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The New York Times' Arthur Sulzberger Sees the Writing on the Wall

His goal is to make the Times' transition from print to Internet as smooth as possible:

Despite his personal fortune and impressive lineage, Arthur Sulzberger, owner, chairman and publisher of the most respected newspaper in the world, is a stressed man.


Why would the man behind the New York Times be stressed? Well, profits from the paper have been declining for four years, and the Times company's market cap has been shrinking, too. Its share lags far behind the benchmark, and just last week, the group Sulzberger leads admitted suffering a $570 million loss because of write offs and losses at the Boston Globe.

As if that weren't enough, his personal bank, Morgan Stanley, recently set out on a campaign that could cost the man control over the paper.

[...]

Given the constant erosion of the printed press, do you see the New York Times still being printed in five years?

"I really don't know whether we'll be printing the Times in five years, and you know what? I don't care either," he says.

Sulzberger is focusing on how to best manage the transition from print to Internet.

"The Internet is a wonderful place to be, and we're leading there," he points out.

The Times, in fact, has doubled its online readership to 1.5 million a day to go along with its 1.1 million subscribers for the print edition.

I don't think I've sat down to read a print newspaper in at least several years.


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Comments (27)

"...suffering a $570 millio... (Below threshold)

"...suffering a $570 million loss because of write offs and losses at the Boston Globe."


BWAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.

Really, honest.


BWAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.

Couldn't hapen to a worse bunch of people.

"I don't think I've sat dow... (Below threshold)
jp2:

"I don't think I've sat down to read a print newspaper in at least several years."

And it shows.

and yet somehow jp2 he know... (Below threshold)
Jo:

and yet somehow jp2 he knows more than you'll ever know.

If people want to read a copy of the Democrat Daily Talking Points (the NYT) they can just go straight to the source. The source that announces itself as such. Not one cloaked in phony objectivity.

Adios and good riddance.

The Times they are a changi... (Below threshold)
Lee:

The Times they are a changing... (heh)

"Adios and good riddance."

The NYT isn't going away, Jo, it's reaching a larger and larger audience on the internet than it ever could in print.

Meanwhile, the world's oldest newspaper just went "online only" last month, ceasing publication on paper altogether January 1, 2007.

STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) - For centuries, readers thumbed through the crackling pages of Sweden's Post-och Inrikes Tidningar newspaper. No longer. The world's oldest paper still in circulation has dropped its paper edition and now exists only in cyberspace.

The newspaper, founded in 1645 by Sweden's Queen Kristina, became a Web-only publication on Jan. 1. It's a fate, many ink-stained writers and readers fear, that may await many of the world's most venerable journals.

"We think it's a cultural disaster," said Hans Holm, who served as the chief editor of Post-och Inrikes Tidningar for 20 years. "It is sad when you have worked with it for so long and it has been around for so long."

Queen Kristina used the publication to keep her subjects informed of the affairs of state, Holm said, and the first editions, which were more like pamphlets, were carried by courier and posted on note boards in cities and towns throughout the kingdom.

A decade ago Dallas had 2 m... (Below threshold)
Skip:

A decade ago Dallas had 2 major newspapers, the Dallas Morning News, and the Dallas Times Herald. I had a subscription to the Morning News, and read it each morning before heading in to work. And I'd frequently buy a Times Herald at lunch and read it there.

The stories they covered had some overlap, but typically there was a fairly wide spread between them. Then the Times Herald went out of business. Shortly after that I ended up canceling my subscription to the Morning News, because if I read the paper in the morning I'd have nothing to read at lunch.

A few years later, I started noticing that every time I bought a paper at lunch, I'd end up double-checking it to make sure it was today's. Because I'd already read about 95% of the stories, which were just wire reports.

At this point I'd have to say it's probably been 5 years since I bought a paper when I wasn't stuck in a hotel somewhere. Maybe longer.

But the question of whether or not the Times can successfully switch to charging for all their content? Who knows? They probably have a slightly higher ratio of original reporting to wire reports, but I doubt it's any higher than 10%, so the other 90% I'd have already read somewhere else.

Nice positive spin on the s... (Below threshold)
Jo:

Nice positive spin on the situation Lee. lol.

Meanwhile, if people are getting their information from the internet (even the NYT online) they are at the same time going to get more from both sides than they did at most newspapers. And that ain't good for the democrat party.

"I don't think I've sat... (Below threshold)
marc:

"I don't think I've sat down to read a print newspaper in at least several years." And it shows.
Posted by: jp2

That's all you got? That's the best, a cheap off topic personal attack?

Typical.

Sulzberger leads admitted suffering a $570 million loss because of write offs and losses at the Boston Globe.

Hmmmm. do I sense a connection between that loss and Times Select?

Yeah, the NYT is just a'-bo... (Below threshold)

Yeah, the NYT is just a'-boomin', posting a loss of $45 per share the last quarter, versus a 43¢ profit in the corresponding period the year before. That's 45 DOLLARS LOST per share, a loss of half a BILLION for a company whose entire worth is under $4 billion. Circulation is down, ad revenue is down. For a newspaper, those are few other sources of revenue.
Good times at the NY Times, pop another bottle of champagne!

Share value is plummeting across the industry. The Minneapolis Strib just sold for HALF what it brought only five years ago - but that's not nearly the whole story. The Star-Tribune's assets include a city block of prime downtown real estate near the new stadium site which has appreciated significantly in value since the prior sale, so the value of the newspaper portion of the company's assets has declined even more drastically.

The LAT, AJC, etc. . . . a sad story repeating itself around the country.

I might point out that the NYT was one of the few papers able to buck the downward trends of the industry (which were less drastic back then) when Sulzberger came to power. The paper started downhill fast then, from the moment Rosenthal was retired from Executive Ed to columnist. Old Abe was an old school liberal (anti-communist, pro-Israel), but he ran the news pages straight, and the facts cited in editorials were accurate.

Anyone see future ramifacti... (Below threshold)

Anyone see future ramifactions beyond the demise of the NYT (which may or may not happen)? All that money lost in advertising (which in newspapers I'm sure is a huge chunk), where are they going to make up that money now? Watch out for adverisements more invasive than the NSA's latest probe.

WHAT?!?!? No more Crossword... (Below threshold)
VagaBond:

WHAT?!?!? No more Crosswords?

"WHAT?!?!? No more Crosswor... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

"WHAT?!?!? No more Crosswords?"

It's safe. The NYT Crossword has long ago moved to an online access model. My wife is a nut about doing it each day and was thankful she could cancel the paper subscription and do the online version.

As for newspapers I quit reading the local papers a good 6 or 7 years ago when I realized I read nothing new in them. I had either already read the stories online or the were so blatantly badly written or wrong as to be ridiculous. Of course, when the two local paper editors also serve as The Dem Party campaign organizers you aren't going to get a balanced story.

"When the two local pape... (Below threshold)
cmd:

"When the two local paper editors. . .serve as Dem Party campaign organizers, you aren't going to get a balanced story."

A-friggin'-men to that, faith. Why is such a simple fact so hard for the "reality-based" lefties to understand? I still get the Boston Globe, but only for the cartoons and the letters to the editor (which are good illustrations of which DNC talking points the base is using). I can occasionally trust the local news, but anything headed "AP" or "Reuters" I immediately ignore - or, if I'm bored, take a moment to highlight which paragraph or word the first leftie lie shows up in.

You want people to buy a newspaper? Print the news. You want to have an outlet for your BDS? Don't expect me to buy it.

"I really don't k... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:
"I really don't know whether we'll be printing the Times in five years, and you know what? I don't care either," he says.

I feel the same way.

He sees the NYSlimes as the... (Below threshold)
bill:

He sees the NYSlimes as the curator of news, Hahahahaha ... news is now free, propaganda you have to pay for.

We dropped all news and magazine subscriptions long ago and got broadband with the money saved ... Much better deal.

"The NYT isn't going away, ... (Below threshold)
JB:

"The NYT isn't going away, Jo, it's reaching a larger and larger audience on the internet than it ever could in print."

Awesome, Lee. 1.5 million eyeballs will bring in some hefty Blogads revenue, no? Why, they'll be almost as big as Drudge .

The NYT's profits and stock... (Below threshold)
nikkolai:

The NYT's profits and stock price are sinking? The hell you say. Did Al Qaeda withhold a couple of payments? Has Hamas fallen on hard times?

JB: I wouldn't be surprised... (Below threshold)
Lee:

JB: I wouldn't be surprised to see the NYT become a national news brand along the size and scope of CNN and Fox News, and a move into television is probable imho.

Yes, today they're losing boatloads of money because, like any monolithic "big ship" institutions they take a long time to correct course when a sea change occurs. The same kind of sea change is occurring throughout the media world - look at the effect iTunes and YouTube are having on the music and television industries. It's all going to increase and grow exponentially going forward.

I've never subscribed to the print NYT, and only pick up a hard copy occasionally, when traveling for example -- but these days I read Times online articles daily, and two years ago I might have read Times articles online once a month, at the most.

The NYT's influence in growing. If they can survive financially they will end up with a much larger readership online than they could ahve ever hoped for with their print edition in New York. Their political influence will increase as well.

Chortle now, dear conservatives, while you have the chance, but in my opinion "adios New York Times" is not in the cards -- not by a long shot.

As for newspapers I quit re... (Below threshold)
maggysturn:

As for newspapers I quit reading the local papers a good 6 or 7 years ago when I realized I read nothing new in them.
Posted by: Faith+1 at February 8, 2007 08:51 AM

Haha. More nonsense from the right. For all you morons that "quit" reading the papers, I'll remind you that it was The New York Times that first reported the Clinton Whitewater story, and The New York Times (through right-wing ass kisser Judith Miller) that carried the ridiculous George Bush WMDs in Iraq story we all know now to be a complete and fabricated lie. Her articles appeared on the front page of the paper over several days. So much for the "liberal" New York Times.

If you'd stop relying on "fair and balanced" reporting from Fox "News", you wouldn't make such jackasses of yourselves online. LOL.

we all know now to be a ... (Below threshold)
JB:

we all know now to be a complete and fabricated lie. Her articles appeared on the front page of the paper over several days. So much for the "liberal" New York Times.

Actually, the "liberal" part of that is opportunistically doing a 360 and creating the "lie" meme, as opposed to the "faulty intelligence" truth.

". . .they will end up w... (Below threshold)
cmd:

". . .they will end up with a much larger readership online. . .Chortle now, dear conservatives, while you have the chance. . ."

However many eyeballs the NYT gets, on paper or on line doesn't concern me, Lee. I don't care whether they stay in business or go out of business. Where they have, IMO, shot themselves fatally in the foot is in allowing their partisan hackery to trump their "All The News That's Fit To Print" mantra. You're somewhat intelligent, Lee, so I needn't point out to you the Times' long history of mendacity, implication and forgery. And I don't care if they do indulge in that kind of behavior - just as I didn't particularly care that the Boston Globe was suckered into printing a story that pictures from some "veils and tails" Arab porn site were actually pictures of our troops raping Iraqi women.

(hey - maybe that's where Arkin got his "through all the rapes" bit, huh?)

But when you set yourself up as the "Paper of Record" and are caught deliberately slanting the news for partisan effect, then you've given up your claim to be taken any more seriously than. . .oh, say, any more seriously than Ollie Willis and his tartar sauce-clogged blowhole.

So - "larger readership" - who cares? You never go broke underestimating the gullibility of the left.

"Their political influence will increase" - only with the Kossacks and Marcottes. The choir loves to listen to the sound of its own voice and imagine it to be the majority ("nobody I know voted for Nixon," remember?) But serious people will treat the Times as the TSM fish-wrap is so assiduously has striven to be.

Oh, and maggy - Whitewater?

BWAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

You clowns kept telling us that it was nothing more than a simple land deal, and only the VRWC saw something nefarious in it. So are you now telling us that Saint Bill of the Dropped Trousers was up to no good because the Times "first reported" the story?

The rest of your post? Feh. Typical BDS. Off with you, little moonbat.

Lee, you speak of their inc... (Below threshold)
JB_:

Lee, you speak of their increasing "political influence" as something additive to the current ecosystem. How exactly are they going to exceed their current status as meme feedstock for the current Big 3 TV/NPR/radio network liberal machine.

You seem to think there's actually some slice of the audience they don't already indirectly reach out there. Nice fantasy, though.

I see that old "pucker puss... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

I see that old "pucker puss" (lee lee) (resident turd polisher) (resident moron) is still living in fantasy land. And still has his "ditto" key.

maggysturn,As I sa... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

maggysturn,

As I said, I quit reading 6 or 7 years ago because they simply reported things already read on several online sources. Both the Miller stories you cited were in excess of 7 years ago and as for Bush and the WMD I suppose if we ignore all the Democrats prior to 2000 and Bush believing it and ignore the over 500 WMD weapons found in Iraq to date you have one citation from around 5 years ago that might lend a bit in your favor.

Case in point, big NYT scoop of the day today? - They just discovered Mitt Romney is MORMON!!! What a scoop! Can't what to see Harry Reid's reaction to that devastating news.

BTW, I don't watch "Fox news" either as I watch TV news of any sort since they tend to be about twice as slow at getting to stories as old fashioned newspapers.

I do subscribe to 26 different online news feeds (some free/some pay) and read daily. There is simply little to nothing new in the mainstream press that isn't either not a simple re-spewing of newswire releases (I directly receive AP/Reuters newsfeeds and it is extremely easy to see more MSM do nothing but regurgitate) or just re-stating of political party talking points.

A whole lotta of assumptions in your post about who and what I am there mags. What should really frighten you is that you couldn't be more wrong in your assumptions....

It's pretty funny reading f... (Below threshold)
Adirondax:

It's pretty funny reading folks taking shots at the "liberal" NYT. What rot.

I read it because it's the best-written paper in the US.

Left-leaning? What, just because they question the hypocrisy and nonsense that we've put up with from the "hey, we're the professionals" nudge, nudge crowd that has made Nixon look like a bloody amateur in terms of their paranoia. To say nothing of this crowd's out and out incompetence. If questioning incompetence makes you a "liberal," then I'm with those guys.

As far as I'm concerned, the me-firstism, coupled with the underlying racism that is part and parcel of the "right," is both sad, pathetic, and definitely unAmerican.

As long as the NYT employs the best journalists, I'll read it, online or otherwise. And yes, I'll pay for the privilige.

If questioning incompete... (Below threshold)
VagaBond:

If questioning incompetence makes you a "liberal," then I'm with those guys.

I kinda drew that conclusion from your second sentence...

" Both the Miller stories y... (Below threshold)
Reality:

" Both the Miller stories you cited were in excess of 7 years ago and as for Bush and the WMD I suppose if we ignore all the Democrats prior to 2000 and Bush believing it and ignore the over 500 WMD weapons found in Iraq to date you have one citation from around 5 years ago that might lend a bit in your favor."

Let me fix this for you. HTH.

" Both the Miller stories you cited were in excess of 4 years ago and as for Bush and the WMD I suppose if we ignore some of the Democrats prior to 2000 and Bush believing it and ignore the 0 WMD weapons found in Iraq to date you have one citation from around 5 years ago that might lend a bit in your favor."

Reality,Don't re-w... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

Reality,

Don't re-write my words--it's pathetic and shows a complete lack of originality, and attempts to re-write history.

Repeating your lies over and over again won't make them true. Whitewater only happened 4 years ago? Really? No, it happened during the Clinton administration--over 7 years ago. See 2007-2000 is 7.

As to zero WMDs you might want to do a bit more research. Downplaying the various finds or claiming "they were too old" doesn't change the fact they were found.




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