Why Newspapers Go Out of Business

Comrades, the other day a friend asked me why newspapers were folding. Off the top of my head I couldn’t answer him, so I decided to research it. The publishers say it’s because people are choosing instead to get their news online or from other free services… like the Maoist Rebel News! Which is rated number one in customer satisfaction and truth. So is the internet to blame for poor paper sales? No, that’s just a bunch of pro-market garbage.

In Europe, Japan and places like that, newspapers get most of their income from their subscribers. Second to that source of income are their advertisers. However in Canada and the US its the other way around. The advertisers are the main source of revenue.

Personally, to Marxists this is an automatic red flag. A newspaper is already admitting that what an advertiser wants is more important than what a subscriber wants. Of course being Marxists we already know this how pretty much everything works.

Newspapers are always searching for a bottom line just like any other business. And in order to keep up a larger and larger profit margin, they have to cut back on labour power. A newspaper can no more control the price of ink and paper than a manufacturer control the cost of steel and tools. This means the paper has to raise the rate of exploitation (making a single writer do more work) or cut a section all together.

The less coverage you have the less content you have. The less there is to actually read, the less people are going to read it. The less people read it, the lower your advertising revenue is going to be. With no revenue, you go bankrupt.

By telling your subscribers that advertising revenue is more important than the content in their paper or their value as a customer, you are telling them they are meaningless. You are basically telling them that you don’t care what they want to hear. You only care about what your sponsors what to hear.

I’m reminded of what Noam Chomsky once said:

“Well, once I asked another editor I know at the Boston Globe why their coverage of the Israel/Palestine conflict is so awful-and it is. He just laughed and said, ‘How many Arab advertisers do you think we have?’ That was the end of the conversation.”

And that’s why newspapers fail and I win. Because I can never go bankrupt broadcasting the news this way.

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