A friend of mine announced that Kentucky Oaks winner Rachel Alexandra might be shut out of this Saturday’s Preakness by owners looking to enter additional horses in order to prevent the filly from making the field, which is capped at 14 horses. When I responded that I’d heard a radio report that Rachel Alexandra would be running, he was incredulous, and showed me a story in today’s St. Petersburg Times to verify his information.
“Right,” I responded with a tinge of smugness. “That was from this morning.”
To settle the disagreement, I quickly found an update on ESPN.com, which confirmed the radio report:
Posted in blogging, media criticism, newspaper websites, Online journalism, Print Journalism
Tagged ESPN.com, horse racing, Kentucky Oaks, media criticism, Online journalism, Pimlico, Preakness, Rachel Alexandra, St. Petersburg Times
A couple of articles worth your while regarding the financial troubles of newspaper industry and what has brought them (in part) to this point:
The Fed shouldn’t save newspapers because they “are not too big to be allowed to fail.” (Newsosaur)
American journalism is in trouble because of “editors and reporters focused more on winning prizes or making television appearances.” (Walter Pincus, Columbia Journalism Review)
Posted in media criticism, news industry, Newspaper industry, newspapers, Out of print, Print Journalism
Tagged Alan Mutter, Columbia Journalism Review, Journalism, news industry, Newsosaur, Newspaper industry, newspapers, Walter Pincus
Alan Mutter explains why newspapers have it all over Amazon’s recently released Kindle DX, a larger version of the electronic tablet.
Nothing beats the convenience and portability of a well-organized newspaper.
A newspaper requires no batteries or AC current, can be read anyplace in all-but-blackout conditions, can be folded (unlike a jumbo Kindle) for convenient transport, can be clipped for coupons, can catch canary poop and can be responsibly recycled into cute flower pots (see below) in a way that electronic detritus cannot.
Plus, you can’t smash a bug with Kindle.
Gina Chen of Save the Media has an outstanding post today that tells newspapers what she as a consumer expects from them.
Here’s Chen on:
Wanting original, well-reported articles:
While we still have a newspapers, don’t fill it just with 6-inch stories and snippets of yesterday’s news. I’ve read those already online. What I haven’t read already online is enterprise, a well-written profile that really digs deeply into a person, investigative pieces that expose government waste, inequity and greed. The short, shallow story isn’t going to save newspapers. And if that’s all I get in the print, honestly, I don’t need the print at all. …
… There’s really no excuse for running most feature wire stories these days with a few exceptions, such as movie openings or some science and technology pieces. And if you must run it, please make sure it has some additional information to localize it. That can be as simple as: Can I buy the product here? Is the trend happening here? What’s the local impact. And, please, please, don’t tell me you don’t have enough reporters because you’ve laid them all off or cut their hours or furloughed them. That may be true, but as a consumer, I don’t really care. …
… Every reporter should be doing enterprise reporting on his or her beat. Some stories may be simply noticing a trend in a community; that’s fine. Not every story has to be Watergate. But there should be many stories that tell me something I can’t get anywhere else.
On integrating print and Web:
Posted in aggregation, hyperlinks, investigative journalism, media criticism, news industry, newspaper cutbacks, Newspaper industry, newspaper websites, newspapers, Online journalism, Print Journalism
Tagged Gina Chen, investigative journalism, news industry, newspaper websites, Online journalism, print, Save the Media
A couple of days ago, I posted a link to Martin Langeveld’s assertion that only 3 percent of newspaper reading happens online. Dan Thornton counters with a compelling argument that the comparison between print and online readers isn’t very useful. And that the numbers Langeveld uses as the basis for his calculation may be way off:
If you’re taking shared readership of print products into account, then surely you’d also need to factor in people reading newspaper website content without ever being logged as a visitor to the site?
That includes people blocking cookies, people using RSS, people reading reposts of newspaper content (Great example of the spread of multimedia news by Martin Belam by the way), people reading content via aggregation sites and site scrapers etc, etc.
And by the time you’ve taken into account all the vagaries of print readership figures (which aren’t a bad guide to something so difficult to measure), and then taken into account the vagaries of online measurement (Less inaccurate, but still pretty fairly vague), and using data and research from 2+ years ago (But that’s probably the most recent readily available) it starts to be apparent that quoting a an exact figure is pretty irrelevant – especially when some people will undoubtedly take it as gospel.
Posted in news industry, Newspaper industry, newspaper websites, Print Journalism
Tagged Dan Thornton, Martin Langeveld, news industry, Newspaper industry, newspaper websites, Nieman Journalism Lab, Online journalism, Online Journalism Blog, Print Journalism
If you believe the estimates of Martin Langeveld, print is outdrawing websites by a country mile:
All generally accepted truths notwithstanding, more than 96 percent of newspaper reading is still done in the print editions, and the online share of the newspaper audience attention is only a bit more than 3 percent. That’s my conclusion after I got out my spreadsheets and calculator out again to check the math behind the assumption that the audience for news has shifted from print to the Web in a big way.
Not that Langeveld is advocating a contrarian’s course of action in response to the “death of print” meme:
The fact remains, of course, that not only is online revenue alone insufficient to sustain news operations, but the print operations of our larger newspapers, having lost most monopoly pricing power, are not sustainable either, recession or no recession. Finding a solution for these industry problems demands careful monitoring of where the audience is actually spending its time and attention. While the audience’s online attention seems to be a surprisingly low 3 percent, online is clearly where the audience is migrating to. In my mind, as I’ve written pretty consistently since last September, the solution is an online-print hybrid in which print is consolidated to one, two or three editions per week, not seven.
From the “sensitivity during hard times” file, this Virginian-Pilot headline: Pilot to lay off 40, but executives say outlook is brighter.
As the opening graf of Philip Walzer’s article attests, the layoffs “will be the third wave of job cuts at The Pilot in the past six months.”
Nevertheless, The Pilot’s financial outlook is brightening, said Maurice Jones, the president and publisher.
Combined, the newspaper and its associated companies turned a profit in the first quarter of the year, said Jones, who declined to disclose figures. March was The Pilot’s most robust month in at least a year, he said, with every unit recording a profit.
But the profits, Jones said, still fall short of the company’s targets, required to pay taxes and other bills and equipment costs, including the modernization of its printing press. That, he said, triggered the latest cutbacks.