Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Newspaper Death Watch

The list of the near-dead newspapers continues to grow.

The latest is the San Francisco Chronicle, the country's 12th largest paper serving the 5th largest media market. Publisher Hearst Corp. says it needs major concessions from its unions to survive -- but even with concessions, its future is in doubt.

Others newspapers in trouble include:
  1. Seattle Post-Intelligencer, also owned by the Hearst Corp.
  2. Tribune Co., parent of Chicago Tribune & Los Angeles Tribune -- filed for bankruptcy.
  3. Minneapolis Star-Tribune -- filed for bankruptcy.
  4. Parent company of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News -- filed for bankruptcy.
  5. Parent company of the New Haven Register and 19 other dailies -- filed for bankruptcy.
  6. Rocky Mountain News -- put up for auction or will be closed.
  7. Austin American-Statesman -- put up for auction or will be closed.
  8. San Diego Union-Tribune -- put up for auction or will be closed.
  9. Detroit News -- scaled back home delivery days.
If the Hearst can't get the concessions it needs, count on the Chronicle to close.

And expect other publishers to follow suite by shutting down their papers, too.

One thing is certain, by the end of the summer, this list will have grown.

PR and advertising functions/agencies will need to be creative in how they add value -- while developing metrics for success in this new media environment.

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