An independent journal about the Gannett Co. and the news industry's digital transition
Small World Department: I once interviewed Warren Stephens, the Little Rock financier who is majority owner of Halifax Media, which just bought 16 daily newspapers from the New York Times Co.
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Comments heard from people when hearing about Florida Today doubling the Sunday price. "Guess I'll have to stop my subscription". "Are they going to double the content?". "What stake in Orlando Sentinel do they have to help keep their sales up". Couple of stores hinted at stopping carrying FT once the raise takes effect. Os is only going to $2. How are we so arrogant to go to $3....in this county....in this economy? Mind boggling.
Just Amazing!!! Sears announced yesterday that it is closing over 100 K-Mart and Sears stores, and not a mention in this mornings Journal News. It would appear that after so many years that The Journal news still doesn't "get it", and know what could impact the local community and should be covered.BTW JN...none of your stores are impacted, good news for those who work and shop there.
Didn't see anything on the Sears closings on the LoHud site either.I've lived here for 10 years. What's LoHud mean anyway?
The Seattle Times is not a G paper, but is image conscious and does stealth layoffs just before Christmas. This is apparently involved the photo director and 19 others. http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2011/12/08/layoffs-at-the-seattle-times
Hey 8:47 AM Lohud stands for Lower Hudson. I lived here over 60 years and never heard of the area being called that when they chose that for the name. That is Gannett for you!
If anyone cares, the Cincinnati Enquirer published a lame editorial today. http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20111230/EDIT01/312300026/Editorial-Debt-request-is-reminder-of-failuresI think it says that Washington should get its act together. Or something like that.
That's about as dull as an editorial can get. It could run in any newspaper in the country as-is (maybe editorial centers are coming to go with the design centers, if this is the model). How does this fulfill Gannett's mission of accountability journalism? I see no accountability here, no statement of the newspaper's position on how to accomplish this goal. Indeed, there also is no local voice - no call to Ohio's representatives to step up and fix this, for example. Isn't the House speaker from Ohio? And the conclusion is vapid. Next up: We favor more apple pie and more American flags.
Man, Florida Today got its butt kicked today on a local Brevard story. The newspaper next door, the Orlando Sentinel, doesn't cover Brevard any more but ran this story on their front page, because of state and national impact it is going to have. I guess FT editors and reporters are out looking for passion fruit, er, passion topics. http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2011-12-29/news/os-lesbian-custody-battle-florida-20111229_1_parental-rights-custody-lesbian-moms
Jim as an avid reader I'd like to request that we stipulate Cinci editorials are poor, Florida Today doesn't cover anything and news folks in Westchester are leaving to work for Newsday digital. These posts are getting repetitive and boring
11:08 Does the print version say its a staff-written editorial? Online, I don't see anything indicating that.
1:07 - Find it hard to believe Newsday would be interested in anyone at Lohud. After all the resignations/layoffs the last few years, there's slim pickings there talent-wise and otherwise.
There are good and talented people left at LOHUD/JN but I have to say that the one mentioned here yesterday as being hired away by Newsday is not one that many of his co-workers would consider a loss to Gannett. Hopefully unloading him will save the job of a quality photo-journalist somewhere down the line.
Curious about the sudden interest lately in Florida Today. Seems for the past few months there has been much said about that paper. I looked at the circulation numbers and was shocked to find it is hovering at less than 60,000. I believe a few years ago it was at least 40,000 more than that. So something drastic has happened which is reflected in those numbers. The first instinct is to blame poor management, a bad economy or readers preferring digital, but I suspect something else. To me it all comes back to Gannett and ineffective direction at the corporate level. Florida Today was once the flagship of Gannett, but clearly something has happened there to change that. Any ideas?
Florida Today's being the flagship would have to pre-date the launch of USA Today in 1982.But was it really ever the flagship?
Florida Today was never the flagship, in the true sense of the term. It was an interesting experiment pushed by Big Al in his own home backyard. For a brief while it demonstrated a design flair. But it dropped well into the ranks as Gannett began acquiring larger, prestigious papers (prestigious until Gannett ruined them). And, of course, along came USA Today.
I don't think Florida Today was ever the flagship of Gannett. Before the launch of USAT, I would have considered the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle the flagship. FT was one of the jewels in the Gannett crown though. I always thought it was sort of a template for what other Gannett papers could be. To watch what has happened to it is truly one of the saddest chapters in the history of American newspapering. Sadly that chapter is filled with newspapers that Gannett has destroyed, either on purpose or through ineptitude. Des Moines, Westchester, Louisville, Jackson (MS) were all once really good regional papers that this company has pretty much gutted.It's disgraceful.
A lot of bad decisions came from corporate. At least that's what circ. management always pawned it off to. They were/are a lot of it though and even at that, Gannett had to sign off on stuff. How do you expect to raise sales when you pull half or more of the racks off the street? Then give what's left to home delivery who didn't want them. Turn what is left of single copy into delivery agents while THEY run the show...draws, locations, etc. How did/does Gannett let the numbers slide so much and not notice and not do something about it sooner? A lot of people here still care and want to paper to succeed but it's like trying to break rocks with Q-tips.And now, 3 dollar Sundays. That will not help one bit. There's still the market here for print but seems Florida Today and Gannett would rather turn their backs on the county.
It is so obvious. Corporate does not want this company to succeed. I am convinced they have hired attorneys to bring it down to its knees so that the corporate honchos can get as much money as they can before the company goes bankrupt. It is the ONLY thing that makes sense anymore.
When I worked at Florida Today it was so local and personal with actual people that were homestead in the community that worked there who had complete interest in what they wrote and photographed. It was a well put together paper from every aspect.- a real quality product from front to back. An excellent read! Now the local content is hardly there and is low quality if any. It's a short read. with little intersest directed towards the community.It's just a hurry and get it out paper that has lost it's way. I wish they would have cared to keep it as the diamond it was!
Florida Today is the best newspaper on the Space Coast lump it or like it.
Check out he Arizona Republic's online vote for the most famous Arizonan. A real estate developer must be packing the ballot boxes, because he beat Barry Goldwater and others enroute to the Final Two. Unfortunately, the Republic foolishly left out the most famous Arizonan of all, Geronimo. Goldwater acknowledged that years ago, pointing out that kids don't jump in the air shouting anything but "Geronimo." http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/most-famous-arizonan.html
I'm reflecting on the slogan for the blog "A journal about the Gannett Co. and the news industry's digital transition" ... During the transition from print to digital, I have experienced "people at their worst." Unfortunately for the Gannett "company", employees (at lower levels) have forced out stronger work-canidates, in fear that they can not compete with them in an environment with dwindling jobs. It's just like the TV show "Survivor," where the strongest canidates are antagonized and voted off by their immediate peer-group. I think this is the greatest lesson of the business transformation process, especially in this economy. And, I believe there should be some more energy focused on identifying and preventing this phenomena, since this internal strife can create the ultimate battle for the overall survival of the company.
7:52, that sounds like a decent idea. It's too bad Jim and others here spend time defending those who don't measure up. Your idea has some merit.
Add Little Rock to the list of once-great regional papers that Gannett ruined. Actually, Gannett didn't ruin the Arkansas Gazette. It was still an excellent newspaper -- right up to the day Gannett sold it to its bitter competitor, who closed it immediately.Yes, it still stings 20 years later.
5:50 Why is Florida Today the best? Expand your comment! Because----
Yes, 7:52, Gannett execs in the last three decades encourage Darwinian tactics and infighting and squealing (not about ethical or unlawful matters) among the rank and file. I recently found out about someone who informed an editor that a colleague took a sick day as a mental health day. The staff in question had not taken a sick day all year otherwise. So, there's no trust or sense of team or creativity. That might encourage shifting attention to top managers. Many of them are mediocre at best, company shills scared about their job security who manipulate the people whose careers they control. It's sad enough working in a room where more than half the desks are empty. This behavior is insidious.
10:36, you missed the point. 7:52 said specifically "employees (at lower levels)."Your philosophy of "worker bee good; manager bad" is covered in many, many other posts here.
To revisit the LoHud question (since I am just now reading so just now commenting), it was coined by the now-departed Michael Maness. Just something made up in a Gannett committee meeting. Dumb, indeed, but not nearly as dumb as many things that have come out of Gannett committee meetings.
Jim says: "Proceed with caution; this is a free-for-all comment zone. I try to correct or clarify incorrect information. But I can't catch everything. Please keep your posts focused on Gannett and media-related subjects. Note that I occasionally review comments in advance, to reject inappropriate ones. And I ignore hostile posters, and recommend you do, too."
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