Quantcast
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Take my newspaper, please

Union-Tribune owner tronc paid to take over New York Daily News

Justin Dearborn
Justin Dearborn

The newspaper chain known as tronc has struck again, this time getting 49.9 percent of a 25-acre printing plant in Jersey City in exchange for accepting the keys to the financially troubled New York Daily News, along with an estimated $30 million of the paper's mounting pension debt.

The total cash price of the deal with Manhattan investor Mort Zuckerman is exactly one dollar, with the primary value to the seller apparently being an escape from the millions of dollars in financial losses resulting from brutal competition with Rupert Murdoch's New York Post for the city's dwindling tabloid readers.

Noted a story in the Post after tronc's transaction for the News was announced, "In the past few years, the paper’s staff has gone through layoffs and buyouts. And while most newspapers have experienced drops in circulation, the News’ has plummeted. In 2016, the paper’s weekday print circulation tumbled by 11.2 percent, to 207,680. Even its digital circulation, once a strong point, fell 29.5 percent via its mobile app."

Tronc execs are touting the deal's "synergies," including the shuttering of printing plants at the chain's Hartford Courant in Connecticut and Morning Call of Allentown, Pennsylvania, a tactic used by the company to save money while also slashing editorial and advertising staffs at its papers.

The practice was epitomized by the 2015 closing of printing operations at the San Diego Union-Tribune, which tronc moved to the Los Angeles Times, clearing the way for further downsizing here.

“Over all, print is attriting,” proclaimed tronc CEO Justin Dearborn at an investor road show in January. “We are going to attrit with the industry.”

A story in tronc's flagship Chicago Tribune called the New York deal "a stunning and bold bet on the future of newspapers," and Dearborn said the Daily News would "benefit greatly from becoming part of the tronc ecosystem."

Tronc president Tim Knight accentuated the potential benefits to the company's internet business. "The Daily News has a great staff and also has 24 million unique visitors to its website (monthly). That really fits into our plans. This increases our digital audience by almost 40 percent. It also gives us what we feel will be a very efficient national platform and significant digital presence across the country."

But whether tronc manages to put anything of editorial value on its web-based platform remains to be seen. The Daily News shared a Pulitzer prize this year with the nonprofit ProPublica online news site for digging into eviction rule abuse by New York cops, which some hope will prove to be a model for the chain's future.

The downside, critics argue, is that increased reliance on news gathering by nonprofit corporations, which in San Diego and elsewhere are not required by law to disclose the details of their financing and therefore risk being influenced by undisclosed funders, will fundamentally corrupt local journalism.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

SinShip Spirits is putting tiki cocktails in a can

Peat-smoked rum maker will have Zombies ready to drink by October
Next Article

Not your father's Normal Heights

"All the neighbors came out and danced in the streets"
Justin Dearborn
Justin Dearborn

The newspaper chain known as tronc has struck again, this time getting 49.9 percent of a 25-acre printing plant in Jersey City in exchange for accepting the keys to the financially troubled New York Daily News, along with an estimated $30 million of the paper's mounting pension debt.

The total cash price of the deal with Manhattan investor Mort Zuckerman is exactly one dollar, with the primary value to the seller apparently being an escape from the millions of dollars in financial losses resulting from brutal competition with Rupert Murdoch's New York Post for the city's dwindling tabloid readers.

Noted a story in the Post after tronc's transaction for the News was announced, "In the past few years, the paper’s staff has gone through layoffs and buyouts. And while most newspapers have experienced drops in circulation, the News’ has plummeted. In 2016, the paper’s weekday print circulation tumbled by 11.2 percent, to 207,680. Even its digital circulation, once a strong point, fell 29.5 percent via its mobile app."

Tronc execs are touting the deal's "synergies," including the shuttering of printing plants at the chain's Hartford Courant in Connecticut and Morning Call of Allentown, Pennsylvania, a tactic used by the company to save money while also slashing editorial and advertising staffs at its papers.

The practice was epitomized by the 2015 closing of printing operations at the San Diego Union-Tribune, which tronc moved to the Los Angeles Times, clearing the way for further downsizing here.

“Over all, print is attriting,” proclaimed tronc CEO Justin Dearborn at an investor road show in January. “We are going to attrit with the industry.”

A story in tronc's flagship Chicago Tribune called the New York deal "a stunning and bold bet on the future of newspapers," and Dearborn said the Daily News would "benefit greatly from becoming part of the tronc ecosystem."

Tronc president Tim Knight accentuated the potential benefits to the company's internet business. "The Daily News has a great staff and also has 24 million unique visitors to its website (monthly). That really fits into our plans. This increases our digital audience by almost 40 percent. It also gives us what we feel will be a very efficient national platform and significant digital presence across the country."

But whether tronc manages to put anything of editorial value on its web-based platform remains to be seen. The Daily News shared a Pulitzer prize this year with the nonprofit ProPublica online news site for digging into eviction rule abuse by New York cops, which some hope will prove to be a model for the chain's future.

The downside, critics argue, is that increased reliance on news gathering by nonprofit corporations, which in San Diego and elsewhere are not required by law to disclose the details of their financing and therefore risk being influenced by undisclosed funders, will fundamentally corrupt local journalism.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Floating Outdoor Cinema on the Bay, Toy Piano Festival

Events September 27-September 30, 2020
Next Article

Margaret Fuller: wrote first major work of feminism in the US

An inspiration on Walt Whitman
Comments
3

San Diego's i-newsource is an example of news gathering supported by a "non-profit" structure that doesn't disclose its funders.

Sept. 5, 2017

There's an old story in the newspaper business of something much like this. Shortly after WWII, Phoenix had a population of only about 45,000. The local newspaper(s) was(were) struggling. The owner was despairing of ever making a profit, and wanted out. (He should have hung tough for a few short years.) One day a friend introduced him to the owner of the Indianapolis paper who was "wintering" in Arizona, something that affluent folks did in those slower-moving times. Eugene Pulliam owned the property in Indianapolis which was successful and profitable at the time. So the then-owner of the Phoenix operation made a proposal. He offered to sell the whole thing to Pulliam, the story goes, for $1 if Pulliam would assume the considerable debts of the publishing company and bring them current. That way he could walk away with his head held high. Pulliam took him up on it, and the rest was history. The Arizona Republic and Phoenix Gazette grew in circulation and revenue and far outstripped the Indianapolis paper.

BTW, that Pulliam was the grandfather of Dan Quayle, vice president 1989-93.

Sept. 6, 2017

tronc = Totally Ridiculous On Newsworthy Consensus

Sept. 6, 2017

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close