Wait, Is The Newspaper Business Thriving Or Falling Apart?

from the depends-on-who-you-talk-to-apparently dept

It would appear that the folks in the newspaper business don’t quite have their talking points set. Yesterday, we showed the letter from the Newspaper Association of America all about how the newspaper business was supposedly thriving despite what you may have heard. But clearly, not everyone in the industry agrees. A whole bunch of folks have sent in the Ars Technica article about the AP’s supposed plans to go after sites that copy their articles, but we’d avoided posting it — because there really weren’t many new details beyond what they’d said before. However, reader Mark pointed to a rather interesting (and surprisingly honest) quote from the AP about why it wants to crack down on sites reposting some of its content:

“We need the money. The industry is falling apart.”

So, on the same day, the NAA claims that the newspaper industry is thriving and profitable… and the AP insists its running out of money and the industry is collapsing. It would be great if, I dunno, one of these reporters could maybe dig into the actual numbers to figure out what’s actually happening. Or is that not what the press does?

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Companies: associated press, naa

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Comments on “Wait, Is The Newspaper Business Thriving Or Falling Apart?”

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Dave Barnes (user link) says:

There are 3 kinds of newspapers (in the USA)

1. Newspapers with zero debt. Doing OK. Not great. Will be here after all the dust settles. Have the financial strength to experiment or not. Most hyper-local papers fall into this category.

2. Newspapers with lots of debt.
a. Those that have declared bankruptcy to screw their creditors. cf. Tribune
b. Those that will declare BK to fuck their creditors. cf. MediaNews
Whether these papers are making money or nor is irrelevant. They cannot produce enough cash flow to make the debt payments. Therefore, BK is the only way out.

schleifnet (user link) says:

ap is failing, some newspapers are failing

newspapers are going through a contraction right now, local dailies in medium and small markets are mutating and are going to thrive in the years to come (see the times picayune/nola.com, recently found to have 85% of all adults in its market to read it online and in print, http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/news/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003979150 ) but those in over crowded markets that have to directly compete on a national and local scale with other outlets are going to get screwed big time…

also AP is screwed right now. They overcharge member papers for content, provide substandard content at times and will be competing with the new CNNwire very soon (which will be cheaper, if not free and more unbiased) in addition to the current competetion with reuters and others

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