No home page for Delawareonline blogs as paper finally hires business reporter


News journalThe News Journal has taken its blogs off its home page at Delaware as the Gannett newspaper takes more of an old school approach.

The home page used to feature links to a number of blogs written by reporters, such as Patricia Talorico’s popular Second Helpings. Another blog was the DelawareInc, which look at business.

Blogs are part of a strategy by newspapers to deal with readers getting their news from sources other than newsprint and build closer ties to their audience. The N-J still posts heavily on Facebook , but confines its work to its own stories, a common practice among newspapers.

Second Helpings and other blog entries still exist, but have been moved into entertainment and other sections of the website. Delaware Inc. is available, but only through a web search.

The DelawareInc. blog had not been updated since the fall,, after the News Journal lost its business reporting staff. Reporters departed at about the time the newspaper required all staff to reapply for their jobs in a “Hunger Games” style process.

On the corporate level, Gannett said the process was needed as the company adapts to a digital landscape.

The News Journal and other Gannett papers have also flattened out their management structures, eliminating positions such as business editor. In the 1990s, the newspaper had upwards of half a dozen staffers, including a business editor.

At about the same time, an anonymous website Delaware Free News emerged, offering a diet of breaking news items that account for a lot of the News Journal’s web traffic. Such stories also sit behind a “pay wall” that limits the number of visits by nonsubscribers.

The departures have continued , the latest being long-time reporter Beth Miller, who took a position at the University of Delaware.

Joining the News Journal as the business reporter after the exits is Jeff Mordock, former reporter for the Delaware Law Weekly.

Mordock broke the story last year on outgoing Delaware Supreme Court Justice criticizing Gov. Jack Markell after she was not picked for the post of Chief Justice.

Berger said Markell was not doing anything to break the glass ceiling for women. The claim was denied by a Markell aide.

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