The response to my letter from the General Manager of The Dominion Post:
You are, of course, entitled to your opinion. Over many years I have found that readers' tastes, preferences and ideas vary greatly and that the daily newspaper finds it impossible to meet everyone's desires and needs.
We are constantly lambasted for positive/violent news on the front page and so purposely leaven the offering with warmer, more empathetic news and pictures when they are available. The picture of the cute dogs in their coats is part of that. It doesn't appeal to you but we know that it resonates with many of our readers. Kids and animals always play well. Similarly, we gave extensive coverage to the Melbourne shooting and subsequent arrests because we believe there is interest in what happens with our closest neighbour. The Korean crisis had already had plenty of coverage for days, similarly the evolving situation in Iran which got strong coverage today. But for trying to vary the offering you accuse us of being something of an English tabloid or gossip magazine. I make no apologies for the paper being seen as populist if the alternative is that we are seen as elitist or only interested in the serious and the mundane. A newspaper that takes such an aloof approach is doomed. A daily paper is a smorgasbord, it delivers a lot to its readers who can choose what they want from the buffet.
I note you think you will be better served by the web. Interesting to note that when you read online the news that you will be looking for in RSS feeds and searches will actually be produced by the Dominion Post and other newspapers and news agencies. Without the papers your internet diet would be thin to say the least. I hope newspapers will still be around to provide you with that.