Los Angeles Times Backtracks on Removing TV Listings: Sometimes Making Media Noise Has an Effect

About a month ago I wrote a piece blasting the Los Angeles Times for continuing the newspaper's steady slide in providing services, ranging from its discontinuation of printing stock news and publishing a magazine to its petty February 16, 2013 announcement that starting February 26 it would no longer show the TV listings.

It may not have been earth shattering and some of my readers indicated they couldn't care less -- presumably because they weren't reading the Times or any other newspaper in the first place. But the issue resonated, and soon after subscribers received an email with a poll, wondering how we felt about the issue. True, they had offered a six-month free subscription to TV Weekly, but it was pretty evident that at the end of that time frame we would have to pay to have the convenience of a TV schedule at our fingertips, rather than running to our computer to see what was on the tube.

Plus, the schedules in the daily newspaper were always more up-to-date than the magazines, which lock in their information more than a week in advance.

That's the background and I'll keep it short. After HuffPost published my piece, I forwarded the article to the editors of the Times, one of whom privately sympathized to me in an email, "What can I say? It is to weep."

Then, in this past Sunday's Calendar much to my surprise, as I turned to the last page the TV listings were back with a "Note to Readers: Starting today, a TV grid and TV highlights will appear in Calendar seven days a week."

Maybe you can fight city hall -- or in this instance the city room!

Michael Russnow's website is www.ramproductionsinternational.com