Blade Staff to Launch New Publication
Tomorrow morning, the staff of the defunct Washington Blade will meet to launch a new publication that does pretty much what the Blade has done/did since 1969—cover gay Washington.
It just won't be called the Blade anymore.
"The staff is united," says current/former Blade editor Kevin Naff. "We’re all together. Our first meeting for our new venture is tomorrow morning."
The staffers don't yet have a name for the newspaper.
Not a dumb move at all: The Blade as a standalone publication runs a profit; however, not enough of a profit to keep its debt-troubled parent company, Window Media, in the black. According to Naff, Window is filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protections, which means that it's ceasing operations. Naff said that he was expecting Chapter 11, which would have allowed the company to restructure.
So what Naff and Blade Publisher Lynne Brown are trying to do is essentially replicate the Blade without the debt load.
The staffers sure won't be wasting any time finishing up old Blade business: They were given till 3 pm today to pack up. When asked if the company was handling the shutdown in a professional manner, Naff responded, "I should probably not comment."
Photo by Darrow Montgomery