A sad sign of the times

New Orleans is losing its daily newspaper. A newspaper will still be published in the city three days a week, but large layoffs are expected.

Moreover, three Alabama newspapers will do likewise. They are the Birmingham News, Huntsville Times and Press-Register of Mobile

This business model has already been explored by the owner of all four newspapers, specifically in Michigan. Presumably the model will work in the South, as well.

Still, if less reporters are working, less local news will be gathered. :frowning:

Is anyone familiar with what happened to the Ann Arbor News? It now seems to represented by this website


Is the published newspaper really called AnnArbor.com Newspaper ?

If so, this could mean the demise of the Times-Picayune, and the Alabama newspapers as well, with their names consigned to history. :frowning:

Well… poop!

It saddens me that so many papers are being ignored in favor of the internet. I used to love the inky smell of the Sunday paper and tended to read it cover to cover… mostly.

The Internet is not a sufficient replacement.

Personally I think the fishwrap industry is in a mess of it’s own making. Liberal bias, irresponsible journalism, fake objectivity, and ridiculous extensions of the freedom of the press.

Every time this happens I know that some will be out of work and I know that information the old fashioned way is hurt, but i can’t help but be a little pleased that such a corrupt and dirty industry is finding itself shrinking.

On the east coast they have sports results 2 days from when the event happened. If there is a baseball game in the pacific zone, on the evening of the 20th it does not make the 21st edition so the results are on the 22nd. In this day and age of instant information, the only way a newspaper can keep up is by actually being journalistic. And so few even know how that works anymore.
Good riddance.

I found a site chronicling the demise of the Ann Arbor News.

It seems that they simultaneously closed the News and opened AnnArbor.com. It would be impossible to speculate the reasons based on the scant information available. The situation reminds me of the General Motors rebirth, however (shut down one company while simultaneously creating another, functionally equivalent company). I hope they didn’t stiff droves of creditors in the process. :frowning:

I sadly quit taking our local paper because it just parrots whatever the local Democrats have to say, or not. I used to at least enjoy the comics, but they have become political so often as well that I just said goodbye to one of my favorite things, which was reading a print newspaper.

I wish the Miami Herald would go bankrupt. It’s a disgusting newspaper. But I loved the Times Picayune, back before Hurricane Katrina when I was living in New Orleans. New Orleans is about local cuisine, jazz, zydeco music, that sort of stuff. :stuck_out_tongue: And the Times Picayune covered “life on the bayou”, with everything that went with it - food, music, Mardi Gras. I’m happy they will still publish three times a week.

Here’s an article about my beloved Times-Picayune.


There’s something about the physical touch of newspapers and books that can’t be replaced, isn’t there? I felt the same about records but adjusted to CD’s, and now even these are scarce and old-fashioned. Ah, the technology of the Internet.

It may please some that the days of The New York Times in paper format seem to be numbered as well.

Quote from the article: “We always do things differently. It’s part of our tradition: You wake up with a cup of chicory coffee and read the newspaper.”

Yay! That’s the New Orleans spirit, baby! :stuck_out_tongue: You just can’t write about the Big Easy without talking about food, drinks, music, or all of them! :smiley:

The NYT can survive as a digital publication. It has the prestige and depth of features which is attractive to online subscribers. From what I have read, its paywall has been a success at increasing subscriber base and increasing revenues.

However, online ads do not bring in nearly as much money as their print counterpart. So a newspaper which shifts to online-only, or online-mainly, will continue to suffer a financial squeeze. I worry that the squeeze will lead to a repeated cycle of contraction, with less and less being offered. Or with quality sacrificed for quantity.

Thanks for that link. I really do hope that the name of the print newspaper remains Times-Picayune.

I am sorry to hear that. I think in today’s market a newspaper needs to focus on local reporting, the news you can’t get off the internet and which local TV doesn’t cover. Offending a portion of one’s readers with needless partisanship is pretty much like eating poison.

On the other hand, I have noticed that my hometown newspaper has become tentative and soft-spoken on local controversies. The desire not to offend one’s readers can lead to under-reporting, which isn’t healthy either.

I see where you are going but what does local reporting look like? Why can’t it be done on the internet and why would these stories be news instead of human interest? Personally I think a print version of NPR will fail miserably. Coffee shop local news types already get their off beat eclectic stories from “free” newspapers that are plentiful.

That describes the situation here fairly well. :frowning:

I was a newspaper distributor with the Birmingham News for six years, and I feel bad for all those in the circulation department who will be losing their jobs. There are a lot of hard working people in that department, and it isn’t their fault that the editing and writing is left slanting and biased, but they will be the ones getting punished.

As a distributor, I had two carriers that worked under me, plus since I couldn’t afford to hire anyone else, I delivered papers myself. It is the only job I can think of that is 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Rain, snow, sleet… we were out there in everything. When gas prices shot up, I had to give my carriers a raise to help them out, but the newspaper didn’t give me one. :mad: And the way our contracts were written was extremely unfair to say the least. All complaints came out of the distributors pay, even if the presses were down and the papers were two hours late. It would be our fault if costumers complained of a late paper.

I do have a lot of good memories though. Driving at night, no traffic, the fresh air was incredibly peaceful. I used to pray a lot while I was out delivering. But it wasn’t worth it. After I had payed my carriers and put gas in my own car, I didn’t have much money left. All that work for pennies; it wasn’t worth it. Then of course during the daytime, a costumer would call and complain about something, and I would have to drive 40 miles round trip to take someone a new paper.

My contract was eliminated in June '09. The Birmingham News eliminated most of their distributors a couple of years ago. Now, the carriers work directly for the paper. Is service better or worse since then? I have no idea, haven’t kept up with it. :shrug:

Passing the powdered sugar to you for your beignets!!!

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