With the Los Angeles Register, Will Owner Aaron Kushner Meet His Waterloo?

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Yesterday, Orange County Register owner Aaron Kushner announced to his workers that he plans to debut next month the LA Register, a daily that'll circulate throughout the Los Angeles area and he promises will be bigger than the Los Angeles Times. Man, would I have loved to been there to see the looks on the faces of his reporters: of shock in hearing their owner expand yet again after opening a paper in Long Beach and buying the Riverside Press-Enterprise despite losing millions of dollars, of bewilderment when Kushner announced he wouldn't be hiring more reporters for this LA experiment but rather staff from within the OC Register, of dread in finally realizing their Pied Piper is to--excuse the French--bat-shit loco.

The story (unsurprisingly left outside the Reg's paywall) by Kushner's stenographer, reporter Mary Ann Milbourn, hails the move as allowing the paper to blanket the entirety of Southern California with three distinct additions and the P-E. But what Milbourn doesn't mention is that Kushner's move is like history repeating itself all over again. Us old folks still remember when, at the height of daily journalism's reach, the Times printed separate editions for the Valley, San Diego, LA, and Orange County, with resources far more vast than whatever Kushner's mysterious funders may have. The most epic one of those was the OC edition, staffed with hundreds of reporters at a time when the Times hired some of the best journalists in the country and the brand was golden--and not only did Times-Mirror NOT succeed in bringing down the Reg, it died an ignoble death.

And Kushner expects to succeed with an LA Reg? HAHAHAHA! The Times' move into OC was hailed by the county's liberal and intellectual class; the Register's reputation in LA remains trash, so that'll be the first, huge hurdle Kushner needs to jump. Most LAers still think the Hoiles run the paper, so the Reg's libertarian perspective is just another insurmountable millstone Kushner will have to face. Most importantly, if Kushner plans to stock his LA paper with OC Register writers, that means a combination of dinosaurs who haven't covered anything other than Orange County for over a decade, and cub scribes who only know LA from pigging out at Würstkuche because they still think no culture exists in OC. So much for blanketing OC with the best possible coverage, Aaron!

We'll see where we are next year, of course, but wethinks Kushner will meet his Waterloo in LA...sounds like fun!

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

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23 comments
carlcarla
carlcarla

Wow! L.A. now will be subject to barely scratch the surface news articles

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

AARON KUSHNER: "So, Eric, we'll start a paper in LA.  But it's just a short-term startup, like that greeting cards business we did back in the dot com boom era."  


ERIC SPITZ: "I get it.  So you're saying we launch the thing, but our exit strategy is, the Times will be so weakened by our kick-ass theme park coverage and our fast food analysis, it will have to buy our paper.  And then with the sale proceeds, we can buy those houses we want in Beacon Hill."  


AARON KUSHNER: "Exactly. Print may be dying, but the venture startup model sure ain't!  Now excuse me, I have another media interview where I say nothing specific to do." 


NGCoot
NGCoot

The new Register really is different – covers a lot of news in a “fair & balanced” way. Really – as a conservative some of their stuff I don’t like – you would like it – even in the OpEd pages. The way they do news – they will kick the LA Times ass.

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

"...dinosaurs who haven't covered anything other than Orange County for over a decade..."

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

DanChmielewski
DanChmielewski

I think that's an unfair portrayal of Mary Ann Milbourn.  I don't think there's any way for the LA Register to surpass the LA Times in terms of size or quality.  Shouldn't you be more concerned with the continued shrinkage of your own publication? 

No-el Fernandez
No-el Fernandez

Haha that's true... But damn hate on something else. It's getting lame

Rick Hale
Rick Hale

Impossible. Half their content is hate originated.

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

"The story...by Kushner's stenographer, reporter Mary Ann Milbourn..."

LMFAO LMFAO

So, so true. Mary Ann Milbourn's reporting -- Reg or non-Reg -- almost makes Nancy Luna look like Bob Woodward. (Almost...)

No-el Fernandez
No-el Fernandez

Hey Gustavo I'm not a register lover. I do think they're dumb for doing their paywall thing etc... But dude stop being a hater. You're always bashin on em. Get over it report on something else already. Ps. You're not funny.

Joe Campas
Joe Campas

what make the price $2 for weekdays and $3 for weekends.

JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

Maybe some of the OC Register folks who staff the Disneyland news bureau can apply for positions in the LA Register's Disney Studios news bureau in Burbank 


JBinOC
JBinOC topcommenter

@GustavoArellano@JBinOC 

Wonder if anyone told them that, last time I checked, the Times is still majority owned by JP Morgan Chase and investment firms -- who surely have no interest in business development and print media mergers and acquisitions.  Even if Eli Broad or David Geffen or someone else owns the LAT in a couple of years or so, they surely will laugh heartily at the proposition of acquiring a paper named the LA Register whose biggest distinction is maintaining a news bureau at Universal Studios theme park. 

DanChmielewski
DanChmielewski

@GustavoArellano@DanChmielewski  The number of news pages, the number of syndicated content in other alt weeklies, tell me you haven't noticed?  Drag out an edition from three years ago, five years ago, 10 years ago...and compare. 

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator topcommentereditor

@NGCootHey, Mikey: Don't you have to go root for a team led by a pedophile protector like Gary McKnight?

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator topcommentereditor

@DanChmielewski And 10 years ago we had no blogs, and 5 years ago we had no social media, so what's your point? Stick to what you know: pulling juvenile stunts on bona fide losers and palling around with the likes of Matty Cunningham.

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