Esquire Deposition Solutions purchases 23 new ads in JCR at 50% of actual market value of ads

Just thought it might be of interest to forum readers that Esquire Deposition Solutions bought 23 new ads in the Court Reporter Listing ad section the September issue of the Journal of Court Reporting.

The new Esquire ads are for the states of Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Virginia and Washington.

Also in the May issue of JCR Merrill Corporation bought a dozen new ads in the Journal of Court Reporting Court Reporter Listings for Alabama,. California, District of Columbia, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington and Asia.

The NCRA board of directors has said those JCR Court Reporter Listing ads must be sold at 50% of their actual market value or else the advertisers would cancel their ads, and that, after all, the NCRA board of directors giving low ad rates is merely helping NCRA members who are freelance agency owners.

I wish average non-freelance agency owner NCRA members could get some preferential treatment and such a wonderful benefit as is given freelance agency owners, a benefit worth far, far, far more than any dues any freelance agency owners may pay.

I have always said what about the poor average NCRA members who must have their dues raised to cover revenue shortfalls while the NCRA board is discounting ad prices as a special favor to freelance agencies, some of whose owners are NCRA members and some of whose owners are not NCRA members.

Also has anybody checked?

Are Merrill Corporation and Esquire Deposition Solutions freelance members of NCRA entitled to benefit from ads sold at 50% of their actual market value?

Also, isn't it wonderful for Merrill Corporation and Esquire Court Reporting that their ads are not restricted to specific cities in states and that both firms can get statewide listings in ads arranged by seniority and not by city.

Bill Parsons

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Bill, when you say these ads are sold at 50% of their actual market value, does that mean that the same size ad is being sold to other agencies for double the price that these companies are paying?

Are you able to share how you're getting this sales info and how much various companies are being charged for ads?
Hi Marge,

Thanks very much for your question which will allow me to give further information to clarify my post.

The September Journal of Court Reporting Court Reporting Listings contain 209 1/12 page ads.

Those 209 ads consist of 197 1/12 page domestic freelance agency ads , 9 1/12 page international freelance agency ads and 3 1/12 page certified video specialist ads.

All 209 ads are priced at not 50% of their going market value but actually 47% of their going market value.

In April of 1991 the Journal of Court Reporting Court Reporting Listing 1/12 page ads were selling at $105 at the 3-time ad rate.

In March of 2009 the 3-time ad rate for the same 1/12 page ads was $95 per ad.

That means 1/12 page ad rate was less in 2009 than it was in 1991.

Over an 18 year period the 1/12 page ad rates had not increased but actually decreased in cost by 9% over an 18 year period.

As of March 26th 2009 the a JCR 5-time 1/6 page ad was selling for $375.

At a minimum in March of 2009 a JCR 1/12 page ad should have been selling for $240 as the going market value of that ad.

That's because as of March of 2009 a 5-time 1/3 page ad sold for $690, and the 50% smaller 5-time 1/6 page ad cost $375. The 1/6 page ad cost 54.5% of the value of a 1/3 page ad.

So applying the same 54.5% ratio to a 1/12 page ad versus a 1/6 page ad, the minimum going market value of a 1/12 page ad should be $204.

Remember the multiple time ad rate for a JCR Court Reporter Listing ad in March was $95 per ad.

Therefore, the multiple 1/12 page ad rate of $95 per ad was priced at $109 less than the going market rate should have been for that $95 ad.

So the $95 ad was not being sold for 50% of its market value, but it was actually being sold for approximately 47% of its going market value.

Now, the question is why did I mention that the NCRA board of directors had said that the cheap $95 ad had be kept at that low price for 18 years or else advertisers would have been lost, and after all, those advertisers were NCRA members.

I say that because then President Yates posted the following explanation as to why the 1/12 page ads had to be sold for 47% of their actual market value.

President Yates explained it this way in her response to me posting the post:

"With respect to the JCR Court Reporter Listings, your assertion that the 1996 ad prices were higher than the 2008 ad prices is simply incorrect.

"Moreover, you've failed tonote the correct structure for multiple CRL ads:

"First ad: $230 bimonthly ($115 per month)
"Second ad: $210 bimonthly ($105 per month)
"Third ad: $190 bimonthly ($95 per month."

Now, President Yates said my assertion the $95 multiple ad rate was lower in 2008 than in 1996 was simply incorrect.

I ask is not $95 per month in 2009 less than $105 per month in 1991?

I guess we have got to call an accountant in to straighten out my discrepancy with President Yates. I say a cost of $105 per ad in 1991 is less than a $95 per ad cost in 2009. Let the NCRA accountants explain how I am wrong.

Now, President Yates went on to post as follows:

"True, we have not increased the price of this particular form of advertising (used by NCRA's court reporter members rather than the vendors who sell to them) for several years, for the simple reason that we believe (and marketing data confirms) that the current cost is as high as members are willing to pay. And, quite honestly, we want to ensure that this form of advertising remains affordable to NCRA members. Raising the rates substantially would lead to a substantial loss in the number of listings, and, again, a reduction in total ad revenues."

So now forum readers have my assertions which are totally accurate that the JCR Court Reporter Listing 1/12 multiple-time ad rate of $95 per ad in 2009 is less than the $105 paid for the same ad in 1991.

I think the accountants should be brought in to see who is giving the best information.

Last I knew Merrill and Esquire were not NCRA members eligible to be sold ads at 47% of the going market value of their ads.

I say going market rates should be charged for ads, and I say that perhaps the rates would have to be raised gradually over a number of years for the ads to be sold for their actual market value.

Submitted by Bill Parsons
Thanks Bill. Can't read now but I will.
I mixed up a sentence in my previous post.

The incorrect sentence should have read as follows:

I say a cost of $95 per ad in 2009 is less than a cost of $105 per ad in 1991.

Bill
Hi Marge again,

I didn't fully respond to your questions.

I get the info on the sales of the JCR Court Reporter Listings by comparing each new month's ad section to the previous month's ad section. Actually the ads change every two months. So I check the old and new issues of the magazine when the new ads are placed in the magazine.

In so comparing the May JCR with the September JCR with both issues open side by side I compare each ad and note each new ad and note each lost ad. I have been doing this each month for the last 15 years.

I have charts of every lost and gained advertiser over the last 15 years. I can tell you the names of dozens of firms that canceled their ads due to their great dissatisfaction with the seniority listing of their ads when the standard in the directory industry is to list ads geographically by city with color coded designations.

The current ad prices are available to anyone by going to the NCRA website and checking the magazine advertising rates. I prepared my figures in March, and thus I am using the figures I obtained at that time when former NCRA President Yates was saying I was simply incorrect when she was providing the exact same figures I had provided.

It is amazing the people that read former NCRA President Yates' false comments that I was incorrect and then attacked me based on President Yates' baseless statement.

Now, the real kicker is that I have studied the JCR Court Reporter Listings for fifteen years, and interspersed in my papers are my writings containing the actual JCR Court Reporter Listing ad prices from as far back as 1991.

In a different world, some companies might thank me for calling their attention to the fact that their 2009 ad rates are less than their 1991 ad rates so that the company could rectify their error.

Not so in NCRA. I put forth the actual rates, and former NCRA President Yates actually published the same figures I was quoting and said I was simply wrong when anyone reading her post could see that she had the exact same figures I had.

Really accountants need to be brought in when the figures I provide and the figures supplied by NCRA are exactly the same, and then I am told I am simply incorrect.

How can I be incorrect when I supplied the exact same figures that NCRA supplied?

We have the same figures, and then former NCRA President Yates says Bill Parsons is incorrect.

Best Regards, Bill
Just a closing note. Former NCRA President Yates has said market studies show the current cost of JCR Court Reporter Listing ads selling at $95 per 1/12 page ad is as high as members are willing to pay.

It should be noted my market studies indicate just the opposite.

My market studies include readily available knowledge that advertisers are very willing to pay the going market rates for ads in all other court reporter directories including the NCRA Source Book and the several other lawyer publications where court reporting advertisers purchase ads.

Now, of course, President Yates is probably correct that ad prices cannot be brought up to their market value after 18 years of not increasing the ad rates without a revolt of advertisers who have been on the gravy train for 18 years.

It just goes to show the mess the NCRA boards of directors have left the members in when for 18 years they refused to raise the ad rates leaving the membership in a mess of undercharged ads which the NCRA board says must remain undercharged forever while in all other directories of court reporter ads the going market value of ads is charged.

The members are left in a mess by the NCRA board of directors. The resources of the members have not been well taken care of by the NCRA board of directors.

Can the mess be straightened out?

Maybe the only way to straighten out the mess is to do away with the present JCR Court Reporter Listing ad section and institute a new JCR Court Reporter Listing ad section where advertisers can buy ads for cities listed by city and where advertisers can buy full page ads, 1/4 page ads and 1/6 page ads and, yes, even 1/12 page ads but at the going market rate.

For sure NCRA needs the money if advertisers are willing to buy full page ads, 1/4 page ads, 1/6 page ads and 1/12 page ads at the going market rates.

I guess that's the only way to straighten out the mess.

Bill
Former NCRA President Yates' comments regarding not raising the NCRA Court Reporter Listing ad prices in 18 years are ludicrous.

She is saying 18 years ago it was determined that the JCR Court Reporter Listing prices could not be raised for the next 18 years.

She is saying if those ad prices had been raised during the past 18 years advertisers would have been lost.

Her reponse post shows my ad rates and her ad rates are exactly the same, and then she says Bill Parsons' ad rates are simply incorrect.

Unbelievably the gullible just accept former NCRA President Yates' comments that Bill Parsons is wrong and go on their merry way.

My friends, the best interests of the average members of NCRA are at stake.

Someone in NCRA has got to at some time decide to have some standards in the association.

In each issue of JCR there are 209 JCR Court Reporter Listings undercharged $109 per ad below the market value of those ads as compared to other ads in JCR.

There is a total loss of $22,781 per issue of JCR due to the undercharging.

At 10 issues per year there is a yearly loss of $227,810 due to the undercharging.

It takes the dues of 877 NCRA members to make up for the shortfall of revenue due to the undercharging for the JCR Court Reporter Listing ads.

Board members should start doing their jobs with a standard of excellence so that the tremendous losses of income will stop.

Board members should start doing their jobs so that the dues of 877 NCRA members don't have to be devoted to making up the shortfall in income to NCRA due to the undercharging of $109 per ad for 209 JCR Court Reporter Listing ads.

When such yearly losses are compounded over many years, it represents a loss of millions of dollars to the members of NCRA.

Submitted by Bill Parsons
The following sentence in my original post was incorrect:

"I say a cost of $105 per ad in 1991 is less than a $95 per ad cost in 2009."

Please omit "less" and insert "more" for the sentence to read properly.

Sentence should have read as follows:

"I say a cost of $105 per ad in 1991 is more than a $95 per ad cost in 2009."

JCR refused to advertise our CSRnation ads a year or so ago. (they didn't want our money for some reason)
also, I don't understand why esquire would even bother advertising on JCR, do attorneys read JCR?
Monti,

Sounds like the people at NCRA who refused your ad had very, very, very convoluted reasoning.

I have seen it on forums where posters are not allowed to post links to other similar forums.

But to carry that policy of not allowing the advertising of competing forums over to the print media is very, very, very convoluted reasoning.

I wish you would contact the NCRA board of directors and ask their intervention to remedy what were definitely misguided actions on the part of the NCRA staffers who refused to accept your money for an ad which was no doubt a wonderful legitimate ad to allow NCRA members to enjoy and partake in what you wanted to advertise.

If you aren't totally disgusted with your treatment by NCRA, I will help you to change a stupid policy against the best interests of NCRA members.

You may contact me at williamparsons2@yahoo.com, and I will provide you with the e-mail addresses of the NCRA board members so that you may send all the board members an e-mail asking their intervention to straighten out what was a very bad decision by NCRA staff.

Also, anyone else who has beefs about NCRA may contact me, and I will provide them the e-mail addresses of the NCRA board so you don't have to search for, find and type out the 15 addresses of the NCRA board members.

Best Regards, Bill
I will help those who want have problems with their treatment by NCRA staff.

Rather than you having to e-mail me for the e-mail addresses of the NCRA board of directors, here are the board's e-mail addresses:

"NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA BOARD" , "NCRA Board" , "NCRA Board" , "NCRA Board - meadors@reporterworks.com NCRA Board - meadors@reporterworks.com" , "NCRA Board 2009" , "NCRA Board 2009" , "NCRA Board 2009"

It's probably long, long, long overdue that NCRA members haven't had ready access to all of their NCRA board members.

Hopefully people will take advantage of being able paste and copy the above e-mail addresses intol e-mails and to be able to directly send their concerns to the NCRA board of directors.

If the e-mail addresses weren't able to be pasted into my post, then I ask all to please feel free to contact me for the e-mail addresses of the board. Better access to the board is in the very best interests of NCRA members and friends, especially when you have legitimate complaints of poor service.

In the past I helped many venders overturn an NCRA ban on classified vender ads when those ads were banned when NCRA officials said allowing such ads would destroy the display advertising section because all the display advertisers would cancel their ads and buy cheap classified ads.

In the past I helped 100 freelance agency owners overturn a ban on classified employment ads when the NCRA officials said allowing such ads would destroy the magazine because there would be so many ads the magazine couldn't handle them and they wouldn't be able to accept some classified employment ads because of their inability to publish so many ads, and the NCRA officials said such a refusal to publish some of the classified employment ads would be a violation of the NCRA bylaws of fair and just treatment for all NCRA members.

I was later to find out there was no such bylaw. So NCRA members have to be vigilant to fight for every little thing they should be entitled to.

Bill
Hi, Monti. I'm catching up on my board reading/posting for the entire month, it seems. And I'm trying to remember if any of the other message boards or forums have had ads in the JCR. Let's see ... there's Depoman, The Court Reporters Forum on CompuServe, and a new player, MyLegal, which in my opinion is by no means comparable to any reporters forum. I'll flip through the hard-copy JCR to see if I can see a reference to other boards, but I don't remember seeing one. I would LOVE to see an ad for CSRnation in the JCR, because there are no doubt reporters who don't bother to "surf" looking for on-line information re: court reporting, but do like to flip through the hard-copy magazine. A nice big ad might pique their interest and get them to log on and join up!

Did you happen to ask for the actual reason why they refused to publish your ad for CSRnation, one of the very best reporter forums available? I'm quite sure they have an official advertising policy, and I don't believe they can arbitrarily decline to publish an ad you're like to actually pay for. There HAS to be a reason, and boy, I'd love to know that reason.

Also, let's keep a watchful eye on the JCR to see if other self-described social networking sites (whether they actually are that or not ...) start advertising in the JCR. To take the thought a bit further, maybe there's something stated in the advertising policy about "business practices" or "intent" or something like that, of the person or entity behind the advertising, and maybe that's the reason for turning down your advertising money. But, gosh, if that's the case, then lowest-bid contracting firms intent on leveling the playing field with our sister's cousin's best friend Timmy's aunt, who just got laid off and is willing to type transcripts for peanuts, shouldn't be allowed to advertise either. Or agencies who don't pay reporters. Or try to unilaterally change rates after the job is over. Or play fast and loose with a reporter's specialty of realtime, or rough draft. Maybe I'm over-thinking it, but I'd really like to know the reason behind the refusal.

Monti, I think there are a handful of attorneys in the country who actually read the JCR ... from NCRA staff, of course, where it's their job, to, let's say, spouses of reporters where the JCR is laying around on the coffee table or something. I think that's probably about it! But Esquire's advertising in the JCR is targeted towards the reporter, because they want reporters to join up with, be associated with a good firm, agency, who treats them like gold and pays them very well for their services. Here's a disclaimer, and that is that I do not work for Esquire ... I'm just saying that's what they'd like their advertising to accomplish, is my guess. They have other, DIFFERENT, advertisements that they run in American Law Journal, Legal Times, and scores of other law firm publications. They (and other reporting agencies as well) make PROMISES to attorneys and law firms on the QUALITY and SCOPE of their court reporting services ... so the atty publication ads make the promise, and the JCR ads IMO are intended to attract the caliber of reporter who can DELIVER on those promises that they have made to their clients and potential clients. Again, I don't work with Esquire, and I don't know what or how they pay ... but need I mention that firms can't attract the best and the brightest with the lowest of low rates, or policies that require reporters to practice and provide their hard-earned specialty skills for free? IMO, when reporters read ads looking for reporters with flowery descriptions of why it might be good to work with the agency, they need to do serious investigation (due diligence?) to confirm that the agency, indeed, will follow through on those promises. "Let the reporter beware!" with ALL firms!

Just a few thouhts.

M.A.

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