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NYT vs. WSJ -- Champagne and Caviar, Anyone?

Today I begin a long break from my impression of a salmon swimming upstream, and expounding on the virtues of newspapers. I swear it would be easier to convince people that politicians really, truly do have their constituents' best interests in mind ...

So let's return to some good ol' blissful denial, and climb into the dark clouds that float above the crumbling newspaper kingdom. Let's visit a high-end war raging between two of the industry's biggest cats -- but only briefly because this battle really means nothing in the grand scheme of things, even if so many sophisticates are fawning over it, and lapping it up like it was a contentious polo match.

Two of the giants in the publishing industry are slugging it out headline for headline, and vying for spectacle-d eyes in the greater New York City area. Welcome to the "Battle of the Big Apple" my good ladies and gentlemen!

In one corner stands the old, liberally-minded, Byzantine Gray Lady -- The New York Times. In the other, a free-swinging challenger from more of a conservative background -- The Wall Street Journal.

The Journal came out with its long-awaited "Greater New York" print edition Monday, and predictably this entertaining news is making quite a splash in all the likely places. Caviar, anyone?

Continue reading "NYT vs. WSJ -- Champagne and Caviar, Anyone?" »

WSJ, Tiger Prepare for First Shots in Battles

We'll wrap up the week with a couple of updates on bits we imparted to you from across the crowded media galaxy ...

WSJ Takes Battle for NYT Readers Home

The Wall Street Journal has pointed yet another cannon at The New York Times in its looming battle for New York City readers.

On Wednesday we told you that Rupert Murdoch's newspaper had infiltrated the 450 Starbucks coffee shops in the greater New York area, long a high-end readership territory held solely by the Times.

Thanks to this report from Reuters we learned today that the WSJ plans to cut subscription prices in the area by as much as 80 percent to attract new readers, and better yet, Times readers.

Continue reading "WSJ, Tiger Prepare for First Shots in Battles" »

No Coffee Break in WSJ's Battle With NYT

The Wall Street Journal's newspaper war against The New York Times just went full-blown caffeinated.

According to a story in AdvertisingAge, Starbucks has struck a deal with Rupert Murdoch's print behemoth to allow the paper to be sold in 450 of its stores in the greater New York area, which includes portions of New Jersey and Connecticut.

This little shot of espresso comes only days after the WSJ announced it would be hiring beat reporters to cover the New York professional sports teams, and just weeks before the paper starts cranking out a New York edition.

We could not find any reaction from what has to be a shell-shocked Times' camp on this latest bit of maneuvering from General Murdoch's troops -- a salvo clearly aimed at capturing yet more of the Times' readership.

Ah, I love the smell of coffee in the morning ...

Continue reading "No Coffee Break in WSJ's Battle With NYT" »

Newspapers Eat Their Own in Bay Area

In "The Battle for Bay Area Readers," The New York Times has allegedly fired the latest significant shot.

The Times announced Friday that it has added 1,100 subscribers in the region since launching its San Francisco Bay Edition in September.

"Single-copy sales are up too," senior Times executive Jim Schachter said Thursday. "We're delighted at the reception we're getting from Bay Area readers for the pages that Felicity Barringer is editing, and for our Bay Area blog," he said.

The modest edition is actually an additional two pages each of Bay Area news running in the Friday and Sunday editions of the paper. Before the section hit the streets, The Times had 40,080 daily subscribers in the San Francisco-San Jose-Oakland market and 57,514 on Sundays.

Also looking to cash in on a region that houses notoriously favorable readership demographics, The Wall Street Journal launched its own Bay Area edition in November. Its edition also includes extra pages filled with area news and runs each Thursday.

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The Sporting Journal

Fulfilling Rupert Murdoch's pledge to make the Wall Street Journal a more general-interest paper to compete with the likes of the New York Times, on Tuesday unveiled a sports page, to be featured now daily in the Journal.


Previously, the Journal's sports coverage was limited to John Paul Newport's golf column in the weekend edition and a few sports stories in the Friday and weekend papers. Sports Editor Sam Walker said the new daily sports page won't be a place to find box scores. "We're not doing game coverage," he said. "These are stories that are idea-based with big themes."

The Journal's first sports center-piece story? Of course it came with a financial theme. It's a feature on why fewer NBA teams are capable of contending for the title this season, and what the economy has to do with it.