Deconstructing the Ann Arbor News

A new article from Jeff Jarvis on Deconstructing the Newspaper really hits the nail on the head for me. I’ve been constantly annoyed by the Ann Arbor News for trying to be a national newspaper, trying to be all things to all people. I want a local newspaper that covers local news. I get the New York Times, and between that and the web I get plenty of national news. I depend on the AAN to give me local election coverage, tell me about upcoming local issues, etc.

Unfortunately that requires wading through a bunch of crap every day. We discontinued daily delivery because it was so much paper to throw away I felt bad about it. So now I just get the Sunday paper. But that means I miss out on about half of their reporting.

I would really like to the Ann Arbor News switch to being a weekly paper, or maybe a twice-weekly paper. Give me a paper filled with all the content I need, and none that I don’t. Or just put it up on a website. I’d even pay a subscription fee for the web site if I had to.

Of course, it is pretty unlikely that a local newspaper in a small midwestern city is going to do anything particularly innovative. They seem to have ceded their web presence to MLive, which does a pretty terrible job themselves.

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