Brandon Hernández 8:18 a.m., May 21
Manchester Buys San Diego CityBeat
Editor: the president of CityBeat's owner, Southland Publishing, has made the following request for changes with regard to this story: (1) Add the word "(satire)" to the headline as follows: "Manchester Buys San Diego CityBeat (satire)"(2) Please add the following language under the headline, above the story: "Editor's note: The following story is not true. It is satire. Doug Manchester has not purchased San Diego CityBeat."
New U-T Owner Continues Effort to Bring Positive Outlook to San Diego Media Community, Snatches Up Local Weekly in Lunchtime Deal
"No more nattering nabobs of negativism!"
It's like I've always said," reflected Papa Doug Manchester - longtime local real-estate magnate and now, media mogul. "Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach. And those who can't even teach become journalists so they can complain about those who can and those who teach. How else to explain the relentless focus of so many media outlets on what's wrong with the world, instead of all the things that are right? Why is it only at Christmas that the news takes time to tell stories of people helping other people, of the great good done by church organizations on behalf of the poor and needy? Instead, all we get is stories of boy-raping priests and embezzling pastors. 'Teachers making a difference? Who cares? Let's report on mismanaged district funds! Real estate developer bolstering the economy in the midst of a brutal recession? Never mind - let's write about the Coastal Commission's prolonged whining!' Enough is enough."
It's that constant, corrosive cascade of criticism that prompted Manchester - a do-er if ever there was one - to purchase the Union-Tribune earlier this year, and to boldly proclaim his intention to turn the paper into a cheerleader for all that is righteous and wonderful in San Diego. But of course, some people were unhappy with the idea. "I guess I should have seen it coming - the brood of vipers that is the San Diego media couldn't bear to see one of their own come over to the side of goodness and light. So they started in hissing. But today, that hissing just got a little quieter."
Manchester was referring to his successful bid to purchase San Diego CityBeat from Southland Publishing, a Pasadena-based company that also publishes The Ventura County Reporter and Life After 50 magazine. The deal, which reportedly took more than two lunch meetings to put together, saw Manchester assume full control of the weekly newspaper in exchange for the lunch bill, cab fare back to the Grand Del Mar Hotel, three days and two nights in an Executive Suite for Southland's CEO and his wife, and one-way bus fare for all current CityBeat employees to the destination of their choice within the continental United States.
"I'm looking forward to the future," crowed Manchester. "A future full of good news, good weather, and good journalism. I wonder how much I'd have to spend to get the North County Times as well?"