In a story that ran without a byline in the Times, Thomas K. Carley, the company's senior vp of strategic planning, says, apparently straight-faced:
The Times is looking at a lot of different ideas for engaging our audience to make statements about what are our strengths, what are the ways that we can delve further into our audience and bring them products and services that basically enhance the bond with The New York Times.Nothing like curling up with a glass of Merlot and a Paul Krugman column about partisian politics, I always say.
Seriously, though, why is the Times Co. spending time setting up a wine club when its entire industry is struggling to find a new business model that will allow it to survive? Doesn't putting this wine club together seem like a drain on resources that should be devoted to that larger issue? I can only imagine how this wine club, and other ventures, "will enhance the bond" with readers. What's next? Times' desk accessories? Times'-branded plush toys? Sheesh.
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