The most ominous news, however, concerns its interactive media division, including the Shopzilla and uSwitch online price comparison sites.
Based on first-quarter results and second-quarter projections, full-year profit from the interactive properties is expected to fall in the range of $30-$40 million--just half of the $60-$70-million range previously forecast by the company.
As shopping comparison sites, Shopzilla and uSwitch are somewhat unusual in the field of newspapers' online operations, but the drop-off seems to mirror the broader slowdown in newspapers' Web revenues. NYTCO, Tribune, Gannett and McClatchy all announced results showing online revenue growing at a lower rate than 2006, with percentage growth dropping by as much as half.
In a note to investors, Morgan Stanley analyst Lisa Monaco observed of Scripps specifically: "It looks like quite a meltdown in the interactive segments."