This weekend the New York Times did not appear in the front yard at its appointed time. When it did arrive, four hours later than usual, it was thin and was accompanied by the note reproduced above. Here's the text of that message:
We regret to inform you that due to production shortages we were unable to deliver the following section of your NYT this morning. If we are able to obtain a replacement copy of this section, we will be more than happy to deliver it to you. Because you are a valued subscriber whose satisfaction is of the utmost import [sic] to us, we feel obliged to offer our apology for this inconvenience. If you should have any further questions, please call our customer service. Sincerely, The New York Times Company Circulation Fulfillment Department.
What appeared with the Sunday delivery was two copies of the Art and Leisure section, two copies of the magazine, but the other missing sections were not provided (or available?). See below.
I phoned customer service.
The agent was able to place a credit for the two missed papers (Saturday and Sunday), but had no further information as to cause from the Production side of the house.
Question: Since the Company knew it could not deliver an intact paper, why was a credit not offered immediately?
Question: The NYT has a full staff of editors and writers. Who is responsible for the clumsily worded "we feel obliged to offer our apology"? "Obliged"?
Question: Was the problem caused by a supply chain failure? Software problem? Data problem? It's not mandatory that customers are informed of the problem, but it is helpful.
Reference: P. Ruth, "Re-examining narrativity: small stories in status updates," Talk and Text, vol. 30, pp. 423+, 2010. [Online]. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/text.2010.021