Thu January 23, 2014

San Francisco's oldest news source gets a new managing editor

The San Francisco Chronicle has undergone radical transformations over the last several years. It's had to. In 2009, its readership dropped faster than any other newspaper in the country – 50 percent in just three years. While its reporterscontinue to win awards for their investigative journalism, the number of people actually reading that work in the paper has declined precipitously.

The digital age is dramatically disrupting the newspaper industry. Despite being in the backyard of Silicon Valley, the Chronicle has been slow to respond. In its recent ranking of the country’s most popular newspaper websites, The Huffington Post named the Washington Post as number one. The San Francisco Chronicle didn’t even make the top ten. 

Enter Audrey Cooper. The 36-year-old journalist was recently named to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Managing Editor. She's the youngest person, and first woman, to take the role. And as she told KALW's Ben Trefny in the Chronicle's offices, she has radical ideas for shaking up the old organization.

AUDREY COOPER: I think it's easy to bemoan the death and say, "Oh we should have done this before." It doesn't do any good and it just convinces our readers and our advertisers that we're irrelevant.

Click the audio player above to listen to the interview. 

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