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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, June 09, 2008

Morning Call Considers More Cuts

"Page and staff reductions are under consideration at The Morning Call, said Timothy R. Kennedy, publisher, president and chief executive officer. But he said it's too soon to talk about specific changes."

Perhaps more people will buy the paper if the product is improved, instead of watered down to the point where it's mostly a collection of ads.


A.J.C. said...

Perhaps they could just eliminate their reader forums.

Anonymous said...

they're already quite thin at the forum monitoring desk. might we expect decreased monitoring and increased hatred that drives website visits and increases ad revenue? it seems to be part of their new business model.

Anonymous said...

I would hate to see ANYONE lose their jobs but maybe The Mcall would consider hiring writers from the local blogging community. I truly believe the writing and investigative reporting is comparable, if not BETTER than what the Mcall offers.

Alfonso Todd

A.J.C. said...

I don't want to see anyone lose a job either, but at the same time, I don't want to see those same reporters and writers that are keeping their jobs continue to BS the public by writing and publishing erroneous, bias and hateful pieces.

Anonymous said...

Retired ASD teacher here.

The only way The Morning Call will survive as a paid-for, print edition will be by becoming a document that includes information that can't be found anywhere else.

It needs to adopt a more local, caring, and helpful presentation.

All of the current reprints of news wire items are readily available elsewhere for free, sooner, and with more bells and whistles.

The Morning Call needs to back away from its obvious political bias and "news-engineering." Today's readers see right through that, and like me, are often insulted.

Deliver to my door, coverage I can't get any other way, and make sure what you deliver can be trusted, not pre-washed.

Clean-up that damn Forum from all the racist posts that still flourish. Remove all the libelous personal attacks (that appear on your site with names of real people) that, right now, attempt to smear the personal affairs of Sam Bennett and several members of the Allentown Police Department. You can remove such garbage within a reasonable amount of time by utilizing 1-2 employees.

Give me local stories. Whenever you print, say, the Mayor of Cleveland said something stupid, I've already heard it, and seen video. Keep that kind of component minimal.

Give me interesting features I WON'T get elsewhere. I no longer need you, Morning Call, to tell me what's going on in Iraq.

Give me a straight scoop, NOT your scoop. Do not endorse candidates on my behalf. I don't need your help with that.

The past fews issues have included minimal editorial contact, mostly ads, and larger than usual photos. It's as if there are only 3 reporters left in your building.

I really don't want to lose my morning paper, enjoy hard copy in my hands with coffee, but if necessary, I'll go with a mail subscription from someone else.

The current Morning Call is the worst product I've seen over more than half a century.

Knuckle Down!

Joe Hilliard said...

There is so much opportunity to local investigative reporting.

Yet, the wave the public relations flags that everything is great....

Newspapers are supposed to demand better government and inform the citizens of the truth. Not to be P.R. for the establishment.

Anonymous said...

Retired ASD, with the exception of the "investigative reporting" angle, you very accurately described the "East Penn Press" and all the other Presses. They do a nice job covering the local stuff.

Should they try to fill the gap that the MC so obviously ignores?

Anonymous said...

Retired ASD teacher here.

For two years now, I also subscribed to The Bethlehem Express. It's only a weekly, but I look forward to it EVERY week. It gives me news I can't get anywhere else. It reports in detail what's happening, where it matters most to me. It gives me local information I can actually act upon.

The East Penn Press and others like that provide the same thing, I'm sure.

If I am being asked to pay for something, first make it something I can believe in, then something I don't think I can get any other way.

The Bethlehem Press, East Penn Press, and others DO give their own opinion now and then, BUT, it doesn't come across as being their only reason for existence.

Bill said...

I think Retired ASD teacher has the correct recipe for how to "save" a local paper.

Also, it is a bit humorous to me that a story on this in the paper last week indicated that they were evaluating reporters by the amount of work that they produced.

Based on that criteria, they could end up terminating a reporter that puts out good quality, lower volume work and keep reporters who put out high volumes of not so good work.

Not a great way to "save" the paper!

michael molovinsky said...

perhaps they should just go with their editorial disposition and just print press releases from city hall(allentown) and eliminate the middleman(reporter)

Anonymous said...

Someone please tell me what I am missing by not reading the Morning Call.

Scott Armstrong

Anonymous said...

Not a thing Scott...I read 3 papers / day incl. the Morning Call. I don't spend more than 10mins on the Call, and sometimes much less than that.

Anonymous said...

Maybe a first step would be to actually deliver the damn thing.

I quit subscribing after I called five times one Sunday because the paper wasn't there. Each time, I was assured that it would be there in ten minutes. ((This was by someone who, based on the echo and static, sounded like they were in a cave in Afghanistan, except the accent wasn't right.)

It never showed.

Also, I prefer Saturday and Sunday delivery. They forced me to Wed-Fri plus Sunday.

They can keep their stinkin' paper and read it themselves.

Mrs. Dottie said...

The new format is just more full page ads, bigger pictures, less news. It takes me 5-10 minutes now to read the paper. And they moved the weather icon to the other side of the front page which really drives me crazy.

Bill Villa said...

The Morning Call, its subscribers, and advertisers, in my opinion, would be better off with these individuals "right-sized" out the door ..

Tim Kennedy, Publisher & President
Ardith Hilliard, VP, Editor
Dave Erdman, Managing Editor,
Glenn Kranzley, VP, Opinion Pages
Eric Chiles, Opinion Writer
Mike Miorelli, Asst. Managing Editor, Editorial
David Venditta, Assistant Metro Editor
Jack Tobias, Assistant Metro Editor
Paul Carpenter, Columnist
Bill White, Columnist
Debbie Garlicki, Reporter
Stephen Budihas, VP Human Resources
Liza Mattison, NIE Supervisor
Sharon Repsher, Billings & Collections Manager

Anonymous said...

You missed Ratt Assad on your list.

Bill Villa said...

"You missed Ratt Assad on your list."

I'm sure my list isn't all-inclusive re: Morning Call staffers who deserve to get the boot. I've listed those I'm positive about via personal experience. I wrestled with including or not including others, such as MC Investigations Editor Tim Darragh. Even though Darragh underachieves, in my opinion, by focusing his investigative efforts seemingly exclusively on "PA Puppy Mills" (for which he has won a PA Newspaper Award), my gut tells me (the result of several lengthy phone conversations with Tim) that he knows how to be a good newspaper man, has been one most of his career until lately, but that his bosses have brainwashed him into grudgingly accepting that there's 'no market for integrity' in the newspaper business anymore.

When I caught DA Jim Martin fixing a DUI homicide case the night before a trial in September 2007, I took my findings to Tim Darragh. Tim told me I was raising 'excellent questions that deserve to be answered' regarding this case. He told me he would take my findings to his bosses, Mike Miorelli and Dave Erdman. Miorelli and Erdman killed it. And not because they were able to refute or disprove what I was claiming-- they never even investigated it. In subsequent phone calls to Tim Darragh asking why TMC was not moving on the story, I could sense the agony Tim was experiencing-- integrity and a good newspaper man's instincts pulling him in one direction ... while his need to simply keep his job pulled him in another direction, and off the story.

But to your point, yes, I'm sure I've missed (on my list) Morning Call staffers who should go.

What's your list look like?