The recently released circulation figures for newspapers in Scotland makes for sobering reading.
Two titles bucked the trend.
Both the Scotsman and the Times increased sales slightly.
However, the overall picture in Scotland is one of declining print sales with no end in sight.
I recall Professor Roy Greenslade of City University giving a historically focused lecture to journalism students in Dublin in 2011.
This was part of the NUJ’s biennial delegate conference in Ireland.
The venue was Croke Park and I had the honour of chairing the event.
He stated that the economic model that had sustained newspapers in these islands since the late 19th century was in terminal decline.
He was correct.
With an impressive career in print journalism and by then a media blogger with the Guardian, Professor Greenslade was well placed to make such an observation.
By that time your humble correspondent was already a part of the Fitba Fifth Estate.
Moreover, Professor Greenslade and his colleagues in the Guardian were already aware of that because of the Hugh Dallas email story.
One of the reasons for the crisis in print sales is that there is now a digital alternative.
You’re reading part of it now.
Since this site started in 2008 the Fitba Fourth Estate seems increasingly determined to remain irrelevant to the real stories on their patch.
Of course, the biggest one of all was the inexorable slide into insolvency by Rangers in 2012.
Regular readers here were not surprised when the music stopped at Ibrox.
After a brief outbreak of accuracy, the sports desks realised that future portions of succulent lamb required liquidation denial.
This week the Stenography Corps in Glasgow will not be able to ask for directions to nearest public convenience without uttering the term “Old Firm”.
Their raison d’être now appears to feed the grandiose expansiveness of The People.
Liquidation denial appears to be the minimum requirement for a job on a sports desk in Glasgow.
Whatever it is, it isn’t journalism.
For the avoidance of doubt, there are still very many fine journalists working in the mainstream media in Scotland.
You will mainly find them on the news desks.
Since 2014 the new media around the independence issue has flourished in Scotland and the mainstream has had to take heed.
The recent partnership between the National (owned by News Quest) and Bella Caledonia is a case in point.
There are many structural reasons why print sales are in a steady decline in Scotland and further afield.
Like any major story, it is always a good idea to follow the money.
The hope of many in the boardrooms of large media organisations is that advertising revenues will migrate from print to online.
Overall that has not happened.
The response by the media conglomerates to these declining sales has been to embark on a race to the bottom in terms of staffing numbers and, sadly, in quality.
As with my recent piece on the movie The Post, there was a time when newspapers were large organisations that could devote substantial resources to investigative work.
That is now a thing of the past.
These figures are a reminder that the financial crisis in the print sector remains extant.
Moreover, paywalls and metered content do not seem to be stemming the overall financial losses.
Just like Sevco, it all looks rather unsustainable.
However, don’t expect to read that in print…