opening shot

Opening Shot

What New Orleans is losing
July 6, 2012

Iā€Šn the years since the Times-Picayune and the city of New Orleans endured the trauma of Hurricane Katrina, it has seemed that the T-P might avoid the downward spiral of regional papers across the country—and that the oft-mentioned special relationship between this proud but troubled city and its newspaper would endure. Last year, the T-P had one of the nation’s highest market-penetration rates (65 percent). So the recent news that the paper would publish only three days a week starting in the fall, followed by more than 200 layoffs, hit the city, and the journalism world, hard. (For evidence of how hard, read laments from David Simon, creator of The Wire and Treme, and actor Harry Shearer, at The Lens, a nonprofit news website in New Orleans, assigned former T-P photographer Bevil Knapp to capture the devotion of the newspapers’ readers (the shot above is one of 10 published on the site). How did she get so many iconic images? “Because I was seeing with my heart,” she says.ā€‚

The Editors are the staffers of the Columbia Journalism Review.