Q. Why is the Times making this change?
A: Tampa Bay Times is a name that better reflects the newspaper it has become and the region it serves. We have been Tampa Bay’s favorite newspaper for several years. We expect that advertisers, readers and subscribers, who might not have been inclined to consider the "St. Petersburg" Times their newspaper, will take a fresh look.
So, basically, the people of the Tampa-St. Pete region are not capable of advertising in/buying a paper that doesn't specifically say "Tampa Bay" on it. By the same token, I can no longer ride SEPTA because it stands for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority and I live in Philadelphia and it isn't called the PTA like it used to be.
To me this feels like a desperate move by a newspaper. It might not hurt, but it certainly isn't going to help. Sadly, the newspaper business is a dying industry and I'm not sure there's a way out.