Some observations on the future of newspapers, including ours:
I forsee the decline/demise of newspapers, especially "local" ones because of availability to read news on your computer/cell phone (the strip "Zits" is painfully good and cites this behavior). I think you guys are doing a great job making the paper better and better to combat this.
I have written you several times, usually from AZ where I also admire the Tribune and have sent you clippings of stuff they print. You have incorporated some of these ideas and I thank you. I would like to make other opinions available. In summary...
POSITIVE ITEMS: The pages dedicated to world news and national news with accompanying maps (it's shocking to read of the lack of geographical knowledge in our populace). The voting record of our lawmakers with explanation of the bills. The airing of several good syndicated columnists on the editorial page as well as several good items by local writers. The daily joke (despite the fact I have seen the majority on forwarded e-mail). The "table of contents" on the front page. Keeping us posted about Michael Restovitch, etc, etc.
NEGATIVE ITEMS: Inconsistent location of favorite reading/work items, esp. puzzles and comics (they may be anywhere in the paper from one time to another and not predictably in section D or E.) I know it can be done since TV schedule and weather are always back to back on the last page of section B. The absence of the Click and Clack column and good car critics like Ann Job. The addition of at least 5 cartoons in recent past few months that are devoid of humor. And finally, the weak business section. I recognize that even several large papers have cut way back on their coverage of stocks, I guess to save space. I don't take WSJ and don't like Star-Trib's shuffling NYSE and NASDAQ together.
I've run out of space. This is all in good intention. Thanks again.
Fair comments, all. The "floating" puzzles and comics is something we haven't been able to fix because of our press configuration...we haven't given up. We've recently improved auto coverage and I believe Job's car reviews will appear occasionally. The comics mentioned include a few that run in the classified section, which help to draw a few more readers into that content, and regarding stocks -- there's more we can do to summarize key news there, but like most papers, we can't go back to the day of running complete stock results.
Other comments on recent changes?