The coronavirus and karma have resulted in newspaper advertising disappearing overnight and news publication are being forced like most other businesses around the country to lay off employees or cutting salaries, the New York Times is screaming for a bailout.
On Monday the Tampa Bay Times announced that they will only print two days a week, Wednesday and Sunday however it’s not due to a lack of traffic to their website.
“The company reported a surge in traffic to its website … and growth in digital subscriptions over the last few weeks” but “the pandemic sent advertising sales into a plunge. In just the last two weeks, [advertising] cancellations have cost us more than $1 million, and there is no sign of quick recovery on the horizon. We must act now.”
Gannett, one of the largest newspaper companies in the country announced they will be furloughing employees immediately and are asking some to make a “collective sacrifice.”
“Our plan is to minimize long-term damage to the business by implementing a combination of furloughs and pay reductions,” the memo explains.
On Monday, BuzzFeed announced that they are going to cut salaries by as much as 25% in some cases. This news caused the New York Times to freak out and published an op-ed claiming the country needs to bail out the free press.
“The coronavirus is likely to hasten the end of advertising-driven media. … And government should not rescue it,” the Times columnist says, which is fair enough: The thought of my tax dollars funding people who hate me is a bit much.
Here’s what the failing, Chinese propaganda touting New York Times wants taxpayers to do:
The time is now to make a painful but necessary shift: Abandon most for-profit local newspapers, whose business model no longer works, and move as fast as possible to a national network of nimble new online newsrooms. That way, we can rescue the only thing worth saving about America’s gutted, largely mismanaged local newspaper companies — the journalists.
The right decision is to consistently look to the future, which comes in a few forms. The most promising right now is Ms. Green’s dream of a big new network of nonprofit news organizations across the country on the model of The Texas Tribune, which Mr. Thornton co-founded.
Government support, as Report for America’s co-founder, Steven Waldman, suggests, could tip toward the new nonprofit organizations and small businesses. Facebook and Google could focus on backing them, rather than paying them to make YouTube videos.
But how could this be possible? We are stuck in our homes, clicks are up, subscriptions are up, and news consumption is up. All of us desperately want to know when the hell we’ll be allowed outside again.
Since partisan groups like Media Matters and Sleeping Giants have harassed advertisers about where their products are displayed. John Nolte from Breitbart News explains:
Blacklisters like Media Matters and Sleeping Giants have mercilessly harassed advertisers advertising on right-of-center sites including Breitbart News, and have tried to get advertisers to block programmatic ads to conservative news websites in order to defund those websites — to put them out of business.
So, for example, using social media, boycotters send to ABC Company a screenshot of its advertising next to a Breitbart story that offends the left and asks something like, “Do you support this HATE!?!?!” (A lie to begin with). In their McCarthyite zeal to destroy Breitbart and other conservative publishers, the boycotters then harassed ABC company until it pulled its advertising.
As it turned out advertiser were blocking coronavirus stories as early as late January because they are afraid to advertise on news platforms. From digiday.com:
In February, “coronavirus” became the second-most common word on block lists for news publishers, up from eighth-most common in January, according to Integral Ad Science data (The number one most-common was — you guessed it — “Trump”). Across the open web, Coronavirus was the third-most common block list entry in February, after not even ranking in the top ten in January.
Advertisers have always wanted to avoid coverage of the most upsetting topics, and many prefer to avoid the news altogether. Joe Barone, the managing partner of brand safety at GroupM, noted that less than one third of GroupM’s clients are blocking coronavirus terms, and those that aren’t either don’t advertise against news at all.
Now even media giants are suffering because of hypersensitive advertisers and they want you to bail them out.