Is there a thread for the rapid death of the newspaper industry?

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If not, this might as well be it.

Beatrix Kiddo, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 14:59 (5 years ago) Permalink

http://www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=45

good times!

Beatrix Kiddo, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:00 (5 years ago) Permalink

There is a constant thread of panic in my office. . .

Not Everyone Can Be Tupac (Susan), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

Detroit Media Partnership L.P., which operates the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit News, is expected to announce next week that it will cease home delivery of the papers' print editions on most days of the week, according to people familiar with the company's thinking.

Detroit Media has not made a final decision, these people said. But the leading scenario set to be unveiled Tuesday calls for the Free Press, the 20th largest U.S. newspaper by weekday circulation, and the News to end home delivery on all but the most lucrative days -- Thursday, Friday and Sunday. On the other days, the company would sell single copies of abbreviated print editions at newsstands and direct readers to the papers' expanded digital editions.

The Free Press, owned by Gannett Co., and the News, owned by MediaNews Group, are operated by Detroit Media under a so-called joint operating agreement.


Bloomberg News/Landov
Weekday circulation for Detroit's two major newspapers has plunged.
The Free Press and the News would be the first dailies in a major metropolitan market to curtail home delivery and drastically scale back their print editions. Other newspapers are contemplating similar moves in response to the erosion of advertising and the rising costs of printing and delivery. In October the Christian Science Monitor said it will stop printing a daily newspaper in April and move instead to an online version with a weekly print product.

Newspaper groups have taken drastic steps lately to align costs with shrinking revenue, including massive staff cuts and efforts to consolidate functions through partnerships like the JOA in Detroit. As many of those measures have proved insufficient, publishers have taken a harder look at shifting away from print or abandoning it altogether to save on printing and distribution.

Even by industry standards, the Detroit papers have been hit particularly hard, a result of the troubled auto industry's impact on Michigan's economy. Dave Hunke, Detroit Media's chief executive, said in October, "It's time for us to look at some radical departures from our business model."

Weekday circulation has declined 15% at the Free Press and 22% at the News over the past five years, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations. As of September, the Free Press had a weekday circulation of 298,243, including 200,110 home and mail subscribers. The comparable numbers at the News were 178,280 and 97,483.

To address the mounting problems, Detroit Media has been working with IDEO Inc., a design firm based in Palo Alto, Calif., for the past six months to help reinvent the papers. The results of their work are scheduled to be unveiled to employees on Tuesday.

The changes are likely to result in significant job cuts. Gannett, which owns 85 daily newspapers, recently said it was eliminating 2,000 positions as part of a 10% staff reduction. Two of its papers, USA Today and the Free Press, were not part of those reductions.

"The Detroit Media Partnership is looking at everything right now just like everyone else in the country," said Leland K. Bassett, a spokesman.

Because the Detroit papers will continue to publish daily electronic versions, the cuts are expected to come mostly, if not entirely, from outside the newsroom, according to people close to the situation.

Curtailing home delivery would bring the Detroit papers much needed savings, but would also carry considerable risk. At a time when newspapers are fighting to retain readers, steering those readers online instead of delivering their paper to the door could cause them to lose the habit of reading a paper daily.

Rumors about Detroit Media's plans have surfaced in recent days on the "Gannett Blog" run by former USA Today reporter Jim Hopkins.

Beatrix Kiddo, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

In addition to advice, doomsaying, and so on, this is also a space for writers to sip cheap brandy in Titanic deck chairs and dish about redesigns, budget cuts, and outlet shrinkage (which has been happening with an alarming frequency over the past two years or so and continues unabated, in my experience).

Beatrix Kiddo, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

anyone interested in this shd subscribe to 'themediaisdying' on twitter, sort of like watching a car crash

beyonc'e (max), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

btw to all the writers thinking about jumping over here to PR--it sucks

beyonc'e (max), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

Over here, a lot of hopes are being pinned to the Web. Which, as the Web person, worries me. Obv. the print model can't just be pasted online and be successful.

Not Everyone Can Be Tupac (Susan), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

btw to all the writers thinking about jumping over here to B2B - we're fucked as well

Go Go Padgett Binoculars (The stickman from the hilarious 'xkcd' comics), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

Newspaper managements are treating the web like it's 1999 and there's a fountain of money just waiting to be tapped. A newspaper group I know recently unveiled its new online revenue plans. #1 amounted to essentially "spam email".

stet, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

it doesnt help that 90% of all newspaper websites are terrible, slow pieces of shit

beyonc'e (max), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

x-post

Exactly.

I'm the first professional staff brought on-board to focus on the Web and the expectations are just not based on reality. (I work for a college newspaper, one of the oldest, circ. of 40k and completely funded by ad revenue).

Luckily, the students I work with have a better grasp of what's possible.

Not Everyone Can Be Tupac (Susan), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

in the ripple effect, last week abitibi-bowater shut down a paper mill in a town/semi-important hub of about 4000ppl near where i grew up, laying off 1100 people. the municipal gov't have had no interest in diversifying their economy, ergo, town is killed. incredibly sad for a lot of people.

rent, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 15:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

I am old school enough to subscribe to the local daily, The Oregonian, or as it is known in my household, The Incredible Shrinking Newspaper. I swear they have cut page count in half in the past 3-4 months.

The front page section, where national and international news resides, has become especially weak and pathetic. If this is how they plan to compete in a market where news and quasi-news breaks hyperactively, they live in a bizarro world.

Aimless, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 19:29 (5 years ago) Permalink

#1 amounted to essentially "spam email".

those of you hoping to jump over to the 'spam email' sector ahem sorry, direct marketing sector, it sucks over here as well.

mark e, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 21:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

last week abitibi-bowater shut down a paper mill

Oh fuck -- do you have any idea what kind(s) of stock they made there?

One Community Service Mummy, hold the Straightedge Merman (Laurel), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 21:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

i don't know but this is the plant Laurel, if it helps. they're shutting down or idling at least three more in tennessee and alabama...

http://www.abitibiconsolidated.com/aciwebsiteV3.nsf/Site/en/papers/newsprint/grand_falls.html

swamp buggy badass (negotiable), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

the 1100 number includes everyone expected to be affected: forestry, hydro, etc.

swamp buggy badass (negotiable), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

As long as it's newsprint, I'm safe. At least for now.

One Community Service Mummy, hold the Straightedge Merman (Laurel), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

Sorry, guys.

One Community Service Mummy, hold the Straightedge Merman (Laurel), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

First they came for the groundwood etc.

One Community Service Mummy, hold the Straightedge Merman (Laurel), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

yeah you know you can just put your kindle in a ziplock bag and it's just as good as a book for reading in the tub. I read it in a blog.

TOMBOT, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

Looking forward to books being lasered into my brain... What's the eta on that??

beyonc'e (max), Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

It looks like we're selling our press (after printing our paper on-site for more than 75 years. There will now be only three other universities in the nation who do so.) So we have quite a bit of surplus newsprint if anyone would like it.

Not Everyone Can Be Tupac (Susan), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

I know it ain't the dotcom boom, but the only jobs in media right now are Flash programmers. Nobody wants or needs print people.

dan selzer, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

now i feel bad for my devoted use of the library. clearly i should be buying printed things to support not having books lasered into my brain.

Maria, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

apparently journalists at the telegraph have a better chance of keeping their jobs if, along side writing their pieces, they can also edit video.

Manchego Bay (G00blar), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:50 (5 years ago) Permalink

Amazon will be rly happy when you drop that $360 Kindle into the tub and the ziploc leaks and you have to buy another one to read the 56 "classics" you downloaded at the recommendation of ILB.

One Community Service Mummy, hold the Straightedge Merman (Laurel), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

yeah this is getting off thread topic, but i don't think books are going away just yet. the kindle is cool, sure, but it's not a industry gamechanger like the Ipod.

Mr. Que, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

I can't imagine using a kindle.

How many of you read papers via iPhone or another mobile device?

Not Everyone Can Be Tupac (Susan), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 14:55 (5 years ago) Permalink

A book is pretty much perfectly designed for what you want to do with it though. In today's day and age, I'm not sure a newspaper is, especially given the speed at which things happen.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

How many of you read papers via iPhone or another mobile device?
Me.

stet, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

if a kindle fit in my back pocket i would buy one in like two seconds.

Whiney G. Weingarten, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

Does the Kindle do that looong pause and annoying flash every time you turn the page like the Sony Reader does? They need to fix that.

stet, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:29 (5 years ago) Permalink

what the Reader and Kindle need is a feature where every time you finish a page, a loud bell goes off, then when you finish a chapter, it plays a short fanfare, and when you finish the book, it plays the end-title music from the Godfather. Now that would be both motivational and satisfying.

dan selzer, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

In newspapers' partial defense, their problems are hugely magnified by the recession/depression. The economic situation we're facing might have destroyed a few papers even in pre-internet times.

Indiespace Administratester (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

The kindle seems prohibitively expensive for most, considering the only thing you can do with it is read books on it.

Nicolars (Nicole), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 16:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

As I heard it, the man who assembled the newspaper chain which owns my local daily, Si Newhouse, constantly preached that a newspaper is not a vehicle for delivering news, but a vehicle for delivering advertising. Oftentimes I have looked for some news in the product dropped at my doorstep and verified his observation.

Aimless, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 17:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

He is right of course. But no news = no vehicle.

Indiespace Administratester (Hurting 2), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 17:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

Nickel Ads, the Newspaper of The Future!!

Aimless, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 17:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

2 months pass...

RIP rocky mountain news

max, Thursday, 26 February 2009 20:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

I am considering whether 'twould be nobler in the mind to subscribe to the NYT and read a newspaper whose reason for existance does not revolve around the comics page. But it seems disloyal somehow.

Aimless, Thursday, 26 February 2009 20:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

StanM, Friday, 27 February 2009 15:55 (5 years ago) Permalink

:'-(

max, Friday, 27 February 2009 15:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

adapt or die, eh?

Dr Morbius, Friday, 27 February 2009 16:00 (5 years ago) Permalink

no wonder they folded, all the news on the sidebar is 150 years late

bobby dijindal (and what), Friday, 27 February 2009 16:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

Seattle Post-Intelligencer and/or SF Chronicle are probably the next two to drop unless they figure something out

dmr, Friday, 27 February 2009 19:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

P-I is screwed, might go web-only but who cares if that's the case

linh (jergins), Friday, 27 February 2009 19:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

Judd Nelson (special guest stars mark bronson), Tuesday, 3 March 2009 14:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

xpost -- I like how that URL is completely opposite from the headline.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 3 March 2009 14:59 (5 years ago) Permalink

How does delivering the paper equate to reading it?

Jarlrmai, Tuesday, 3 March 2009 15:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

"Rap Band"

I shall always respect my elders (Z S), Tuesday, 3 March 2009 15:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

(it's asking if newspapers have dumbed down in the last 30 years)

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:30 (5 years ago) Permalink

there will probably be a story about bears shitting in the woods accompanying it.

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:30 (5 years ago) Permalink

1989

The paper wears its Thatcherite heart on its sleeve with page leads on plans being considered by the Tory government for identity cards and the possibility of all immigrants being DNA tested.

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

and

George Walden pens a column about the dangers of the end of the Cold War, including the rise of Islam.

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:35 (5 years ago) Permalink

(it's asking if newspapers have dumbed down in the last 30 years)

Er. Is it? It just seems to be going "MY GOD, LOOK, WE'VE GOT AN INFINITE AMOUNT OF WEBSPACE TO FILL SO WE'RE GOING TO PUT THIS DRIVEL UP HERE." Really, the impression I get is that the only newspapers with which the author is properly familiar are the ones used to line the bottom of his cage.

Still. Yes, newspapers as we know them absolutely and totally fucked, large swathes of the broadcast media hot on their heels ... in what possible way is this news? :)

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

Also: if you ever wanted evidence of why newspapers as we know them should cease to exist, that "Teens: Yesterday and Today" thing might be pretty much perfect. Other than "I am a suppurating fucking bell-end", I fail to see what point the cartoonist is trying to make.

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:50 (5 years ago) Permalink

I think that is the point actually.

Alex in SF, Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

Ha. Fair enough.

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

There is nothing like reading a newspaper in its hard copy form. However, I have found from sniffing around that if your online paper looks like a newspaper, people might find your news more substantial. I have been reading the Pantagraph lately because it looks great. By the way, this paper is 172 years old!

u s steel, Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

the cartoon is an onion parody btw, just in case it's not clear who is being a suppurating fucking bell-end here.

joe, Tuesday, 10 March 2009 22:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

Oh! I'd consider blushing, but ... er, actually, I'm not sure it works as a parody either.

<Looks again>

OK. Might not be as offensively shit, but it's still shit. Unless there's some fabulous piece of context in which it should be viewed?

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 23:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

Fabulous piece of context = most US political cartoonists.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 10 March 2009 23:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

Christ, really? *Boggles*. OK, in that case I'm going to step back ... there are some holes in my knowledge I'm happy to keep. Apologies to the Onion cartoonist, but to be honest: you might actually be better simply using your pen to go around stabbing some of your contemporaries in the neck.

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 23:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

^ Threads I have never opened and never intend to, #26. And I think this little exchange has really, really impressed upon me how many tears of blood I would weep if I did.

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 10 March 2009 23:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

never read it either

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

You're missing out

I KNOW WHAT YOU'RE UP TO (Colonel Poo), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

There is nothing like reading a newspaper in its hard copy form. However, I have found from sniffing around that if your online paper looks like a newspaper, people might find your news more substantial. I have been reading the Pantagraph lately because it looks great. By the way, this paper is 172 years old!

#462 in the series of things I never thought I would see referenced on ILX. I grew up in a tiny shit town in McLean County, so that was pretty much the only paper I even saw for a good chunk of my youth. I always thought the mustachioed Bill Flick was hilarious when I was 12.

legendary North American forest ape (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 13:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

i still don't understand that onion cartoon

\∫Öζ/.... argh oh noes! (ken c), Wednesday, 11 March 2009 15:55 (5 years ago) Permalink

tomorrow is the final print edition of the seattle post-intelligencer. 146 years...

cathlamet wa (jergins), Monday, 16 March 2009 19:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

the final print edition

(sings)

I gave my love a newspaper, with no paaaay-per.

Aimless, Monday, 16 March 2009 19:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

seattle post-intelligencer

<Doffs cap, sadly>

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Monday, 16 March 2009 19:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

Seattle P-I Editor and Publisher Roger Oglesby addressed staff in the newsroom Monday morning. Here are his remarks:

Tonight we'll be putting the paper to bed for the last time. But the bloodline will live on.

Hearst is announcing today that the P-I will become an online-only news operation. The last print edition will appear tomorrow.

We have copies of the press release for you, as well as a letter from (The Hearst Corp. CEO) Frank Bennack and (Hearst Newspapers President) Steve Swartz. But first I have just a couple of things to say.

This is a hard day for all of us. We were fortunate to be part of a great newspaper with a great tradition, and we've been blessed to be part of a wonderful group of talented people. We all hate to see that end.

But we knew it was coming. Hearst fought for years to keep this place going, but time and these rotten economic conditions finally caught up with us.

But there's another part to the story, and I'm not going to let you forget it. It's the part that has to do with what will live on and who's responsible for it. Tomorrow, SeattlePI.com will be reborn, outside the JOA. It will continue, and it will thrive, and it will be a strong and vital voice of this city for years to come.

Some of you will part of that ongoing effort, and you have an exciting road ahead of you. But we should all remember that everybody at this paper helped to build SeattlePI.com and the foundation on which its future will rest. Every one of you, everyone at this paper, should take pride in that. I will, and you should, too.

As for the paper, tonight will be the final run. So let's do it right. This is a great newspaper and has been for a long time. Let's show the world it still is. Let's show them what we can do, one more time.

http://www.seattlepi.com/business/403793_piclosure17.html

James Mitchell, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

145 editorial jobs going, only 20 to remain. rip.

joe, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

cathlamet wa (jergins), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 04:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

velko, Tuesday, 17 March 2009 05:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

estimated 2010 numbers

iatee, Tuesday, 17 March 2009 05:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

From the Stranger piece linked above:

In one of the areas that remained populated, page designers ("Of which none will be kept," a guide said)

WELL, NO SHIT. If there aren't any pages to design ...

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 20:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

Mind you, perhaps they could hire one to design a new banner for future save-newspapers rallies. This one's the worst I've ever seen:

Atoms are "balls" (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 20:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

Still. Got a new display name out of it.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 20:23 (5 years ago) Permalink

the number of former and/or aspiring newspaper/alt-weekly people i know who can't find jobs or have been forced out of their old ones is reaching really pretty alarming levels. and people i know who are still employed are dealing with unpaid furloughs and all that shit.

paper plans (tipsy mothra), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 20:36 (5 years ago) Permalink

and people i know who are still employed are dealing with unpaid furloughs and all that shit

*Waves, cheerlessly*

True, in our (ultimately Gannett-owned) place these are voluntary. And it suits me: going part-time halved my salary, so I'm not going to notice the cost of a few extra days' holiday. But still. The whole game is F U C K E D and I'm under no illusions about that.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 21:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

from today's P-I

cathlamet wa (jergins), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 23:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

True, in our (ultimately Gannett-owned) place these are voluntary

Really? My gf works for a Gannett-owned newspaper and the furloughs are mandatory for everyone.

I f'd up the word rear (Z S), Tuesday, 17 March 2009 23:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Wednesday, 18 March 2009 00:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

gallows lol, thx

joe, Wednesday, 18 March 2009 00:31 (5 years ago) Permalink

Really? My gf works for a Gannett-owned newspaper and the furloughs are mandatory for everyone

I'm in the UK, though. From what I understand, employment law here means they can't make it mandatory.

That said: senior managers are all taking a week's unpaid leave with no questions asked, or so we're told.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Wednesday, 18 March 2009 09:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

clay shirky, not comforting, but otm:

Round and round this goes, with the people committed to saving newspapers demanding to know “If the old model is broken, what will work in its place?” To which the answer is: Nothing. Nothing will work. There is no general model for newspapers to replace the one the internet just broke.

...Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism. For a century, the imperatives to strengthen journalism and to strengthen newspapers have been so tightly wound as to be indistinguishable. That’s been a fine accident to have, but when that accident stops, as it is stopping before our eyes, we’re going to need lots of other ways to strengthen journalism instead.

paper plans (tipsy mothra), Thursday, 19 March 2009 16:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism
Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism
Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism

So, so, so fucking OTM. Sadly, we're going to end up with neither.

Have Instapapered the piece and will read later. Thanks, Tipsy.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 19 March 2009 20:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

the internet has such a fucked up way of rewarding. it's the linkers that get all the revenue, which is a business that basically costs nothing to maintain, while the sources of the actual content, which is expensive, get nothing.

be on the treadmill - uh! - like OK GO (M@tt He1ges0n), Thursday, 19 March 2009 20:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

Well, yes, but those sources were the ones who decided 10 years ago to start giving everything away for free, in the hope that the Magic Money Fairy would visit them with some revenue-creating ideas further down the line. I'm not saying they necessarily had much choice, but there wasn't a great deal of thought went into it -- and, with this being the newspaper industry, editors and proprietors weren't keen to discuss the problem with each other.

Basically: the situation is fucked. It doesn't matter how it got fucked. All that matters is that it is. For everyone.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 19 March 2009 20:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:29 (5 years ago) Permalink

2010s = The Decade of Misinformation (like, more than ever)

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:40 (5 years ago) Permalink

I think we'll figure something out after the 2010s, but it will be roughly a decade before this happens.

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

UK national newspapers have misinformed as much (maybe even as gravely) as our government for as long as i can remember

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:42 (5 years ago) Permalink

It is very strange that newspapers rushed headlong into providing all their content for free.

I'm still surprised to see "print" links below articles on, say, Vanity Fair, or the NY Daily News, or the NY Times. Allowing people to read online for free is bad enough, but then providing a specially-formatted page so that people can print off exactly the articles they want to read without paying you a penny? It's bizarre.

Tracer Hand, Monday, 23 March 2009 15:45 (5 years ago) Permalink

Well, this is the only silver lining. Archaic newspapers that suck will finally die too.

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:45 (5 years ago) Permalink

Unfortunately, many newspapers thought that making most of their journalists' jobs be press release writers contributed to this.

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

but then providing a specially-formatted page so that people can print off exactly the articles they want to read without paying you a penny? It's bizarre.

but surely it's unfeasible to provide an obstacle to people printing online documents anyway?

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Monday, 23 March 2009 15:49 (5 years ago) Permalink

You don't have to make it THAT easy.

Tracer Hand, Monday, 23 March 2009 15:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

Various newspapers did try various paying models. They didn't work.

Zelda Zonk, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

They did, if you consider them taking their tops off, work.

Mark G, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

It was hard for them to make pay work while all their competitors were offering free substitutes. The ones that had no or few substitutes -- WSJ, FT -- have made pay work.

There's still a massive oversupply just now, but after many more papers have died, that's going to fall sharply. It's then we'll find out whether or not people will pay for traditional journalism. I suspect not, but I'm cynical.

stet, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

But isn't it that that no one ever really paid for traditional journalism, at least in the sense that newsstand sales and subscriptions always fell far short of operating costs?

Tracer Hand, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

but that's the whole thing: net ad revenue is a fraction of ye olde print ad revenue.

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Monday, 23 March 2009 16:45 (5 years ago) Permalink

Right.

Tracer Hand, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:49 (5 years ago) Permalink

Although print ad revenue isn't any great shakes these days either, right?

Tracer Hand, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:49 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yeh, people never paid for the cost of the news they bought -- it's why freesheets work. But on the other hand, the amount that a newspaper will have to do in the future is far less as well: they don't need to try and cover everything badly as they do now, just focus on a few specific areas. Is there any point in them all trying to run sports websites, for example?

The print product has to try and offer everything because it's theoretically the only one you buy all day. The online one is sharing space with sites that will do business/sports/features far better, so leave that to them.

xposts: it's still massive compared to the pittance you make online

stet, Monday, 23 March 2009 16:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

A couple of thoughts:

Any effect of the web on print is greatly intensified by the recession's effects on overall ad revenue. Newspapers are having their deaths hastened by that revenue drop, and some might otherwise survive.

Also, pay models work where you have an audience that can easily afford to pay and where you can convince that audience they're getting information they can't get elsewhere. The Wall Street Journal has that -- it at least gives the impression of financial reporting of a more "inside" nature and higher sophistication than you get elsewhere, and it caters to people who are interested in investment markets and such and therefore it ain't no thang to them to pay (especially if work is paying).

No one will pay for the same AP stories they can get a million other places, obv. And, similarly, newspapers can no longer rely on things like sports, comics, crosswords, classifieds, employment ads to draw otherwise non-news-interested readers in.

I guess the question is whether the possibility of people paying for more unique, in-depth coverage can be successfully translated to non-financial news. Obviously the old model of world-national-local-classifieds-comics-sports-and-the-kitchen-sink is not going to stay very viable where so many of those individual things can be had for free. More focus is required.

Comprehensive Nuclear Suggest-Ban Treaty (Hurting 2), Monday, 23 March 2009 17:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

There'll always be a way to get anything for free if it's in digital form.

Software doesn't lend itself to this as much as other forms of digital media, though. If the news were more of a software application than just a static place where the words change from time to time, there's potential there.

This is just an idea thrown out that probably has as more holes than not, but making news a more interactive experience with long term benefits will probably seem worth more. I have no clue if the return on investment would be enough to foster a healthy culture of reporting. But it's just an idea.

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Monday, 23 March 2009 19:42 (5 years ago) Permalink

i think what's especially endangered is the general-interest paper that wraps everything up in one bundle. nobody needs that when you have online aggregators that you can set to any mix of stuff you want. so i think journalism will continue to move more into niches, which of course has been going on for a while: sports, entertainment, politics, the environment, education, etc. some of those things will generate more traffic and interest than others, which is why some will be able to be commercial for-profit (like tmz.com) and others will probably have to be nonprofit or foundation-driven or something. the most likely arena i think for the continued operation of slimmed-down local news outfits will be local government/crime/schools news, because there will continue to be an interest in that and nobody else is going to do it. so i'd expect to see a lot of local papers turn into websites mostly focusing on those things (probably in partnership with a local tv station, since the newspapers might not be able to fund the operation on their own).

paper plans (tipsy mothra), Monday, 23 March 2009 19:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

UK national newspapers have misinformed as much (maybe even as gravely) as our government for as long as i can remember

Uh-huh, yes, every single word every paper has ever printed is a lie. Come on: I'd be the last person to pretend that every paper was a bastion of truth, but deliberate misinformation has always been the preserve of the few, thankfully. The point being made eloquently by many others here is simple but key: without the resources of a newsroom behind them, how is any journalist going to be able to hold anything to account, ever?

Better to have a functional journalistic model with a few bad apples than no journalistic model at all, surely?

But that, I fear, is where we're headed. This:

I think we'll figure something out after the 2010s, but it will be roughly a decade before this happens

chimes precisely with my thinking. Shit, eh?

Also, Hurting OTM about focus/quality as the ideal ... but is that likely to happen either? When circulations started really plummeting, almost every UK paper got into a crazy price war or giveaway war in a short-term bid to beat the figures. Nobody did the sensible thing -- to say: "Right, falling circulation goes with the territory here, so let's dig in; let's make this paper a quality product bought by fewer people but with a truly loyal readership base on which we might even be able to build." Nah, they all fucking threw shit DVDs into little plastic bags and hoped for the best.

This isn't revisionism, either: I've been saying this for five fucking years now. Nobody listened. And, of course, it's bloody difficult to consolidate your quality when you're being forced to lay off staff left, right and centre.

Did I say "fucked, totally and utterly"? Oh, yes, I did. Several times.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:05 (5 years ago) Permalink

(I try to kid myself I don't really care, but the sheer volume of swearing in that post surprises even me.)

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

RIP Ann Arbor News (I lived across the street from this building for two years).

2 ears + 1 ❤ (Pillbox), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

Uh-huh, yes, every single word every paper has ever printed is a lie.

where did i say that? is everything politicans say lies? no. it's a heart over head feeling but they make me just as angry in the end so, honestly, fuck them.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

and i'm not advocating 'no journalistic model at all' there btw

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

We're kinda lucky in the UK that there are so many papers -- they're mostly biased in different ways, so act as a counterbalance on each other. These US cities that have one or two papers at most are screwed if the paper's shite. I can see why so many US posters elsewhere are cheering at their demise

stet, Monday, 23 March 2009 22:18 (5 years ago) Permalink

It was hard for them to make pay work while all their competitors were offering free substitutes. The ones that had no or few substitutes -- WSJ, FT -- have made pay work.

They haven't really made pay work - FT.com was a very expensive commercial failure and both have now made the majority of their content free, haven't they?

The pay-subscription model works like a dream in B2B because customers are willing to pay large amounts of money for access to that information. It hasn't really worked in more consumer-orientated financial media, partly because the price of the paper version puts a ceiling on what can actually be charged.

Matt DC, Monday, 23 March 2009 22:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

There'll always be a way to get anything for free if it's in digital form.

This is kind of a myth, or at least a half-truth. It's not a matter of whether there's "always a way" to get it, but how hard it is to get. For example you could put everything in a non copy/pastable format, and either restrict the e-mailing and printing or only allow a printing/e-mailing format that includes advertising. I mean there was always a way to get a paper copy for free too if you wanted one bad enough, but most people will only go through so much trouble.

Comprehensive Nuclear Suggest-Ban Treaty (Hurting 2), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

There are lots of pay-for-information schemes over the internet that work just fine. Westlaw and Lexis come to mind -- specialized information organized in a way that is very costly to do and hence cannot easily be done for free.

Comprehensive Nuclear Suggest-Ban Treaty (Hurting 2), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:24 (5 years ago) Permalink

but text and pictures, in digital form, is one of the easiest things to get generally (more than linear media).

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Monday, 23 March 2009 22:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

They haven't really made pay work - FT.com was a very expensive commercial failure and both have now made the majority of their content free, haven't they?

I think they've made it "work" in the sense that they've made more money than they estimate they would have from advertising if they made it available for free, which the NY Times failed to do with Connect.

In terms of making it work enough to pay for itself, no they didn't, but I don't think anybody mass-market is going to do that. Too many competing options for advertisers.

stet, Monday, 23 March 2009 22:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

These US cities that have one or two papers at most are screwed if the paper's shite.

and to be honest, most of them are pretty bad, and not many are better than mediocre. i worked at a mid-sized corporate-owned daily for a few years, and even though i felt like i did some good work there, and i had lots of friends who also did (several of whom are still plugging away at it), it was an uphill battle against a great corporate complacency. as the only daily in town, the paper had no real incentive to be better than it had to be to attract advertising -- and as the biggest print vehicle in that part of the state, it didn't have to be very good. i found it hugely frustrating, which is why i jumped ship for an alt-weekly after a few years. (ironically but predictably, the alt-weekly is now owned by the same corporate chain that owns the daily. but i left before that happened, and so far the corporate chain has mostly left the alt-weekly alone.)

paper plans (tipsy mothra), Monday, 23 March 2009 23:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

(that's why i have mixed feelings about the rolling collapse of the daily paper -- it's hard for me to get too worked up about, since so many of them have been weak for so long. but otoh, i know that at all of these places there are some good and smart reporters and editors doing what they can in unfriendly circumstances.)

paper plans (tipsy mothra), Monday, 23 March 2009 23:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

I was wondering how newpapers benefit from airing podcasts? I listen to a couple of The Guardian's and they're fine (Football Weekly is great). They contain no advertising content, so where are they making their buck? (apart from giving the paper some extra exposure if they're any good i guess).

sam500, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 05:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

I guess they're nebulous "brand-building" exercises. I know someone fairly high up at the Guardian - she told me its website and related initiatives don't make money and they never have, and that everyone at the Guardian is running around like headless chickens without a clue what to do next.

Zelda Zonk, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 08:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

Their website is definitely one of the better ones as well.

sam500, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 09:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

but they make me just as angry in the end so, honestly, fuck them

...

and i'm not advocating 'no journalistic model at all' there btw

Right. So what are you advocating? A legion of bloggers setting the world to right from their bedrooms armed with nothing more than the weight of their own ill-formed, unedited opinion? Some kind of magic information fairy?

Serious question. You can't dismiss all non-broadcast news-publishing organisations (note how desperately I'm trying to avoid the word "newspaper" itself) -- which, with comments such as "fuck them", you're doing, no? -- on an otherwise very intelligent and well-balanced thread and not offer some suggestion as to what you'd have instead. Text and pictures might be easy enough to come across, but meaningful text? Pictures that tell you something? Who's going to provide them once the surviving newspaper websites have been reduced to two work-experiencers and an RSS feed from the BBC?

Have a read of Ian Jack on Comment is Free:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/mar/21/local-newspapers-under-threat

I think this hits the nail on the head, even if it is a bit misty-eyed and over-romanticised. And I'm guessing you and I will agree on the comment Other than the people who work for them, who could really care if the Daily Star and the Sunday People vanished tomorrow?

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 09:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

(that's why i have mixed feelings about the rolling collapse of the daily paper -- it's hard for me to get too worked up about, since so many of them have been weak for so long. but otoh, i know that at all of these places there are some good and smart reporters and editors doing what they can in unfriendly circumstances

Yes. Absolutely. Blueski, this is exactly it: there's a metric tonne of shit out there but to dismiss everything is spectacularly reductive.

And Tipsy: I'd refer you to the Ian Jack piece I linked above. It won't make you feel any better, but it offers an interesting take on the same argument.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 09:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

Magic information fairy sounds good I'll go with that cheers.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 10:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

I mean do you think I'm being spectacularly reductive by never buying a newspaper or spending much time on any of their websites other than when duped into reading some of the Guardian shit linked here? If so fine. Wires are being crossed here, but it's not worth arguing about really.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 10:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yes, because unless you are the only person in the world, and you are right about everything -- which, with the greatest respect in the world, I doubt is true of any of us -- then you can't really expect the rest of society to fall into line with you.

You might not look at newspaper websites but a staggering amount of other people do. So unless you're popping up on this thread just to say "lol dicks talking about journalism" -- which doesn't seem to be the case! -- then, umm: what do you think should be done?

I'm really trying to find out what you think here and all I'm getting is gnomic two-line responses at best. You don't strike me as someone who avoids the news. So: where do you go to get it?

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 11:00 (5 years ago) Permalink

To be honest "avoids the news" isn't all that far off, as bad as that sounds. How else to describe a situation where you never read a paper (unless you're alone in a pub/cafe etc. which is not all that often, or on a bus for a few minutes. I've never been a paper buyer on a regular basis tho) and more recently don't have a TV to catch the news semi-intentionally (I am missing Newsnight a little but otherwise doesn't feel like a great loss). Rarely listen to news radio either. All of which just leaves, yes, the internet and just a handful of news sites i'm forever meaning to expand the range of...so I guess I do expect news for free. I can see how this might be cause for concern but don't feel too bad about disregarding old media entirely because it clearly isn't required in my life (and if that's true for me it can and will be true for many thousands). I'd offer you constructive solutions but don't really have them yet.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 11:23 (5 years ago) Permalink

Here's my best guess at what the future will look like: most major newsgathering will get consolidated down to just Reuters, AP and one other - they will sell packages to the surviving newspapers, which will all be freesheet or online only, with the exception of one or two high-end "quality" dailies. Newspapers will supplement these news agency packages with local reporting, provided by some combination of traditional reporting/"Web 2.0"/advertising-driven content. Original investigative reporting, if it survives, will survive on TV and in weekly magazines. Some countries, like France, may set up new government-subsidised newspapers or newgathering organisations.

Zelda Zonk, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 11:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

It strikes me that TV news is being somewhat sidelined in this debate when in fact the huge growth of 24hr rolling news over the past few years is surely a massive factor in all this?

Matt DC, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 11:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

rolling tv news, non-pro blogs, etc don't do

- informed opinion
- investigatory journalism

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 11:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yeah I'd say the advent of CNN etc was one of the factors dooming newspapers - after all, decline in readership began in the eighties, before the Internet. But the main factor remains advertising, and the impossibility of "monetising" newspaper websites.

Zelda Zonk, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 12:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

were it not immediately distressing, this is a fascinating historical question, the interplay of long- and short-term ish, all kinds of factors, with the recession and ad slump as this sorta unexpected accelerator. "or is it?" will be the question. i think i'm firmly in the "this was inevitable" camp.

wrt british papers and the question of quality, i do reckon it's been very high in the two-odd decades i've been reading them. better, anyway, than in the other era i know well, the 1920s and '30s. i don't think the quality of the writing has much to do with the survival of the format.

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 12:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

a more optimistic view from steven johnson.

i think he's got a point but he's incredibly blasé about investigative reporting when there's maybe two alternative models in the usa (center for public integrity and propublica) and none in the uk (especially with a post-hutton bbc). i've got no faith in tv news keeping this alive when they've got their own revenue problems.

joe, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 12:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

Toynbee's tuppence

seems to be no real sympathy from the commenters

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 16:05 (5 years ago) Permalink

There never is. I think most people don't realise that the vast majority of news comes from newspapers. It's like a river: it starts small with local newspapers, builds into dailies and ends up as the hose of the internet. But when it's all choked off upstream, everything that depends on it is fucked as well.

otoh this is some idealistic shit, tbh. A lot of local newspapers have been little more than money-making aw-look-a-baby-was-born shite for a long time.

stet, Tuesday, 24 March 2009 17:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

my local newspaper (the cambeidge evening news) is pretty dire. otoh it's where alan rusbridger more like rubbishger learn how to be a journalist. (and peter bradshaw, probably not coincidentally learnt to be... well, whatever he is.) so this is maybe an important part of the media ecology being killed off.

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 17:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

The bottom line is that any model of journalism that hinges on (1) printing stuff on paper or (2) want ads is eventually going to die, and while it will be sad that this will soon be going away, and while it may be a disaster in some respects in the short-term insofar as investigative journalism is concerned, we need to continue to work to find a model of journalism that can be supported in the modern era, and dreaming that this problem might go away if we turned off the Internet or shut down Craigslist or ... isn't going to actually solve the problem.

Also, did anyone post this article about the Austin Chronicle? Pretty interesting, I thought:

http://tinyurl.com/d4z4al

Your heartbeat soun like sasquatch feet (polyphonic), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 17:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

any model of journalism that hinges on (1) printing stuff on paper or (2) want ads is eventually going to die,

so OTM. let's not confuse form with content people.

Roberto Mussolini (Shakey Mo Collier), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 17:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

The Pittsburgh post-gazette cold called this morning touting for a subscription. I can get it weekdays for free in school, she persevered and said why not take it on sunday only 'for the coupons'. The local news is fine but the national and international is light dusting of AP and NYT articles. Possibly a more sustainable model is for a national newspaper, the NYT, which a locally produced local section produced by the rump of local journalists left. Italy is more or less like this although in some areas the local section is a local paper sold as a bundle deal.

Prince of Persia (Ed), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 18:05 (5 years ago) Permalink

cant imagine any big papers would be willing to give up the ability to endorse

rip dom passantino 3/5/09 never forget (max), Tuesday, 24 March 2009 19:42 (5 years ago) Permalink

Newspapers need competition otherwise they go to shit: it's always cheaper to do press release rehashing than proper investigative stuff. That's (one of) the problems with UK local papers and US city ones, which makes me sceptical of the whole non-profit or local-section ideas.

stet, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 00:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

so OTM. let's not confuse form with content people

I don't think anyone on this thread is. The Clay Shirky quote cited upthread says it all: "Society doesn’t need newspapers. What we need is journalism."

But as Stet points out: where does that journalism come from when all the newsrooms are gone?

Blueski's comment:

(I) don't feel too bad about disregarding old media entirely because it clearly isn't required in my life (and if that's true for me it can and will be true for many thousands)

nails it: there was a time when a newspaper really was "required" by anyone who wanted to have even the vaguest idea about what was going on. Those days are long, long gone. But -- tragically -- this next bit:

I'd offer you constructive solutions but don't really have them yet

is as applicable to the entire fucking industry as it is to, er, one ILX0r. At the moment there's an abundance of content but that is going to disappear very fucking quickly, as Zelda Zonk suggests.

dreaming that this problem might go away if we turned off the Internet or shut down Craigslist or ... isn't going to actually solve the problem

Yes. Sadly, there's been an awful lot of that kind of moaning in newsrooms worldwide for the past decade; as you say, it totally missed the point.

The only thing that can happen now is for (certain) newspapers and broadcasters to stop living in denial and start working together -- yes! Together! -- to work out how the fuck journalism survives.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 10:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

What the Internet has generally done in other information industries is massively consolidate until you end up with monopolies or duopolies. In theory, you could have dozens of competing search engines (and you did in the early days); in practice, there's Google. There's YouTube, there's Facebook, there's Wikipedia etc.: just one or two main providers for each segment. I can only imagine news content will go the same way in the end - there will be just two or three main content providers who will feed the news to newspapers/websites. The newspaper/website's job will no longer be to provide the news, but to shape it and add the local colour.

Zelda Zonk, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

running a newspaper isn't exactly like those things. you do it partly for political influence, or for... well, who knows what satisfies a conrad black or a rupert murdoch, but they aren't regular silicon valley-type guys. newspapers often lose money, after all.

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

Not local papers - they're pretty strictly profit-generating machines.

The newspaper/website's job will no longer be to provide the news, but to shape it and add the local colour.

I see it the other way around, mostly. The model of the "website that you visit", once integral to the way we conceived the web, is slipping. You hear people talk about so-and-so's "Twitter page" and it's a sure sign that they don't really use Twitter, or get it. I don't think people will visit a local newspaper's website to get the locally coloured news in the future.

The Guardian launching Open Platform is an interesting development in providing syndicated content with some kind of commercial underpinning (it's not fully open as it "requires partners to carry its advertising as part of its terms and conditions").

Alba, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

The business model of the newspaper is probably even now more robust than the business model of YouTube/Twitter/Facebook but everyone concerned seems to be hoping the issue of monetising them just goes away as well.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

Twitter introduces text ads

Alba, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

xpost
I agree, that's an interesting development. And yeah, maybe we won't be visiting websites, maybe news will be delivered in other ways. But I think the massive consolidation will nonetheless happen and you'll end up with very few agencies actually providing the news, however they provide it.

Zelda Zonk, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

The business model of the newspaper is probably even now more robust than the business model of YouTube/Twitter/Facebook but everyone concerned seems to be hoping the issue of monetising them just goes away as well.

Google makes a lot of money, doesn't it? And yet not so long ago people were scratching their heads as to how a search engine could be a viable business model. I guess the answer is: be the only one, have a captive audience, benefit from economies of scale. And that's going to be the answer for a lot of these. The brand that becomes "the only one" globally will eventually make moeny whatever it does.

Zelda Zonk, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 11:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

One thing I'm keen on is filtered news and increased customisation of content deliverance. It's not the best example but let's say I wanted to 'killfile' all headline mention of a certain celebrity or subject from a feed or website. Could be interesting - difficult to implement because there is obviously much overlap between stories and subjects but this is where the power of online news really lies - more of an exchange between provider and reader (not just thru 'having your say' and whatnot).

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 12:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

wonder if political reporting/comment will go the same way as financial news: would not be surprised, but how it'll play out idk.

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 12:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

The politics blogosphere (hate that word, but it can be useful) might work against that IMO.

zero learnt from nero (Neil S), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 12:42 (5 years ago) Permalink

i think the key players, ie the ones with real connections, in the 'sphere are ppl who earn their irl wages as hacks. if that goes tits up i don't see them providing content for nish-all.

FREE DOM AND ETHAN (special guest stars mark bronson), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 13:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

There's YouTube, there's Facebook, there's Wikipedia etc.: just one or two main providers for each segment. I can only imagine news content will go the same way in the end - there will be just two or three main content providers who will feed the news to newspapers/websites.

This isn't quite right, I don't think: those sites aren't providers in the same way that news organisations are -- each of them gets their content given *to* them from hundreds of millions of little local one-man operations who feed content *up* to them.

It's possible that something similar could happen to news, but that would be a complete disaster, for the same reason that this would:

It's not the best example but let's say I wanted to 'killfile' all headline mention of a certain celebrity or subject from a feed or website. Could be interesting - difficult to implement because there is obviously much overlap between stories and subjects but this is where the power of online news really lies - more of an exchange between provider and reader

The real power of newspapers, and the ability of their journalists to demand answers, comes from the attention they can command, and the fact that everybody gets the same splash. Whether you're just buying it for the crossword, or the sports, or the job listings, you see the same p1 story. So that means if it's some sort of scandal uncovered in an esoteric subject, it's going to be shoved in front of you whether or not you're interested in it. This in turn forces the subjects of that splash to respond, and so the accountability thing rolls on.

If there are only three big outlets, or if everyone is filtering out stories about dull-subject-x, then lots of things can be quietly swept into the darkness. It's this lack of unifying attention that worries me most about net news, far more than the money thing.

stet, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 15:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

Stet I don't think anyone would be 'banning' the really important stuff in practice tho. No-one buys newspapers JUST for the sport or celeb gossip generally. It may be the thing they like about it most but surely the additional stuff sweetens the deal. I'm advocating a theoretically more democratic process when it comes to deciding what news is most important and I have faith that social and political issues would be better served by this process in the long-run (as much as I have faith in society). I don't believe it can be worse than e.g. the tabloids making celeb news front page because they know it will jerk knees and more effectively, pandering to the lowest common denominator or whatever. Too many people bemoan this approach on a daily basis for it to be something to just accept as 'reflecting the public interest'.

But granted there's a good chance a more user-defined online edition of many papers would only result in more sex and death.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 15:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

Oh I think I see what you mean now -- do you mean where people collaborate on choosing the news, something like Digg without all the Diggness? That could definitely work.

I was fearing something like those old sites where you can personally filter out all the stuff you don't care about. I'd never see another sport or environmental story again, despite actually caring a bit about the latter.

stet, Wednesday, 25 March 2009 16:04 (5 years ago) Permalink

well i'd like that filter thing too. but i'm not really thinking about it for newspapers because i don't read newspaper sites that often as it is, more BBC and supposedly more impartial channels.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Wednesday, 25 March 2009 16:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

Page 39 of my local newspaper Hamilton Advertiser and I found the headline Scumbags Rob Pensioner, 73

Would you allow that headline at the Herald, grimly?

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Friday, 27 March 2009 15:08 (5 years ago) Permalink

Umm. What do you think?

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Friday, 27 March 2009 16:32 (5 years ago) Permalink

think again!

One of the suspects is described as aged 30, 5ft 8ins and thin.

He spoke with an English accent and was wearing a blue jacket and light blue trousers.

joe, Friday, 27 March 2009 16:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

Also, did anyone post this article about the Austin Chronicle? Pretty interesting, I thought:

http://tinyurl.com/d4z4al

― Your heartbeat soun like sasquatch feet (polyphonic), Tuesday, March 24, 2009 1:48 PM (3 days ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

good read but i couldn't help but get some immature lols out of this:

South by Southwest now has three vibrant legs — music, film and Web — that come together to create a stool that is the envy of every other American city.

the worst breed of fong (some dude), Friday, 27 March 2009 16:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

So you're suggesting Grimly has a reason to not publish it? ;)
xp

Pfunkboy in blood drenched rabbit suit jamming in the woods (Herman G. Neuname), Friday, 27 March 2009 17:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

can't see how mergers are going to help, they'll just mean more journalists redundant, worse quality papers and even less reason for readers to cough up for the same recycled stuff off the wires and press releases that they can read everywhere else.

sly bailey's missing the point if she thinks "news aggregators" are the problem. google news links to your site, so it's bringing in hits and making your adspace more valuable. there's more of a problem with rss, so why not embed ads in the feed mid way through the story or whatever? <<<< does not constitute an entire digital media strategy btw.

otoh as an opportunistic effort to extend local monopolies at a time when some companies are likely to go under it will probably work well. by the time anyone sees any audited figures of how well or badly it is going for the big local news groups - which have had 20 per cent profit margins for years before this sudden period of pleading poverty - they will have got what they want.

joe, Friday, 17 April 2009 18:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

depressing tale #3495:

speaking to a friend last night who works as the web editor for a regional newspaper in the north-west. one of their reporters has recently been producing articles critical of the local nhs hospital, exposing corruption, mismanagement etc. in response, the hospital has set up a new PR position in a bid to get positive stories out there. this position pays 10k more per year than the reporter earns. she's the only person the hospital approached to take the job. she took it.

NI, Sunday, 19 April 2009 16:05 (5 years ago) Permalink

the paper won't be replacing her job so in one easy movement the good old money-to-burn nhs has wiped out any criticism they may have faced.

NI, Sunday, 19 April 2009 16:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

Cooption is a tradition as old as wealth and privilege. Still is depressing how well it works, though.

Aimless, Sunday, 19 April 2009 17:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

NYT going up to $2 daily. Boston global squeezing concessions from the unions and a representative saying newspapers should be restructured as not for profits. Great times.

Prince of Persia (Ed), Wednesday, 6 May 2009 20:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

two bucks seems totally fair for all the reading material you get

Mr. Que, Wednesday, 6 May 2009 20:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

Rupert ­Murdoch expects to start charging for access to News Corporation's newspaper websites within a year

...

News Corp's newspaper division barely broke even, with quarterly profits collapsing from $216m to $7m year-on-year.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2009/may/07/rupert-murdoch-charging-websites

James Mitchell, Thursday, 7 May 2009 08:32 (5 years ago) Permalink

Good luck with that, Rupe.

e.e. cummingstonite (Noodle Vague), Thursday, 7 May 2009 08:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

It's way too late to start charging for newspaper websites. The Wall Street Journal is clearly the exception, not the rule, because financial news works on a different model.

Zelda Zonk, Thursday, 7 May 2009 08:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

They _should_ be restructured as non-profits and they should receive grants. Newspapers have big positive externalities.

death from abroad (lukas), Thursday, 7 May 2009 08:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

Not Murdoch newspapers.

e.e. cummingstonite (Noodle Vague), Thursday, 7 May 2009 08:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

not newsPAPERS full stop. the print model is over but yeah i think some kind of non-profit status for news-gathering orgs might be the way fwd.

jesus is the man (jabba hands), Thursday, 7 May 2009 09:23 (5 years ago) Permalink

i think charging will work because it has to. at least News Corp has the power to force it thru.

Hard House SugBanton (blueski), Thursday, 7 May 2009 12:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

Needs to be set up incredibly carefully: if they're dependent on sponsorship and donations, there are bigger conflicts there than there are with advertising. But if they don't have to raise cash, there's a chance they'll get lazy. The BBC doesn't, but it's got plenty of competition and is trying desperately not to lose its free loot.

Also: proper journalism really depends on good competition (lack of it is one of the reasons the big American papers are so corpulent and complacent) so are we going to give grants to lots of them?

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 12:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

(That was about non-profits/grants)

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 12:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

i think charging will work because it has to. at least News Corp has the power to force it thru

... and if every other publisher jumps on board -- which they might well do -- then finally you fuckers might realise newspapers aren't fucking charities, er, it'd be interesting.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 13:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

(Never underestimate how quickly publishers will jump into bed with each other if the need arises.)

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 13:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

I should add that I think some kind of pay-to-visit model would be shockingly bad. I guess tiered content is the only way to do this ... ach, I keep forgetting I'm not meant to care about this any more.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 13:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

The execs in charge of this are easily as fucking stupid as the ones in charge of the music industry. IE: why the fuck were they all buying up social networking sites and trying to build comment-audiences instead of buying/supplementing the sites that are stealing their bread? NC should have bought Gumtree, not MySpace.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 13:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

non-profits don't necessarily need grants. plenty of newspapers have been turning profits while they were sacking journalists because of ownership models that demand not just profitability, but endless growth of profits. a non-profit paper could trundle along quite happily making a small surplus to be reinvested in the business.

the problem with paid online content is that it removes the connectivity - you can't share links with non-subscribers. and it hands a massive advantage to the bbc.

xpost stet massively otm

joe, Thursday, 7 May 2009 13:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

Paid online content is surely a dead duck. Outside financial services, has anything at all worked using this model? If Murdoch is now relying on it to save the industry, then that's bad news indeed.

I think newsgathering and reporting will eventually prove to be profitable on the Internet, once it has been massively consolidated.

Zelda Zonk, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

just because it hasn't worked doesn't mean it can't. the biggest obstacle is getting people used to the idea of paying for content online. newspaper/magazine content specifically, since they already pay for other kinds of content (music, tv shows, porn, etc). the whole question obviously is how many will pay -- if the nyt, say, can get a million paid subscribers online, that might be enough to offset losing the other 19 million readers a month who read it online for free right now. if it can only get 250,000, that might not be enough. (i have no idea what the actual tipping-point number would be.) and there are ways around the link problem. you could allow links to a headline and first paragraph, e.g. you could also maintain a small free section of the site and rotate top stories through there, as a sort of loss leader. there's also the salon model of making nonsubscribers watch an ad to access any particular story.

would you ask tom petty that? (tipsy mothra), Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

The NY Times did try some kind of paid online content, didn't it? And then gave it up. As for Salon, I don't know if it turns a profit or not but its overheads would be utterly minuscule compared with the NY Times, since it doesn't have Baghdad bureaus and the like.

Zelda Zonk, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

a non-profit paper could trundle along quite happily making a small surplus to be reinvested in the business

Oddly, there's a wee piece in this month's NUJ mag about this. Obviously, it's utterly uninformative and raises more questions than it answers, but you're right: it's not an unworkable model. However, right now it can only work for tiny buyouts and (hahahah) start-ups, natch.

the problem with paid online content is that it removes the connectivity - you can't share links with non-subscribers. and it hands a massive advantage to the bbc

Yes, I agree completely on both points. But the worst-case alternative is that everything else disappears completely, which gives the BBC a really quite spec-fucking-tacular advantage.

I think newsgathering and reporting will eventually prove to be profitable on the Internet, once it has been massively consolidated

Er, that "once ..." clause is a bit of a dealbreaker, no?

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:21 (5 years ago) Permalink

But the worst-case alternative is that everything else disappears completely, which gives the BBC a really quite spec-fucking-tacular advantage.
It'll become news for people who don't care about news, which it is just now anyway.

If large groups of journalists are going to be employed on nothing but journalism, I can't ever see how web publishing is going to fund it. Too much competition, no culture of charging.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:25 (5 years ago) Permalink

It is time, though, for a newspaper to be set up not a 20% PROFIT model. Something like a John Lewis of newspapers, where they need to cover their costs and the rest is gravy that goes back into the newspaper.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

Saw State of Play last night, btw. It's not as bad as reviews made out, and one they've got just about spot-on is the resentment/confusion about the web among hacks. There's a real undercurrent of "newspapers are about to die, sure they did a lot of shit but they also did the odd good thing". The film under the credits though -- which starts at the reporter's keyboard and goes on from the newsroom to film output, into platemaking, onto the press, through the binders, into the mailroom and out onto the trucks -- is incredibly poignant for nostalgics.

Which wasn't our audience, who mostly stomped out.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

Er, that "once ..." clause is a bit of a dealbreaker, no?

I don't think massive consolidation is great, just inevitable. After all, it's the way everything has gone on the Internet - search engines, bookselling, encyclopedias etc etc - eventually one or two players end up with almost all the audience. I think we'll end up with the BBC plus a couple of other huge newsgathering businesses soaking up 80% of the audience, and then a teeming mass of small operators, mostly run benevolently, taking up the rest.

Zelda Zonk, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

thing is that news doesn't really work when it's consolidated. It needs competition otherwise reporters can be lazy, and even the biggest orgs depend on the river of news that everybody contributes their little bit to.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

(i don't mean it won't happen, just that if it does it's likely to heave)

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

It is time, though, for a newspaper to be set up not a 20% PROFIT model. Something like a John Lewis of newspapers, where they need to cover their costs and the rest is gravy that goes back into the newspaper.

― stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 09:26 (14 minutes ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

Isn't this the scott trust?

Prince of Persia (Ed), Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:50 (5 years ago) Permalink

Don't think the Scott Trust really exists as such any more, does it? It's now a limited company -- so has fiduciary duty and all the other excuses of rapacious capitalism to fall back on.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

huh, did not know that had happened and slightly disappointed. Just read up on it. Balls to the lot of them.

Prince of Persia (Ed), Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yeh, it wasn't the greatest day in GMG history, that one. Sorry to be the bearer of disappointing tidings!

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 14:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

The best they could come up with was Ltd. Did they even consider mutual or partnership options for longer than 30 seconds? What a bunch of cockfarmers? Fields of prize feathered beasts as far as the eye can see.

Prince of Persia (Ed), Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

I think Murdoch might be right actually - and not just for newspaper websites. At some point soon the massive piles of cash that have been subsidising YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and other sites that cost fuckloads and have no workable business model are going to run out and they're going to have to find a way to monetise them properly.

What's risky is being the first major publisher to make that jump. NewsCorp is probably better placed than others to do it due to being bigger, and I think SunOnline at least could find some way of including content people are prepared to pay for.

My gut feeling about this is 'too little too late' though. People should have thought about all of this before making pretty much everything on the internet free of charge. Especially as internet behaviour is so nomadic, there'll always be something else new to pick up the users that fall away.

Enormous Epic (Matt DC), Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

i didn't know that about the scott trust either. apparently there was a fear of being hit with inheritance tax, lol irony:

The decision was taken because like all non-charitable trusts, the Scott Trust has a finite lifespan, unlike limited companies.

could they have made it a charity instead? they'd have to give up endorsing parties at elections, but who cares about that?

anyway, part of the problem is not the move to online news in itself, but that we're only halfway through the transition. revenues are down, but they're still paying huge costs for printing and distributing to a smaller audience. an all-online publication in the future may be much more viable: journalists are way cheaper than printworks. that may make competition easier too.

ps: read the other day that the huffington post employs 25 people just to moderate comments. so there will still be a future for subeditors.

joe, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

so there will still be a future for subeditors

We're like cockroaches. We can survive anything. Even if we have to be "multi-platform content refacilitators", we'll still be there spilling soup down our cardigans and calling everything shit.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

Moderating comments for a living would probably end up driving you insane, though

Zelda Zonk, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:24 (5 years ago) Permalink

which starts at the reporter's keyboard and goes on from the newsroom to film output, into platemaking, onto the press, through the binders, into the mailroom and out onto the trucks

Yeah - straight from the reporter's keyboard to the printing press, it looked like. He even wrote the headline and made it fit without the need for WYSIWYG or even a galley view. What a pro!

Alba, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

Moderating comments for a living would probably end up driving you insane, though

I know a certain place where a rota for this involves people such as the news editor. What a fantastic use of resources.

Alba, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:29 (5 years ago) Permalink

I should add that I think some kind of pay-to-visit model would be shockingly bad

Oi. Wasn't it you who said the old place should charge for access to the current day's news?

Alba, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

Not having WYSIWYG would explain a lot about American headlines to me.

Still, aye, the fuckers could have had even just one soup-covered eyeshaded ol' moke in there somewhere. xp

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:35 (5 years ago) Permalink

There was a sign nearby marked "copy editors" but they all seemed to have gone home (quite right too - holding the front page for three hours, you're having a laugh ain't you?).

Alba, Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:50 (5 years ago) Permalink

I know a certain place where a rota for this involves people such as the news editor. What a fantastic use of resources

Not any more :)

Oi. Wasn't it you who said the old place should charge for access to the current day's news?

Maybe! I reserve the right to be a capricious fuck, as always. If I did say that, I was wrong.

He even wrote the headline and made it fit without the need for WYSIWYG or even a galley view

In fairness: back in the hot-metal days, that was HOW IT WORKED. And it's funny: returning to do Saturday shifts on your alma mater, I find I can cast off almost perfectly in Poynter Roman -- in a way I certainly can't in fucking Din bastard Black.

they all seemed to have gone home

I assume, in this old-school fantasy, they were all in the pub?

Moderating comments for a living would probably end up driving you insane, though

Try subbing professional writers' copy for a living :)

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 15:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

I think there's a place for charge-for-today, but pay-per-view isn't it.

I was ace at casting off in Din by the end, so much so that I noticed they'd used the wrong-but-similar cutting for Atex because things that should have fit didn't.

Never managed it in Poynter, tho

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 16:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

That's because you were too busy writing

Grimly is a
horse's ass

in every headline box you could find.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 16:04 (5 years ago) Permalink

Got that in print once, too.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 16:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

Moderating comments for a living would probably end up driving you insane, though

Heh. Did this for nine months straight at a former company. One time I ended up hallucinating the main Outlook window in the blinds in my bathroom at 2am.

James Mitchell, Thursday, 7 May 2009 16:34 (5 years ago) Permalink

Got that in print once, too

I reduced 10 years of accumulated crap to a couple of boxes recently; safely at the bottom of one of them is that very scrap of newsprint. (How many copies did they run?)

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Thursday, 7 May 2009 17:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

Only about 1000, but good copy took forever on that press, so there's probably about 10,000 smeary copies in a mouldy shed somewhere.

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 21:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

Is there a thread for the rapid death of the newzzz...

I saved cassie breast in my iPhone (Tape Store), Thursday, 7 May 2009 21:59 (5 years ago) Permalink

sry

stet, Thursday, 7 May 2009 22:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

guys, it's ok, i'm at the university of missouri, and we know the answer is mandatory ipods

I saved cassie breast in my iPhone (Tape Store), Thursday, 7 May 2009 22:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

You guys are a bunch of print nerds and I love it.

But not someone who should be dead anyway (Laurel), Thursday, 7 May 2009 22:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

European newspapers furious over Google's intention to sell ads on Google News

(as an above mentioned print nerd and editor-in-chief, this indeed likely will not help newspapers...)

Gerard (Le Bateau Ivre), Monday, 18 May 2009 16:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

Newspapers should all band together to block Google's spiders. Common interest and all that. Probably take too long to organize, though.

Aimless, Monday, 18 May 2009 17:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yeh, that'd be a great idea. "What's going on?" "No fucking idea, these idiot newspapers are blocking Google. Let's look at the BBC instead."

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Monday, 18 May 2009 17:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

(slaps forehead!) It never occured to me, but you're right! No one could possibly figure out how to visit the newspapers's own websites to read the news there.

Aimless, Monday, 18 May 2009 17:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

But that's not what they do, are used to doing or will begin to do. Very few readers are loyal to a single newspaper website: the majority will click about indiscriminately in a sea of information, and Google is -- rather obviously -- a vital part of that. If you really think that de-indexing would suddenly have millions of readers tapping in the URL of their favourite blatt, you're living in dreamland, son.

Why do you think metadata is such a big deal? Why is the race to be first more important than the desire to be right? Believe me, as a working staff hack on a daily newspaper I wish you were right ... but you're miles off, I'm afraid.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Monday, 18 May 2009 18:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

Actually, thinking about this as I got off the bus and walked up to my door: I can envisage something like this actually happening, ie a small, misguided bunch of publishers taking their metaphorical ball home in a fit of pique. And that will be us totally an utterly fucking screwed.

It's a horrible situation but there ain't no simple, or even not-so-simple, fix.

a tiny, faltering megaphone (grimly fiendish), Monday, 18 May 2009 18:23 (5 years ago) Permalink

The only reason Google News is a problem is it exposes newspapers to competition they've rarely had -- the local monopolies break down at that scale. The solution is exclusive stories, but they're expensive and papers have sacked most of the people who would write them.

Getting pissed off about the ads is fucking stupid; it's like complaining about the money newsagents make from cigs and sweets.

Google news is only a threat to shit PA-rehashing papers. For everyone else it drives traffic, which is what they claim to want.

stet, Monday, 18 May 2009 18:29 (5 years ago) Permalink

It's a horrible situation but there ain't no simple, or even not-so-simple, fix.

That's basically what it is, yeah. But Google is gonna walk this, I'm sure.

xp

Gerard (Le Bateau Ivre), Monday, 18 May 2009 18:36 (5 years ago) Permalink

Stet, I do agree with you for the most part. Though people seem less and less keen on exclusive stories (if you don't read the paper that haas an exclusive story, or does some muckraking or investigative journalism, people will know about it when the press agencies or other (online) media copy it). I work for a regional newspaper and that makes it a bit more easy, I think. The connection between the newspaper and the reader is stronger. The 'big' (inter)national news can't be missed anymore today, not even if you tried. The 'smaller' news doesn't have that problem, at least, not as much yet.

Gerard (Le Bateau Ivre), Monday, 18 May 2009 18:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

Yeh, I don't mean exclusive in the sense of Big Scoop, just in the sense that "nobody else has it" -- yr competitors aren't going to steal the Googlejuice from you if you're the only one carrying the story about that cat who likes custard. Regionals definitely have it easier, here.

stet, Monday, 18 May 2009 21:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

A desperate measure to arrest ad-revenue decline?

Row erupts over far-right group's newspaper ads

Alba, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 15:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

i see my first paper was one of the ones that took the ads. depressing. expect it never occurred to the ad depts that this would be controversial.

joe, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 15:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

NQ ad depts don't give a fuck: they'll put any old shit in p1 solus if they pay the fee, regardless of damage it could do to the paper. I've seen editors fight stuff like that, and not always win.

stet, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 15:42 (5 years ago) Permalink

I'm beginning to wonder whether the end result is not going to be that Google and other Internet companies wind up buying the newspapers. After all, they're the only ones making money from them.

Zelda Zonk, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 15:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

xpost true - that reminds me of a newsquest paper in london that ran the edition after september 11 with an advert for "twin towers language college".

joe, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 15:52 (5 years ago) Permalink

how is google making money from newspapers, ZZ?

jesus is the man (jabba hands), Wednesday, 20 May 2009 00:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

Nothing has changed! The written word—the love of it and the power of the written word—it hasn’t changed. It’s a matter of fostering it, fertilizing it, not giving up on it, and having faith. Don’t get down. I actually have established an e-mail address, degg✧✧✧@826natio✧✧✧.o✧✧—if you want to take it down—if you are ever feeling down, if you are ever despairing, if you ever think publishing is dying or print is dying or books are dying or newspapers are dying (the next issue of McSweeney’s will be a newspaper—we’re going to prove that it can make it. It comes out in September). If you ever have any doubt, e-mail me, and I will buck you up and prove to you that you’re wrong.

Dave Eggers will prove you wrong

Alba, Thursday, 21 May 2009 19:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

What a bag of dicks.

But not someone who should be dead anyway (Laurel), Thursday, 21 May 2009 19:22 (5 years ago) Permalink

There is that.

Alba, Thursday, 21 May 2009 19:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

2 months pass...

The fate of The Observer hangs in the balance...

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/media/article6736037.ece

Zelda Zonk, Sunday, 2 August 2009 14:24 (5 years ago) Permalink

And given the size of losses reported in that article, the future of The Guardian must seem a bit shaky too...

Zelda Zonk, Sunday, 2 August 2009 14:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

some real dick comments on that article.

this would be such a disaster - no omm, review or food monthly. hope something saves it.

NI, Monday, 3 August 2009 09:48 (5 years ago) Permalink

Separate thread here now (although there's probably not a great deal else to say just yet, is there?)

The Observer RIP (possibly)

no omm, review or food monthly

Shamefully, I thought this was sarcasm when I first read it. I guess I expect everyone to be as cynical about newspapers as me.

the future of The Guardian must seem a bit shaky too

Er, yes, what with it being a newspaper and everything :)

grimly fiendish, Monday, 3 August 2009 10:32 (5 years ago) Permalink

no, i love all those sections! (though i know they get a bad rap on here)

NI, Monday, 3 August 2009 11:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

a bit of good news for uk journalism. if i won the lottery i would do something like this. as it is, i might just beg them for a job instead:

http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/story.asp?storycode=43986

joe, Monday, 3 August 2009 13:50 (5 years ago) Permalink

Fuck yes, tremendously good news. All the best to them with that.

My only problem is here:

Its aim is to dig out - and then sell - the stories

Who do they plan to sell to, who will buy, and -- most important of all -- what will they do with the stories once they've bought them? If they put together (say) broadcast packages to be aired uncut, great; however, at what point do they relinquish editorial control?

Still. You're right: fundamentally excellent news. For once.

grimly fiendish, Monday, 3 August 2009 14:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

yeah, i dunno. the american models (centre of public integrity, propublica) are all for free distribution but this has much less start-up funding. although i hope they will get more eventually. weirdly you can't donate even if you want to at the moment!

i suspect the idea is that they will sell to the "quality" press/panorama etc, but they're offering news orgs the chance to avoid the risk and expense of a failed investigation - papers will still shell out for a guaranteed tale as the expenses story showed. as for editorial control - i dunno, they could sort out a standard contract to have copy approval?

joe, Monday, 3 August 2009 14:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

i dunno, they could sort out a standard contract to have copy approval?

Depends on how forward-thinking the buyer is. There's no precedent, and that sort of thing is anathema to most editors ...

... but desperate times call for desperate measures, and if you're dealing with top-flight hacks who are doing all your investigative legwork for you, then why the bloody hell not, eh?

One to watch with tremendous interest, I think.

grimly fiendish, Monday, 3 August 2009 14:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

do papers not want in-depth investigative reporting? i presumed the only real barrier to it was a lack of budget, rather than editors not wishing to publish it?

can-i-jus (stevie), Monday, 3 August 2009 14:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

Er, I meant "copy approval" is anathema to most editors.

grimly fiendish, Monday, 3 August 2009 14:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

well, if you think of the bureau as more like a star freelance contributor rather than, say, a pr company touting a story it wouldn't be that weird. it's normal for subs to call columnists etc to run any changes by them. maybe it's not really "copy approval" in the sense that the editor might still have the last word, but that sort of consultation is probably all they need.

joe, Monday, 3 August 2009 14:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

it's normal for subs to call columnists etc to run any changes by them

Hahahah HAHAHAHAHAH ... yeh, right.

maybe it's not really "copy approval" in the sense that the editor might still have the last word

See, there are some editors who -- if I was the agency in question -- I really, really wouldn't want having anything like the last word. But then I guess that's down to them: they have to decide if there are some editors/papers they just won't deal with.

grimly fiendish, Monday, 3 August 2009 15:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

well, all i can say is i'm glad you don't handle giles coren's copy.

joe, Monday, 3 August 2009 15:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

Oh, me too! And I'm sure he is as well:

Sub-editors: how can I avoid killing them?

Actually: I have a soft spot for Coren, and when I was the (award-winning) production editor of a (multiple-award-winning) newspaper magazine, I really went out of my way to build constructive dialogue with all the regular writers -- not to mention some of the one-offs; Louise Wener, I remember, was a joy to work with! -- because some of them had bled every single beautiful word. Sadly, in just five or six short years, the entire landscape has changed to the extent that I think such practices would now be frowned upon and end up with me getting my arse whipped about not getting shit done quickly enough.

(The above is Reason #243 why I'm extricating myself from journalism.)

grimly fiendish, Monday, 3 August 2009 15:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

those folding instructions are wtf. assume that bit's a joke?

joe, Tuesday, 4 August 2009 14:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

burkesworks says:
4 August 2009 at 3:08 pm

Good old Graun; even in a parallel universe, its headlines contain spelling mistakes. There is no "c" in "dietitian".

Susan Tully Blanchard (MPx4A), Tuesday, 4 August 2009 14:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

Apparently the newspaper of the future looked a bit like a student magazine.

Matt DC, Tuesday, 4 August 2009 14:18 (5 years ago) Permalink

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/8186701.stm

Murdoch signals end of free news

News Corp is set to start charging online customers for news content across all its websites.

It'll be interesting to see how this pans out.

stop me if you think that you've heard this (onimo), Thursday, 6 August 2009 10:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

May 2010: Murdoch calls for the shut-down of BBC News website, claiming 'anti-competitive'...

carson dial, Thursday, 6 August 2009 10:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

From the copy of Press Gazette in front of me, it's estimated that the revenue for a Times Online behind a subscription wall would come in at £3.6m a year. That's fuck all.

Matt DC, Thursday, 6 August 2009 10:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

More importantly, why would anyone pay for an online subscription when they could just buy the paper? PAYG use for the website might be the way forward here but I still don't see it.

Matt DC, Thursday, 6 August 2009 10:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

Aye but think of the income from The Sun. I mean who wouldn't pay for quality coverage like this

stop me if you think that you've heard this (onimo), Thursday, 6 August 2009 10:18 (5 years ago) Permalink

Where will we go for our shonky Arshavin photoshops now?

Matt DC, Thursday, 6 August 2009 10:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/17/business/media/17ft.html?_r=2&ref=media

sounds like a good idea to me.

titchy (titchyschneiderMk2), Tuesday, 18 August 2009 17:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

Great idea for business papers, yeah. But financial firms are a) rich and b) used to paying through the nose for useful information. Don't think that works as well with people happy with the Metro.

stet, Tuesday, 18 August 2009 17:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

Did the crash mean we missed out on pouring one out for thelondonpaper? Not that I didn't get a good enough dose of that from 80% of my Facebook list but wh'ever.

Dulce et decorum est pro [NEWS INTERNATIONAL] mori

Susan Tully Blanchard (MPx4A), Friday, 21 August 2009 11:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

NewsInt irony LOL: report the Obs is to close, then be the company to shut down a paper. I have a friend there and it sucks he'll have to redouble his work effort. It also sucks (although proportionally much less) that I won't ride shotgun to do restaurant reviews any more, best plus-one scenario there is outside of free air travel.

I'm reliably informed that the Murdoch machine pursued that fake scoop in revenge for the NOTW wiretap scandal exposé.

gossip and complaints (suzy), Friday, 21 August 2009 11:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

people on twitter seriously concerned for the future of "em". no word yet from creator maria smedstad. will no one think of the twee middle class professionals living in shared houses?

joe, Friday, 21 August 2009 11:26 (5 years ago) Permalink

xp "fake scoop" is pushing it a bit considering it was... factually accurate in all respects and leaked by observer execs?

joe, Friday, 21 August 2009 11:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

is the observer about to close or not? do we know for certain if it was totally made up by news int?

NI, Sunday, 23 August 2009 20:43 (5 years ago) Permalink

Private Eye seemed to think they were being cagy about discussing it but definitely considering it, as far as I remember.

Susan Tully Blanchard (MPx4A), Sunday, 23 August 2009 21:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

^I think PE is usually right about these things as they only take sides against the stupid, but with the caveat that there was one of those meetings where all options were trial-ballooned. The immense brand value of being the world's oldest Sunday paper will probably save the Obs from GMG hassle, not an advantage of other loss-making titles.

challop bread (suzy), Sunday, 23 August 2009 21:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

4 weeks pass...

independent deathwatch: closed by xmas says (somewhat shit-stirring) second largest shareholder. losing £70,000 a day, apparently.

"There's no point in us as a company subsidising a newspaper that really nobody wants to read in the United Kingdom," said Denis O'Brien.

http://www.reuters.com/article/rbssTechMediaTelecomNews/idUSLI32052720090918?sp=true

joe, Monday, 21 September 2009 10:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

I'm amazed it's lasted as long as it has.

Zelda Zonk, Monday, 21 September 2009 10:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

The Independent and presumably the IoS folding would presumably ensure the future of the Observer, what with GMG having the whole centre-left market to itself.

Matt DC, Monday, 21 September 2009 10:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

This Denis O'Brien character seems like a bit of a dick, tbh.

James Mitchell, Monday, 21 September 2009 11:01 (5 years ago) Permalink

Michael Moore on why it's happening here, and not in Europe (true?):

http://hollywood-elsewhere.com/2009/09/michael_moore_o.php

A Patch on Blazing Saddles (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 22 September 2009 04:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

not really a comparable situation because we have a basically "national" print media. local press is – mostly – dead here already.

and we are likely going to lose a national paper here, one of the four "qualities", quite soon.

history mayne, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

Is it so hard to say "Independent"?

Tracer Hand, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

Haha considering how they can't make the Independent mean anything to people *here* how does Morbs knowing the name of the paper make any difference?

Matt DC, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

exactly

history mayne, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

Is there any non-tabloid that still turns a profit? The Telegraph maybe? At this stage of the game, "quality" newspapers are just vanity publishing for billionaires.

Zelda Zonk, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:27 (5 years ago) Permalink

"at this stage of the game"?

history mayne, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:30 (5 years ago) Permalink

history mayne, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:30 (5 years ago) Permalink

xpost Point taken, but surely there was a time when there was at least a chance of making some cash? The Sunday Times used to be a cash cow for Murdoch, didn't it?

Zelda Zonk, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

yeah. i reckon the sunday times still does make a profit (?)

history mayne, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:37 (5 years ago) Permalink

xpost think the s-times was making a profit as recently as last year, suspect it will be back in the black as the economy picks up. telegraph made money in 08 as well.

re: local press, it's not dead and is often profitable. the mirror has been propped up by its regional business for years now. dunno why classified ads haven't moved online the way they did in the usa.

joe, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:40 (5 years ago) Permalink

Most local newspaper publishers have been pretty appalling when it comes to creating websites that anyone would actually look at, might be the reason?

Matt DC, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:44 (5 years ago) Permalink

Our local paper seems to be thriving, unfortunately. It's hit on the winning formula of "The Past - wasn't it lovely! Modern life is rubbish"

Ned Trifle II, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

(the fact that most people say "local paper" singular suggests how things have gone down. though it is surprising they even exist tbh.)

history mayne, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:49 (5 years ago) Permalink

Most local newspaper publishers have been pretty appalling when it comes to creating websites that anyone would actually look at, might be the reason?

― Matt DC, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 10:44 (6 minutes ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

i meant things like craigslist or i guess gumtree here. clearly people use them, but they haven't taken away the ad business of local papers in the way that they seem to have done in the states.

joe, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

Ah right - I thought you meant US publishers seeing an upturn in their own online classified sales.

Matt DC, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 09:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

so, i picked the wrong day to rep for the financial viability of local newspapers. trinity mirror just closed three of them. :(

joe, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 10:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

http://www.holdthefrontpage.co.uk/news/090922tmnorthwales.shtml

The Whitchurch Herald, meanwhile, has a paid-for circulation of 3,883 in a town with a population of just 8,944.

This is one of the papers being closed, presumably selling to 43% of the available marketplace would indicate that it plays/played a pretty major role in the local community? That's really sad.

The Ad Director of the Standard has just left to become Commercial Director of the Indy, which is a weird move all things considered.

Matt DC, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 11:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

Big fan of local media in theory, because noone else is keeping an eye on what local govt gets up to - but every time I see a story I know something about, it's teeth-clenchingly wrong

Ismael Klata, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 12:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

wasn't sure where to put this, so i'm putting it here. 1981 report on first attempts at getting the news online. feel a bit like sarah connor when she meets the guy who invented skynet.

joe, Tuesday, 22 September 2009 14:18 (5 years ago) Permalink

Evening Standard goes free from Monday: http://www.brandrepublic.com/News/942719/

James Mitchell, Friday, 2 October 2009 09:31 (5 years ago) Permalink

The Standard's Russian owner Alexander Lebedev said his intention to make the paper available to a wider audience was for it to function as a "deterrent against corruption".

lol

Ned Trifle (Notinmyname), Friday, 2 October 2009 09:40 (5 years ago) Permalink

It's been pretty much free for a while now anyway. Anytime I've been heading home later than about 8 in the past I've seen the same guys that give out other freesheets, only wearing yellow t-shirts instead of purple.

Lovely and tender, like velvet. (Upt0eleven), Friday, 2 October 2009 09:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

It was only free after 8pm because no fucker bought it after then. And it probably works out cheaper to pay guys to hand them out rather than pulp or landfill the leftover copies.

James Mitchell, Friday, 2 October 2009 09:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

And some quick sums show that all those 50p sales add up to £32mn a year - does doubling its income from advertising cover that? I'd guess so.

James Mitchell, Friday, 2 October 2009 09:58 (5 years ago) Permalink

The most important subset of numbers are 155 and 5. They refer to £155, the worth of an average reader to a paid-for newspaper a year in 2008. It breaks down to £90 a year from purchase price and £65 from advertising. Annual revenue from newspaper online totals just £5.
http://www.inpublishing.co.uk/kb/articles/figuratively_speaking_online_doesnt_add_up.aspx

James Mitchell, Monday, 5 October 2009 10:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

Standard going freesheet is unbelievably stupid of them right now, surely? Although presumably this will kill the London Lite with a stroke though?

Matt DC, Monday, 5 October 2009 11:00 (5 years ago) Permalink

Unbelievably stupid if Lebedev has any interest in running the paper as a "business". Which it's pretty clear he doesn't, right?

Lovely and tender, like velvet. (Upt0eleven), Monday, 5 October 2009 11:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

(rookie qn: presumably ad rates are much lower in free papers?)

history mayne, Monday, 5 October 2009 11:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

wouldn't they be higher, with the presumed higher readership figures of a free sheet?

butchered in the spooky twilight (stevie), Monday, 5 October 2009 11:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

my guess is that advertisers are as concerned with quality (wealth) of readers as much as with quantity.

history mayne, Monday, 5 October 2009 11:12 (5 years ago) Permalink

Not if you are just turning to freesheet. Presumably they'll drop the ad rates as low as they can to draw advertisers.

xp

young depardieu looming out of void in hour of profound triumph (Le Bateau Ivre), Monday, 5 October 2009 11:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

“There are certain facts you can't argue with,” says one senior executive. “If the recession lasts too long, we will run out of money.”
http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2009-10/02/guardian-struggles-to-avoid-the-e-word.aspx

James Mitchell, Monday, 5 October 2009 14:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

In much the same way that they would support an author jailed on trumped-up charges in a distant failed state, Martin Amis, Salman Rushdie and 50 other luminaries signed an open letter of support for the 218-year-old newspaper. At a subsequent public meeting in London, chaired by the comedian David Mitchell, 300 well-wishers included the actor Simon Callow, the broadcaster John Humphries and the film critic Barry Norman.

Wonder what a Venn diagram of this vs Roman Polanski campaigners looks like.

numetrical changeover (onimo), Monday, 5 October 2009 14:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

The end result:

Ned Raggett, Monday, 5 October 2009 14:33 (5 years ago) Permalink

Not newspapers, but Conde Nast is closing Gourmet and Modern Bride.

Squash weather (Eazy), Monday, 5 October 2009 14:42 (5 years ago) Permalink

3 months pass...

in the "hysterical laughter that becomes hysterical crying" sense

scent of a wolfman (s1ocki), Wednesday, 27 January 2010 13:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

It's totally misleading, too: most of their readers get it for free w/cable subscription so of course nobody's going to pay for it. (Also, isn't Newsday shit? Hardly news that it's tough to sell rubbish)

stet, Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:09 (4 years ago) Permalink

so why bother trying to charge for it if "most of their readers get it for free"?

congratulations (n/a), Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:13 (4 years ago) Permalink

to get $$ iirc

scent of a wolfman (s1ocki), Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:14 (4 years ago) Permalink

my times is thinking about it too: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/21/business/media/21questions.html

Maria, Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:16 (4 years ago) Permalink

The web site redesign and relaunch cost the Dolans $4 million, according to Mr. Jimenez. With those 35 people, they've grossed about $9,000.

congratulations (n/a), Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:17 (4 years ago) Permalink

so why bother trying to charge for it if "most of their readers get it for free"?
i'm sure there's a money deal in here somewhere: they'll be charging *somebody* for all these "free" subscriptions. Also "look, free access to our website (that's a $xx value, when you sign for x+y".

I mean, putting up the paywall isn't going to lose them any real money anyway. Drive-by web readers are worth bupkis in ad money terms.

stet, Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:19 (4 years ago) Permalink

Newsday was the only decent NY tabloid when they still published a city edition. I have been picking it up maybe 2x a week for the sports, but less often since street price went to $1.

Rage, Resentment, Spleen (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 27 January 2010 14:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

lol

James Mitchell, Friday, 29 January 2010 16:16 (4 years ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

The Times and the Sunday Times are to start charging for content online in June.

Users will be charged £1 for a day's access and £2 for a week's subscription for access to both papers' websites, publisher News International has announced.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/mar/26/times-website-paywall

James Mitchell, Friday, 26 March 2010 08:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

What I don't understand is what this means for people who buy the actual newspaper and then want to read the website. Pay twice?

James Mitchell, Friday, 26 March 2010 08:56 (4 years ago) Permalink

£1? How much is the actual newspaper daily?

he might have even have gone in. (a hoy hoy), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:01 (4 years ago) Permalink

The Times and the Sunday Times are to start charging for content online in June

Shurely they're gonna have to generate some first?

Allbran Burg (Noodle Vague), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:10 (4 years ago) Permalink

who's shirley?

it is just like an unknown puzzle till the end of the world (dyao), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:11 (4 years ago) Permalink

Think it's £1, but it's a long time since I last paid for a copy since there's always three copies lying around at work unread and because, hey, we have the internet.

Apparently they're expecting 60,000 people to pay each day. WTF?

James Mitchell, Friday, 26 March 2010 09:12 (4 years ago) Permalink

Assume this is a ploy so's somebody can write a piece in July about why they only got 6 subscribers and how it's the BBC's fault.

Allbran Burg (Noodle Vague), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:13 (4 years ago) Permalink

Go to: http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/media/article7076987.ece - read the comments and try to find the one reader who says she'll pay for website access.

James Mitchell, Friday, 26 March 2010 09:35 (4 years ago) Permalink

Quality in-depth interviewing from Eamonn Holmes on that article.

Ned Trifle II, Friday, 26 March 2010 09:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

Mrs Brooks added that News International’s two other titles, The Sun and The News of the World, would follow.

Oh man I only just read this bit.

Allbran Burg (Noodle Vague), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

suicide. it's not like news won't appear on the net faster elsewhere, and probably better reported.

Jermaine Jenason (darraghmac), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:58 (4 years ago) Permalink

Probably?

Allbran Burg (Noodle Vague), Friday, 26 March 2010 09:59 (4 years ago) Permalink

i don't read anything in daily print but the irish times tbh. their website is free, but rte.ie replicates it just in case they change that. print edition still gonna be a purchase for me most days regardless.

Jermaine Jenason (darraghmac), Friday, 26 March 2010 10:05 (4 years ago) Permalink

so, i mean i have no idea what the standard of writing/comment is in your lefty propaganda sheets.

i did get landed with the sunday independent (irish version) on a train journey once, after the death of a socialite model. genuinely fucking painfully awful shit paper.

Jermaine Jenason (darraghmac), Friday, 26 March 2010 10:06 (4 years ago) Permalink

this is the standard the times is setting for its front page these days:

niminy-piminy cricket (Upt0eleven), Friday, 26 March 2010 10:08 (4 years ago) Permalink

sorry, btw.

niminy-piminy cricket (Upt0eleven), Friday, 26 March 2010 10:08 (4 years ago) Permalink

i did get landed with the sunday independent (irish version) on a train journey once, after the death of a socialite model

just hide the spoon and lighter and say she was like that when you got there

i rate the irish times actually, i compared the news content vs a copy of the telegraph and the guardian and the proportion of ideologically purblind 'x says y, oh noes' crap was easily the lowest, most of the editorial and features content was at least as good too

they also get to crib the best articles out of other papers! (and kevin mccarra)

nakhchivan, Friday, 26 March 2010 10:19 (4 years ago) Permalink

arah shure there's a week's reading itn the times fergawdshakes.

also, crosaire on his worst day has yet to be equalled

Jermaine Jenason (darraghmac), Friday, 26 March 2010 10:21 (4 years ago) Permalink

if this does fail dismally, and i can't see why it wouldn't, what will be the ultimate outcome for the times, the sun and news intnl? can we expect the guardian etc to mop up all the spare ad revenue?

and have the daily mail said anything about this? i'm always surprised how the mail have masses of content and high quality photos on there, aren't they leaking money by the shedload?

NI, Saturday, 27 March 2010 12:48 (4 years ago) Permalink

I don't know whether this actually makes a significant difference, but I'm guessing the Mail demographic probably buys more papers than, say, ones with a less pinched editorial target audience?

porn mirth pig (GamalielRatsey), Saturday, 27 March 2010 12:50 (4 years ago) Permalink

I'm guessing this will be the end of the road for Rupert, but not the News International papers. After six months it will be deemed a total failure, then Murdoch's kids and NI execs will use this failure to get rid of Dad, then it will all go free again.

Zelda Zonk, Saturday, 27 March 2010 13:00 (4 years ago) Permalink

The one thing I heard about as a potential way to make it work is to package it with the Sky tv deal (an extra fiver a month say gets you total access to all Times Online content). I've read others saying that while it fails the amount they've supposedly 'lost' will be used as an extra stat to beat the BBC with.

Really is difficult to see it succeeding tho.

porn mirth pig (GamalielRatsey), Saturday, 27 March 2010 13:04 (4 years ago) Permalink

I speak from a position of no knowledge, but I don't see how charging can be worse than the status quo - it's not like they lose out by charging

Ismael Klata, Saturday, 27 March 2010 13:16 (4 years ago) Permalink

Well, there's online advertising revenue, the very thing The Guardian (improbably imo) is claiming will allow them to succeed. That would certainly go down with the pay wall Times Online, whether the subscription makes up for the ad revenue loss is I suppose the thing that everyone's waiting to see.

porn mirth pig (GamalielRatsey), Saturday, 27 March 2010 13:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

diminished traffic -> fewer advertisers?
ditto position of knowledge but ehhh.

egregious apostrophising (schlump), Saturday, 27 March 2010 13:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

Looks alright:

http://paidcontent.co.uk/image/set/times

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 18 May 2010 14:07 (4 years ago) Permalink

It does look nice. Although it bothers me that full justification still doesn't work properly on the web.

The Clegg Effect (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 18 May 2010 14:28 (4 years ago) Permalink

don;t even read it when it's free so

long time listener, first time balla (history mayne), Tuesday, 18 May 2010 14:30 (4 years ago) Permalink

Interesting debate yesterday - it'll be on the radio later - but if you can't listen there's some info here.
http://www.beehivecity.com/newspapers/alan-rusbriger-vs-john-witherow-on-the-future-of-newspapers191805/

John Witherow said that The Times and The Sunday Times would “easily” lose 90 per cent of its online audience when the two titles went behind the online £2 a week ‘paywall’ next month. A massive fall.
Alan Rusbridger conceded that if the Times/Sunday Times made a roaring success of the pay wall his newspapers would eventually have to follow suit. A surprising concession.

I don't think that's very surprising, but then I don't think the paywall will be a roaring success either.

Ned Trifle II, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 08:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

One good effect of paywall at the Times: I can't imagine their BTL commenters from the US state of Dumbfuckistan would pay for access.

cleggaeton (suzy), Wednesday, 19 May 2010 08:29 (4 years ago) Permalink

i think the paywall stuff is going to be a disaster across the board

by another name (amateurist), Wednesday, 19 May 2010 09:52 (4 years ago) Permalink

It's only worth having a paywall if you have content that people are willing to pay for - ie paywalls work perfectly well in B2B and financial media but will be a disaster in consumer newspapers. The FT's paywall works because everyone expenses it, who'd do that for the Times?

Matt DC, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 09:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

Read somewhere that one possibility was to bundle it for a nominal-ish fee with Sky subscription, but despite the tentacly nature of Rupert Moloch's empire, he perhaps wdn't want to yoke two parts of it that closely.

Yes, tentacly.

GamalielRatsey, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 10:04 (4 years ago) Permalink

When I first got internet access in '96 various papers (p. sure the Times was one) had pay-only online access. It didn't do very well and news.bbc and other free online news sites took off so they took down the pay wall. Admittedly internet availability and newspaper profit margins are very different now, but surprised that I haven't seen any mention of it previously being paywalled.

To be honest I was surprised that the Guardian changed from free content + paywalled crossword to having everything free. I could see the crossword being carrot enough for a certain small percentage of readers, and I don't know how else they'd get more people to pay. (How much money do they make off the "ring this number to order a book tangentially mentioned in this piece" thing? Enough to subsidise anything?)

xylyl syzygy (a passing spacecadet), Wednesday, 19 May 2010 10:10 (4 years ago) Permalink

From the looks of Ned's link above, SoulMates brings in a fair wodge, and presumably a few other things (do they still have that dvd rental thing), as clickthrough sites. Still not really convinced by either model tbh, in terms of long-term sustainability. Rusbridger makes his case here, and while I agree with his negative comments about paywalls, I'm not convinced by his positive comments about ad revenue.

GamalielRatsey, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 10:16 (4 years ago) Permalink

Still don't see how you can buy the paper and read the website without paying twice...

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 18:52 (4 years ago) Permalink

Get a feeling that's part of the dastardly plan, though - at least in the short term.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 19 May 2010 18:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

New Times site live at www.thetimes.co.uk now. Like it a lot; v clean. Don't see me paying for it, mind.

stet, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 01:35 (4 years ago) Permalink

Love the fact that everything except the homepage - even the blogs - is behind the paywall.

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 06:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

Georgia for the main text doesn't look great. But other than that the design looks really good - much better than the Guardian redesign.

GamalielRatsey, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 08:07 (4 years ago) Permalink

Paywall still has a handy side-door where you can just reach over and flip the latch at timesonline.co.uk. James Murdoch probably nagging his dad to get it fixed right now.

ketchup scam (useless chamber), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 08:47 (4 years ago) Permalink

It's free (with registration) for a month I think, while the main times site is still running, then the paywall goes up.

GamalielRatsey, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 08:48 (4 years ago) Permalink

Georgia for the main text doesn't look great.

Strongly disagree as I am a huge Georgia stan.

The Clegg Effect (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:24 (4 years ago) Permalink

I love Georgia as a general font for when I'm writing, but not really for this somehow. It's a bit skeletal looking to my eye.

GamalielRatsey, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:31 (4 years ago) Permalink

Well, in general it's gorgeous. There's something very calming about it, very balanced. Maybe the best newspaper front page on the web?

The Clegg Effect (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:35 (4 years ago) Permalink

In a world where the content is irrelevant

every time i pull a j/k off the shelf (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:35 (4 years ago) Permalink

I also like how prominent the leader articles are. More newspaper sites should do that.

The Clegg Effect (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:41 (4 years ago) Permalink

Heh the numbers in the bottom-left "Most Read" box need a bit of alignment...

The Clegg Effect (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:45 (4 years ago) Permalink

Love Georgia also.
Some daft use of Flash, including the graphic above the leaders.

stet, Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:51 (4 years ago) Permalink

Ohhhh the hands on the clock move??!

That is pretty cool, though you could do that with SVG...

The Clegg Effect (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 25 May 2010 09:54 (4 years ago) Permalink

The owner of the Daily Express and Daily Star has indicated that he wants to buy the Sun newspaper.

Richard Desmond told the BBC he had £1bn to spend and that he was keen to add to his stable of titles which includes the celebrity magazine OK!

He said he would run the Sun, which is Britain's biggest-selling newspaper, in a manner that was "more efficient in today's market place".

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/10233752.stm

James Mitchell, Friday, 4 June 2010 08:46 (4 years ago) Permalink

Mark G, Friday, 4 June 2010 09:06 (4 years ago) Permalink

So not gonna happen. I can't see Murdoch selling The Sun.

Matt DC, Friday, 4 June 2010 09:12 (4 years ago) Permalink

given that the daily star is a clone of the sun - the last redesign brief copied all their fonts with, i think, the hope that people would buy the star by mistake - it wouldn't make sense for desmond either: he'd have to merge them. but yeah, i assume he's just winding up the murdochs.

joe, Friday, 4 June 2010 09:52 (4 years ago) Permalink

Attention sub-editors

Matt DC, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:25 (4 years ago) Permalink

massive lol

some men enjoy the feeling of being owned (acoleuthic), Friday, 4 June 2010 10:29 (4 years ago) Permalink

It's on Press Gazette as well. Genuine production howler.

Matt DC, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:29 (4 years ago) Permalink

Dewey Defeats headghgh

real eyes realize real truffle fries (dyao), Friday, 4 June 2010 10:31 (4 years ago) Permalink

headline headghgh in topless bar

joe, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:33 (4 years ago) Permalink

"We Wgfgfgfg"

(It'll be on Have I got News for you, doubtless)

Mark G, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:36 (4 years ago) Permalink

ah: "The error comes as journalists across Johnston Press mull group-wide strike action in protest against staffing levels and the introduction of the Atex production system.

"Press Gazette understands that Atex, which allows reporters to input stories directly on to page layouts, has been introduced across Johnston Press titles in the south of England."

joe, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:38 (4 years ago) Permalink

fwiw

nakhchivan, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:39 (4 years ago) Permalink

who do you believe? the bedford time and citizen's website or your own lying eyes?

joe, Friday, 4 June 2010 10:45 (4 years ago) Permalink

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:17 (4 years ago) Permalink

News Sharter?

sent from my neural lace (ledge), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

*creature harbours grudge against blodes

WHEN CROWS GO BAD (suzy), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

LOLLLLLL, blondes

WHEN CROWS GO BAD (suzy), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

"News Shower" is very Morris-esque.

I'm being a smartass here, but in a fun way (NotEnough), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:23 (4 years ago) Permalink

It's actually the News Shopper, ahem, paper of record in Lewisham & Catford.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:29 (4 years ago) Permalink

Have you noticed issues with crows?

WHEN CROWS GO BAD (suzy), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:39 (4 years ago) Permalink

It's only ever guns, crows and crack these days.

Matt DC, Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:40 (4 years ago) Permalink

Don't forget the foxes. Animals be fighting back.

sent from my neural lace (ledge), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:42 (4 years ago) Permalink

keen dancer and former actress, you say

I wonder if heaven got a Netto (DJ Mencap), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:50 (4 years ago) Permalink

she's no tipi hedren

Don't look at the finger (Ste), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:51 (4 years ago) Permalink

She's Edna Lunt

Wenlock & Mandelson (Tom D.), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

from IMDB

Edna Lunt:
Letters of Service (2004) .... Dancing Patient

Don't look at the finger (Ste), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 10:56 (4 years ago) Permalink

omg terrifying my gf is a blonde Lewisham/Catford jogger. I know someone who'll be getting a hard hat for her next birthday.

tetrahedron of space (woof), Wednesday, 9 June 2010 11:10 (4 years ago) Permalink

Heard magpies do this all the time in Australia, and that they have to wear special hats.... hang on a sec, this might be a dream...

GamalielRatsey, Wednesday, 9 June 2010 11:19 (4 years ago) Permalink

No, it's not.

GamalielRatsey, Wednesday, 9 June 2010 11:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

Erk, just read about the Mirror cutting a third of its staff. Dark times. Though I guess it's lost, what, half its readers during the past 10 or 15 years?

James Mitchell, Thursday, 10 June 2010 20:40 (4 years ago) Permalink

press gazette says a quarter of the staff of the mirror, the smirror and the people? made £70m profit last year as well per NUJ. what a bunch of cunts. newspapers shouldn't be plcs.

joe, Thursday, 10 June 2010 21:07 (4 years ago) Permalink

This was kind of worrying/a blow too. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/10278700.stm My friends who work for DC Thompson are based at the other site, but it doesn't bode well, I guess. Also not that many companies that still print their own magazines etc., I think.

textbook blows on the head (dowd), Thursday, 10 June 2010 21:08 (4 years ago) Permalink

The crow attack story really belongs in the "Stuff that looks like the Onion" thread

hills like white people (Hurting 2), Friday, 11 June 2010 21:33 (4 years ago) Permalink

A STUNNED mum nearly choked on her favourite chocs - after she found one shaped like a WILLY.

Last night a Cadbury's spokesman said: "It appears some of the Nibbles have melted.

"We will of course offer a full refund if the consumer is unhappy."

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 07:02 (4 years ago) Permalink

Welcome
Our old website has been switched off: enjoy the new

Live at 9am: webchat with Gary Neville

Opinion
Soldiers must get same leniency as the IRA
Daniel Finkelstein

nakhchivan, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 22:59 (4 years ago) Permalink

wait, I'm sorry, I'm only just learning about the chocolate genitals

"My two-and-a-half-year-old grandson eats these and I'd have been horrified if he'd found it."

BUT HE HAS REAL GENITALS

oɔsıqɐu (nabisco), Thursday, 17 June 2010 23:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

Two-and-a-half is a bit young to be learning about eating a bag of dicks tbf,

slow motion hair ruffle (onimo), Friday, 18 June 2010 09:49 (4 years ago) Permalink

The Times loses half its traffic since introducing paywall

Still probably too early to judge, and impossible to know how that compares with their projections, but that looks like a pretty decent result to me, no?

Is there still advertising behind the paywall?

Upt0eleven, Thursday, 24 June 2010 14:59 (4 years ago) Permalink

there were hardly any ads when i looked at it during the trial period. i presume they want that to change, because the subs revenue on its own is going to be pitiful.

joe, Thursday, 24 June 2010 15:06 (4 years ago) Permalink

I bought the Wall Street Journal a couple of times recently and got the impression that Murdoch has in fact changed it for the worse. I mean I haven't read it consistently in a few years, but I remember that I used to really like it outside of the editorial page. Today I was particularly put off by a cover story that seemed to be stealth-blaming the federal government for the BP disaster because BP "relied on" some 2004 government report that said that the effects of an oil spill wouldn't be as bad as this.

hills like white people (Hurting 2), Thursday, 24 June 2010 15:07 (4 years ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

color me surprised

My sources say that not only is nobody subscribing to the website, but subscribers to [The Times] itself—who have free access to the site—are not going beyond the registration page. It’s an empty world.

like a ◴ ◷ ◶ (dyao), Friday, 16 July 2010 13:36 (4 years ago) Permalink

"Times loses almost 90% of online readership
Less than three weeks after the Times paywall went up, data shows a massive decline in web traffic"

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/jul/20/times-paywall-readership

(linked to from http://daringfireball.net/linked/2010/07/27/london-times)

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:48 (4 years ago) Permalink

looks like someone already pointed this out upthread

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:49 (4 years ago) Permalink

"london times" lol

well what rupert wants, rupert gets

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:50 (4 years ago) Permalink

on the other hand, advertising is fucked too:

“We have been so overtly dependent on advertising as the turbine that runs this place, and that is a very, very risky model as we emerge from the recession,” Condé CEO Chuck Townsend told The Times. “In a company like ours where 70 percent of our margins are generated on the advertising side, we must develop a much, much more effective financial relationship with the consumer.” That is, get money from the consumer instead of the advertiser.

Good luck.

joe, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:53 (4 years ago) Permalink

interesting article about conde nast and news apps, and how they might be more attractive advertising platforms than the web - http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/06/16/ipad_saves_wired/

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

The bind is pretty obvious - the more you charge -> the fewer subscribers you have -> the less you can make off advertising (unless your smaller subscriber base is especially worth targeting due to being loaded or some such)

uNi-tArDs (Hurting 2), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:55 (4 years ago) Permalink

im not an expert or anything but it strikes me that publications charging for their web advertising on a per-click basis are seriously undervaluing their ad space.

max, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:58 (4 years ago) Permalink

i've only just realized that it is impossible to click on an actual newspaper advertisement

therefore they should be free!

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:01 (4 years ago) Permalink

exactly

max, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:02 (4 years ago) Permalink

I don't know how much online advertising costs but it seems like it should be the same cost as print per reader/viewer PLUS a per click fee

uNi-tArDs (Hurting 2), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:11 (4 years ago) Permalink

i know all ads aren't like this, but i can't believe anyone actually clicks on something like, say, the little Google text ads they've started inserting at the bottom of YouTube videos

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

^ i'm sure there are surveys and all that proving me wrong, but this^

"It's far from 'lol' you were reared, boy" (darraghmac), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:21 (4 years ago) Permalink

like, HOLY SHIT "Custom Profile Layouts"! man, just want I've always been looking for! (custom profile layout for **what**? and what the fuck does this have to do with Radiohead playing "High and Dry" on Jools Holland in the mid-90s?)

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

ok then the video ends and some audio starts up advertising American Military University

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:23 (4 years ago) Permalink

none of that has anything to do with Radiohead, and the chances that someone watching the same video I was watching would actually click on any of that shit is zero. if anything, I'll probably be more apt to just associate whatever brands pop up randomly with this stuff with spammy activity in general

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:24 (4 years ago) Permalink

the ads in the sidebar on my gmail- now these are pretty good, have used and will use again

"It's far from 'lol' you were reared, boy" (darraghmac), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:26 (4 years ago) Permalink

lol

markers, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:30 (4 years ago) Permalink

nah srsly, car rental for hols this week, bike hire last week, these guys know what's up

"It's far from 'lol' you were reared, boy" (darraghmac), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 17:31 (4 years ago) Permalink

Drifting a bit off topic here possibly - but the subtitles google have implemented for YouTube, which use automated voice recognition technology, are an offshoot of their desire to scan YouTube videos for key words to allow them to target advertise more effectively.

Obv lots of pitfalls here - automated voice rec tech still has lots of problems associated w' it (hence the low quality of the captions in many cases) and you can't always guarantee that verbal content matches the point of the vid (the radiohead song problem perhaps), but they'll be able to charge more for ads if they can show a decent level of targeting.

Hide the prickforks (GamalielRatsey), Tuesday, 27 July 2010 19:27 (4 years ago) Permalink

Britain’s most outrageous newspapers, Daily and Sunday Sport are looking for an ambitious trainee reporter to join the busiest news desk on “Fleet Street”

To fill the role you must be keen, sharp, unshockable and hungry for the story. You will have a love of tabloid-style reporting and an interest in all things topical from Kelly Brook’s cleavage to Wayne Rooney’s bald patch.

The successful candidate will be a team player with a great sense of humour and a flexible approach to working hours.

NCTJ qualification or equivalent is a must. Newspaper or news agency experience is a bonus.

In return, you will get on-the-job training at a world famous national newspaper group and the grounding for a glittering media career. Starting salary is £16k.

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 3 August 2010 11:30 (4 years ago) Permalink

ty

let it sb (acoleuthic), Tuesday, 3 August 2010 11:31 (4 years ago) Permalink

;)

let it sb (acoleuthic), Tuesday, 3 August 2010 11:31 (4 years ago) Permalink

Amazing letter in today's Western Daily Press:

James Mitchell, Thursday, 5 August 2010 10:00 (4 years ago) Permalink

LOL, couple downstairs from me have a Union Jack doormat. They're Russian.

tom d: he did what he had to do now he is dead (Tom D.), Thursday, 5 August 2010 10:01 (4 years ago) Permalink

There's a Celtic supporters' club round my way who bust out a Union Jack doormat for their Christmas parties etc. Classy

someone who has fainted mid-squeeze at a Real Big Fish gig recently (DJ Mencap), Thursday, 5 August 2010 10:07 (4 years ago) Permalink

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 10 August 2010 13:15 (4 years ago) Permalink

XDDDD

visit europe more (acoleuthic), Tuesday, 10 August 2010 13:16 (4 years ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

Already looking forward to seeing him become Lord Coulson when he leaves his role as our government's highest paid adviser:

A dozen former reporters said in interviews that hacking was pervasive at News of the World. “Everyone knew,” one longtime reporter said. “The office cat knew.”

One former editor said Coulson talked freely with colleagues about the dark arts, including hacking. “I’ve been to dozens if not hundreds of meetings with Andy” when the subject came up, said the former editor, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The editor added that when Coulson would ask where a story came from, editors would reply, “We’ve pulled the phone records” or “I’ve listened to the phone messages.”

Sean Hoare, a former reporter and onetime close friend of Coulson’s, also recalled discussing hacking. The two men first worked together at The Sun, where, Hoare said, he played tape recordings of hacked messages for Coulson. At News of the World, Hoare said he continued to inform Coulson of his pursuits. Coulson “actively encouraged me to do it,” Hoare said.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/05/magazine/05hacking-t.html

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 1 September 2010 21:14 (4 years ago) Permalink

The Time paywall appears to have just come down.

Matt DC, Friday, 10 September 2010 15:05 (4 years ago) Permalink

http://www.mediaweek.co.uk/news/1027766/Times-circulation-falls-16-year-low-below-500000/

Rupert Murdoch's The Times has fallen below the 500,000 circulation figure for the first time since April 1994, according to ABC figures today.

pissky in the jar (onimo), Friday, 10 September 2010 15:11 (4 years ago) Permalink

huh? paywall is still up and running

NI, Saturday, 18 September 2010 17:20 (4 years ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

Oops. Which understates. Heavily.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/06/business/media/06tribune.html

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 6 October 2010 05:40 (4 years ago) Permalink

...the staid company, came to resemble a frat house, complete with poker parties, juke boxes and pervasive sex talk.

The name of the CEO who wrought these changes? Randy! Just too sweet.

Aimless, Wednesday, 6 October 2010 17:26 (4 years ago) Permalink

Two friends who work at The South Florida Sun-Sentinel said it feels like a demilitarized zone in there.

raging hetero lifechill (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 6 October 2010 17:28 (4 years ago) Permalink

L.A. times media columnist was on Madeleine Brand's show this morning talking about it, they must not be able to fire him from Chicago??

http://www.scpr.org/programs/madeleine-brand/2010/10/06/party-at-the-la-times-frat/

shecky naw (tremendoid), Thursday, 7 October 2010 00:09 (4 years ago) Permalink

Pouring over an article, are they?

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 7 October 2010 00:13 (4 years ago) Permalink

LOOK OUTSIDE YOUR WINDOW DUDE
(lol kpcc you're better than that)

shecky naw (tremendoid), Thursday, 7 October 2010 00:15 (4 years ago) Permalink

Hahaha

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 7 October 2010 00:18 (4 years ago) Permalink

Access to the website, and all our exclusive stories, pictures and videos, costs just £1 for 24 hours, or £1.99 for a four-week subscription.

http://www.newsoftheworld.co.uk/notw/public/nol_public_news/1011912/Our-guide-to-your-brilliant-new-website.html

James Mitchell, Thursday, 14 October 2010 10:14 (4 years ago) Permalink

After Mr. Michaels arrived, according to two people at the bar that night, he sat down and said, “watch this,” and offered the waitress $100 to show him her breasts. The group sat dumbfounded.

“Here was this guy, who was responsible for all these people, getting drunk in front of senior people and saying this to a waitress who many of us knew,” said one of the Tribune executives present, who declined to be identified because he had left the company and did not want to be quoted criticizing a former employer. “I have never seen anything like it.”

This passage really drops the ball by failing to clarify whether breasts were shown or not.

buju_stanton (Hurting 2), Thursday, 14 October 2010 16:15 (4 years ago) Permalink

Dumbfounded...by breasts?
"I had never seen anything like"... those breasts?

buju_stanton (Hurting 2), Thursday, 14 October 2010 16:16 (4 years ago) Permalink

GILLIAN ANDERSON Actress: 'The Independent cares about the things I care about, and so does i.'

JAMIE THEAKSTON Broadcaster: 'At last, a paper that recognises that people in a hurry don't have to be treated like idiots'

JAMES NESBITT Actor: 'The Independent is my favourite paper but sometimes I don't have time to get through it. For those occasions, i is just what I need'

PETER YORK Social commentator: 'We live in a time of radical solutions - and this is one. I love the idea of a modestly priced newspaper for people who can actually read.'

NOEL GALLAGHER Musician: 'It's a top idea to have a paper for clever people who can't be arsed to spend hours reading every day'

RONNI ANCONA Actress and author: 'The launch of a new newspaper happens only once in a generation and I'm breathless with excitement for the launch of i. It's everything I've been waiting for'

CLAUDIA WINKLEMAN Broadcaster: 'I'm properly excited about i. It sounds like the kind of paper for a girl like me.'

DOM JOLY Comedian and journalist: 'i is a breath of fresh air in the quality newspaper world - all the best of the 'Independent' in a concise read. I is very excited....."

ROSS KEMP Actor: 'I wish i the very best of luck. It's aimed at real people living real lives, and it deserves to succeed'

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/press/from-tomorrow-iii--a-new-daily-newspaper-for-20p-2109899.html

James Mitchell, Monday, 25 October 2010 09:22 (4 years ago) Permalink

"I is very excited....."

you can tell he's a comedian

incredible zing banned (history mayne), Monday, 25 October 2010 09:24 (4 years ago) Permalink

"It's aimed at real people living real lives".

Really narrow niche market, this.

James Mitchell, Monday, 25 October 2010 09:34 (4 years ago) Permalink

er, bite the guardian's style much??? jeez

progressive cuts (Tracer Hand), Monday, 25 October 2010 09:36 (4 years ago) Permalink

Sounds more like a Metro that you have to pay for.

James Mitchell, Monday, 25 October 2010 09:49 (4 years ago) Permalink

Can't work out if Noel Gallagher's trying to zing "clever" people or thinks he is one of them.

Tilting at Bushmills (onimo), Monday, 25 October 2010 10:33 (4 years ago) Permalink

Newspaper extinction timeline (click the image there for a PDF)

http://rossdawsonblog.com/weblog/archives/2010/10/launch_of_newsp.html

StanM, Tuesday, 2 November 2010 19:31 (3 years ago) Permalink

Have seen a few graphs like this, and they almost always extrapolate out a steady decline at current rates, and then wait until that hits zero and proclaim that d-day. But actually papers will die long before that -- you don't keep a huge newsroom going on a circulation of 10,000, for instance. 2019 seems wildly optimistic, basically.

stet, Tuesday, 2 November 2010 20:18 (3 years ago) Permalink

I am the crime correspondent and report on crime stories worldwide.I have broken exclusive news stories through my extensive network of contacts.My information led to Sky News being the first to report that the July 7 events in London were the work of terrorists. I also broke the news of death of the Queen Mother and the murder of Jill Dando among a long list of scoops.I have reported extensively from Portugal on the disappearance of Madeleine McCann and interviewed Robert Murat. I also covered the Suffolk murders.

Calumny (stevie), Monday, 8 November 2010 23:15 (3 years ago) Permalink

'rock & roll part 11'

also what's with 'GAQRY_GLITTER'

NI, Tuesday, 9 November 2010 09:20 (3 years ago) Permalink

Pulitzer-worthy journalism courtesy of my local newspaper.

Matt DC, Tuesday, 9 November 2010 11:20 (3 years ago) Permalink

fuck it just exterminate all kids, no kids=no paedos.

I see what this is (Local Garda), Tuesday, 9 November 2010 11:29 (3 years ago) Permalink

i don't even have kids, i just don't want paedos taking my parking space.

r|t|c, Tuesday, 9 November 2010 14:01 (3 years ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

Groundbreaking and revolutionary stuff, here:

Monday’s box flagged up the worst Christmas cracker jokes members of the i team had come across, and we picked up the baton online and asked followers of @TheIPaper, the official i Twitter account, for their own entries. Below are a small selection of those received, and an embedded widget with a live feed of new ones.
http://blogs.independent.co.uk/2010/12/21/thats-a-cracker-your-least-favourite-christmas-jokes/

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 22 December 2010 08:08 (3 years ago) Permalink

NOEL GALLAGHER Musician: 'It's a top idea to have a paper for clever people who can't be arsed to spend hours reading every day'

this reads like something from the 'inner life of noel gallagher' thread. amazing.

NI, Wednesday, 22 December 2010 09:09 (3 years ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

Eddy Cue on the webcast looks like a mirror universe Dave Foley. This can't go well.

http://www.thedaily.com

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 16:40 (3 years ago) Permalink

Basically this is like about as good an idea in 2011 as buying Myspace was in 2006.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 16:43 (3 years ago) Permalink

The Q&A is going so awkwardly.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 16:44 (3 years ago) Permalink

Asked by the FT about The Daily's demographic targeting, their answer is "everybody".

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 16:48 (3 years ago) Permalink

"You can click on an ad, and it turns into a video"

Amazing.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 16:50 (3 years ago) Permalink

I hate it when that happens.

Mark G, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 16:54 (3 years ago) Permalink

Looks like Murdoch is in the midst of 'dropping the kids off at the pool'. UNGGGGGGGH.

champagne in the arse (suzy), Wednesday, 2 February 2011 17:05 (3 years ago) Permalink

The webcast is a rebroadcast from earlier, but stay tuned for the Q&A - it's when it becomes really clear that their plan is falling apart.

Quick estimate of the figures is that they need one in every 30 iPad owners to pay and keep paying for it to break even.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 17:10 (3 years ago) Permalink

Been playing with the Daily here. It's total shit. It crashes all the time, the UI is this horrible car-crash between PDF pages and iPad, it crashes all the time, it's boring and it crashes. all. the. time.

stet, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 17:24 (3 years ago) Permalink

Today's editorial:

New times demand new journalism. Modern technology has given us more ways to tell stories than ever before — words, pictures, audio, video and interactive graphics. The Daily will deliver them all.

These amazing times also demand new ideas, and The Daily will deliver those too.

We live at a moment of unprecedented social and technological transformation, of political tension in the United States and upheaval abroad. These times call for arguments that push beyond calcified partisanship and the political battles of yesteryear. We need new voices that inform, entertain and provoke.

On these pages you’ll find views from across the political spectrum. They will come from across cultures and generations, across America and the world.

Here you will read reviews of books that matter. Pieces that explore religious faith. And history stories that illuminate where we come from.

You will also find The Daily’s own point of view. We will crusade for reforming America’s broken schools so we can remain the world’s pre-eminent economic and technological power. We will fight for sensible immigration reform and smart environmental laws. We will push for policies that give Americans the maximum possible freedom in their personal lives. And we don’t believe that expanding government is the solution to most problems.

Above all else, we will stand for freedom and with those who seek it. We believe America is exceptional, and must retain its unique role as global leader.

Not everyone will agree with us. But we know that, from the clamor of debate, new and world-changing ideas emerge. The Daily looks forward to being your guide and companion as our new era begins.

Fox News for Wired subscribers, then.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 2 February 2011 18:19 (3 years ago) Permalink

Shall I pitch them the Jesus Rides Dinosaur story, or have they already done that?

champagne in the arse (suzy), Wednesday, 2 February 2011 18:26 (3 years ago) Permalink

Awesome:

James Mitchell, Thursday, 10 February 2011 07:32 (3 years ago) Permalink

haha is that what it looks like on the newsstand?

max, Thursday, 10 February 2011 07:41 (3 years ago) Permalink

Sadly not, just seen a copy.

James Mitchell, Thursday, 10 February 2011 09:54 (3 years ago) Permalink

It's not hitting the level of solemnity here, going "Ttty tyrtyty yttyty tty tyyt tytyty yttyty", really, is it?

Mark G, Thursday, 10 February 2011 10:13 (3 years ago) Permalink

thank thank thank you thank you really thank you thank you you thank thank you is a bit much. It's not going to sell that many papers.

stet, Thursday, 10 February 2011 11:42 (3 years ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

James Mitchell, Monday, 7 March 2011 11:36 (3 years ago) Permalink

new york times paywall is going up : /

On NYTimes.com, you can view 20 articles each month at no charge (including slide shows, videos and other features). After 20 articles, we will ask you to become a digital subscriber, with full access to our site.

j., Thursday, 17 March 2011 17:29 (3 years ago) Permalink

It would be a fine system, if every other large online newspaper wasn't completely free.
Oh, I read my 20 articles? Guess I'll head over to CNN, NPR, USA Today, BBC, etc etc

juicebox, Thursday, 17 March 2011 18:21 (3 years ago) Permalink

didn't they try that before and lose a ton of money

three megabytes of hot RAM (abanana), Thursday, 17 March 2011 22:31 (3 years ago) Permalink

No, that was a case of them thinking the world was dying to pay lots of money for the insightful wit and wisdom of Maureen O'Dowd.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 17 March 2011 22:32 (3 years ago) Permalink

"For the next three weeks Jay Leno stands in for Jeremy Clarkson"

Well done The Sunday Times, repurposing columns from your sister US papers for a country that has no clue who Jay Leno is.

James Mitchell, Sunday, 20 March 2011 08:55 (3 years ago) Permalink

you know who jay leno is, i know who jay leno is, and i don't think we're so bleedin exceptional (besides, he's been on top gear so i'm guessing that's part of the reason for the substitution)

Ward Fowler, Sunday, 20 March 2011 10:03 (3 years ago) Permalink

Suppose Clarkson's column being printed in the New York Post would make less sense.

James Mitchell, Sunday, 20 March 2011 10:17 (3 years ago) Permalink

Yeah, Jay Leno's quite well known to Top Gear viewers, and Sunday Times readers aren't yer "no idea what goes on in other countries" types, as a rule.

ailsa, Sunday, 20 March 2011 12:05 (3 years ago) Permalink

Belatedly catching up with the Society of News Design's best newspaper design winner for 2010. Portugual's i launched in 2009 - phenomenal work to turn this kind of thing around daily:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/lmarques_/sets/72157625931753217/

Alba, Sunday, 27 March 2011 11:20 (3 years ago) Permalink

HOUSES THAT LOOK LIKE PEOPLE

James Mitchell, Thursday, 31 March 2011 08:36 (3 years ago) Permalink

lebedev paid too much imho

Romford Spring (DG), Thursday, 31 March 2011 11:58 (3 years ago) Permalink

RIP. they would have to do this on april fool's day, confusing the boundaries of fact and fiction even in their death throes.

joe, Friday, 1 April 2011 16:23 (3 years ago) Permalink

rot in piss

black bloc bologna (blueski), Friday, 1 April 2011 16:24 (3 years ago) Permalink

Sad for the staff and their families, but this is a great opportunity for other newspapers to pick up some of their readers. I hope the Guardian has a strategy fot this.

Alba, Friday, 1 April 2011 16:28 (3 years ago) Permalink

It's a newspaper?

James Mitchell, Friday, 1 April 2011 16:29 (3 years ago) Permalink

Worst front page splash ever?

Terrible nonsensical headline and a photo of a 14 year-old fruity girl? Plus points for the double Roo joke, though.

James Mitchell, Monday, 4 April 2011 08:11 (3 years ago) Permalink

Agree.

(except unsure what 'fruity' means here)

the pinefox, Monday, 4 April 2011 09:21 (3 years ago) Permalink

A Private Eye term for the sort of teenager who gets her picture on the front of the Telegraph on A level results day.

James Mitchell, Monday, 4 April 2011 09:23 (3 years ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

Feed her some fruit.

James Mitchell, Thursday, 21 April 2011 08:12 (3 years ago) Permalink

http://www.guardian.co.uk/help/insideguardian/2011/apr/27/guardian-local-update

Guardian kills its local project because it's "not sustainable". Where does that thinking end then, eh?

stet, Wednesday, 27 April 2011 12:46 (3 years ago) Permalink

I'd guess that Dave Hill's London blog is safe, though.

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 27 April 2011 12:55 (3 years ago) Permalink

the guardian as a whole isn't sustainable. they should give a better reason why they picked this from among their many unprofitable activities.

joe, Wednesday, 27 April 2011 13:04 (3 years ago) Permalink

Ooh, a big gypsy sex cheat!

Mark G, Wednesday, 27 April 2011 13:07 (3 years ago) Permalink

Weird how they don't explain AT ALL what the criteria for continuing it were, why those criteria weren't met, etc.

40% chill and 100% negative (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 27 April 2011 16:12 (3 years ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/greenslade/2011/jun/09/daily-record-mediabusiness?CMP=twt_fd

In June 2001, the Record was selling an average of 596,000 copies a day. In April this year, the latest ABC figure, it sold just 312,000. [...]

I can see that the Record, in concert with all the red-tops in Britain, has lost its way - and there is no apparent turning back.

So, and I know this is going to upset the journalists who work there (plus others who don't), there is no genuine point to the Record.

I have no especial brief for Trinity Mirror - as I must have made clear endless numbers of times on this blog - but its willingness to continue publishing the Record and Mail could be viewed as an act of charity.

1. the guardian's circulation is 263,000, nearly 50,000 less than the daily record despite a larger target market in the whole of the uk
2. what a cunt

joe, Thursday, 9 June 2011 16:20 (3 years ago) Permalink

3. he wears stupid waistcoats

40% chill and 100% negative (Tracer Hand), Thursday, 9 June 2011 16:43 (3 years ago) Permalink

4. Glass houses, stones, etc.

stet, Thursday, 9 June 2011 17:35 (3 years ago) Permalink

I think allot of industries have to adapt or die these days - ie. the music industry. I think there is still a desire for local news but not necessarily in print

Latham Green, Thursday, 9 June 2011 17:41 (3 years ago) Permalink

So apparently we missed this last week? Good luck building a sustainable business model there guyz.

Matt DC, Monday, 20 June 2011 13:44 (3 years ago) Permalink

what are they supposed to do?

blueski, Monday, 20 June 2011 14:21 (3 years ago) Permalink

they've been "digital first" since 2006 or something, so i'm not really sure what they're announcing now. i think it's just the CEO trying to make it look like he's got a strategy other than merely managing decline. although - and i've bored on about this before, sorry - the guardian would be financially very healthy if they hadn't made their stupid private equity deal.

the print edition will include less 'news' and more analysis.

lol everyone says this when they realise things are going to shit because they've sacked all the reporters, cf the independent's viewspaper. comment is cheap, but facts are hard to come by.

elsewhere, they announced that their recruitment advertising had fallen by £41m, but they are giving job ads away for free at the moment. i guess if you're the sharpest business brain you're not likely to be attracted to a hippy outfit like the graun.

joe, Monday, 20 June 2011 14:43 (3 years ago) Permalink

so was the times paywall the total fucking disaster everyone predicted? haven't heard much gloating so i presume it wasn't that bad

Once Were Moderators (DG), Monday, 20 June 2011 14:54 (3 years ago) Permalink

i want the times paywall to succeed, less because i care about the times and more because i want cory doctorow to be wrong about everything

☂ (max), Monday, 20 June 2011 14:55 (3 years ago) Permalink

anyone planning to see the NYT documentary? I feel I couldn't care less about it.

already president FYI (Dr Morbius), Monday, 20 June 2011 14:57 (3 years ago) Permalink

I've seen it; it's not bad but it's really insular. You'd think the Times was pretty much the only paper in the world facing these things.

stet, Monday, 20 June 2011 15:05 (3 years ago) Permalink

so was the times paywall the total fucking disaster everyone predicted? haven't heard much gloating so i presume it wasn't that bad

London Times? From what I can tell it's neither abject disaster nor roaring success, but they won't break their subscription figures down (79,000, but no-one knows how many are discounted, special offers etc) so no-one can really tell how much money is coming in (like it's def not enough to turn a profit, but it could be anywhere between beggaringly little or a promising amount).

Here's the story, most things I saw were similarly hesitant.

portrait of velleity (woof), Monday, 20 June 2011 15:22 (3 years ago) Permalink

2 months pass...

Well done, the Evening Standard:

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 23 August 2011 07:59 (3 years ago) Permalink

There's a really fucking weird interview with Dick Cheney and his daughter Liz in today's Sunday Times Magazine. All about his "lifetime in public life" and the day the family feared could be his last: turns out it was 9/11. Really makes them both out to be creepy and out-of-touch.

Then in the review section of the paper Andrew Sullivan absolutely destroys him in an article entitled "Dastardly Dick, America's Worst Vice President".

It's almost like someone at News International is annoyed Cheney's book went to the competition.

James Mitchell, Sunday, 4 September 2011 08:02 (3 years ago) Permalink

Oh god I saw an article about that parachutist, but the paper here just showed a photo and the article which I thought was awful enough - to have video AND COMMENTS!? Thats just horrible.

Silent Hedgehogs (Trayce), Sunday, 4 September 2011 08:37 (3 years ago) Permalink

(lol "the paper here" makes it sound like the entirety of Australia has a single newspaper. Um, I sppose if you count Murdoch press as a single cthulubeast it isnt too far from true, mind you)

Silent Hedgehogs (Trayce), Sunday, 4 September 2011 08:38 (3 years ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

Is there a thread for the prolonged death of the cheese farmer?

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 25 October 2011 06:34 (3 years ago) Permalink

I can't work out what's worse, the fact that he was paid to write that shit or that he was prepared to put his name to someone else writing that shit.

Ned Trifle X, Tuesday, 25 October 2011 06:45 (3 years ago) Permalink

Grab a slice and cook it in some leftover bacon juices.

That kicks Krispy Kreme's a*** any day.

James Mitchell, Tuesday, 25 October 2011 07:27 (3 years ago) Permalink

god he's a cunt

The doctor smiled, realizing that he had made his point. (stevie), Tuesday, 25 October 2011 07:34 (3 years ago) Permalink

3 months pass...

A brilliant new-look Mirror website was launched early this morning ... and then, as is traditional in digital publishing, promptly crashed.
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/top-stories/2012/02/08/coming-very-soon-a-brilliant-new-look-mirror-online-115875-23740540/

James Mitchell, Wednesday, 8 February 2012 09:53 (2 years ago) Permalink

RIP

Raymond Cummings, Wednesday, 8 February 2012 12:12 (2 years ago) Permalink

This is going well:

James Mitchell, Monday, 20 February 2012 07:21 (2 years ago) Permalink

first response hall of fame

Wub wub wub wubwubwubwub wub Pzzzzzzz WUBB wubwub (Autumn Almanac), Monday, 20 February 2012 07:43 (2 years ago) Permalink

2 months pass...

Martin Clarke v interesting at Leveson today http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/interactive/2012/may/09/martin-clarke-witness-statement-leveson-inquiry

stet, Wednesday, 9 May 2012 16:05 (2 years ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

NOLA Times-Pic dropping its printed product back to 3x/week, reportedly cutting newsroom staff by 1/3.

Trey Imaginary Songz (WmC), Thursday, 24 May 2012 15:59 (2 years ago) Permalink

Advance also said Thursday that three major daily newspapers that it owns in Alabama will switch to publishing three days a week as part of a new focus on online news: The Birmingham News, The Huntsville Times and the Press-Register of Mobile.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g-VEJIvNQKJKPe6Pz4fWFot76Iyw?docId=ecc3151fb82e44dd98446f33dd4258c7

curmudgeon, Thursday, 24 May 2012 18:40 (2 years ago) Permalink

Meanwhile, Warren Buffett is buying newspapers:

Buffett is adding to Berkshire’s newspaper holdings with the $142 million deal announced May 17 for Media General Inc. (MEG) publications including the Richmond Times-Dispatch of Virginia. The billionaire, who bought the Buffalo News in 1977 and said in 2009 that newspapers have the potential for unending losses, is now betting that papers with a community focus can profit as they change their models.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-05-24/buffett-says-free-news-unsustainable-may-add-more-papers.html

o. nate, Thursday, 24 May 2012 20:57 (2 years ago) Permalink

I think he's right that there's still a void to fill in terms of local/community information, and probably a way to make money off this, but I'm not clear on how he thinks existing newspapers are going to fill that void without going bankrupt.

this guy's a gangsta? his real name's mittens. (Hurting 2), Thursday, 24 May 2012 21:15 (2 years ago) Permalink

Yeah, I'm not sure if he knows either.

...Buffett wrote in a letter to editors and publishers of Berkshire’s daily newspapers. "We want your best thinking as we work out the blend of digital and print that will attract both the audience and the revenue we need."

o. nate, Thursday, 24 May 2012 21:19 (2 years ago) Permalink

I thought AOL's "Patch" was a perhaps good idea that was ATROCIOUSLY executed. But something like that could work maybe, a sort of national network of local news sites, taking advantage of certain scalable aspects while keeping the content completely local and locally reported.

this guy's a gangsta? his real name's mittens. (Hurting 2), Thursday, 24 May 2012 21:28 (2 years ago) Permalink

patch may be good in theory except for the part where huffpo hired a bunch of 23 year olds right out of college to run the sites and expected them to turn a profit immediately

fapper don (J0rdan S.), Thursday, 24 May 2012 21:53 (2 years ago) Permalink

I think a lot of Brooklyn and Queens neighborhoods would support more extensive and better quality local coverage, just for example. The big dailies mostly stick to the *trendy* angles on brooklyn and all but ignore queens. No great source for real local news. The Brooklyn Paper seems spotty. Highly literate and interested populace, big city.

this guy's a gangsta? his real name's mittens. (Hurting 2), Thursday, 24 May 2012 21:56 (2 years ago) Permalink

patch is terrible in theory too, because the economics just don't work. there's no way to make it add up.

well, it could plausibly work in major cities, everything after that, forget it.

stet, Thursday, 24 May 2012 23:51 (2 years ago) Permalink

piscesx, Friday, 25 May 2012 01:28 (2 years ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

Dead newspapers, dead Middle American democracy

http://www.salon.com/2012/06/11/dead_newspapers_kill_democracy_dead/singleton/

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Monday, 11 June 2012 17:47 (2 years ago) Permalink

http://www.nola.com/business/index.ssf/2012/06/times-picayune_employees_to_le.html#incart_river

They just canned a bunch of the staff

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 13 June 2012 04:00 (2 years ago) Permalink

times-picayune pretended the BP oil spill didn't happen until the national media picked it up. seriously. there was a tiny story on the rig explosion and then nothing for like two weeks. in a town/state utterly subject to the sordid whims of energy companies. weird huh.

i know i should be all wringing my hands on the decline of professional journalism or something but if the t-p is an example of modern american newspaperdom just let the whole thing die.

adam, Wednesday, 13 June 2012 20:32 (2 years ago) Permalink

2 months pass...

Yeah, AEI link, but:

The blue line in the chart above displays total annual print newspaper advertising revenue (for the categories national, retail and classified) based on actual annual data from 1950 to 2011, and estimated annual revenue for 2012 using quarterly data through the second quarter of this year, from the Newspaper Association of America (NAA). The advertising revenues have been adjusted for inflation, and appear in the chart as millions of constant 2012 dollars. Estimated print advertising revenues of $19.0 billion in 2012 will be the lowest annual amount spent on print newspaper advertising since the NAA started tracking ad revenue in 1950.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 10 September 2012 19:59 (2 years ago) Permalink

Oof.

Chewshabadoo, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 00:32 (2 years ago) Permalink

Surprising that they were doing so well in 1999.

get you ass to mahs (abanana), Tuesday, 11 September 2012 01:52 (2 years ago) Permalink

2005 as the start of the steep decline sounds right.

a regina spektor is haunting europe (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 11 September 2012 01:55 (2 years ago) Permalink

1999 was right before things really hit an infrastructure tipping point in terms of the Net as high speed delivery, IIRC.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 11 September 2012 01:59 (2 years ago) Permalink

I've mentioned this on other threads, but an indispensible site for following industry triage/amputation/death/autopsy: http://jimromenesko.com/

Irwin Dante's Towering Inferno (WmC), Tuesday, 11 September 2012 01:59 (2 years ago) Permalink

3 months pass...

Innovative approach from the Irish newspaper industry: demand money from people who link to your content.

http://www.mcgarrsolicitors.ie/2012/12/30/2012-the-year-irish-newspapers-tried-to-destroy-the-web/

the definite listicle (seandalai), Thursday, 3 January 2013 11:22 (1 year ago) Permalink

"We're probably not going to lose a lot, but we aren't going to make much either."

REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:21 (1 year ago) Permalink

5 months pass...

My local daily newspaper, The Oregonian, just announced that it will soon curtail home delivery to its subscribers to 4 days a week. Oh, it will continue to print daily editions. It just will refuse to home deliver these printed editions 3 days a week. Lucky subscribers will, however, be treated to full access to the paper's website, while non-subscribers will be given limited access and told to fuck off.

At the same time the publisher announced that the paper will degrade the quality of its product by making even more layoffs to its staff than the massive layoffs already made in prior years, which sure as shit means the website won't have many resources behind it, and the paper will shrink even more.

No reductions in retail cost were announced to accompany these reductions in service and quality. As a longtime subscriber I'm not very impressed with this strategy.

Aimless, Saturday, 22 June 2013 03:54 (1 year ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

http://jimromenesko.com/2013/08/03/red-sox-owner-john-henry-agrees-to-buy-boston-globe-for-70-million/

NYT buys for $1.1 billion, sells 20 years later for $70 million. Ch-ching!

things are going to get better or worse (WilliamC), Saturday, 3 August 2013 13:03 (1 year ago) Permalink

Meet your new Washington Post owner!

More accurately Bezos himself but anyway.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 5 August 2013 20:43 (1 year ago) Permalink

Apparently he cashed out a load of stock the other day

https://twitter.com/tcarmody/status/363444171601747968

And there you go.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 5 August 2013 20:44 (1 year ago) Permalink

Purchase price $250 million.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 5 August 2013 20:44 (1 year ago) Permalink

lol for a min i thought robin was rich

..it would have sounded about as heavy as Talulah Gosh. (Algerian Goalkeeper), Monday, 5 August 2013 20:45 (1 year ago) Permalink

holy shit

Autumn Almanac, Monday, 5 August 2013 22:43 (1 year ago) Permalink

john henry of course also owns Liverpool FC

..it would have sounded about as heavy as Talulah Gosh. (Algerian Goalkeeper), Monday, 5 August 2013 22:48 (1 year ago) Permalink

The paper that broke Watergate is worth exactly 1/4 as much as the app that makes your iphone photos look like bad early 80s snapshots. #trenchantsocialcommentary

HOOS next aka won't get steened again (Hurting 2), Monday, 5 August 2013 23:02 (1 year ago) Permalink

3 months pass...

This impenetrable drivel from Montgomery would be infuriating if it wasn't so depressing.
http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/content/who-needs-sub-editors-read-david-montgomerys-latest-unsubbed-2200-word-missive-future-local

stet, Thursday, 21 November 2013 13:14 (11 months ago) Permalink

I honestly don't even understand what he's talking about.

Matt DC, Thursday, 21 November 2013 13:39 (11 months ago) Permalink

I mean the fact that he uses the phrase "one-stop shop for content" shows he doesn't have the faintest conception of how people actually consume digital media, even at local level.

Matt DC, Thursday, 21 November 2013 13:40 (11 months ago) Permalink

tl, dr

http://i26.tinypic.com/2udyu5e.jpg (stevie), Thursday, 21 November 2013 14:22 (11 months ago) Permalink

10 months pass...

My old paper, where I spent 7 great years, is no more.

http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/mediawire/275033/another-alt-weekly-folds/

(As noted there, the SFBG also folded this week.)

Not surprising, but sad. Especially because the paper was actually making a small profit.

something of an astrological coup (tipsy mothra), Thursday, 16 October 2014 18:36 (2 weeks ago) Permalink


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