Bezos Is Not Saving Journalism, He's Saving Amazon
Those were the words of Jeff Bezos while speaking to German paper Berliner-Zeitung.
So it came as a surprise when it was announced Monday that Amazon.com's
That's all well and good. And I want to take the press release at face value. But who are we kidding here?
There are many theories as to why Bezos would risk what amounts to only a small fraction of his wealth to buy the Post. The most popular opinion is that Bezos, by the kindness of his heart, somehow "wants to save journalism." Well, "journalism" doesn't necessarily reside exclusively in newspapers. If that were the case, Bezos could have founded a journalism school for much less, or he could have simply made a sizable donation to one.
Buying the Washington Post, as shrewd of a move as I have ever seen, is about power and influence. Let's not forget that for his $250 million, Bezos also gets other assets such as Southern Maryland newspaper groups, Fairfax County Times and El Tiempo Latino. He's also buying the Express newspaper, the Gazette and Greater Washington Publishing. Bezos, a brilliant mind by many standards, also understands the political pressures Amazon has been under.
Bezos sees how rivals like Wal-Mart
Do you suppose that Bezos feels bad about crushing family-owned bookstores? Does anyone care about the fates of former rivals like Borders, Dalton's, Media Play and several others that were killed off by Amazon's online/e-books concept? Even Best Buy