I received this postcard today. Needless to say, I was a mite irritated at the overall assumption that I should be thrilled to pay extra for local coverage in my local paper. So, I wrote to Customer Service:
I just received a postcard about the special "Sunday Premium Edition" of the Livingston Daily Press & Argus.
Apparently, I've "asked for more content relevant to my area" - and it's true I, personally, have grumbled often on social media and in conversation about the lack of actual local coverage, the increasing use of stock Gannett pieces, and the inclusion of USA Today articles and entire sections, as if USA Today was a paper that anyone actually reads outside waiting areas, airports or hotel rooms. But it's not like anyone from Gannett actually asked for my opinion.
My subscription - and it goes on to list what is currently included - will now "include an exclusive, special Sunday premium section on popular local topics four times per year." Except the subscription rate for this "premium edition" will be $1 each, and will be added to my bill. So, really, you are simply increasing my subscription rate to cover the occasional local content that I should be getting from my local paper every day. Right?
The detail that is lacking is whether I can opt out of this "premium edition" and how. Because until I see just what constitutes "popular local topics" - and whether anything remotely relevant, well-researched and decently written is included in what is likely just a new advertising-revenue stream and vehicle for extending the life of Gannett pieces from elsewhere - I may not want this "premium."
I know, I know. It's just $4/year. But you know what? If this rate increase had been simply that - a rate increase - I would have just shrugged my shoulders and thought "OK." But your postcard couched this rate increase as some kind of special deal, an opportunity to pay extra! for local content, a rate increase that will actually give me MORE news. You know, that local stuff. That should already be covered by the local paper.
I checked online and didn't see any information on how to manage my subscription for this upcoming "premium" - so if you could let me know what my options are, I'd really appreciate it.
I'll let you know what they say!