March 30, 2020

The Tampa Bay Times announced Monday that it would suspend print publication except for Sunday and Wednesday due to coronavirus-related business losses. The publication, which Poynter owns, will furlough some staff while print days are suspended.

In a story published to the Tampa Bay Times website, the Times said a growth in subscriptions has not been enough to overcome advertising losses stemming from the pandemic that are devastating the media industry. 

The company reported a surge in traffic to its website — tampabay.com — and growth in digital subscriptions over the last few weeks, but those gains are not strong enough to make up for advertising losses.

In a memo to staff, Times chairman and CEO Paul Tash outlined the advertising losses. 

At the Times, the pandemic sent advertising sales into a plunge. In just the last two weeks, cancellations have cost us more than $1 million, and there is no sign of quick recovery on the horizon. We must act now.

Poynter media business analyst Rick Edmonds spoke with Tash for a Q&A about the print reduction and furloughs.

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