My father would get up early, make his coffee and wait for the thud of the delivery of his morning paper (shiny happy person on left is not actual dad). You could hear him swearing if it didn’t make it on the porch but rather hung from our rhododendron bush just out of reach. The newspaper boy would come around once a month to “collect” for the subscription. He rode a bike. In the rain.

Dad was a front page and business page reader. I grabbed The Jumble. We weren’t a big sports watching family so that section usually remained untouched. On Sunday that paper was spread out on the dining room table all day. Had to read the Parade Magazine, bonus! In December the Sunday edition weighed about five pounds with all the colorful pull-out ads. My generation’s version of the Sears catalog.

The Boy Scouts had newspaper drives regularly. We’d bundle up our piles with twine and take them to the grocery store parking lot.  Do they even do that anymore?

Before television the newspaper is how a story broke. Extra! Extra!

Today you’ll hear it on Twitter before the news crew can turn on their cameras.

Newspapers are failing left and right. Some are declaring bankruptcy to try and reorganize and almost all have drastically cut back on staff.

Rupert Murdoch believes that this old model is dead:

“The old business model based on advertising only is dead…..that’s not going to change even in a boom.”*

Murdoch’s plan is to “put all its entities behind a pay wall.” Or as the soup Nazi would say “No more free news for you!”

* BIG POINT: I found that quote this morning when I was reading the CU Watercooler links from yesterday. It pointed me to the online (free) version of the Washington Post’s article. Isn’t that delicious?

After the Rocky Mountain News closed in February of this year, several displaced staffers announced the development of an online, real-time local newspaper. They needed 50,000 paid subscriber pledges before they could launch. Their goal was May 4, 2009. On April 23rd they shut it down with only 3,000 pledges.

Are you still buying Newspaper ads? I know some credit unions are because it’s cheap. And if it’s cheap it’s not wasting money, right?

The bigger the ad the higher the price tag, because it was harder to avoid the thing. Think about it. People don’t BUY the paper for the ads. They buy it for the news – and now they can get that for free.

I cancelled my newspaper about four years ago. My blue recycle bin sits empty in my garage next to the green one and the grey one.

When we moved last month I had to buy packing paper because we didn’t have old newspapers lying around. So that industry will probably pick up – and someone should start a “bird cage liner” business.

RIP Newspaper ad.

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