Friday, April 10, 2009

All talk: reader says Pruitt talks a great game about the Internet but has no plan to succeed

Reader Walt-in-Durham read Gary Pruitt's remarks to the NAA, and says Pruitt's talk about the digital age is all hype.

The CEO has been heard from, and he is the stupid cousin Warren Buffet warned about.

Like many CEOs who don't understand their business, he masters the jargon, but none of the substance. Frankly, the "we'll make it through and come out just fine" line does not cut it with me as an investor and I doubt it cuts it with those here who are employees or former employees of MNI. So far I have seen no plan from this man for making the transition to the digital future. I see plans for continued print. But, nothing to justify that. I see words that praise the internet. Yet no plan to profit from it. According to Pruitt, MNI had $200 million in internet revenues last year. Great. That is 10.5% of all revenues. What he fails to recognize or address is the canibalization of MNI's print service by offering the same thing for free online. He gives the customer no reason to buy the print version. That indicates a total lack of understanding of his business.

Why, Mr. Pruitt, should a customer buy the print edition of your paper when he can get the electronic edition for free? (And apparently wade through fewer ads?) Until someone can answer that simple question, your revenue struggles will continue. Advertisers know they can reach the target audience online. Readers, the target audience, are online. Your product is being left behind. Fix that problem and you will not be the stupid cousin. But right now, you sir are the stupid cousin and you are running the newspaper.


Well said. (Photo credit:


Anonymous said...

And if the Internet is his grand plan, why are we (Fort Worth) handing our best online people walking papers?

What sense does this make? This confirms Pruitt is clueless about the digital era and what it takes to be successful. Is it magic that is going to get our stuff online?

Our website SUCKS and its not our fault when we are given a design that DOES NOT WORK. We HAD great workers who got the job done, but Pruitts grand plan included letting them go.

Someone tell me what exactly is this business model?

Anonymous said...

If your going to put a paper online, will you not still need editors? Reporters? Some sort of advertising department people? Who's going to get convince advertisers that you paper is a great way to reach client?

With all the people being fired / released, who will be left to do the stories? The bosses secretary? Janitorial Staff? The crickets that are chirping in the hallways?


Anonymous said...

Anon 4:16 You are on to something.

Tiller boy and all the other useful idiot Marxists here, despite the same jargonesqe, and smug arguments, now due to massive attrition, they see your obvious and proper point.

Despite the palpable denial of bias, and ostracizing half their audience, CONTENT and STYLE have been glossed over, until now.

But with the layoffs of quality people, the CONTENT and STYLE of on-line or paper versions is now as laughable as their bias.

Now for two very palpable reasons, NO ONE READS THEM or is willing to pay 50% more for CRAP content.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if MNI stock has breached idiots $5 firewall?

I want to short MNI stock.

Oh, it’s .50 cent? Nevermind

Anonymous said...

Maybe they can bring lokeman out of reitrement to help their cause?

Anonymous said...

Journalists that take pride in their work cannot be happy with the decline they see at McClatchy. It must be frustrating to be in a struggle to save your job while CEO Pruitt decides if the Rolling Stones or Bob Dylan has the best lyrics for his next speech.

Anonymous said...

5:15 AM "Janitorial Staff?" ... He got rid of them too! Look to India for the latest breaking local news!
N.A.T.O. No Action, Talk Only

Anonymous said...

MNI employees song for Pruitt

♫ Ship Of Fools ♫
Grateful Dead

Went to see the captain, strangest I could find
Laid my proposition down, laid it on the line
I won't slave for beggar's pay, likewise gold and jewels
But I would slave to learn the way to sink your ship of fools

Ship of fools on a cruel sea
Ship of fools sail away from me
It was later than I thought when I first believed you
But now I cannot share your laughter, ship of fools

Saw your first ship sink and drown from rocking of the boat
And all that could not sink or swim were just left there to float
I won't leave you drifting down but whoa it makes me wild
With thirty years upon my head to have you call me child