Austin American-Statesman sold to GateHouse Media; ownership shrinks as prices drop.

The Austin American-Statesman was a Cox property and now has been sold to GateHouse for $47.5 million US. statesman-logo

When I was covering the newspaper landscape in the late 1990s, early 2000s. this price would have been considered a pittance. This wasn't a minor newspaper, but now we are seeing companies buy up properties to squeeze out the remaining assets.

There is no stability in print anymore. There wasn't any real stability twenty years ago, either, just fewer owners paying less for properties, and many of those properties don't last long, despite being in publication for over a century -- and surviving the Great Depression.

What sales often mean is people are let go, and operations are centralized, meaning media properties all walk lockstep to a single ideology. Despite the glowing press release, this is a painful era for the once noble -- and power profession.