Alberta Politics
Postmedia wants to deliver parcels to your doorstep – skilled Postmedia delivery technicians may not appear exactly as illustrated (Photo: East Carolina University).

State of the Media: Postmedia, looking for a future, post media as it were, wants to deliver your parcels!

Posted on May 21, 2021, 1:54 am
6 mins

Let’s give ourselves some respite from the horror of living in Alberta under Jason Kenney and his United Conspiracy Party.

Instead, here’s an inspiring, upbeat story about an old business we all thought was on its last legs that is thinking outside the box about how to grab the low-hanging fruit by pro-actively finding new opportunities to add value through identifying exciting synergies! (Quit with the meaningless business bromides, already! — Ed.) 

Postmedia President and CEO Andrew MacLeod (Photo: Postmedia).

Not the fossil fuel industry, I’m afraid. Sorry to get your hopes up, Alberta.

No, I give you … a drumroll would be appropriate … Postmedia’s new parcel service. 

Yes! Toronto-based Postmedia Network Inc., owner of the moribund Calgary Sun-Herald and similarly moribund Edmonton Sun-Journal and serial killer of Canadian community newspapers, announced yesterday it is building a national network to deliver small parcels! 

The new Postmedia division will soon start hauling and delivering small parcels in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and, best of all, here in Alberta!

“At Postmedia we have a long, proud history of delivering to homes in communities across our country,” Postmedia President and CEO Andrew MacLeod said in the press release, which was apparently written by someone wearing a straight face. 

“Extending our offerings and trusted relationships in the communities we already serve, through this new partnership, aligns to our corporate strategy,” Mr. MacLeod said. (I’m not making this up – but, seriously Ed., doesn’t this justify using the word “synergies”?)

Mr. MacLeod did not say if Postmedia’s deliveries will be folded and tossed somewhere in the general area of your doorstep by a kid on a bicycle, possibly left in the rain, or if the fading formerly dominant English-language newspaper chain will just pack the stuff up in multiple giant cardboard boxes the way Amazon does nowadays. 

Is this the Toronto Star news desk? (Photo: Best Western, Las Vegas).

If it is the former – which, if I may be so bold, Ed., would be an example of literally thinking outside the box – you can call Circulation and wait for the elevator music to calm you down before you get to complain.

If it is the latter, though, it seems likely one of the many established players in this already crowded market will squash them like a bug. However, the deal involves a partnership with New Brunswick’s vertically integrated Irving Family, so who knows what kind of corporate black magic they’ll bring to the deal. 

Another former media giant looking for new synergies after falling on hard times is Toronto-based Torstar Corp.

Torstar recently announced plans to open an online casino on the grounds that – and I’m not making this up either – “as an Ontario-based media business and trusted brand for more than 128 years, we believe Torstar will provide a unique and responsible gaming brand that creates new jobs, offers growth for the Ontario economy, and generates new tax revenue to help support important programs in our province.

The $64,000 Question in Torstar’s case is: Can Canadian newspaper executives lose money running a casino? The answer is: Yes, they probably can. 

Back in 2019, Torstar and Postmedia reached a deal to swap 41 community newspapers and then immediately closed down 36 of them, thereby dividing Canada up into newspaper advertising competition-free zones, or so they apparently thought.

My guess is that yesterday’s announcement by Postmedia, like the one by Torstar in March, is a sign of just how well their journalism-killing deal in 2019 is working out. 

Both companies would now like some of your federal tax dollars to support their flagging efforts at practising journalism, as well as chances to sniff out new excuses to keep the lights on long enough for a few more executive bonuses.

Meanwhile, some clever boots in Victoria, B.C., has figured out a way to compete with (corporate) people like Postmedia and Torstar and says he’ll be doing it in 50 communities across Canada by 2023. 

Quite a few of those communities, presumably, won’t have a lot of time for Postmedia because it’s just closed down their local rag and laid off its employees. Now, if Ottawa would consider closing down the Post Office, Postmedia must be thinking, there might be some business for their parcel service anyway.

Or if it just drops the requirement that buyers sign for the cannabis deliveries, there could be gold in those small packages. Green gold. 

Expect Postmedia editorials on these topics soon. 

14 Comments to: State of the Media: Postmedia, looking for a future, post media as it were, wants to deliver your parcels!

  1. Anonymous

    May 21st, 2021

    Postmedia is a joke. They still cater to the Conservatives, no matter how much they would try to make people believe otherwise. The question also remains. What were Postmedia’s ties to the UCP’s election win, under very controversial means, in 2019? What role did they play here, as their major newspapers had full cover ads with the premier of Alberta on them? Rosa Ambrose was one thing that also stuck out. I wouldn’t doubt it that Postmedia will have involvement in trying to convince Albertans to vote for the UCP in 2023.

    Reply
  2. Derek

    May 21st, 2021

    I wonder if the newspaper will be the wrapping for packages.

    Reply
    • tom in Ontario

      May 21st, 2021

      My Postmedia morning paper is excellent for wrapping fish. If it can wrap packages as successfully as the fish, they may be onto something.

      Reply
  3. Abs

    May 21st, 2021

    April 1 happens every day in 2021. There is no need for any of the other days.

    Reply
  4. David

    May 21st, 2021

    Is Torstar’s casino going to be for real money gambling or is it one of the ‘can’t win real money sites that just want your email address to sell you more ads?

    Reply
  5. Dave

    May 21st, 2021

    Well, perhaps they do delivery better than news coverage these days, although I am not so sure about that.

    I think this is a sign and not a good one for the Post Mortal Media company. I have been anticipating its demise for some time and while it has been slowly diminishing, it hasn’t reached the end quite yet. Often such quixotic ideas are a sign of desperation by those in charge who can see the end in sight. As their papers get thinner, there is less to appeal to new reader or even to retain existing ones. Whether in paper or on line, content counts. Either way, it is hard to keep that up with a diminishing number of journalists and reporters.

    I do not see much from the Post Millennial recently. I am not sure if they gave up on that attempt to attract new readers, but it seemed to me to be similar to the content of papers targeted at their presumably older regular readers, just re-branded. Maybe they can take the money spent on that and plow it into the delivery business.

    Perhaps some larger Canadian newspapers will successfully transition into the digital world. Likely those large enough to provide some in depth coverage still, even with a reduced number of staff. They may also pick up readers from regional papers that the Post Media owns as people notice the Alberta coverage is as good as, or perhaps even better in these remaining national papers, as it is in the shell of what remains in local coverage.

    Reply
  6. Just Me

    May 21st, 2021

    Hmmm…sounds like the dullards that run Canada’s media companies are letting their collective diminishing mental faculties known, and they really don’t care who knows.

    I suggest this action by Postmedia is just the result of the public responding to their excessive partisan hackery by rejecting them completely, as well as denying them scarce revenues to maintain themselves and their special brand of tomfoolery.

    Considering the two local dailies in Edmonton, for example, are not much more than mimics of each other, often sharing the same writers no less, one does not need to think very hard about how this decline got started.

    And Postmedia has competition, from all kinds of media outlets, from the credible to the incredible, for every Progress Alberta, there’s the Rebelmedia or Post-Millennial rodeo clowns of public discourse.

    All things considered, I suspect a Postmedia delivered parcel would probably be lost in transit, arrive at the wrong address, or show up at the right address but as something completely different.

    Reply
  7. pogo

    May 21st, 2021

    So! Here we are. In flagrante delicto! Crying! Ne bastardi! What now sensei? Have you and our constituency the strength of raw values after all these years? I gotta say. You folks look weak. My peeps? Bricks baby! Strong as they ever were! https://youtu.be/js_ik_KlfZM Just on top of the
    Holiday Inn in the old used to be!

    Reply
  8. Northern Loon

    May 21st, 2021

    Postmedia – working hard to kill another business.

    Reply
  9. ema

    May 21st, 2021

    I was just hoping that the Postmedia news would be that Staples had finally been pink-slipped, especially now that Keith Gerein is back from his trek down east, to Massey College.

    *Sigh*

    Reply
    • David Climenhaga

      May 21st, 2021

      I’m sorry to have to tell you that David Staples will be the last man standing at the Edmonton Journal. It’s just a Postmedia inevitability. DJC

      Reply
      • Just Me

        May 21st, 2021

        I recall, years ago, I had an encounter with David Staples that was especially enjoyable for me. It was in the parking lot of a nondescript supermarket, where I encountered Staples pushing a shopping cart back into its corral. Well, not pushing it — more like shoving it violently in the direction of the corral. Needless to say, the cart only made it as far as the middle of the roadway, because…snow. Of course, Staples, being the young and budding moron he has become, walked away from the cart and got in his car, leaving the cart out in the middle of nowhere. It was then I rolled down my window and yelled at the young sapling of a partisan hack, “Hey! Are you going to leave that cart there? Idiot?”

        Staples looked at me, with a somewhat bewildered expression, before shrugging his shoulders, as though saying, “no hablo ingles,” before driving off, very slowly.

        It was then I knew I was forever “Blocked by David Staples”.

        Reply

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