured. 

whateveryousay
whateveryousay topcommenter

It's the pay wall. I ditched my home subscription, but still have a subscription at the office.  The pay wall is a pain.  Login, re-login. Go home and login again, then to the iPad and have to login again.  

Way too cumbersome of a user interface.  

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

Did you know that when you call the OC Register/Freedom Communications offices and are waiting on hold for a connection to the Pay-for-Publish department, the song that plays in an endless loop is "Freedom" by George Michael?  


Free-dom....

Free-dom...

FREE-DOM....

You've gotta give for what you take.....

Sandy Baumgardner
Sandy Baumgardner

Could it be that advertisers are flying the coop because nobody clicks on the site anymore? WHY pay the $$ for a daily delivery AND read it online? Folks are not going to pay what is essentially $1/day for online access. And did anyone think out social media sharing? Even SF Chronicle and Boston Globe get that. They are a paid subscription model, but anything that is posted in social media is open (and sharable) to all.

dale_c
dale_c

I canceled my subscription because of the paywall. They tried calling me a couple weeks ago and I told them to remove my name from their list until the paywall goes down. The caller told me he gets that a lot.

Jon Lundin
Jon Lundin

Isn't that your parent company OC Weekly?

ocbreeze
ocbreeze

Well, for one, if you aren't a subscriber, you can't read any articles online. We get Sunday only and are still not allowed to read on the other days. So we don't read the register. In fact, we started our Sunday subscription in support of his new venture, but quickly realized it didn't go both ways. I know many online sources are heading this way, but you first and foremost have to have content that people want to read. He jumped on the subscription only bandwagon before proving the content was there. 

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

It's true, the real money is in the comments.  My contract here is up in February and I'm being wooed by Riviera Magazine to help bring some star quality to their new comments section.  Village Voice Media is, unfortunately, a small-market team that is grooming talent for the Modern Luxury-ies of the world.  As long as I pass that physical on my rotator cuff, I'm looking at a multi-year offer.  


tongue_twister_for_t
tongue_twister_for_t topcommenter

That's called "denial of freedom of speech" and then they tell you that it's 'journalistic integrity'? = BS. 

tongue_twister_for_t
tongue_twister_for_t topcommenter

No, it's not, the parent company is Village Voice Media and it's gay based.

MatthewTCoker
MatthewTCoker topcommenter

@Jon Lundin No one mentioned in the post is our parent company.

MatthewTCoker
MatthewTCoker topcommenter

Actually, it's Voice Media Group (dropped the Village, even though it takes one). And gay-seeped would be more accurate.

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

@MatthewTCoker  

But Kushner does have an eye on the Weekly ...

he sees some revenue synergy between your coverage of Richard Nixon and the Nixon Library

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

LOL

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