Why the San Francisco Chronicle is a candidate to exit print
Play with me on this one: Which major American newspaper should be the first to throw up its hands and stop publishing a print product?
It’s a question worth asking. This could be the worst year for newspapers since the Great Depression. The double-digit revenue declines long forecast by doomsters have arrived. While nearly all the major papers still post profits, albeit smaller than before, a few prominent ones are losing boatloads. At Hearst Newspapers’ San Francisco Chronicle, according to a deposition given by James M. Asher, the company’s chief legal and business development officer, losses of $330 million piled up between mid-2000 and September, 2006, better—or should I say worse?—than $1 million a week. During negotiations with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette‘s unions, the owning Block family disclosed that the paper lost $20 million in 2006. Late last year, The Boston Globe was headed for unprofitability as well, according to The Wall Street Journal.
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