CLARIFICATION: Regarding the Demise of Metroland
Since you’re writing about alt-weeklies new and old, I would like to clear up one misconception. Metroland was not shut down by NYS Tax & Finance, nor did they seize any property. They changed the locks in an attempt to collect some back taxes, which they did about two weeks later when some ad payments came in. I got the keys back and actually used the office for two more months to wind things down (I had prepaid the rent, imagine that!).
The decision to close Metroland had already been made, in fact we (the majority shareholders) originally planned to cease publishing in July 2015. You may or may not remember that I went public with our intent to sell that month – that was our stay of execution and our last hope. We then moved the closure date to the end of the year, and the tax action was just inconvenient enough to fold several weeks ahead of schedule.
Six years of declining revenues and steady losses will do that to you.