Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The New Roanoke Times Coming Soon

The Roanoke Times in the fading light of day>

The Roanoke Times this week adjusted to its economic bottom dropping like a watermelon out of a fifth-story window by freezing salaries and telling workers they’ll need to take off five unpaid days in the next few months. Now comes word (from inside the building) that a major remake of the Monday-Saturday paper is next. It will debut Feb. 9 and the design is still being worked on.

Highlights include:

* National/international, Virginia, community, business, obituaries and editorial will now be included in one section and stories—except for those on Page 1—will generally be contained on a single page under their headings. Each section will have its own page label and individual story topics will have their labels, as well.

* Each of these sections will contain news in brief, rounding up day's events. Sections will have color labels inside the big section (much as Valley Business FRONT labels its special sections).

* The editorial page will be a single page Tuesday, Friday and Saturday. The lottery report will be in Virginia’s briefs and the weather map moves to Page A-2.

There's also a persistent rumor that The Times is considering not publishing one day a week, probably Monday, when the paper is generally small and, frankly, rarely profitable in the best of times.

Sounds like a heavy slathering of lipstick on this thinning pig.


  1. This looks like a pretty good reason to stop our subscription. We already have to take turns with the Front and Virginia sections at lunch in our office, but with four us waiting in line it might not happen. Oh, wait, if the editorials and letters (major source of amusement, rage and commentary) are reduced to two weekdays, the four of us should be able to read the entire paper well within our lunch hour. With time to spare.

  2. One of the main reasons this paper is going down the tubes is because it is a liberal rag. The other is the bane of all print media, it is called the internet...G