This week’s Brooklyn Paper Radio had big news — make that News.
Co-host Gersh Kuntzman, who left his job as a New York Daily News columnist only last week, revealed the inside scoop on Monday’s sale of the paper to Tronc — information he was able to obtain because access to his Daily News e-mail account wasn’t restricted until after the holiday weekend.
The trove of details included an internal memo from former publisher Eric Gertler, which Kuntzman skimmed through on the air; details from a Tuesday “town hall” meeting between Daily News employees and their new Tronc bosses; and confirmation that News editor-in-chief Arthur Browne would be relieved of his post in December.
Kuntzman, who starts Friday as Breaking News Editor at Newsweek after a five-year run at the News, described Browne’s yearlong tenure — during which he enlisted Kuntzman to write the straight-to-digital political novel “Coup!” — as a “roller coaster ride — but only the part of the roller coaster from the top of the first hill to the bottom of the first hill.”
Co-host Vince DiMiceli suggested that Kuntzman’s interest in the Daily News sale — and in Browne’s demise — was just “personal,” but Kuntzman denied it.
“All I wanted to do was save the paper,” he said. “I wanted to innovate with videos, podcasts, etc., so the advertising staff could sell ads, rather than just calling up the usual suspects.”
Then, as part of a broader discussion of the future of journalism, DiMiceli and Kuntzman — the Lennon and McCartney of Community Journalism — reached out to Ed Weintrob, former publisher of The Brooklyn Paper, who said Kuntzman perhaps should have stayed at the Daily News.
“You’re a great editor, Gersh,” he said. “But if you had stayed, you probably would have gotten a buyout from Tronc.”
Brooklyn Paper radio is recorded and podcast live every Tuesday at 4 pm from our studio in America’s Downtown.