Let's start with the bad news: The American Society of Newspaper Editors has released its annual survey of U.S. newspaper newsroom staffing and found a 4.4 per cent decline in the year. That's the largest decline since it began the survey three decades ago and puts the U.S. newspaper editorial staffs back at 1984 levels.
Earlier, of course, the Newspaper Association of America pointed to dramatic revenue declines at the U.S. dailies in the year, so the staffing data should be of no surprise. While other countries are experiencing different stories, the growth of digital is clearly not enough at the moment for the U.S. papers to avert declines.
The good news: The Newspaper Association of America reported Monday that newspaper Web sites attracted record audiences in the first quarter of 2008. The 66.4 million unique visitors represents a 12.3 per cent increase over the same period a year earlier.