Two newspaper subscriptions

It’s been really sad to see how the quality of the Mercury News has deteriorated . . . from just a few years ago. All newspapers have taken a beating from competing media like the Internet. And somehow like all those Wall Street types who didn’t ‘see the current financial meltdown coming’, I didn’t expect that my local newspaper would become so crappy. So many good columnists gone. The quality control is terrible, there’s lots of typos.

I spent a really long time thinking seriously about canceling my Merc subscription, and getting the New York Times instead. (I don’t know why it was so hard for me to make a decision.) I finally started my NYT subscription a couple weeks ago, but I haven’t had the heart to cancel the Merc yet. Part of me doens’t want to miss out on the little bit of local news/items that’s useful. Part of me considers it a charitable subsidy for a for-profit. The optimist in me thinks maybe, just maybe, they’ll improve over time and be as good as they used to be! Plus Joe reads the sports section; NYT lacks coverage for California sports.

My recycling bin gets full much quicker with two daily papers. I find myself waking up earlier to have more time to read two newspapers. So I actually like the days I ride transit, it gives me time to really pore through cover to cover. I’m still seeing how this will work out. Maybe I’ll wean myself off the Merc and administer the coup de grace. . .

I need my daily news fix. I need to have a hard copy newspaper around. I just don’t like reading news online. I don’t watch TV news at all.

Having a full copy of the daily paper in my hand allows me to skim items of interest, and introduce me to things I wou’dn’t know to go look for in online sources. I’m rather old-fashioned and reactionary that way I guess.

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3 thoughts on “Two newspaper subscriptions

  1. If you cancel the Merc, here are some suggestions to get the fix:

    1. Work out with a neighbor to swap papers at the end of the day. Or,
    2. Drop by your local library to read the Merc if it is on the way to/fro work.
    3. Drop by your local cafe to read the Merc. (Best is if you can avoid ordering.)
    4. Pick it up from your workplace at the end of the day if a co-worker is done with his or her copy.

    I am in a similar situation: I subscribe to the International Herald Tribune (sister newspaper of NYT) because my local papers are pretty crappy. I am lucky that I can at least skim them over at the office, if not at the lobby of my apartment. Usually I spend no more than 2 minutes glancing both BKK Post and The Nation, making sure that I don’t miss the local gossips such as which hi-so with the skyscraper hairdo showed up at the Rotary party last night.

  2. I quite agree with you about wanting a hard copy newspaper around. I do enjoy reading on-line newspapers from around the world- it gives me a different perspective- but I MUST have one at least one real newspaper, preferably two ! Luckily, we have a good newspaper ( the Newark Star Ledger) which adequately covers both local and international events but I miss the N.Y. Times which I used to pick up on my way to work. I do read it online but it’s not the same.
    About typos in the newspaper… you are very kind to call them typos. They are really spelling errors and reflect poorly on the writer’s spelling ability and knowledge of English. Perhaps this is the result of an over-reliance on Spellcheck which is unable to distinguish between ” principle” and “principal” or “levy’ and ” levee”. Such errors can be excused in a blog or a news article but it ‘s surprising to note how few books are free of such errors.

  3. I also subscribe to Merc… it is indeed sad to see how its content shrinks both in size & quality. Like a lot of folks these days, I get most of my news from the web, but like you I also like to read the news in the morning the old fashion way…

    I read somewhere that Craigslist was blamed to be one of the big reason why newspapers nationwide are struggling. It siphons away much needed classified ads & job listings…

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