Tracy: Star Wars; KC Star 1, Joco Sun Zippo

So Steve Rose bails on the setting Sun after penning a farewell column about his family’s 60 year history. 

Where does he go? Smack into the loving arms of his family’s hated rival, the dreaded KC Star. But only in the dullish, lightly-read edition of Johnson County’s Neighborhood News.  There are now two zoned editions in JoCo and  Rose’s column will not be in the Olathe news zone, (circ. 15,700). 

That despite that half of Rose’s obsessions dealing with the County Commission, which meets in downtown Olathe.

The Star comes out the big winner for snapping up Rose as the poster child for Johnson County. 

He’s far more connected than the Star‘s Mike Hendricks ever was.  Both are snotty, but Rose owns a necktie and the power suits in JoCo take his phone calls. Hendricks is such a goober he doesn’t even merit a return call.

Since Rose is a rich, I hope the Star got him cheap. 

Rose made his millions unloading his parents’s papers (that he aquired years before) on gullible out of town publishers. 

To date the Star is virtually obsolete, especially in Johnson County. 

Veteran news reporter Jim Sullinger has been filing 15 stories a day lately, which is preposterous. He’s also likely to retire this year after 30 plus years of accurate reporting.  But for the most part, the Star doesn’t really cover news in Johnson County.  Editorial writer Yael Abouhalkah was once assigned to manage coverage here, but he’d need a trail of bread crumbs to find Olathe.

Can Rose’s column save the Joco Star?  Nope. These days you can get the school lunch menus online.

As for the Sun, it’s setting just as fast or faster than the Star.  Personally, I loved Hearne’s column there which ended after a year, but at least provided a boost to help launch KC Confidential after he left the Star.

But here’s the real deal; without Rose on page 1, the Sun is doomed to ignominy. 

Rose is now unofficially our town’s version of Senator Joe Lieberman, who changed parties from Democrat to Independent.  Both are struggling to remain relevant.  And in the end, I predict both have been fatally marginalized because the world changed. 

In Rose’s case, print journalism is a pretty much fast becoming a dinosaur.  So it doesn’t matter like it once used to what he thinks or writes because SO FEW PEOPLE ARE READING ANYMORE!

Worse yet, now with Rose’s column is gone, Sun worshippers are stuck with not-very-well reported stories, instead of Rose’s column which was usually worth reading.

The Sun’s managing editor for JoCo is Jessica Marshall and she’s dreadful in my humble opinion.

I’ve found her to be inaccurate, meanspirited, and myopic in her news judgment.  (Glad I quit doing PR—no sense pitching any stories to her!)  One example of Marshall’s bias and ethical lapses is that she allegedly trades clothes with Shawnee City Councilwoman Dawn Kuhn. 

That’s right, trading clothes with a pol.

Kuhn, whose day job is a VP at Midwest Bank in western Shawnee, actually has appeared in Council chambers with cleavage showing.  And Marshall has walked into Shawnee City Council chambers before meetings she was to report on, approached Kuhn and said, “I have your  skirt in the car.  I didn’t have time to have it drycleaned.”
The audited circulation of the Star neighborhood insert on Wednesdays is currently 50,123, according to Ron Ciani, Advertising Manager for Johnson County at the Star.
The circulation of the Sun in JoCo was stated but not confirmed as being 50,000. That’s down from just two years back.  But few friends of mine receive it, so I believe they are not mailing anywhere near the 50,000 papers.  Maybe half is my guess.  That’s why the Sun chose to no longer being audited. 

Now mark your calendars: I predict the Sun will set before the Mayan calendar ends in 2012.

Ah but Steve Rose,  vampire that he is, will have a column for another 10 years.  If the Star lasts that long.
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3 Responses to Tracy: Star Wars; KC Star 1, Joco Sun Zippo

  1. Anonymous says:

    Same old Stevie
    I knew him when he was 10and through college. Jerk then, jerk now. What an ass.

  2. mark x says:

    Good stuff, Tracy …
    …”I have your skirt in the car. I didn%u2019t have time to have it drycleaned.%u201D …. THIS is why I read KC Confidential !

  3. chuck says:

    Very interesting stuff, good read.
    Love the scoop.

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