Tuesday, March 03, 2009

What Today’s Slim Raleigh N&O Tells Us

Today the McClatchy Company’s liberal/leftist Raleigh N&O’s print edition is a slim 38 pages.

The “A” Section at only 10 pages is a real shocker that tells us something very important..

The section contains two editorial pages and about four-and-a-half ad pages. The ad pages were likely sold at very reduced rates. One full-pager is from Chevy which wouldn’t be paying full price now for such an ad in any newspaper. Another full-pager, on the preferred last page of the section and in color, was placed by Hatfield-Berrang Hearing Aid Centers who, like Chevy, surely demanded and got an rate discount along with the preferred placement.

That's all bad news for the N&O revenue stream which I’ll bet is nowmore like a revenue trickle.

And look at what’s happening to subscribers.

When you take away from the total of 10 pages in today’s “A” section the two editorial pages, four-and-a-half ad pages and the front page which is mostly masthead, headlines and photos, you're left with just two-and-a-half pages.

And not all of them are devoted to serious news reporting. Some space is given over to state lottery numbers, a list of celebrity birthday and the like.

But let’s be generous and say two-and-a-half of the “A” section pages are serious news stories.

While some of you will praise the Lord for the N&O’s shrinking news coverage, it is really shocking.

Things aren’t much better when you look at the 12-page “B” section which includes 5 pages devoted to Business with no mention of McClatchy’s financial troubles, including its stock selling at 43 cents a share as of 2:20 ET today.

So even when the N&O gives you a heap of Business news (mostly from wire services) it omits the one story that right now is most effecting the paper, its staff and, most important of all, its readers who are paying full price for a reduced product.

The “C” section – Sports – has 6 pages.

The “D” section – called “Life, etc” – has 10 pages that include the comics, crossword, advice columns, classifieds, etc.

Journalism at the N&O!

It's sad.


Anonymous said...

The Cincinnati Enquirer has also shrunk. There are no classified ads in the Monday paper. Sections have been combined (no separate tv section on Sunday - it is combined with the travel section in a large rather unwieldy mess.
I fully expect that there will be further reductions as the year proceeds - a sign of the times.

Anonymous said...

I subscribed to the N&O for many years, and I always thought it was an okay paper (not great, but a better read than the Pennysaver). But I stopped my subscription midway through a billing cycle when I decided that I just couldn't handle any more uncritical Obama fanaticism. Now I get all of my news online. It's free, and certainly more objective.

Anonymous said...

The N&O has a big story about the implosion of McClatchy which is having a major impact on its news and sports reporting and other services to its subscribers.

But it doesn't report on those things because that ain't good for McClatchy or the N&O editors.

Anyone surprised?

Former N&O reader

Anonymous said...

When will the N&O apologize for its March 2006 coverage of Nifong's Duke lacrosse frame?

Anonymous said...

Die, N&O, Die!

Locomotive Breath said...

Failing, prospering — same difference

The Daniels family must be laughing their butts off.

Anonymous said...

My local paper is going through the same downsizing process. Like the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland. Lack of investigative reporting has given the local pols carte blanche to spend our city into insolvency. Local media is uninterested in anything except cheerleading for the pols they agree with and readership is tanking. But remember, nature abhors a vacuum.

Locomotive Breath said...



Anonymous said...

"What Today's Slim Raleigh N&O Tells Us"
It tells us there are a bunch of losers out there who have nothing better to do than complain about the local paper. The fact is, Mondays and Tuesdays are the equivalent of the midnight to 6am overnight hours at a tv station - always has been. Ever seen what the tv channels run at that hour? The Triangle area is lucky to have the N&O - it pounds on local government and it's sports coverage (esp ACC basketball) is great. If you dont like it, dont read it but it really is your loss.

Anonymous said...

Every time I have to travel to Raleigh, I always pick up a copy of the N&O just to remind myself what an abomination it is. The Hurled Scum is no better. I really feel sorry for folks who have to choose between managed news and outright trash.
Tarheel Hawkeye