Sun-Times closing 12 yr old, 100 million printing plant

Submitted by Jeff Buster on Thu, 07/21/2011 - 09:05.

 The Chicago Tribune reports that their unionized printing press will close this fall.   

400 union workers will be out of work.

Next question: will the plant be dismantled and sold elsewhere? or has the internet made this very new (12 years old) plant obsolete - scrap?

Is the closing the result of decreasing demand for print media or a means of removing the union?   Probably both.

Are people reading less, demanding less thoughtful news, concentrating on video games instead of newspapers? Or is the internet actually providing a close (or better) substitute for commercial ad supported corporate print news?

Certainly internet news sources - like Realneo -  can operate at costs far, far below 1 percent of what it costs to operate print media. With about a million + page views annually the hard costs (server, urls, etc) of providing a single page view on Realneo is about .05 cents (5 mills).   If the page views double - the hard costs will stay the same.   With print media, doubling the reads will double the costs because twice as many pages will need to be printed.    

Since the soft costs - labor - are all volunteer on realneo - the comparison with a commercial news organization is not apples to apples.

Watch more print media shutter.

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