Considering Carlos Slim’s Investment In The New York Times

Carlos Slim Helu, currently the third richest person in the world, purchased a significant stake in the NYT not too long ago.

Is he crazy?  I mean the print news business has been having terrible difficulties in recent years.

For example, classified advertising revenue for the major papers — whether print or online — has declined dramatically.  And there’s a good reason for this, too:  Why would you or I pay a newspaper for an ad in its “Classified” section — print or online — when we might just as soon advertise mostly for free on, say,  CraigsList?

Then consider his investment in light of us bloggers.  When a web user reads what we or millions of others of us write on our respective blogs, his or her attention is not likely on The New York Times simultaneously.

Again, this is seemingly not great news for the future growth of  “The Gray Lady” (whose online edition did not before face this novel, indirect competition for the attention of readers globally).

So, is Slim thinking clearly by investing in The New York Times at this point in time?  I say, who knows?

The Times certainly has its archive, one dating back to1851.  If you want to read something from it dated decades ago, it’ll cost you.   So,  Slim’s probably was not crazy when he considered said archive or the value of other Times assets prior to his investment.

But does Slim see The New York Times as merely an undervalued “museum-piece” that he might sell the public “tickets” to view?  Or does he see it as something that will have on-going, even greater (!) journalistic relevance in a world where legions of us bloggers (including those of us here at are doing high-quality, highly-specialized publishing online?

Personally, I don’t know.

All I do know that I think it’d be great if Slim was one of the people crazy enough to see a better future for The New York Times even in a world with a growing number of great bloggers like us.

(Note: I don’t own shares of NYT or know people who do)