It was hot times for journalism back in the early 1970s, when Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein exposed the Watergate scandal that would bring down a president.
The scoop in the Washington Post established a zeitgeist for investigative reporting that would drive the newspaper industry for years to come.
But oh how times have changed. With words no longer a good business model and newspapers the world over closing down, the paper that broke the spying foibles of Richard Nixon has diversified into the furnace business.
Yes, the Washington Post Co. has purchased a company that makes parts for industrial furnaces. As Bloomberg Businessweek reported:
In what may be the most brazen diversification play in media, the company this week said it’s purchasing Forney, a Texas-based company that makes burners and flame detectors for industrial furnaces.
There's nothing particularly new about media companies expanding their holdings outside of core areas. For over two decades, NBC was part of toaster-to-turbine conglomerate General Electric.
But the Washington Post acquisition underlines a burning question facing free society: Will the future of journalism go up in flames?
Image from IMPAwards.com via Wikimedia
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This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com