Times-Standard Paradox

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Times-Standard bids farewell to Southern Humboldt with one last laughably sanctimonious editorial

All ye rural residents of Humboldt County, know this: The Times-Standard cares about you. A lot.

No, really!!

That’s why the county’s only local daily newspaper has taken up your cause against those rat bastards from the Postal Service who want to close a handful of your small rural post offices.

Have a look at this impassioned editorial from Saturday’s paper:

These closures are about more than just numbers. The people in the communities of Korbel, Blocksburg, Honeydew, Kneeland, Weott, Phillipsville, Redcrest and Samoa depend on their post offices for more than just mail. They serve as community centers, places to share news and keep in touch. Most of these residents don’t have the option of home delivery. This is their only landline to the outside world, and the mail there brings more than letters and bills — it brings needed supplies. They simply depend on the post office in ways those of us who live in more urban areas do not.

So maybe the Times-Standard is just trying to help by ensuring that in Blocksburg, Honeydew, Weott, Phillipsville, Redcrest and many, many other communities there will be quite a bit less news to share–because the T-S is discontinuing delivery to all of Southern Humboldt effective August 31. So much for landlines to the outside world!

The editorial notes that if the post office in Honeydew is closed, the nearest post office would be 15 miles away in Petrolia. By comparison, after the Times-Standard ends delivery, Honeydew residents would have to travel two or three times that distance to get to the nearest news box.

Not that anyone would. It is, after all, the Times-Standard.

But really. Mediocrity is no excuse for hypocrisy.

Not that the Times-Standard has ever needed an excuse for that before.

Times-Standard provides one more reason to stop reading it

As part of its strategic plan to reduce costs by downsizing itself into oblivion, the Times-Standard announced a new price structure that requires separate payments for print and online subscriptions.

The announcement was accompanied by a polished ad campaign that showed a photo of a bustling newsroom, beneath which read, “More money, more suck. Promise.”

The new pricing scheme appears to have confused some readers, who wonder why, if they already have a print subscription, they will be billed again to read the same news online. As commenter A Guy said on the North Coast Journal blog,

They’ve already collected the news, written it up, and not had it copy edited or spell checked, so where’s the additional cost?

Netflix outraged thousands of people several weeks ago when it announced separate subscription rates for DVD and digital delivery. Times-Standard Publisher Dave Kuta noted that the two price models are similar, “except Netflix isn’t crap.”

Kuta added, “Increasingly businesses are recognizing that digital content can demand a premium. They’re learning that there’s stuff on the Internet worth paying for. Not our stuff, obviously, but someone’s.”

To make stories even less comprehensible, Times-Standard tries using bylines as headlines

WTF?

State budget cuts force Sheriff to house inmates in fire engines

Or maybe Media News Group budget cuts force Times-Standard to use just whatever the hell photo happens to be handy. Either way.

Remember what Chekhov said about guns? Yeah. The same principle likely applies to big-ass photos of fire engines in stories about correctional facilities.

No thanks necessary–we’re just here to help.

Times-Standard uncharacteristically stoic about latest environmental threat

A fish 36 feet long? This thing's got dioxin written all over it.

Times-Standard lets people spend money to look unimaginative in print

We know it would seem like C is the logical choice--honest, direct, sincere--but guys, trust us on this one. Save that extra dollar and choose something stupid instead.