It breaks my heart that Salon may not make it. Salon represented the best that the commercial Web had to offer and it demonstrated that newspaper editors are capable of creating smart editorial products once the need for 60% market penetration was removed. It also showed that online-only publications could break news.
Of course, Salon was never a business. Harper’s, The Atlantic, The New Republic, and the Washington Monthly aren’t businesses. Meanwhile, I (and probably a lot of other people) read it a lot less after they put their best content behind a subscription barrier and cut their staff.
I suppose they’ll have to declare bankruptcy and go dark before the remains can be salvaged. It’s also troubling that the fate of The WELL hangs in the balance here.
I kept vainly hoping one of the big newspaper corporations would buy it and repurpose Salon’s content in their papers. But the only real solution for Salon is to find an rich individual to bankroll it for personal reasons. That’s why Slate is still around.