Borough High Street - Newspaper Monkeys

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Tuesday 16 January 2007 1.10pm
Im really glad that the Metro is not handed out like the two new london papers( The london paper and the London lite).

After a hard day at work the last thing I want is to be accosted by 10 (33 people when they first started handing them out) people trying to thrust a newspaper into my already burdened arms. which if they were employed for their intelligence they would see I have no free arms and therefore I cant take a paper. Its not me Ive seen these folk do this to, I've seen mothers with too much shopping and small children have a newspaper thrust at them with no consideration.

Is there any legal way to get rid of them.. Ive tried pesticide Ive tried not taking the newspaper from their hands and getting them from their trays instead, rendering them the as an obvious inconvenience.

What would happen if no one actually took a paper and resorted to getting it from a stand, surely then the high street would be easily to traverse and I wouldn't have to get so annoyed walking home.

For the majority of people who take the tube and train why dont they just use the metro holders to give readers the chance to pick it up on the way. but for bus riders this wont work so well.

Anyone know of any legal way to remove these pests, loitering with intent???
Tuesday 16 January 2007 1.52pm
They can't use the Metro holders - those are a concession, and TfL have discontinued the evening tender process. That's why the two newspapers were being so aggressively promoted - they were trying to get themselves positioned as the most established one for when TfL made that decision.

thelondonpaper is clearly the better of the two in my view, and has already got the contract for National Rail stations (so you can get it from the Metro holder in those), but I don't know about the future - they can't be profitable...
Tuesday 16 January 2007 2.25pm
The whole free newspaper thing is really quite bizarre.

Associated Newspapers (which has the Daily Mail in its stable) is the publisher of the Evening Standard and started up the Metro with the aim of advertising features that would be in the Standard in the evening and trying to shift the emphasis of the newspaper buying public from morning papers to evening papers to boost sales of the Standard.

I can't remember what order the free evening papers papers came in but London Lite is also by Associated Newspapers whereas thelondonpaper is News International (I think).

Whatever their motives (and clearly one is trying to spoil the tactics of the other), they are both big companies who can clearly afford to underwrite the losses on either title whilst it fulfils their strategic objective of countering the other newspaper group.

Currently, I would imagine they're both picking up reasonable advertising revenues however but I wouldn't have thought they could go on ad infinitum.
Tuesday 16 January 2007 2.56pm
Surely not if all those distributors are paid the minimum wage, they can't... As for strategic objective, sales of the Evening Standard are (understandably!) well down.
Tuesday 16 January 2007 3.20pm
I'm sure both companies have money put aside to wage war over circulation figures, and who knows perhaps the end game for News International is to drive down the Standard sales, over-saturate the free newspaper market and turn people off them, at the same time depleting the reserves of Associated Newspapers and then launch their own quality London evening paper to mop up the old Standard readers no longer buying it and then eat further into the Standard's circulation.

I agree that paying all those distributors must be costing a pretty penny but you can guarantee that they're not supplying costly free newspapers out of genenorisity.
Tuesday 16 January 2007 3.39pm
I know the whole free newspaper thing seems nonsensical but as someone who works in the industry (by association, I hasten to add), it sort of makes sense.

Paid-for-print is struggling and has been for some time with the advent of online news and then the freebies. The point of these is that rather than log their circulation via sales, thence producing reader figures (the norm is one newspaper is usually read by an average of three people), with the freebies, they can "massage" (oops, did I really say that!) the circulation figures to impress the advertisers. In other words, they can try to get away with quoting print figures rather that sales figures.

Who can verify exactly how many issues are actually read or binned (by distributors?) So, the advertisers love them as it appears that more print reaches the consumer than paid-for-print.

Younger people (under 30s), apparently, are more likely to glean their news via TV or internet and these 3 London freebies are geared exactly to this demographic; short pieces, or "fast news" to cater for today's ever-growing grazing society. The sort of people that need everything bite-sized and quickly (as if their capacity for concentration has been truncated in the womb). The people who buy a newspaper for things other than news, say crosswords, features, etc are, sadly, a dying breed.

So, freebies are here to stay at the expense of paid-for-print. And yes, garethpmorgan, both the Lite and the Metro are produced by Northcliffe - ostensibly one for the morning commuters and the other for the evening. And the London Paper is indeed published by Murdoch's Army, News International (although I have another name for them!)

So sadly, those papers that you know and love ,with well-researched and sometimes thoughtful features, will soon be things of the past.
Tuesday 16 January 2007 10.28pm
On my walk home from Leicester Sqaure to Elephant I can easily be accosted by 10+ people trying to give me a paper. I'm getting paper rage!!!
Tuesday 16 January 2007 10.54pm
I think the best suggestion is the one I read in The Guardian: accept one, stand next to the vendor, make it into a paper hat and hand it on to someone else.
Wednesday 17 January 2007 10.54am
williamn wrote:
On my walk home from Leicester Sqaure to Elephant I can easily be accosted by 10+ people trying to give me a paper. I'm getting paper rage!!!

I get paper rage too when dozens of the freebies are scattered around on the tube and buses, which is presumably how they arrive at the figure of 3 people 'reading' them. People rarely discard the papers they have paid for - except the sections no-one else will want to read. Perhaps the freebies should sponsor collections for recycling.
Wednesday 17 January 2007 11.44am
In Canary Wharf they have recently erected paper recycling baskets. A lot of papers seem to go straight there after being handed out.

On the other hand the free papers that you get from the stands appear to be skim read over lunch and then discarded (from what I can see the property pages are most popular)
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