I have a suggestion -- go Web only.
Printing the newspaper on dead trees requires the cost of maintaining and staffing a printing press. Pixels are almost free. There are a few big papers -- the Christian Science Monitor -- who are already going this route (the CSM doesn't print a daily edition anymore, and sticks with pixels during the workweek).
It's not generating revenue, per se, but it is eliminating basically all of the costs associated with operating a newspaper -- printing press, circulation, classified ads, even management to coordinate all of those things. After start up costs for equipment, marketing, and site design, I think you could fund an entire local news operation for less than $200,000 a year, almost all of which would be salaries for reporters, visual media specialists, and an editor.
On Thu, Nov 20, 2008 at 9:52 AM, Erich Ditschman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I enjoyed your column today and agree that the loss of professional journalism is a threat to our democracy.
Do you have some suggestions on how our news services can make money so that they can stay in business?
Perhaps a silver lining is that we are saving some trees and polluting less rivers.
From: David Poulson <email@example.com>
Sent: Thursday, November 20, 2008 9:17:09 AM
Subject: E-M:/ Michigan Newspapers
I wrote this for LSJ: http://tinyurl.com/5rsdt5
I'm posting here because I believe that it has particular implications for environmental protection.
Knight Center for Environmental Journalism
Michigan State University
517 432 5417
Editor and owner