Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Crowsnest Pass Promoter publishes final edition

Final edition of the Crowsnest Pass Promoter hits news stands today
Christian Davis

The Wednesday August 28, 2013 issue of the Crowsnest Pass Promoter will be the last for the publication.  Sun Media Group Publisher Nancy Middleton announced the closure on Friday last week.  According to the Promoter's article about the closure, two full-time and one part-time position will be affected.  The Promoter had been sharing staff with the Pincher Creek Echo, which is also owned by Sun Media.

Editor Joni MacFarlane was the mainstay at the Promoter, editing the newspaper for about 6 years.  In an email she expressed sadness and a desire to remain optimistic about her own future. I worked part-time for MacFarlane and the Promoter (my full-time job was split between the Echo and the Promoter) prior to starting the Pincher Creek Voice, and know her to be a dedicated and highly qualified journalist.

 Sun Media is a subsidiary of Quebecor Media Inc.  Sun Media has had a hard time of it over the past few years.  Most recently, at least 12 Sun Media publications were closed in July 2013, with 360 layoffs announced at that time. Sun Media claimed that cut was  about 10% of its workforce.  In November of 2012 Sun Media cut 500 jobs and a number of community newspapers.  In December of 2008 Sun Media cut 600 jobs, at that time about 10% of its workforce.

A substantial number of upper level Sun Media executives have been fired, been bought out, or quit over the last year or so.  Many publishers have been dismissed, to be replaced by Group Publishers with ever growing portfolio.   Editors have often been rebranded and repurposed as  Managing Editors.

Former Quebecor President Pierre Karl Péladeau (PKP) stepped down "to devote more time to his young family and his charitable activities" before taking an unpaid job as Hydro-Quebec Chairman. Pierre Karl Péladeau inherited Quebecor from its founder, his father Pierre Péladeau, taking over as President in 1991.

Recently Sun Media was denied Mandatory Coverage for their cable news network "Sun TV" by the CRTC.  Mandatory Coverage would have meant that Sun TV would be carried as part of every basic cable package in Canada, guaranteeing it a source of revenue.  Sun TV lost approximately $17 million in 2012 and is projected to lose about $19.5 million in 2013.

Sun Media has repeatedly blamed much of their woes on the difficulties in adjusting to the ascension of the internet as the primary source for news over the last decade.  Print ad revenues have been steadily declining, and in the last two quarters that decline has accelerated considerably.

Related links/primary sources:
Sun Media to shutter 11 papers, cut 360 jobs (Globe and Mail)

1 comment:

  1. Good job here Chris in acknowledgement our much loved and respected Joni and your synopsis of Sun Media and print medias spiraling downfall in our new digital age.

    Have shared...

    Today's, Crowsnest Promoter's final edition


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