Gawker, citing no sources and using no quotes, is reporting that Observer owner Jared Kushner “has been taking meetings and asking for ‘ideas’ about what to do with his paper.” To them, the discussions sound as though he’s “more interested in finding a graceful way to get rid of the paper.” It’s true it seems the paper has lost a little of its relevance of late — just today we only remembered in the afternoon that a new issue had come out. Once we did, it was hard to see what was new on their wholly impenetrable website. But it sure seems like a terrible time to try and unload a newspaper — especially one to which you’ve pinned your young reputation.
We called the Observer’s publicist to see what was going on, and were told these rumors were “just silly.” “The Observer is not for sale and has not been for sale,” a spokeswoman told us. “In fact, our stable of publications is growing, with the launches of the Commercial Observer on September 15 and Observer Playground on September 16.” The explanation for the “ideas” meetings was that “Jared is continually pursuing potential new partnerships and acquisitions that will further expand the Observer brand and is looking to grow the Observer Media Group.” Figuring out how to expand with the “new-media crowd,” as Gawker put it, isn’t a bad idea when your “old-media title” never really made money in the first place. Plus, Jared can’t sell the Observer! What would we refer to him as then — “666 Fifth Avenue owner Jared Kushner”? That has no ring to it whatsoever.
Jared Kushner Ready to Exit the New York Observer? [Gawker]
Related: Read Gabriel Sherman’s profile of Jared Kushner from New York last month.