Saturday, May 3, 2008

American Media On the Brink

Venerable newspapers face extinction

The New York Times once epitomized all that was great about American newspapers; now it symbolizes its industry’s deep malaise. The Grey Lady’s circulation is tumbling, down another 3.9% in the latest data from America’s Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC). Its advertising revenues are down, too (12.5% lower in March than a year earlier), as is the share price of its owner, the New York Times Company, up from its January low but still over 20% below what it was last July. On Tuesday April 29th Standard & Poor’s cut the firm’s debt rating to one notch above junk.

At the company’s annual meeting a week earlier, its embattled publisher, Arthur “Pinch” Sulzberger, attempted to quash rumors that his family is preparing to jettison the firm it has owned since 1896. Carnage is expected soon as dozens of what were once the safest jobs in journalism are axed, since too few of the staff have accepted a generous offer of voluntary redundancy. [Click for MORE]

> AP source says Murdoch won't raise bid for Newsday

> Cablevision submits its $650 million bid for Newsday

> Cablevision is being advised by ex-Tribune CEO FitzSimons

> Newspaper jobs on the move -- over the ocean

> Journal Register says it's through as public company

> Is the housing market the final nail in the coffin for newspapers?

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