Skip to comments.Why big city newspapers are dying
Posted on 04/17/2009 7:51:17 PM PDT by ReformationFan
The recent announcement by the New York Times that it might close down the venerable Boston Globe, unless the paper can cut costs and begin to make money, came as a shock to many Bostonians. The Times bought the Globe in 1993 for $1.1 billion because it assumed that in an area with Harvard, MIT, Tufts, Boston University, Boston College and other schools of higher learning, they would have lots of readers and make lots of money. But this much-touted Athens of America, which prides itself on its intellectual history, has become, like the rest of America, a victim of our general literacy decline.
The problem is now so severe that the National Endowment for the Arts issued an alarming report, "Reading at Risk," in November 2007, revealing the precipitous decline of literacy in America. According to the report, the number of 17-year-olds who never read for pleasure increased from 9 percent in 1984 to 19 percent in 2004. About half of Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 never read books for pleasure.
Endowment Chairman Dana Gioia stated: "This is a massive social problem. We are losing the majority of the new generation. They will not achieve anything close to their potential because of poor reading." The survey found that only a third of high school seniors read at a proficient level. "And proficiency is not a high standard," said Gioia. "We're not asking them to be able to read Proust in the original. We're talking about reading the daily newspaper."
(Excerpt) Read more at wnd.com ...
Easy... a majority of the population can not read.
How about we get someone in Congress to propose a TAX!
A TAX on NEWSPRINT!
Whereas the production of newspapers causes trees to be cut down, hauled by polluting trucks to polluting paper mills, and hauled from paper mills to publishers and
Whereas the production of newspapers requires toxic ink and solvents and energy wasting machinery and
Whereas the distribution of newspapers requires the use of dirty internal combustion engines and
Whereas a large portion of every landfill is used for discarded newspapers,
Be it resolved that a Newsprint tax, of $1,000.00 per pound, be charged to EVERY newspaper with a daily subscription, within the United States!
We should get some Republican to propose THIS as an amendment to any cap and trade or carbon tax proposal that comes up!
Maybe we can make it like Cap and Trade and use the revenue generated, from this tax on dirty dinosaur newspapers, to subsidize a tax credit for home computers and digital devices?
Or, we could use the money to subsidize talk radio! Well, those guys really dont need any help!
I don’t get it cause I have a computer and read on that. No dirty paper mess.
i thought of this years ago:
it’s ironic that the los angeles times cannot be read by the mexican immigrants’ children.
los angeles county counts about 10,000,000 people, 2/3 of which are mexican.
if the union schools had properly educated only several hundred thousands of children to read,
the los angeles times would be having no problemas.
I can read...it’s just that I don’t agree with what I’m reading in the various hometown papers. Whatever happened to “nothing but the facts” journalism? I won’t even buy the Sunday paper for the coupons any more.
Late edition, perfect size for reading on the subway and train ... otherwise an early incarnation of the NYP.
> Endowment Chairman Dana Gioia stated: “This is a massive social problem. We are losing the majority of the new generation. They will not achieve anything close to their potential because of poor reading.”
You mean, reading the LA Times and the Washington Post makes you smarter? That must be more than 80-proof Kool Aid she’s drinking.
TELL THE TRUTH.
(I fully realize that all sensible, thinking Americans — thatd be conservatives —fully understand this information. I post it only for the brain-dead Obama voters and statists — thatd be liberals — who might have slipped out of their rubber rooms over at DU and are lurking, hacking or generally causing trouble here at FR.)
Recently, I read what probably amounts to the obituary for the Atlanta Journal Constitution. (My wife insists on buying the Sunday edition for the TV guide.) It joins the growing list of print newspapers in deep, deep financial trouble. The LA Times, NY Times, Boston Globe, Cleveland Plain Dealer, etc.
Heres my horseback analysis of why theyre heading for extinction.
As generally liberal statist propaganda outlets, they have for decades supported a government education system (and I used the term very loosely) dominated by the NEA and the idiot bureaucrats running the DOE in Washington. The unions and the NEA have largely hurled the traditional three Rs and critical thinking skills under the bus in favor of touchy-feely diversity training, self-esteem building, political correctness, African studies, teaching Hispanic kids in SPANISH instead of teaching them English on day one, social promotions, basket weaving, navel gazing, etc., etc.
I wont dwell on it here but would, instead, refer you to my personal experience with the government schools here:
What I cannot grasp is precisely why, after effectively dumbing down the members of the American populace who have traversed the conveyor belt of mediocrity called government schools, the overeducated owners and operators of these newspapers are surprised that this population has lost its interest in READING NEWSPAPERS: Many of them CANT read!!
Those folks especially conservatives who resent the increasingly liberal drivel found in the major papers — who can and DO read things are now getting their information from the Internet or, for those too busy to actually read, from largely conservative talk radio (which helps explain why Algore, Pelosi, Reid, et al feel the need to control both these formats).
Their statist dumbing down has produced huge numbers of voters who lacked the critical thinking skills necessary to determine that their present-voting, slick-talking liar of a candidate had virtually NO management or legislative experience. And the economic illiterates they have elevated to high office in Washington for years have produced a growing economic crisis which has even those with any money left spending it on luxuries like food, clothing and shelter. Newspapers and advertising therein are far down the list.
And did I mention that the economic collapse Obama inherited has its genesis in Jimmy Carters Community Reinvestment Act? It was then expanded by Clinton and stridently defended by Chris Dodd, Maxine Waters and Barney Frank (who was sleeping with Herb Moses while he held a top spot at appropriately Fannie). Only government could turn the dream of home ownership for poor folks into a NIGHTMARE for the rest of us.
Now that they have control of the White House and both houses of Congress, the liberals who run most of the newspapers here SHOULD be on a beach somewhere throwing a huge party. Instead, they are dusting off their resumes. The Editor of the AJC informed us that she was actively seeking to get more conservative/traditional values writers in the pages down there. Id submit that its too little, too late!
Perhaps shell write and let us know if that Hope and Change We Can Believe In thing helps with the job search.
If you just have to have one of those 1,000 new jobs dunning folks for Tim Geithners IRS, it couldnt hurt.
Exactly. The writers act they are all so much smarter than us “dumb plebian hick conservatives” so why should any of us waste their time and money on them? They’re the “intelligent” ones but they never figure out that a good way to stay in business is not to alienate half your potential customers.
You hit the nail on the head. And to make matters worse, companies aren’t even putting coupons in the papers anymore. With readership declining, they are spending advertising dollars on their biggest bang for the buck.
The young of today are use to 30-second segments in their lives (TV commercials being a great example). Anything beyond that and they lose interest. To read a newspaper takes time and concentration, something our youth dont have the patients for.
If you lean to the left, you already know what the newspaper is going to say.
If you lean to the right, you already know what the newspaper is going to say.
Any of us here can make the Globe profitable in a year. It’s a simple business model.
>To read a newspaper takes time and concentration, something our youth dont have the patients for.
I guess they shouldn’t try to read a book... and judging by the language, or rather lack thereof, in text-messaging that’s a good thing.
“Why big city newspapers are dying”
Cause they suck.
This is a massive social problem. We are losing the majority of the new generation. They will not achieve anything close to their potential because of poor reading.
Hey, here’s an idea, how about they read books? There aren’t many Menckens running around news offices these days, let alone Shakespeares.
For conservatives, this isn’t just any divorce from the newspapers. It’s a loathing, knockdown one. I hate them.
A thread about newspaper death...
Very interesting idea !!
Since the tax would be for newspapers, why not call it a “CRAP AND TRADE “ ??
For one the newspapers have made a decision to cater to the ubberleft. They basically have said we don’t care about conservtives buying our newspaper. Secondly, from talking and working with leftist most of them are just dingbats. They rarely read a newspaper unless its to catch up on celbrity news. The liberal elites might be reading these newspapers but thats about it. So they cater to a small group and hope to atract mainstream advertising bucks and those advertisers realize they can go elsewhere for their money.
Growing up in Memphis, I remember the morning paper, waiting on the doorstep by 7 AM, an afternoon edition, thrown by neighborhood kids, and a final edition, brought home by my father after work.
Of course, in those days, even the milk and laundry were
delivered daily, and the popsicle guy made daily rounds.
If needed, we even had home delivery of groceries.
At least I am not quite old enough to remember the ice man ;)
While we like to blame it on the pro Demowit left wing Marxist trash that they print, I doubt that anything can
save the papers.
Internet , broadcast, and cable has taken over news distribution.
I know there is a niche market for those of us that
like to browse the paper over morning coffee, but I do not
think it is enough to support the infrastructure required for a newspaper.
YEP....and have any of you ever seen the pile of your local newspapers dropped at the doors of schools every day? Even junior high level.....that must be why they fear a reading problem.....they are ONLY READING the TRASH MSM at school!
Better dead than red!
“like the rest of America, a victim of our general literacy decline.”
IMHO all they need to do is apply some novel concepts such as tell the truth and apply conservative fiscal business techniques.
Exactly. The public library is a good source of knowledge for kids and adults to enjoy.
I know the liberal MSM has brought this on themselves - but I still feel breakfast is coffee and a newspaper...
Or, it could be craigslist.
Crazy that they think if they make some token effort that all will be forgiven. Putting a bandaid on a gangrenous wound doesn't make it smell any sweeter.
Then why is the internet flourishing? Even with YouTube and the rest, it's still mainly a written medium.
People are abandoning newspapers not because they can't read, but because the new media now offer better choices. Who needs to pore over apartment listings in the classifieds when you can search online instantly? Why would you go blind looking up stock quotes in the financial pages when you can get a whole lot more information instantly with Google?
Arguably the news gathering talent the newspapers have assembled over time is a valuable asset. But they are going to have find new business models to support it.
I remember the days (not so long ago) when I'd get out early to pick up a copy of the newspaper to figure out my fantasy football results. Now I get realtime updates on the internet without any effort.
Its the same with any information needs now. Newspapers are old news. Twelve hour old news in the newspaper isn't much better than week-old news. Its all stuff I already read on the internet.
because they print lies and trash no one believes?
We have family who just canceled their subscription to their city newspaper after 50 YEARS. The sales person was flabbergasted that they canceled, and tried every trick in the book to keep their business. My relative explained over and over that they no longer wish to pay to read obvious bias. The circulation person had no response to that.
Actually, Dana Gioia is a man, and a very impressive guy. This report was written back in the Bush era.
I’ve met Dana Gioia and had dinner with him in New York some years ago, after he published his excellent book, “Can poetry matter?”
He’s also a very fine poet. He was a business executive who did very well, and then decided to quit because literature was more important to him. One of the few contemporary poets whom I really enjoy.
Here’s a pretty good one, called “Cruising with the Beach Boys”:
So strange to hear that song again tonight
Travelling on business in a rented car
Miles from anywhere I’ve been before.
And now a tune I haven’t heard for years
Probably not since it last left the charts
Back in L.A. in 1969.
I can’t believe I know the words by heart
And can’t think of a girl to blame them on.
Every lovesick summer has its song,
And this one I pretended to despise,
But if I was alone when it came on,
I turned it up full-blast to sing along —
A primal scream in croaky baritone,
The notes all flat, the lyrics mostly slurred.
No wonder I spent so much time alone
Making the rounds in Dad’s old Thunderbird.
Some nights I drove down to the beach to park
And walk along the railings of the pier.
The water down below was cold and dark,
The waves monotonous against the shore.
The darkness and the mist, the midnight sea,
The flickering lights reflected from the city —
A perfect setting for a boy like me,
The Cecil B. DeMille of my self-pity.
I thought by now I’d left those nights behind,
Lost like the girls that I could never get,
Gone with the years, junked with the old T-Bird.
But one old song, a stretch of empty road,
Can open up a door and let them fall
Tumbling like boxes from a dusty shelf,
Tightening my throat for no reason at all
Bringing on tears shed only for myself.
Copyright 1986, Dana Gioia
When the St. Louis Post-Dispatch assassinated the Globe-Democrat, it didn’t know it but it signed it’s own death warrant. I can’t wait to see its last pitiful edition!
Study done in 2006 on US adults:
52% could look at a heating bill and figure out that a five-cent-per gallon deduction on a purchase of 140 gallons of oil would yield $7.
1. Everyone who wants to read reads for free on the internet.
2. Libs don’t need it as it’s just preaching to the choir.
3. Conservatives won’t pay to read the libs’ BS and complaining about evil conservatives.
4. The housebird population is not increasing.
Hmm, let me take a crack at this...
Could it be because they no longer provide a service people are willing to pay for?
Could it be because the public (in general) is in various stages of waking up to the obvious bias in most papers so-called "news?"
Could it be that the public no-longer trusts the papers to give them the news rather than propaganda?
Could it be that most MSM "journalists" are held in lower regard than politicians, used car salesmen, and lawyers?
In short, papers are dying because they have walked, nay ran, away from what the people want.
“Then why is the internet flourishing? Even with YouTube and the rest, it’s still mainly a written medium.”
Half the population in cities like NY, Philadelphia, and LA are on public assistance. They don’t use the internet either... The fact is that they are functionally illiterate and or don’t read English.
These people watch TV.
“Easy... a majority of the population can not read.”
In addition to that, when you pay a check and try to avoid pennies, young clerks have zero clue what to do. They nearly always screw it up. I gave a guy a $20 bill and two pennies to pay for an iced tea - cost $2.02. He was struck dumb. I told him to give me $18; he had to use the cash register to verify that $18 was the right change.
Easy, stale, biased news :(
Its kind of ironic that all the libtards that would buy these papers dont want to buy papers because they want to save trees. The liberal newspapers killed themselves.
I was born and raised in the Boston area. I remember when the Boston Herald, the Boston Traveller, the Globe and the Record-American were separate papers (the Record-American was probably the result of a merger, I bet). The Herald was a morning paper and the Traveller was an afternoon paper. Dad brought them both home and I’d read both.
“breakfast is coffee and a newspaper...”
We are a dying breed, friend. I get up at 5:00 AM Sunday, brew a pot of Maxwell House and fire up my pipe. Grab the Arkansas Democrat Gazette and read the paper in my garage. Sitting there with my pipe full of Prince Albert, a big mug of black, steaming coffee and the feel of the Ark. DG in my hands, I feel completely satisfied. My family is still asleep, I am alone in the morning stillness with only my thoughts - and it occurs to me: Although I have only a modest home in a subdivision, and neither fame nor fortune, right now I am completely satisfied. God has truly Blessed me, we should all feel so rich. And to think a simple pipe, cup of coffee and a newspaper has put me in such a mood.—JM