Wall Street's recent thumbs-up for E.W. Scripps ( SSP) could set the stage for another squabble between the investment community and a family trying to protect its newspaper publishing traditions. Shares of Scripps have jumped about 5% since the start of trading Wednesday after Joseph NeCastro, the company's chief financial officer, signaled to investors at a Citigroup conference that the media conglomerate was considering a move to ditch its newspaper businesses. "Newspapers seem to be much more troubled and it is hard to call a bottom there," said NeCastro. He said the company's management has been meeting with its board about "options for the newspaper side," adding that separating its other media properties from the newspapers is "clearly the most advantageous route" for the company. Tim Stautberg, a Scripps spokesman, declined to comment on the remarks. Scripps publishes newspapers in 18 markets, including the Rocky Mountain News in Denver and the Commercial Appeal in Memphis, Tenn. But the lion's share of the company's profits now come from its relatively new cable channels, like the Food Network and HGTV, and its fast-growing Internet search engines, like Shopzilla.com. Only 29.5% of the company's revenue comes from its newspapers. Like Washington Post Co. ( WPO), which derives almost half its revenue and the bulk of its profits from its for-profit education business, Scripps downplays its long-standing reputation as a newspaper company to investors, calling itself a "diversified media concern."