Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Monday, March 09, 2021

This does appear to be the year when more than a couple major-metropolitan newspapers finally bite the dust, at least in print format. Time Magazine’s put together a list of the ten most-endangered papers, based on competitive landscape and debt-loaded finances.

Here’s the list below, linking to their websites (which might be all that’s left of them, soon enough). To keep this post somewhat dynamic, I’m going to edit it as needed throughout 2009, with a strikethrough serving as a tombstone for each killed-off paper (along with a brief summation/eulogy).

1. Philadelphia Daily News
2. Minneapolis Star Tribune
3. Miami Herald
4. Detroit News
5. Boston Globe
6. San Francisco Chronicle
7. Chicago Sun-Times
8. New York Daily News
9. Fort Worth Star-Telegram
10. Cleveland Plain Dealer

One observation: The only other big-city competitive situation that comes to my mind is the Tampa Bay area, which still hosts two dailies, the St. Petersburg Times and Tampa Tribune. As far as I know, neither of them are in imminent danger of folding, despite native scenarios that suggest a struggling print environment — only a mid-sized circulation area, big hits in real estate advertising (being that Florida overall is foreclosure ground-zero), a transient/transplanted population, etc. Probably in both papers’ favor is the large presence of an older demographic that supports the print edition to a higher degree than in other parts of the country; still, a study on why Tampa Bay is faring better than other metros is probably in order.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 03/09/2021 07:47:16 PM
Category: Business, Media
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  1. You might be right about the Tampa Bay demographics: old farts like me who still subscribe to dead-tree newspapers may be the only ones left.

    I’m not so sure that Belo, owner of The Dallas Morning News,, is all that much stronger than McClatchy, owner of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Then again, Belo did manage to ingest one competitor several years back (the much-missed Dallas Times Herald), so at least they have experience to fall back on should the opportunity to swallow the S-T present itself.

    Comment by CGHill — 03/10/2021 @ 09:16:08 PM

  2. Belo’s been bleeding cash, like the rest. This list isn’t meant to be comprehensive, just which papers will get to the shredder first. Mentioned in the accompanying article was the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, which is already all but consigned to go all-online shortly.

    I do think Time made blanket assumptions that the remaining two-paper towns were automatically endangered — which also makes Tampa Bay’s omission surprising.

    Comment by CT — 03/11/2021 @ 09:48:52 AM

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