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PUB CHAT: A premium discussion

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I had a very nice phone conversation with a reader the other day, and I was so glad she called because she was asking about something that I wanted to address in a “Pub Chat” one of these days but hadn’t gotten around to. Until now.

“Why,” she asked, “does the Saturday paper have a different price every once in a while?”

It was a great question, and she didn’t realize how perfectly timely it was because today is actually one of those handful of days when our weekend edition is priced at $3.75 instead of the normal $2.75.

She was elderly, on a fixed income, and a longtime home subscriber — I think she said 45 years, for which I thanked her. Because she’s a home subscriber, the $1 price increase doesn’t really affect her too much, other than it will make her subscription run out a couple of days sooner; however, because she is on a fixed income, it certainly does affect her, which we recognize.

Meanwhile, for those buying the paper on the newsstand, it costs that extra buck today.

But here’s the reason behind the bump: A few Saturdays a year we produce special sections or add extra pages that cost us more to print than the normal three-section weekend editions cost. There are a number of reasons why this could be: Sometimes, we need to hire freelancers to write the stories or take the photos for a special section; sometimes, we use special stock or........

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