The Guardian is widely respected for breaking such huge stories as the News International phone hacking scandal, but Alan Rusbridger, its Edit0r-in-Chief, knows that while admiration is nice, money is necessary. He tells New York that the fantastic paper lost a whopping $50 million last year, and if things don’t change, it might be forced to fold in five years.
Rusbridger says that is part of the reason why The Guardian launched the United States, web-only version. He expects that if the site continues to grow, everything will work out. “Within four years we will have brought losses down to a single figure, which is sustainable,” Rusbridger explains to New York.
It can only help the Guardian that Rusbridger wants its journalists to “make waves,” something he is obviously comfortable doing. When the paper’s editor begins discussing the hacking scandal, he makes a point of noting that Rupert Murdoch and News International didn’t succeed with trying to intimidate The Guardian:
‘I’m not a Murdoch hater,’ Rusbridger says, though he makes a point of noting he ‘effectively called us liars.’ More important: He’s also not afraid of him. People believed ‘it was a bad mistake to make an enemy of Murdoch,’ Rusbridger says. ‘News International knew that, and they felt that that gave them some kind of immunity. And so they didn’t have to play by the normal rules, and they would get away with it.’