Sunday, February 18, 2018

Big hassle

I haven't posted much this past week. We've had a crisis at the newspaper. When Patricia and I bought it at the start of the year, we inherited a printer for the subscription labels that didn't seem to work. We got by that by emailing a file of subscribers to the newspaper that prints us, and having them label the papers as they exit the printing press.

That means. however, we don't see the labels before they are put on the papers, and during the past few weeks we have gotten complaints that people who bought subscriptions since the start of the year are not getting their papers in the mail.

The company we pay to service our mailing list - sort it according to postal carrier route and otherwise organize it for bagging to the post office - has not been helpful at all. We must be doing something wrong, but they have not been able to help us. Soon we will have to start refunding subscriptions.

Last week I gave up on them and decided to hit the reboot button. As difficult as it would be, I decided we needed to look for another servicer

The Clarksville Times has used the company for many years, but Patricia and I just took over, and apparently we don't know the system well enough. Customer service finally offered to train us like new users, but set the date as March 2.

I told them forget it, by then we'll be sending out refunds.

The folks that are missing the paper have been very good about it. Many who live in the city are just coming to the office and picking theirs up. We've also been doing some home delivery and dropping papers at people's houses. Which is ridiculous because we are paying this company to prepare our mailing list.

Friday Patricia and I delivered two papers to people who live in the Clarksville zip code but live out in the country. It was a 40 mile round trip.

And people who live in other counties are not getting their paper at all.

The circulation company now says a they are shipping a printer that works and it should be at the office tomorrow. They also have promised to give Patricia and I each two hours training on Monday.

This has been so stressful my health has declined and I'm fighting a cold again because my immune system is obviously weakened.

Tomorrow we'll see if the current circulation management company follows through and we keep them, or whether we switch to a new provider. Having to make a switch will bring its own set of problems, but we may have no choice in the long run.

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