Since the Times-News announced that Saturday print editions will end effective March 5, I’ve heard from dozens of readers, many with the same two questions:
- What will happen with House to Home, the long-running guide to Erie-area real estate that now publishes on Saturdays?
- Can the Sports on TV schedule for Saturdays be included in Friday’s print editions?
Related:The Erie Times-News will move to digital distribution on Saturdays starting March 5
House to Home absolutely will continue, moving to Friday print publication effective March 4. And we learned days ago that Saturday’s sports broadcast schedules can in fact be prepared and delivered to our designers early enough to publish Friday.
Those decisions result from a bigger one announced four weeks ago: The Times-News will cease home delivery on Saturdays and instead will provide a full digital replica of the newspaper that day. The new model means subscribers will get newspapers delivered to their homes six days a week, with a new digital edition available every day.
The Times-News is part of the USA TODAY Network, and the change also is taking place at numerous other publications in the national network.
Why now? Computers have been as commonplace in homes as microwaves or refrigerators for the past three decades, and phones and tablets have been attached to our hands for more than a decade. GoErie.com, the Times-News website, was launched more than 25 years ago and our mobile apps and social media pages have been available for years. The way many people get information isn’t changing, it long ago changed.
Erie long has been a strong print readership market, and the Times-News is the largest of the 14 USA TODAY Network publications in Pennsylvania. Print remains a central part of what we do and offer. But subscriber and advertising trends lead us to new strategies, such as a website a quarter-century ago, and now a shift to Saturday e-edition publication.
It’s a good time to revisit exactly what your a print subscription provides beyond print: an all-access pass to every product and service we produce. All you need to do to access it is provide an email address in one place online to sync your existing account to all of your other rights.
The e-edition, for example, is a digital replica of the print newspaper — it looks just like it. Click to read a page, an article, a headline, a photo caption, an ad. You can save, share and highlight items of interest , as well as change type size and otherwise customize your experience. You can generate an automated email notification when articles about topics of interest to you are published. The e-edition is the No. 1 product that people who tell us they only want the print newspaper later tell us they love.
The e-edition is easy to access as well. A new edition loads automatically every day in the mobile app and also at https://erietimes-pa.newsmemory.com, which you can bookmark. A link also is delivered daily with the 6 am newsletter; just click and you’ll be delivered to the most recent e-edition. Sign up for the Daily Briefing and breaking news alerts at www.goerie.com/newsletters.
If you have a mobile phone, you have access to the surest way to experience the e-edition and the latest news. Just download the app for your iOS or Android device and the log-in you’ll have set up for the e-edition will give you access. If you’re on the news app, you also get five other USA TODAY Network sites of your choice and do not have to leave the GoErie app to read them. Whether on the app or on the website, www.GoErie.com, you can view videos, photo galleries, online-only stories, databases and more that do not and cannot appear in print.
Visitors to GoErie.com will find scores, standings, schedules and statistics for many high school spectator sports on the TeamPlayer page.
If you enjoy comics or puzzles, we offer more online that what is available in print — and our puzzle offerings have grown in the past month with the availability of the USA Today Crossword, ad-free and included in a Times-News subscription.
Our digital resources also include social media. With 221,000 followers, the Times-News Facebook page is by far the most popular among northwestern Pennsylvania news page visitors. On Twitter, our missionaries share their work and insights on their own accounts and the @GoErie, @GoErieSports and other handles. And our Instagram, @GoEriecom, is at nearly 17,000 followers and growing rapidly as we spend more time there.
Finally, back to the e-edition: We offer subscribers daily access to USA Today and regular special sections, and in the past couple weeks have opened access to the e-edition for every USA TODAY Network property’s e-edition. If you have relatives, previously have lived in or have an interest in Detroit, or Indianapolis, or many Florida cities, or hundreds of other places around the country, you’re able to read the most recent 30 days of their local newspaper’s e- editions at no additional cost.
There’s immense unapped value in a subscription to the Times-News, which has been locally staffed since 1888. News and sales staffing will not change as a result of the Saturday shift. In fact, Erie’s news staff grew in January with the arrival of news director Melissa Lee and visual journalist Benjamin Chambers. And your longtime and future support means local journalism can continue to evolve and thrive in northwestern Pennsylvania, telling stories you can’t find elsewhere, asking questions that you want answered and putting first the community we all call home.
Matt Martin is the executive editor of the Erie Times-News and the USA Today Network’s Western Pennsylvania Region. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.