Two Big Reasons Why Saturday Sun Numbers Are Way Down

An anonymous source passed on some shocking information to Toronto Sun Family blogger John Cosway which he posted today.  The unnamed informant revealed that the tabloid newspaper is in deep trouble.  Daily readership is down 33%.  This means that the paper has lost a third of its readership during the Monday to Friday publishing period over the last year (1,325,000 in 2006 to 875,000 today).  Sunday Sun readership is down 14% (1,029,000 in 2006 to 893,000 today).
But the biggest drop involves The Saturday Sun.  Cosway’s source says that readership is down a staggering 47% since last year (1,268,000 in 2006 to 672,000 today).  All of these cited statistics are from the recent 2007 Print Measurement Bureau study, which shouldn’t be confused with sales circulation.  According to Cosway, “PMB survey numbers reflect exposure to the tabloid (the number of people who share a Sun at home, work, eateries, libraries[,] etc.)…”.
Now we know why The Sun hasn’t publicized these findings.  There was simply no positive way to spin the figures.  Cosway had noted recently that the latest statistics were missing in the actual newspaper.  (They’re usually seen in the upper right hand corner of the Editorial Page.)
It shouldn’t be a surprise why this has happened.  Talented, credible writers have been shown the door in the most classless of manners while the least inspired pundits can’t get fired under any circumstances.
There are two big reasons why readers are abandoning The Saturday Sun in droves:  Michael Coren and Salim Mansur.
Mansur is a conservative Muslim professor who championed the Iraq occupation, which is now globally hated and has been going horribly wrong for quite some time.  He stubbornly hasn’t changed his mind about it, either.  Despite evidence to the contrary, he questioned Senator John Kerry’s war record, a deplorable tactic used by numerous right-wingers.  Lately, he’s been harping on Al Gore and global warming.  Like Lorrie Goldstein (who at least apologized for supporting that invasion), Mansur disagrees with 77% of Canada who believe this is a real threat to the health of not only humanity but the planet itself.  (This past Saturday, a reader took him to task for one such column.  It’s the third letter.)
As for Coren, he’s in a class all by himself.  Where do I begin with this disgraceful writer?  He thinks homosexuality is unnatural, despite the scientific evidence that it’s not.  He’s against gay marriage and gay people adopting children.  (There’s never been a persuasive argument against either of those ideas.)  He’s been critical of Howard Stern even though he owes his entire radio and TV career to the American broadcaster.  (Like Stern, he thrives on being outrageous.  Unlike Stern, he’s neither funny nor particularly intelligent.)  While he did publicly oppose the Iraq invasion (but didn’t hammer the Bush Administration on a regular basis like the astute and couragous Eric Margolis), on one occasion he compared it to the American Civil War.  (Yeah, I didn’t get the connection, either.)
He thinks Iran’s nuclear facilities should be bombed (even though there’s no conclusive evidence they’re breaking any international laws).  He believes religion is the answer to everything, most especially fundamentalism.   He thinks atheism is a religion.  He doesn’t think women should be allowed to enter the priesthood or work while they’re raising babies.  He whines publicly when he’s not on CBC enough (even though, he’s been on there plenty of times).  He complains incessantly about the lack of respect he receives and that he’s been subjected to censorship campaigns despite the fact he’s written many books, writes columns for Sun Media and The National Post, has his radio show back on CFRB in Toronto (he’s been on and off that station for years), is available for public speaking engagements and continues to broadcast his evening call-in show (essentially, the radio show in a TV studio) live on CTS in Burlington. 
On November 13th, 2004, a letter written by a reader and sent to The Toronto Sun editor was published.  His feelings about Michael Coren were summed up nicely in one sentence:
“Mr. Coren remains preachy, obnoxious, uptight, hypocritical, childish, heartless, stubborn, witless, talentless and tedious.”
Who was that reader?  Me.  It was one of many I sent into the paper in the last decade until Coren became too much to take.  I suspect many readers got tired of his continual nonsense, as well.
When two of your Saturday columnists are two of the most clueless and discredited pundits working in Canada today, is it any wonder that you’ve lost half your readership in a single year?
Dennis Earl
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Monday, April 2, 2007
5:01 p.m.
Published in: on April 2, 2007 at 5:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

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