Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Case Study: 'Times Union' May Cut 28 Pages Each Week

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Case Study: 'Times Union' May Cut 28 Pages Each Week

Article excerpt

The Times Union of Albany, N.Y. may cut up to 28 pages each week, including several feature and business sections, to counter the rising cost of newsprint, according to Editor Rex Smith.

Smith told E&P Monday that an internal task force reviewing cost-saving options for the past month is expected to put forth recommendations next week. Among those is likely to be the page cutback.

"It looks like we are at the point where we need to lose 28 pages from the paper each week in order to get our newsprint consumption to the level that is tolerable," Smith said about the Hearst-owned paper. "Every newspaper is going through various operations to reduce spending without it damaging the paper. We look at what can newspapers give readers and what can they eliminate?"

Smith declined to reveal how much would be saved with such cuts, saying no final numbers have been determined.

The biggest hit would likely be to the paper's feature section, which runs daily from Tuesday through Saturday. On Sunday, four feature sections are printed, which include life, arts, travel and books, and real estate.

"Some of the feature sections are less likely to survive," said Smith, who added that much of the content, such as advice, comics and television listings, would be placed in other sections. "Feature sections have usually been targeted to women readers; they are the largest audience. But women are much more likely to be reading on the weekend."

Smith added that the Sunday feature sections could be combined into one: "Do we really need to have four? …

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