From Newspaper Death Watch, in its commentary on a meeting of newspaper executives seeking to implement a paid content plan for their websites (emphasis below is mine):
The newspaper industry’s paid content debate sounds more and more like the desperate protests of the music industry when file-sharing began to dismantle its business model. The two industries have some characteristics in common. Both are mature, traditionally stable and highly profitable businesses with predictable growth and high barriers to entry. The people who gravitate to such industries excel at managing costs and limiting risk.
These are the last people you want to run operations at a time of crisis. Crisis demands innovative thinking, fast reaction times and tolerance for risk. One reason we’ve seen so little of this in the newspaper industry is that the people at the top have no capacity for making dramatic changes. The innovation that we’ve seen comes almost entirely from startups or skunkworks operations that publishers have had the sensibility to leave alone.