Star Tribune

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MNdible
is great.
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby MNdible » February 7th, 2017, 2:19 pm

And the NYT is able to sell its product across the entire country, thereby reducing what it needs to charge to everybody to cover its fixed costs and increasing the value of the ads it sells.

If charging $2.50/week for the Strib increased subscribers by 60%, I'm sure that's a trade they would happily make. (Except that it would probably encourage further cannibalization of their more profitable print subscribers.)

grrdanko
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby grrdanko » February 7th, 2017, 2:24 pm

MNdible wrote:
February 7th, 2017, 2:00 pm
As has been pointed out above, there are ways to work around the paywalls and get the Strib for free, so this isn't really an exercise in getting the best price. If you're paying for it, it's because you value you it at some level. Perhaps $4 per week really is too much, and I'd tend to agree that there should be a more significant discount for digital only vs. paper + digital.

But there are almost certainly things that we all waste $1.50 a week on that are less important than local journalism.


If the Star Tribune cared about local reporting I'd be happy to pay for it. Their local stories are about as substantial as the local tv news.

VAStationDude
US Bank Plaza
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby VAStationDude » February 7th, 2017, 2:29 pm

Absolute nonsense. One recent example of excellent local reporting is overuse of solitary confinement by the Department of Corrections. As a direct result of that reporting an effort to limit the practice and eliminate it the mentality ill is underway at the Capitol.

EOst
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby EOst » February 7th, 2017, 2:32 pm

grrdanko wrote:
February 7th, 2017, 2:24 pm
If the Star Tribune cared about local reporting I'd be happy to pay for it. Their local stories are about as substantial as the local tv news.
I know where you're coming from, but you're basically saying "if the Strib could afford to hire enough reporters to cover local news in-depth, I'd pay for it." Which is kind of a catch-22, no?

grrdanko
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby grrdanko » February 7th, 2017, 2:56 pm

EOst wrote:
February 7th, 2017, 2:32 pm
grrdanko wrote:
February 7th, 2017, 2:24 pm
If the Star Tribune cared about local reporting I'd be happy to pay for it. Their local stories are about as substantial as the local tv news.
I know where you're coming from, but you're basically saying "if the Strib could afford to hire enough reporters to cover local news in-depth, I'd pay for it." Which is kind of a catch-22, no?
I guess it is, but I don't see them improving their local coverage. They started shrinking the local section many years ago. For a while they even got rid of it.

Didier
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby Didier » February 7th, 2017, 3:00 pm

I get the Sunday print + digital package. It's a very good newspaper, and comparatively very healthy among major metro daily newspapers. However, it really does fall short in the customer relations and circulation departments. A little effort on their end could go a long way.

twincitizen
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby twincitizen » February 7th, 2017, 3:15 pm

^That's all I'm sayin'!

I like the product. I want the product. But they need to get with the times when it comes to fair pricing, billing, etc. Charge a reasonable monthly rate (not weekly), knock it off with the "offer you can't refuse" to come back, and just charge a simple $10/month a la Netflix. Heck, I'll pay $99/year in advance for a whole year, a la Amazon Prime. That's gotta be worth something, no? The stories are already being written and the reporters are getting paid regardless if my eyeballs read the website. Take my money you dummies!

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Nick
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby Nick » February 7th, 2017, 5:05 pm


billhelm
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby billhelm » February 8th, 2017, 10:44 am

I'm a paying digital subscriber. FWIW:

Pros:
-e-edition is worthwhile for a scroll through the day's stories - (even if linking to it is difficult and generates a weird alternate link)
-no annoying paywall reminders (yeah, easily avoided but it's a pain and I was doing it often)
-Supports local journalism, in one of the few places left.
-they still do excellent investigative reporting and have a good base of reporters on the ground in the TC

Cons:
-Much of the content is re-purposed from AP/NYT/Wash Post ... available elsewhere and I already pay for both NYT and Post
-Website is sub par on desktop and gives me fits on mobile (switches to the unreadable desktop version quite often)
-Apps suck. Hard. better off using web based e-edition.
-Customer service which has been described elsewhere. good as long as you're not trying to cancel, I guess.
-Pricing - it's expensive for what it is. could reinvest some of that into a better product, which i'm guessing they don't project a ROI or they already would have done it.

David Greene
IDS Center
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby David Greene » February 8th, 2017, 3:35 pm

MNdible wrote:
February 7th, 2017, 2:00 pm
I'd tend to agree that there should be a more significant discount for digital only vs. paper + digital.
I'm not so sure. The cost of personnel (i.e. reporters, editors, staff) likely dwarfs the cost of printing.

David Greene
IDS Center
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby David Greene » February 8th, 2017, 3:41 pm

billhelm wrote:
February 8th, 2017, 10:44 am
I'm a paying digital subscriber. FWIW:
Me too and I basically agree with your analysis, except I think it's perfectly fine that national/world news is mostly copy from other agencies. The Strib made a decision several years ago to put more into local coverage and they have produced many excellent serial-form investigative pieces (solitary confinement as mentioned earlier, abused kids, reservation schools, etc.). I can't get good local/state coverage anywhere else.

Mostly I'm paying and not complaining about cost too much because we need good news sources, especially now.

billhelm
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby billhelm » February 9th, 2017, 9:41 am

David Greene wrote:
February 8th, 2017, 3:41 pm
billhelm wrote:
February 8th, 2017, 10:44 am
I'm a paying digital subscriber. FWIW:
Me too and I basically agree with your analysis, except I think it's perfectly fine that national/world news is mostly copy from other agencies. The Strib made a decision several years ago to put more into local coverage and they have produced many excellent serial-form investigative pieces (solitary confinement as mentioned earlier, abused kids, reservation schools, etc.). I can't get good local/state coverage anywhere else.

Mostly I'm paying and not complaining about cost too much because we need good news sources, especially now.
They occasionally use AP content for local stories which gets a little annoying. But otherwise, I'm find with the local focus and outsource the rest.

I'm right there with you - I hemmed and hawed over it but we need to keep local news sources running and I'll pay up.

xandrex
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby xandrex » February 9th, 2017, 9:45 am

MNdible wrote:
February 7th, 2017, 2:00 pm
Perhaps $4 per week really is too much, and I'd tend to agree that there should be a more significant discount for digital only vs. paper + digital.
It really would be great if they’d discount digital only. Alas, digital-only subscribers are far, far less valuable. Every person getting a cheap copy of the paper is another set of eyeballs they can charge advertisers for with larger circulation numbers. Print is still the moneymaker.

billhelm
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby billhelm » February 9th, 2017, 9:56 am

Like a lot of traditional media businesses, they're going to have a demographic problem (they probably already do - guessing most of their subs - print or digital - are 40+ at this point) for which the print business will not be sustainable eventually.

I don't blame them for not giving away the farm while they can still get paid, but it'd be nice to see them make more of an effort in the digital space if they're going to charge just as much for it.

xandrex
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby xandrex » February 9th, 2017, 10:08 am

The shift to digital will definitely have to happen. The problem is that consumers have never been willing to pay anywhere close to the real price of reporting the news. Most of the heavy lifting continues to be advertisers (they're the reason you can get a magazine subscription for like $10-20 a year), and they value print eyeballs over web impressions. There are a lot of factors that play into that: Ad blockers mean that about half of Americans don't see advertisements in the first place (there's not software to block print ads); the ads that are seen are often being viewed by bots that incur a cost to the advertiser without a benefit; polls continue to show print as a more "trustworthy" medium over the web.

Until advertisers shift their priorities to the web, we're going to continue to see a focus on legacy products like print.

Didier
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby Didier » February 9th, 2017, 3:44 pm

billhelm wrote:
February 9th, 2017, 9:41 am
I'm right there with you - I hemmed and hawed over it but we need to keep local news sources running and I'll pay up.
Just wanted to point out that this type of thinking is thankfully pretty common here, and we're all better for it!

John21
Union Depot
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby John21 » February 9th, 2017, 5:17 pm

I get the paper copy on the weekend. I thought about calling and cancelling but in the end I paid for many of the reasons others have said. Promotional pricing is the worst though and doesn't really make one feel like being too loyal of a customer.

jebr
Nicollet Mall
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Location: St. Paul (Hamline-Midway)

Re: Star Tribune

Postby jebr » February 15th, 2017, 7:55 pm

I'm hopeful that I'll be able to get a decent renewal deal at the State Fair this year. They seem to have the best renewal deals there (and as a print-only customer I was able to sign up for a new digital subscription for $29.99 for the year, and they threw in a cooler bag as well.)

I may drop the Strib for the Sunday print, though. I seem to have terrible luck with delivery (seems like once or twice a month my paper goes missing) and nothing seems to change. I may switch over to the PiPress for the Sunday print, even though I like the content less.

Didier
Capella Tower
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby Didier » February 15th, 2017, 10:28 pm

Just as a heads up, I'm pretty sure both papers are delivered by the same person now. At least that's the case in some places.

twincitizen
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Re: Star Tribune

Postby twincitizen » February 16th, 2017, 8:04 am

Here's a Groupon deal that is "not available yet" (but maybe on Presidents' Day?) but could be a major bargain at $20/year for new subs: https://www.groupon.com/deals/minneapol ... owContinue

Not exactly related to Strib, but there's also a great deal on Mpls-St.Paul Magazine at $10/year or $19 for 2 years: https://www.groupon.com/deals/mpls-st-paul-magazine-1


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