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Denver loses the Rocky Mountain News

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  • Denver loses the Rocky Mountain News

    Hello,

    The bad economic environment has spelled disaster for many newspapers and magazines and unfortunately and another stalwart newspaper has shuddered its doors permanently. The Rocky Mountain News, a Pulitzer winning paper, has shut down, leaving The Denver Post as the only major remaining newspaper in the Denver area. It's just sad that so many notable US newspapers are going under, the San Fransisco Chronicle or the Seattle Post Intelligencer may be next.

    The Rocky Mountain News though being a liberal paper, still offered a Conservative voice and offered a nice change of pace from the Denver Post. The Rocky also had a far superior aviation news section, an excellent sports section and was know for its award-winning photographers. Farewell to the Rocky Mountain News, it will definitely be missed.

    Here's the link: http://www.rockymountainnews.com/new...dbye-colorado/

    Regards,

    Rohan

  • #2
    I think this has less to do with the recession, and more to do with the fact that newspapers have been replaced by the internet. Even after the recession ends, newspapers will continue to fall. You can get more news than you'll ever be able to read through the internet, so newspapers are pretty much novelties now adays. The only people who probably still get a lot of their news from them are seniors.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Airbus_A320 View Post
      I think this has less to do with the recession, and more to do with the fact that newspapers have been replaced by the internet. Even after the recession ends, newspapers will continue to fall. You can get more news than you'll ever be able to read through the internet, so newspapers are pretty much novelties now adays. The only people who probably still get a lot of their news from them are seniors.
      I agree with you, the internet offers a lot more information for free than a newspaper ever could and yes, newspapers started falling in 2005, even when the economy was booming. However, in the case of the Rocky Mountain News, the paper was doing very well until about late 2006.

      The Rocky's case is unique because it was a major stalwart paper and won numerous awards. Basically what contributed to the Rocky Mountain News's decline was a sudden loss of a relatively large subscriber base in 2007-2008, due to the recession, less subscribers makes it much harder to get advertising revenue, which means that losses continually mounted. In 2008, the Rocky Mountain News lost over $16 million and the forecast for 2009 wasn't much better (~$14 million in losses). The Rocky Mountain News still had a large subscriber base, so it's surprising that even running an on-line only paper wasn't feasible either.

      Agreed, the only people who get their news regularly from the newspaper are seniors, my mom and dad still read the whole thing daily. I basically only read the Sports section, maybe the business section daily and maybe once or twice a week read the news section. However, I always find newspapers to have helpful articles for college projects, for instance, when I had to write a 12 page argumentative essay on the US male-female wage gap, I got 8 of my 15 sources from newspapers (The RMN, The Denver Post, and the Wall Street Journal). In addition, newspaper editiorials often give you more of an insight into the news, than any of the big meadia giants websites, eg., CNN.

      Thank you for responding

      Rohan

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      • #4
        I think it's the combination of both the internet and the recession which is the problem. Of course, the rise of the internet, and the disappearance of classified advertizing from newspapers, has been a serious problem for some years. However, this is mitigated to some extent by newspaper websites, most of which are free. Some newspaper websites are very good, others are awful.

        The impact of the recession has been in the reduction in mainstream advertizing, which has cut revenues sharply, which causes circulations to fall, which leads to further reductions in advertizing revenues, and so on. The cover price of a newspaper is generally only a small part of its revenue. Advertizing revenue is the lifeblood, and this is where the squeeze now is.

        The fact of the matter, nonetheless, is that newspaper stories are still often the driving force of public debate. Articles and stories in newspapers are often the raw material for internet discussion boards, blogs, radio and TV shows, cable services etc..... The quality of life without newspapers would get worse, and we would have an even more uninformed citizenry.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by HalcyonDays View Post
          I think it's the combination of both the internet and the recession which is the problem. Of course, the rise of the internet, and the disappearance of classified advertizing from newspapers, has been a serious problem for some years. However, this is mitigated to some extent by newspaper websites, most of which are free. Some newspaper websites are very good, others are awful.

          The impact of the recession has been in the reduction in mainstream advertizing, which has cut revenues sharply, which causes circulations to fall, which leads to further reductions in advertizing revenues, and so on. The cover price of a newspaper is generally only a small part of its revenue. Advertizing revenue is the lifeblood, and this is where the squeeze now is.

          The fact of the matter, nonetheless, is that newspaper stories are still often the driving force of public debate. Articles and stories in newspapers are often the raw material for internet discussion boards, blogs, radio and TV shows, cable services etc..... The quality of life without newspapers would get worse, and we would have an even more uninformed citizenry.
          Thank you for responding.

          I definitely agree that the biggest problems for newspapers is the combination of the internet and recession. Even though subscriptions cover only a small percentage of a newspaper revenues, advertisers often look at subscriber and sale numbers in order to determine whether or not it's worth it to advertise in that publication.

          IMO, the Rocky Mountain News and the Denver Post both have good websites, which are easy to navigate. The Rocky's website is still available at www.rockymountainnews.com

          In addition, you make a good point that newspaper stories are often a driving force in public debate and a loss of newspapers is going to make the public less educated. For instance, in Denver, the Denver Post was often a very liberal paper, the Rocky used to offer different perspectives and the Rocky was known for its in-depth investigations and reporting style.

          10 years ago when I was in 6th grade, a student needed information on MLK for a report and speech. He searched for the information on-line and ended on a racist site and based his report totally on that site. The teacher was not happy, to say the least.

          Young children simply can't distinguish valid internet sources that well and newspapers generally provide high-quality reporting, so newspapers always made good teaching tools for kids.

          In Denver, the RMD and the Denver Post had a joint-operating agreement, so the Denver Post has been proactive by hiring many well-known Rocky Mountain News columinists and by providing RMN subscribers with the Denver Post for the duration of their subscription.

          Regards,

          Rohan

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          • #6
            Yeah,where I live,a few just shut down.Now all we get now seems to be the Standard Catholic Times!
            August 29th will be the worst day of the year.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by BoeingKing77 View Post
              Yeah,where I live,a few just shut down.Now all we get now seems to be the Standard Catholic Times!
              Hello BoeingKing77,

              Thank you for responding. I agree the loss of newspapers is scary. There are rumors that at the current rate the Denver Post may not survive past 2012, if that happens the most intellectually stimulating newspaper in the Denver area will be The Onion. For those who don't know, the Onion is a complete joke with mostly imaginary stories, makes for a fun read though. I surely hope that never happens, as I still enjoy reading a newspaper and I will miss the Rocky Mountain News for its award-winning journalism, photography, and for its easy to read Tabloid style format.

              The Standard Catholic Times huh, aren't you just outside the Philadelphia area? Wow, that's really scary.


              Rohan

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              • #8
                Hello,

                Just thought I would update you guys. Well, the Seattle Post Intelligencer has printed its last edition; it's really sad to see another US major daily newspaper go under, but at least the on-line part will remain. The US newspaper industry is in really bad shape, several other US dailies such as the San Fransisco Chronicle, even the Boston Globe, might go on-line or out of business in the next couple of years.

                As for the situation in Denver, the Denver Post hired about 20 former Rocky Mountain News staffers most notably columnists Mike Littwin and Dave Krieger. As for the rest of the Rocky staff most of them continued posting free content on www.iwantmyrocky.com and got together to create a new on-line newspaper.

                The new "paper" is called the In Denver Times, which will officially begin on May 4, 2009. The paper needed 50,000 subscribers by April 23 to start and they got that many in just 3 days! I know the name is really strange, Rocky Mountain News just sounded better and it was too expensive to buy the name. Oh well, at least Denver will be back to having two local newspapers.

                Most of the news (approximately 70% will be for free) will be available for free and subscribers will get a complete downloadable newspaper and access to the columnist's columns and blogs. Subscribers will also get more access to local content. They have a temporary website going at www.indenvertimes.com and subscriptions range from $5-$7 per month.

                Yearly subscriptions for the paper cost around $60, home delivery of the print edition for the Denver Post is $158, and the former Rocky Mountain News used to cost $175/year for the print edition. The complete on-line edition of the Denver Post costs $80/year.

                The Rocky Mountain News was renowned for its local content and in-depth investigations, something, which, the Denver Post hasn't matched yet.

                Currently the In Denver Times will employ about 30-35 former Rocky staffers, as the paper grows, predictions are that the paper will have about 70-90 full-time staff members and around 120 employees total. The Rocky had over 230 total employees with about 130-140 full-time staff.

                The In Denver Times website: www.indenvertimes.com
                The former Rocky website, it's still up and functional: www.rockymountainnews.com

                Some youtube.com videos on the new newspaper:
                http://www.youtube.com/user/InDenverTimes


                Regards,

                Rohan

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