PBJ: If the newspaper isn't delivered daily, why not stop printing daily?Heading off new print competition is another factor.
Anderson: We still have a large single-copy audience and wish to continue to serve that audience without the expense of home delivery on those three days.
|Oregonian digital edition|
The Oregonian explains:
"The Oregonian will continue to be published daily and sold at outlets in the Portland metropolitan area and elsewhere in the state and southwestern Washington. Home delivery will be Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, and include the Saturday edition as a bonus."Willamette Week (which broke the news of the impending change last Friday):
"The Oregonian confirmed this morning that the paper will reduce print delivery to three days a week.Interesting that the Oregonian business model is based on a seven day print edition to be sold at outlets but not to home subscribers. It doesn't seem likely that their money hemorrhage is coming just from home delivery costs, so the home delivery cut is a head scratcher if they are continuing to produce a daily print edition.
"Publisher N. Christian Anderson III informed staff just before 10 am that the paper will continue to publish seven days a week, but will only offer home delivery on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, with the Saturday edition apparently delivered with Sunday papers. He also announced that newsroom layoffs are beginning immediately.
"Anderson told staff this morning that the company will inform them by Friday morning whether they are being laid off.
"'The newsroom was just told there will be 'significant layoffs,' w/some new hiring for digital,' reporter Anna Griffin wrote on Twitter at 10:51 am. 'Somebody open the bar tab.'
"Staffers were told they could be offered severance or take new jobs at a recently formed company The Oregonian Publishing Co.
"Anderson also told the staffers the paper will move out of its iconic downtown building on Southwest Broadway to new offices."
It would make more sense to completely cut out three print days than just stop home delivery on those days. The actual physical materials and process of printing the paper is likely to be 1/5th or more of the cost of getting the paper out in a print format. But, if you are going to publish anyway, there is the loss that comes per unit with limited production of an edition rather than mass production.
Along with cutting home deliveries nearly in half, the Advance Central Services owners are significantly cutting employees. So salaries and employee benefits seems the real savings the Oregonian owners are going for now.
Another thing that doesn't add up is that though they are cutting staff they plan to expand the content of their Wednesday, Friday and Sunday editions.
"The Wednesday, Friday and Sunday editions will be enhanced with more content than current editions while the Saturday newspaper will have news and a strong emphasis on sports content, along with classified advertising."Quality content expansion is not likely when you're significantly cutting staff. Nor does it seem likely that "enhanced" content will attract new subscribers when the Oregonian is cutting down on print circulation (via 40% less home delivery).
There's a lot here that doesn't add up.