Extra, Extra… Read All About It !
The New York Times hikes its cover price yet again.
Another New York Times price increase.
Get ready to shell out more for your copy of The New York Times.
Extra, Extra !
Executives at The New York Times must be taking business strategy lessons from the same experts that have guided the once mighty General Motors to the brink of bankruptcy and needing to take federal bailout money to stay alive. Shares of GM, once considered a “blue chip” stock that was among the most highly regarded of all investments, and which were trading at close to $90 a share ten years ago, are now virtually worthless.
The New York Times has announced yet another round of price increases, the third in less than two years , that will hike the newsstand price of their Sunday edition to $5.00 or $6.00, depending on the geographic edition. The weekday New York Times increases to $2.00 ! And you still don’t get any comics. The price increases are effective June 1st.
$6.00 for a newspaper? Are they joking ? Perhaps New York Times publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. hasn’t yet taken notice of the new kid on the block. Mr. Sulzberger, we would like to introduce you to Mr. Internet. He’s big, he’s getting bigger all the time, and he’s eating your lunch.
The Internet is eating everybody’s lunch. This Time Magazine article names the ten most endangered newspapers in America. And according to this CNN article, at least 120 U.S. newspapers have folded since January, 2008.
Faced with a sharp drop in advertising revenue and falling circulation, the price increases at The Times are likely to just exacerbate the problems facing the newspaper. Price increases will inevitably produce a further errosion in circulation, which is sure to further weaken advertising income. A decision to increase prices at a time like this, for many businesses, is tantamount to committing suicide. We believe that the New York Times has made the worst possible decision at the worst possible time.
Our readers will note that we have not raised the cover price here at Routing By Rumor; reading our blog is still free!
Understandably, the bean counters at The Times are desperate. They’re being squeezed from all directions. But you have to wonder who made the strategic decision that may very well seal their fate. Perhaps a price decrease, coupled with an agressive advertising campaign would have been the right course to follow. We believe that with the increasing competition for readers that the Internet has created, along with belt tightening by consumers in the depths of this economic recession, and the drastically shrinking size (the number of pages) of newspapers over the last few years, including the Times, newspapers are increasingly becoming irrelevant to more and more readers. It’s not unlike a phone company that keeps increasing it’s rates, in an attempt to offset the loss of revenue from customers who are dropping their traditional phone service, and using cellphones exclusively. Price increases will only serve to accelerate the trend.
Will the New York Times disappear completely? We fully expect to see a copy of the New York Times on the newsstand in the near future, with a headline of “THE END”. The fact that you are reading this blog, when you could be reading The New York Times instead, isn’t helping the Gray Lady one bit. We believe that their print editions are in mortal danger,with The Times becoming an online-only newspaper.
Better buy your Amazon Kindle now !
– Routing By Rumor