Thursday, March 03, 2011

Survey | Who owns your paper or TV station?

Imagine you assembled 100 people representative of your Gannett community, then asked them to identify the owner of their local newspaper or TV station.
  • How many would answer correctly?
  • Would promoting GCI's ownership increase advertising or subscription sales? Why, or why not?

Please post your replies in the comments section, below. To e-mail confidentially, write jimhopkins[at]gmail[dot-com]; see Tipsters Anonymous Policy in the rail, upper right.


  1. Years ago, when I first interviewed, I thought it was pronounced "GAN-net". I was gently corrected, and learned that the correct pronunciation was "Guh-NET".
    I guarantee you that most people would still say "GAN-net". Our local paper was pronounced "ad-vo-CATE".
    Nuff said.....

  2. This is a potential public relations problem for Corporate:

    In the past month, according to Google Analytics, nearly 600 referrals to this site came when someone typed the word "Gannett'' into a search engine.

    Today, for example, when I Googled "Gannett," this blog is the fifth result.

  3. ...the emphasis is on "NET" as in NET INCOME.

  4. That's right 1:15 p.m.! That's been a management joke for decades. Believe me, folks, the bean counting is nothing new. GANNETT HAS ALWAYS BEEN A CHEAP OUTFIT TO WORK FOR. One big difference is that nowadays it SCREWS EVERYONE: ADVERTISERS AND READERS ALIKE.

  5. Here's the theme of your company's new branding campaign, I've been told:

    "Gannett -- it's all within reach."

  6. "Gannett - it's all within reach." If you are correct, Jim, I like it. Plays up Gannett's many different publications and platforms for people to get their news and other content. Not sure how company wide branding will help the bottom line, but at least the branding is decent.

  7. I figured the conference call, like the e-mail, would amount to nothing. Now I know I'm right.

  8. "Disaster - it's all within reach."

  9. Local, involved ownership trumps outside corporations like Gannett any day.

    More so, in economic times like these as so many jobs have been cut and/or outsourced by faceless corporations. Gannett’s guilty of both even now, including in jobs it once sent overseas and in the paper it brought back from China to print presumably, America’s Newspaper, USA Today.

    If Gannett’s thinks this PR move will build local sales and readers it won’t. Though, redirecting Gannett foundation funds from this company’s officers charities to the exclusive use of the market it serves may help, something that isn’t lost on local charities seeking donations now.

  10. Who are the owners of your TV station(s)? In Washington DC it is not Gannett. It is the Detroit News INC. Some assets are attributed to Detroit Free Press INC. Vehicle owners' cards. I suspect many of the properties acquired by asset purchase agreements retain the name of the seller. It has to do with tax implications and burden.

    My question is this. Is the huge profit generated by WUSA TV (The Detroit News INC) somehow written off against the losses at the Free Press? Licensee is Detroit Free Press INC. with the address being 7950 Jones Branch Drive.

  11. Our paper has been owned by Gannett for more than a generation. When someone finds out I work there, as often as not they say, "The paper just isn't like it was when it was locally owned." (My spouse, ex-Gannett, says the same thing, and often.) They may not know who owns it, exactly, but they know it's not anyone around here, and they are still unhappy about that.

  12. Gannett needs a heck of a lot more than a slogan, and no slogan will pick up the slack of an inferior product.

  13. When I went to an API session back in the early '80s, the folks from the Gannett-owned papers (mine wasn't then) were prety open about how cheap the company was, so it's certainly not a matter of good will recently squandered.

    I'll always love the Sunday newspaper spoof that National Lampoon put out some 30+ years ago. It had the "Swill Mart'' ad insert with this motto: "Where Quality is a Slogan''


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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