Every major newspaper except WSJ is reporting losses, in some cases, severe. Where is this going?

These numbers came out yesterday from Editor and Publisher. The only gain made by any top 25 newspaper was a less than 1% circulation increase by The Wall Street Journal.

Check out some of the losses. SF Chronicle down by more than 25 percent.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL — 2,024,269 — 0.61%
USA TODAY — 1,900,116 — (-17.15%)
THE NEW YORK TIMES — 927,851 — (-7.28%)
LOS ANGELES TIMES — 657,467 — (-11.05%)
THE WASHINGTON POST — 582,844 — (-6.40%)

DAILY NEWS (NEW YORK) — 544,167 — (-13.98%)
NEW YORK POST — 508,042 — (-18.77%)
CHICAGO TRIBUNE — 465,892 — (-9.72%)
HOUSTON CHRONICLE — 384,419 — (-14.24%)
THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER — 361,480 — N/A

NEWSDAY — 357,124 — (-5.40%)
THE DENVER POST — 340,949 — N/A
THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC — 316,874 — (-12.30%)
STAR TRIBUNE, MINNEAPOLIS — 304,543 — (-5.53%)
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES — 275,641 — (-11.98%)

The PLAIN DEALER, CLEVELAND — 271,180 — (-11.24%)
DETROIT FREE PRESS (e) — 269,729 — (-9.56%)
THE BOSTON GLOBE — 264,105 — (-18.48%)
THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS — 263,810 — (-22.16%)
THE SEATTLE TIMES — 263,588 — N/A

SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE — 251,782 — (-25.82%)
THE OREGONIAN — 249,163 — (-12.06%)
THE STAR-LEDGER, NEWARK — 246,006 — (-22.22%)
SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE — 242,705 — (-10.05%)
ST. PETERSBURG (FLA.) TIMES — 240,147 — (-10.70%)

I’d be interested to see a side by side comparison of these numbers with corresponding increases or decreases of traffic on newspapers’ websites.

Questions:

How is this overall trend impacting journalism school applications?

Does anyone still subscribe to the paper? (My folks here get the Sarasota Herald Tribune)

Which major city (population over 5 million) will be the first to go without a daily newspaper?

I’m not sure exactly how I feel about all of this. I remember Eva Holland mentioning all the travel editors at Book Passage last year foreseeing this and thinking ‘well, now we’ll have time to write our books.’

I guess my thought is that this is all part of the evolution of the form. News needs to come from ever more local sources, and, in my opinion, be liberated of the classic ‘objective’ paradigm, moving instead towards a new ethic of material transparency.

Community Connection

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