Downsizing Print Book Reviews

I’ve seen it reported on several blogs as well as the New York Times that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution dropped the book reviews editor position entirely. This is interesting, because the book section of the AJC was one of the paper’s only redeeming qualities.

In the New York Times article, Motoko Rich points out that this development corresponds to the rise in the democratization of book reviews online (e.g., my blog!). This may be true, but it’s unfortunate that the AJC and many other papers are consolidating their arts sections and dropping important editor positions. I suppose this may also have to do with the malaise in newspaper readership and subscriptions. What can we do to raise newspaper audiences, or is it even necessary with the increased readership online?