It's been a while since I've posted, more than two weeks. So much has changed for me in terms of energy and outlook since my trip to the Galapagos. There is now a gallery of pictures on-line you can look at.

Anyway, read this article in the Business section of the Bee today. It seems that, curiously, that the profits of McClatchy Newspapers (of which the Bee is one) are up....but their overall revenues are down. I posted the following on-line as a challenge had to McClatchy's beancounters:

I wonder if anyone will read this, but I just had to comment. The outcome outlined in the headline was entirely predictable for anyone who has followed the Bee's evolution to a leaner, but also less filling, product. The Bee's decision to change formats to reduce printing costs doubtless helped raise the profit margin, but there was also a reduction in content, especially in local content. If you want to make your newspaper relevant, you need to invest more in local content by local writers, and (frankly) in content that will provoke people to respond. Have you considered reducing the size of text, for example, in the letters to the editor? People read those things, and they would read 40 a day instead of 10 even if the text was smaller. Another thing: more stories that tease people with links to more comprehensive coverage on-line! Create the expectation that you buy the paper to get the 'Easter eggs' !

Also, original comics, in color. Look at what USA Today did with Wednesday Comics, increasing their readership under the age of 30. You need content that others don't have if you want your market share to grow. Otherwise, you can keep slashing the cost of production all you want, but your overall revenues will drop because your share of the market will shrink. The Internet changes the equation: if McClatchy does not invest in generating more unique, local content they should get out of the newspaper business.