Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Death by a thousand cuts, thanks to the beancounters


Some weeks back I enjoyed a fine lunch put on by a global company who was expanding its operations in New Zealand.
Many other journos were there and there were the usual talks about the state of the market.
One respected business title is seeking staff I was told, but they only want newbies to intermediates, so they can pay them just $30-$40k a year.
Of course they never think to ask whether an old timer might work 3-4 days a week for such a sum, one who is perhaps skilled enough to produce more and better work than the newbie in half the time!
And there’s another well respected title that is not replacing staff who leaves, regardless of the impact on the quality of the publication. The recruitment freeze continues.
Soon after, I had coffee with a guy who had been in publishing for more than 30 years.
He had been made redundant by a large corporate because he disagreed with the direction of the company, and the recession gave the perfect excuse to pay him off.
The old timer wanted the small provincial weekly to have a solid focus on ‘community news’. He wanted more than just filling the white space between the ads with recycled press releases.
However, real news costs, and the publishers aren’t keen to pay for it, no matter how much it might cost them in the long run in not having it.
I guess many of the readers of this blog have decent incomes, incomes so beloved of advertisers.
So imagine how damaging it would be for you to stop reading certain titles.
Indeed, I have heard so many of you say you have stopped reading certain titles because you disagreed with their left wing politics or the tabloidization of the papers, that they contained too much fluff.
So here is an idea, one that may help you save your favourite papers from rampant costcutting.
If you are thinking of cancelling your subscription, before you do, tell the editor or general manager of your newspaper or magazine.
And please do it in large enough numbers that it will be clear to the beancounters that costcutting doesn’t work and in fact reinforces a spiral of decline.
Of course, you think having gone down this route so many times before that they might have learnt by now!

2 comments:

Redbaiter said...

I've tried talking to editors on more than one occasion.

They were arrogant left wing scum.

One actually said to me "right wing doesn't sell".

The Editor of the Herald (some years ago now) told me he didn't need to run any other "right wing" columnists other than (IIRC) Ron Eagles (?) who wrote left wing crap anyway, in the business section.

Why should I contribute to the upkeep of a paper that prints predominantly left wing editorials, has predominantly left wing opinion writers, and perpetually slants most news items to the left?

Why should I support a paper that promotes a political system I consider repugnant?

The left control and use newspapers to spin for socialism.

Long ago I vowed never to buy one, and never never never to ever advertise in one, and I know many of my friends who feel the same.

With at least 40% of the population being non-left, they must know they're pissing off a large part of their market.

Fuck em. Too bad for the few journalist who aren't just socialist shills, but newspapers just have to go broke. There is no other way to remove them from the clutches of the left.

I'm watching as their financial problems grow, and enjoying every minute.

Fairfacts- why don't you apply for a job with FOX news?

FAIRFACTS MEDIA said...

If only Fox operated in New Zealand!
I am missing Fox while at my parents' house.
They don't have Sky but Freeview, so I use Sky news as a substitute.
My brother, who lives down the road from them has Fox news on his Sky system, but it is too intellectual for him!