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Norfolk, Milwaukee - am I missing any?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Moderator1, Oct 17, 2014.

  1. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    More layoffs today, I'm told Norfolk got hit particularly hard. Don't know a lot of details. Saw something on my Facebook feed about cuts in Milwaukee, too.

    I suppose the days of hoping things get better are long gone?
  2. old_tony

    old_tony Well-Known Member

    I don't think things will ever get better. I think they're close to the point, though, where they get so bad that they can't get any worse. That's about all anyone can hope for now.
  3. BDC99

    BDC99 Well-Known Member

    Dunno. Starting to think it can always get worse. Thought about 4 years ago that they couldn't cut anymore. That was about 6 rounds of layoffs/furloughs/pay cuts ago.
  4. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    Heard from someone leaving the biz some circulation figures and I was stunned at how bad they had gotten at his place. So much focus has been on the death spiral in advertising revenue that I'd taken my eye off that particular ball. It was appalling how much sheer readership had dropped off, apart from the income streams.
  5. LanceyHoward

    LanceyHoward Well-Known Member

    This was posted on the thread for the merger of the Journal and Scripps.


    Bob Wolfey and Michael Hunt are identified as sports staffers who took buyouts.
  6. old_tony

    old_tony Well-Known Member

    Counting circulation for on-line subscriptions is a really tricky thing, too, for advertisers.

    When a reader is at a paper's online site, what are they reading? My guess is just a few stories that they're looking for and very little else.

    In the old days, you'd page through the paper and ended up reading a lot of stories you didn't go looking for. Twenty years ago I would regularly read nearly every story in the sports section and a lot in the news pages, too. With a newspaper you could read for enjoyment. I don't think anyone reads online newspaper sites for enjoyment. The click a few times for the information they want and are off to another website.
  7. ColdCat

    ColdCat Well-Known Member

    The more damaging part is that so much of it is social media. Someone clicks on the link their friend tweeted or shared on facebook, and they go straight to that story, never seeing the headlines for anything else you have posted. News sites I go to, maybe I'll read four or five stories there. If I get there through Fark or a link someone posted, chances are I look at that story, then leave.
  8. old_tony

    old_tony Well-Known Member

    That does have its positive side, though, as a number of people at least read that one story that might not have.

    My question is what would the business be like had no paper ever put its stuff up for free back in the last year or two of the 1990s? Obviously, papers had to go to the web. But they didn't have to make it free. Until the pay-wall craze of the last few years (and people are getting around pay walls with very little effort), the "brains" of the industry spent about 12-13 years completely devaluing the product. An entire generation grew up thinking you never pay for the newspaper. How do you reverse that?
  9. Lack of paywalls are not the major contributing factor as to why print is mostly irrelevant. Other websites were/are (TV/radio/blogs/organizations) offering "just as good" news for free.
  10. old_tony

    old_tony Well-Known Member

    So if you're the Kansas City Star covering the Royals every day (before all the national media showed up this month) you're not giving Royals fans more than ESPN.com? Sorry, but I don't buy that.

    The same goes for a paper with reporters actually in a state capitol or city hall vs. some blogger or wire service.

    I understand you have "just as good" in quotes, but it's up to the newspaper management to show that that is simply not the case.
  11. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    Newspaper management only cares about getting enough bonuses until they can escape with their golden parachutes.
  12. I Should Coco

    I Should Coco Well-Known Member

    Great point.

    When I was working at a small daily back in the late 1990s-early 2000s, we established a web site, and there was virtually zero thought given to "devaluing the product." If I recall, the sole reason we set up our lame, el cheapo web site back then was because a couple advertisers wanted to try online ads.

    "Hey, we could make a couple thousand dollars and maybe have a shot at our monthly ad revenue quota! Do whatever it takes to hit that number!"

    Thinking like that is a big reason print journalism — and even newspaper website revenue — is in the toilet right now.
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