SF Chron business plan. Charge more for less content

The San Francisco Chronicle plans to fire half its employees, then raise the price of the paper and charge for online access.

Such a breathtakingly stupid plan seems typical of the newspaper business. Why, would readers want to pay more for dumbed down or non-existent content?

Let’s hope a buyer is found.

Some observers speculated that Dean Singleton’s MediaNews Group was positioning itself to buy the Chronicle. The company also owns the San Jose Mercury News, the Oakland Tribune, and many other smaller dailies in the Bay Area — as well as the Denver Post.

But if it fails

And then what happens to democracy in San Francisco? Would you still hold your demonstration if there’s no one there to report on it? What will well-connected business people and their friends in City Hall slip past the public if there’s no one watching?

A question being posed in many other cities now too, as newspapers nationwide are cratering.

James Boyce in HuffPo says
newspapers often don’t understand the business they are in, and are confusing the paper with the news.

Ironically, delivering news through new media is cheap, fast and easy. Readers made the transition, it’s just too bad so many newspapers, with so many good people, never did.

Sounds like the music business, which is similarly clueless and resistant to change.

And in a somewhat related case of corporate idiocy, desperation, and greed Irish carrier Ryanair may start charging passengers to use the toilet. What a great way to attract potential customers.

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