Bad news for the financially troubled New York Times is always good news for America — and America received some very good news today. In an attempt to survive online competition and a growing credibility gap, Bloomberg reports that the Times is banking on a move to digital subscriptions to make up for declining advertising revenue.
In the first quarter of 2013, that plan has failed miserably.
Advertising revenue plummeted 11%, while subscription sales rose by only 6.5%.
Total revenue dropped by a full 2%, which analysts did not expect.
The new plan? Here…
The results represent Mark Thompson’s first full quarter as the company’s chief executive officer, following his arrival from the British Broadcasting Corp. last November. Thompson announced new strategic initiatives today in a bid to revive growth. The effort includes a lower-priced subscription plan, as well as a higher-priced option that would include access to events. The company also aims to entice more readers and advertisers with online videos.
As you can see, there is nothing in Thompson’s plan that comes close to facing reality. Part of the advertising revenue decline is a likely result of a faltering American economy brought on by the failed economic policies of Barack Obama, a man the Times openly championed. Then there is the other problem — the fact that Times’ advertisers cannot count on over half the country seeing their advertising in a newspaper over half the country knows hates them.
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