Alt-weekly publisher: I hear Aaron Kushner is losing millions on the Orange County Register

Stephen Mindich, who closed the Boston Phoenix in March, said at a panel discussion on newspapers Tuesday that he hears Aaron Kushner’s investment in the Orange County Register and other publications isn’t paying off.
“They are having a horrible time,” Mindich said at the law-firm sponsored event. “They are losing millions and millions of dollars.”

I’ve asked Freedom Communications/Register boss Kushner to comment. Update: “Freedom does not wish to comment,” says spokesman Eric Morgan.

CommonWealth Magazine’s Bruce Mohl writes: “Mindich said quality newspaper journalism is nearly impossible to produce today because readers won’t pay for it and advertisers are no longer willing to subsidize it because there are cheaper ways to reach their target audiences.”

Mindich told the audience of Boston media bigwigs that he closed the Phoenix because he could no longer afford to pay the salaries of high quality journalists. (When I was interviewing former Phoenix staffers for this piece, I was told that Mindich didn’t pay much. One editor said: “We were earning so little, and working under such bare-bones conditions, that the work itself had to be our main compensation.”)

* Stephen Mindich questions the future of newspapers (
* Where Phoenix staffers landed after the alt-weekly folded (