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Bailey pens “requiem” for Courier News

14 December 2010 RS 11 Comments

House, Elgin IL House, Elgin IL (Photo by The Elginite).

Definitely worth reading is Mike Bailey’s recent column at BocaJump recalling the heyday of the Courier News. The iconic Elgin newspaper last week closed its downtown offices, moving operations to Aurora.

This melancholy note arises because the Courier News closed last Friday. Well, the building did, but it might as well have been the newspaper as well. Its demise has been guaranteed since the owners decided that a thin tab with little substance would be more attractive to a community which craved hard news and a no-holds-barred civic watchdog.

The person who executed this numbingly stupid strategy was terminated quickly when it failed on a grand scale. But the paper is as dead as disco.

At one time, the building at 300 Lake St. housed nearly 200 employees. At its peak, circulation topped 38,000 and it required so many employees that we had to rent office space downtown for the advertising staff.

When the Courier News building closed Friday, fewer than a dozen people remained; the press was long gone and about 80 percent of the building was empty. Circulation has fallen to less than 7,000 and declining every day.

I’m not sure I can agree with Mr. Bailey that the change to tabloid format had anything to do with the paper’s demise. It was killed by the Internet. Isn’t that what’s killing every paper these days?

You can read the rest of Mr. Bailey’s column on BocaJump.

HT Craig :)

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11 Responses to “Bailey pens “requiem” for Courier News”

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  1. David Reinert says:


    Clink the above link and see if you agree with: “Bailey pens “requiem” for Courier News.” The Courier News has been the mediam stalwart for the Elgin area for as long as I can rember. I delivered the paper to the good citizens of the area when I was just a small boy. The community received all of their news from the Courier News for years. It was the only good and reliable source of news coverage that was available. Those who want to knock it have an agenda to push their own electronic version of duplication, for their own financial gain, what the Courier News has accomplish for many years as a creditable news media for all who enjoyed the daily paper. The “requiem”, posted on this board, proves my post.

    • David Reinert says:

      “More lay-offs resulted, reducing staffing to the levels of 1972. The loss of an industrial/commercial/retail base meant lean times for the Courier News”.

      “But it was about to get leaner”.

      Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows that the loss of any industrial/commercial/retail base anywhere in the USA meant lean times for all. The fast growth of the internet turned the economy around resulting in the loss of revenue to a technological way of doing business. The news media was one of the first areas to feel the pressure of this new technology. They are all slowly dying one by one. Electronic journalism will take the place of gathering news for the production of a newspaper. Every TV news media invites the public to their website to read extended coverage of current stories as well as other events and stories of interest. The public can even comment via the electronic media. The above is an example of this fact. The Elginite makes it possible for public interaction about world and local events. I don’t consider this a “requiem”. I consider this an advancement in the way people interact, learn,and grow. The world has has been reduced to one large society. We can buy a Big Mac, Coke, or a Bud in Japan, China, India, and hundreds of other countries today. I hope you enjoy the Elginite and all of it’s wonderful electronic features.

  2. David Reinert says:

    I read both daily newspapers available for information about the Elgin area. I also use the internet and Comcast XFINITY bundled services for TV viewing. I find all of these sources creditable.
    I agree that technology has hurt the print media nationwide. However, just one source dose not offer the same information I enjoy reading on a daily basis.

    • rei016 says:

      What I do not understand is why we need another duplicate site that is in competition with the Elginite.org the first site constructed to bring community events, forums, blogs,real estate, jobs and all of the other information citizens of Elgin need to guide them to what is taking place in the community? There is not any good reason too confuse people with an over abundance of the same information. It is a free country and a person has the right to offer others information about community events. To me it looks like a copycat endevor. Be as it may, I feel that the Elginite.org should be given top priority. The Internet is full of junk and span now. Why clutter it up with more of the same? Elginite.org I will stick with you as my source for information. You have a creditable site. You offer the citizens of this community an ambundance service to the Elgin area. You should be happy ith the leadership you have taken in the area.

      • Craig says:

        REI, I love the loyalty!

        Personally, I welcome the competition! The more people we have getting involved in the discussion, the better.

        Of course, I agree that the Elginite is the best ;)

        • rei016 says:

          That all depends on the quality of the competition. The other group lacks the quality needed to promote the community in a positive way. The leader is to much of a negative person. Just go to the library and read the garbage he wrote for over 30 years. His point of view opposes everything the community promotes to better itself.

          • Craig says:

            While I’m not specifically familiar with the management at the competition, I can say that as a believer in the free market, if the competition is no good, people will see it as such and choose for themselves what’s best!

  3. rei016 says:

    Maybe, as a believer in the free market system, you should explain to all of our governments about the laissez faire doctrine.

  4. Dave Reinert says:

    In 1975, as Township Supervisor, I talked the Township Board in giving the Community Crisis Center $40,000 in seed money to start the CCC. The center was funded every year when they presented their annual budget and grant documentation. I noticed through the years that expenses kept increasing as i examined their annual financial statement. Their largest expense was administration and staff cost. I knew the day would arrive when their current financial position would become a reality. Social Service Agencies need too learn how to live within their means. Administration and staff cost such as: salaries, benefits, and perks need to be reduced. Their current finanncial position is due to questionable needless spending. I suggest they get a conservative financial manager who can suggest a way to cut expenses and advise how too live within their means.

    • jgooser says:

      In 1975 I was 11, but in ‘76 I played on the little league team you managed in the Elgin Classic…..the Whiz Kids. I must say I found it disappointing to see how your career as Elgin Supervisor went down. That’s why I find it somewhat hypocritical of you to mention that another agency learn to live within its means. I agree with you wholeheartedly, I just find it amusing that you’re the one delivering the message.

      • David Reinert says:

        I’m delivering the message because I had to fight members of my own party (GOP) to get the CCC seed money to start operations. No one else would step up to the plate to help at the beginning. It was after we got the CCC started that others started to jump on board. I was there from the start. I pushed for annual funding for several years and was considered by many as: “the father of the crisis center”. The CCC gave me an award for my dedication to their cause. I don’t like reading stories about the CCC closing the doors to women and children in need. I don’t find that amusing at all. I stand by my remarks of 12-31-10.