The Denver Post's quarter-life crisis

A small item in the Business section of today's Denver Post announces that the paper is raising the price of single copies for sale at stores and newsstands from 50 cents to 75 cents beginning on Monday -- a decision as startling as the revelation that water is wet, wingless birds have trouble flying and Al Franken isn't nearly as funny as he used to be. Single-copy sales at newspapers nationwide have been on the decline for years, and with fewer copies being purchased, the Post and other publishers must get more for each edition or else cut back even more on the number of distribution points.

Theoretically, higher prices for single editions could inspire some people to subscribe as opposed to buying papers one at a time. Of course, the folks most likely to react in this way after being asked to fork over another 25 cents either haven't heard of Google or think it's only a mathematical term, and there are fewer of them every day. With that in mind, don't expect the Post's piggy bank to suddenly overflow with extra coins. This measure is meant to slow the bleeding when it comes to single-copy sales, not stop it entirely.

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