New Times, Village Voice Media Sign Consent Decree

january 27, 2003  09:22 am
In the conclusion to the unprecedented antitrust probe of the two alt-weekly chains, neither company admitted guilt but agreed to aid the opening of new weekly papers in Los Angeles and Cleveland. The New York Times' David Carr calls the case "a validation of the growing role of the alternative press in an era when many dailies now own monopolies in their respective markets." New Times officials expressed outrage at the government's actions in the case. "The way that it has been told, this was two fat cats getting together so they could get even fatter, but the fact of the matter is, we would not be here if we had not done this deal," says New Times' CEO Jim Larkin, who reveals that $20 million of losses in Cleveland and Los Angeles had put the company in technical default with its lending agreements.