You may have noticed that the WSJ is looking more like a British newspaper every day, with its new Heard of the Street format, “no-jump” stories, and higher volume of corporate coverage. Dow Jones (NYSE: NWS) took another step in that direction today with the appointment of Gerard Baker, from the Times of London, as the deputy editor in chief of the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones.
The move is part of a broader editorial reorganization that included the departure of Marcus Brauchli, who stepped down as managing editor in April, and the editorial reorg in July, when the paper let go of 50 people.
New owner Rupert Murdoch has made clear that he thinks the paper needs spicing up, and clearly believes that British and Australian newspaper editors are particularly adept at that. Baker will report to Robert Thomson, who formally replaced Brauchli as managing editor in May. In a staff memo, Thomson said, “Our editing troika remain at the heart of the day-to-day decisions, as do Mike Miller [senior deputy managing editor/Features] and Alix Freedman [deputy managing editor]. Neal Lipschutz [SVP, managing editor, Newswires] will continue to report directly to me and Alan Murray [deputy managing editor] remains at the helm of online. Gerry will edit the Journal in my absence and be tasked with accelerating our development as a national paper of influence and as an unrivalled international business news franchise.”
Baker, who has also held editorial posts at the BBC and Financial Times, was most recently based in Washington, D.C. as The Times’ U.S. Editor and assistant editor. He joined The Times’ four years ago and was charged with overseeing the paper’s U.S. edition and website.