Journalism’s competition doesn’t even look like journalism

social media

Journalism is being replaced

Newspapers and other media entities have had to continually expand their view of who their competition is ever since the web was invented. In the old days the competition was other newspapers, and then TV, and then after the web it became other news websites, or maybe Yahoo or Google.


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The end of the printed newspaper


The death of newspapers is sad, but the threatened loss of journalistic talent is catastrophic.

By Clay Shirky: The Roanoke Times, the local paper in my family home, is a classic metro daily, with roots that go back to the 1880s. Like most such papers, it ran into trouble in the middle of last decade, as print advertising revenue fell, leaving a hole in the balance sheet that digital advertising couldn’t fill. When the 2008 recession accelerated those problems, the Times’ parent company, Landmark, began looking for a buyer, eventually selling it to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Media Group in 2013. The acquisition was greeted with relief in the newsroom, as Buffett had famously assured the employees at his earlier purchases “Your paper will operate from a position of financial strength.” Three months after acquiring the Times, BH Media fired 31 employees, a bit over a tenth of the workforce.



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Meganews kiosk prints magazines and newspapers on demand

Meganews Magazines

Meganews Magazines is the world’s first automatic magazine newsstand.  It offers a new way to distribute magazines and newspapers with their print on demand technology.  The technology will reduce the mountains of wasted paper from unsold magazines at newsstands since their vending machine only prints publications when they’re ordered, in just two minutes.

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Drones to deliver newspapers in France

A drone delivering a newspaper.

It looks like news delivery is another job being obviated by robots.  In Auvergne, France, residents get their daily news the old-fashioned way: through newspapers. But the delivery of said newspapers, apparently, will soon be executed with the help of high tech — because it’ll be done with the help of drones.



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Paywalls rise for online news readers

More newspapers adding paywalls to their online subscriptions.

Several newspapers have recently announced plans to erect paywalls to extract subscription revenues for their most loyal online readers. While the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Telegraph, and the Sun are adding paywalls other paywalls are being tweaked.  The NYT paywall is getting less porous, while Andrew Sullivan’s is being tightened up, with a new $2/month option to complement the existing $20/year price point.

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Researchers analyzing New York Times archives to predict the future

Researchers are creating software that analyzes 22 years of New York Times archives, Wikipedia and about 90 other web resources to predict the future.

Microsoft and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology researchers are creating software that analyzes 22 years of New York Times archives, Wikipedia and about 90 other web resources to predict future disease outbreaks, riots and deaths — and hopefully prevent them.



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Longform meltdown at major newspapers in the U.S.

The number of stories longer than 2,000 words published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Times, from 2003 to 2012.

Major U.S. newspapers have seen a sharp decline in the last ten years in the stories that are published that contain over 2,000 words.  The Los Angeles Times has seen an 86% drop, The Washington Post down 50% and The Wall Street Journal down 35%.



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The challenge of media alignment

Twitter has the opportunity to become extraordinarily aligned with their best users.

Advertisers are the actual customer of the TV networks – not the viewers.  Both of these groups had similar goals for a long time.  Viewers wanted shows they wanted to watch and advertisers wanted lots of viewers to watch these shows.  So the TV networks used ratings as a proxy for advertiser happiness and there wasn’t much of a problem.



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Majority of large newspaper groups experimenting with paywalls


About 20 percent of the 1,400 or so daily papers in the U.S. will charge for online access by the end of the year.

Last week McClathy’s announced it will expand its paywall testing to four more sites and now the Chicago Tribune’s plans to charge readers for some of its online content.  This further proof that a majority of large newspaper companies now believe in some form of paid online content.

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Web Advertising Surpassed Newspaper Ad Revenue in 2010


The IAB estimates that Internet-ad revenue in 2010 surpassed that of newspapers.

Double-digit growth of web advertising resumed in 2010 in the U.S.   According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, web advertising outpaced traditional media and surpassed newspaper ad revenue for the first time.


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