Update: I just spoke with Knox News Executive Editor Joel Christopher who advised me that earlier speculation was incorrect. Even though Gannett is eliminating Saturday print editions in most of its 130+ daily newspapers, that is NOT the case in Knoxville. Christopher said “absolutely not.” Knox News will remain at 7 days per week. I also got his email and cell phone number so I can check things in the future. I will.
In what Gannett execs euphemistically call “a new Saturday experience,” Gannet will stop printing Saturday newspapers in most markets. Dan Kennedy of Media Nation has the details here. The double-speak used in the memo is startling from folks at the top of the news-producing food chain. Here it is, straight from the pens of Larry, Curly and Moe:
As we kick off the new year energized with a keen focus on our North Stars, we are working collaboratively to enable our growth and further accelerate our digital strategy by evolving the print delivery experience.
To make bold progress toward our goal of 10 million digital subscribers requires that we embrace the multi-platform, connected experiences our audiences and customers expect. Our customer-obsessed approach will ensure we remain a vital part of the communities we serve across the country.
As more of our readers engage with our content online, we are introducing a new Saturday experience in 136 of our markets which transitions from delivering the Saturday print edition to providing exclusive access to the full Saturday e-Edition. Committing to our digital future ensures our resources are laser-focused on delivering unlimited access to the premium news, sports, events, and information our loyal subscribers value most. A number of markets will not be included in this transition based on specific market data. Details will be included by local managers in the coming weeks. In addition, we plan to introduce different delivery models in select markets to stimulate further learning and insights as we address the rapidly evolving digital landscape to provide our subscribers with the best experience.
We recognize the importance of Saturday for our advertising clients, and our advertising sales and service teams will be working closely with our customers to provide them with innovative, impactful digital and print options for their Saturday investment. These solutions include high impact and targeted digital display campaigns on our local websites, opportunities within our e-Editions, our industry-leading LOCALiQ digital marketing solutions, as well as alternative print advertising programs.
Our mission is unwavering: to empower communities to thrive by delivering impactful, trusted news coverage and best-in-class marketing solutions for our customers.
Thank you for being part of this team as we work together to serve our customers, execute our digital strategy, and prioritize community-focused journalism in the year (and years) ahead.
— Mayur, Maribel, Kevin & Bernie
Mayur Gupta, Chief Marketing & Strategy Officer
Maribel Perez Wadsworth, President/News at Gannett & Publisher/USA TODAY
Kevin Gentzel, Chief Revenue Officer
Bernie Szachara, President of U.S. Publishing
Sandra Clark is editor/CEO of Knox TN Today.