A change in editorial leadership at the Philadelphia Daily News is bringing scrutiny to the Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper.
The urban tabloid’s new editor will be Larry Platt, the former editor of the glossy Philadelphia Magazine. The outgoing editor, Michael Days, will move upstairs to the Inquirer newssroom to be a managing editor.
Platt used to edit Philadelphia Magazine, a glossy monthly. The CEO of the holding company that owns both the Inquirer and the Daily News, Greg Osberg, says Platt embodies the future tone of the Daily News.
“The personality characteristics that we want to build on the Daily News are loud, irreverent, and fun,” said Osberg, who bought the papers in October. “If you want a product that exhibits that, you better have an editor that falls into that category, too.”
Osberg says he will build upon the paper’s renowned sports coverage while punching the paper’s graphics and headlines to make it appealing to younger readers.
Some observers wonder about the future of the Daily News. Journalist Bobbi Booker, who writes for the Philadelphia Tribune, fears the incoming editor may not uphold the Daily News’ diversity.
“Philadelphia Magazine for a long time has been considered elitist,” said Booker, who has criticized the magazine for its dearth of African-American writers. “It takes a stance the looks down on folks who do not have the same values. Hearing this change at the Daily News, which was known for a long time as the People’s Paper, it brings some concerns.”
Booker is not alone. George Miller, a former Daily News writer who now teaches journalism at Temple University, calls Michael Days a highly respected editor but is concerned about his successor.
“Why do you bring someone of a high-caliber magazine background into a daily newspaper that is really a gritty, on the street daily–crime politics and sports,” said Miller. “It makes me wonder what is the direction of the Daily News.”
The changing of the guards occurs at the end of the month.