The hard work’s been done. Now it’s all in the hands of the marketers.
If you can’t wait for Monday, the first day you can actually buy the redesigned Tribune at newsstands, here’s the Tower’s official preview. It’s a “much bolder” and “more colorful” Tribune updated “for a 21st century audience” at the cost — not mentioned here — of a smaller news hole and dozens of editorial jobs.
The Tribune‘s so-called complete redesign in 2001 — not driven by the same financial exigencies — produced a new paper almost perversely similar to the old. “They didn’t want to change who they were,” a design consultant who’d been brimming with unused ideas told me then. “They didn’t want to look like any other paper but themselves.”
What a lucky break! Today’s Tribune needs to quietly trim the steak while loudly selling the sizzle, and its drab 2001 redo left all the room in the world to add sizzle. If the Tribune had changed as radically then as it’s changing now, the new owners might have found it a lot harder to disguise retrenchment as rebirth.