Progress to Charge a Thanksgiving Premium

Rick Sincere shares some odd news from the Progress: the daily paper has informed subscribers that they’ll be charged more for the Thanksgiving edition of the paper. In an e-mail to subscribers, publisher Lawrence McConnell says that because “it is loaded with information you can use and valuable advertising” it is “one of the most expensive to produce and difficult to distribute,” so they “will charge a premium rate of $2.50 for the Thanksgiving Day newspaper.” Subscribers will find their subscription is somewhat shorter as a result of the unexpected charge. As Rick points out, the only thing that makes the Thanksgiving installment so hefty is that it’s stuffed full of a stunning amount of advertising circulars, advertisements that the Progress charges advertisers a handsome rate to include in the newspaper.

For reference, a Daily Progress subscription will run you $9.32/month for a Monday–Saturday subscription, or 35¢ per non-Sunday issue. (A 7-day subscription runs $17.40/month, meaning that each Sunday issue costs $2.02.)

8 Responses to “Progress to Charge a Thanksgiving Premium”


  • One thought advertisers paid for advertising.

  • If I were still a DP subscriber, I’d ask them to not deliver the Thanksgiving edition and to credit my account the $2.50

  • The worst thing is, the vast bulk of that day’s newspaper will go straight into the recycling bin. The eight or twelve pages that actually contain news are the only parts that will be kept for reading.

  • Not a fine manner in which to go redefining “legacy” within “legacy media.”

  • It’s not that uncommon. In 2009 a third of all newspapers were already doing it, including the Washington Post, and the whole Tribune and Scripps chains. http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aj9lo8Bp2AQo
    I’d never heard of it, I guess I don’t get out of podunk much.

    Fine with me, giveaways are what almost killed newspapers. People got the idea the paper had no value, and the #1 reason people gave for ending subs was that it was free online. That horse is out of the barn, and now people expect actual journalism for free. So the fixes won’t be pretty.

    The NYT and other big papers led the way in the relentless drive for clicks above any other metric. So now you have lightweight celeb-etc. taking up a good chunk of the home pages of most news sites, and the more newsy stories are driven by popularity as well. No matter that people *click* on the ice cream (I do), but in the long run they want the real potatoes, or they don’t trust the brand. Let’s hope. At one point some newspapers held out on putting the whole thing online for free, but in a second wave they too gave in (Times-Picayune, Le Monde). The WSJ is the only big one I know that never went that route, though I think a few in Asia did as well.

    Here in Cville the TV sites are almost as good as the Progress, that’s what it’s come to, and those will never charge.

  • This is outrageous. Charging more basically for more ads is bad enough, but changing the terms of a subscription that’s already been paid for is beyond the pale. It ought to be illegal.

  • It’s not that uncommon. In 2009 a third of all newspapers were already doing it, including the Washington Post, and the whole Tribune and Scripps chains.

    That’s really interesting—I had no idea. There’s even one example in that article of a paper (the Kansas City Star) charging subscribers more, rather than just increasing the newsstand price.

    Charging more basically for more ads is bad enough, but changing the terms of a subscription that’s already been paid for is beyond the pale.

    Yeah, that’s the bit that doesn’t sit well with me. If the Progress wants to increase the price on the newsstand, I get that. If they want to increase the price in advance, so that subscribers know what they’re getting into, I get that. But subscribers had paid for a month’s subscription, and now they’re not getting one. I’m not a subscriber, so I can’t pretend to speak for them, but if I were a subscriber, I’d be unhappy.

  • Curiously, this is the only edition of the DP that any of my daughter in laws actually buy, for the ads.

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