Thursday, May 30, 2013

Guardian open journalism: Three Little Pigs advert - video

guardian reporting:
This advert for the Guardian's open journalism, screened for the first time on 29 February 2012, imagines how we might cover the story of the Three Little Pigs in print and online. Follow the story from the paper's front page headline, through a social media discussion and finally to an unexpected conclusion.

Are coffee shops the future of all media and other questions to which the answer is 'definitely not'

theMediaBriefing reporting:
The Guardian briefly set the Twittersphere alight today with the launch of its coffee shop in London's hip Shoreditch district, allowing armchair comedians to ask whether the venerable liberal newspaper group has finally cracked and genuinely gone mad.

The more prosaic answer to what's going on is that Guardian News & Media is investing heavily in its brand, something most publishers are relatively shy to do. This follows The Guardian's Masterclass learning sessions, Open Days for readers and the launch of Witness, an impressive way to harness readers' comments, pictures and views.

Remember when national newspapers all bought TV advertising to boost sales? The Guardian's Little Pigs TV ad is a rare example of a news brand seriously investing in above-the-line consumer marketing.

As a business it may have a long way to go to reaching sustainability and this isn't the answer - it may even add to the problem by adding even more costs - but let's not criticise GNM for trying something new and boosting its brand.

Digital is used for direct response more than offline marketing

eMarketer reporting:
Marketers are backing up the excitement around mobile, social and video with more ad dollars. Of the 20 major US brands surveyed by the Association of National Advertisers in March 2013, 65% said they were increasing their investments in mobile—the highest percentage of marketers upping investments in any channel studied. Only 10% planned to decrease mobile spend.
And marketers seem to have no hesitations about social, as 55% of respondents said they were putting more dollars to the format, while no advertisers reported decreasing social investments.

Video rounded out the top three channels with the greatest number of marketers increasing spend. Two out five marketers were upping their investment in video.;postID=7732252125601714259;onPublishedMenu=allposts;onClosedMenu=allposts;postNum=1;src=postname

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Who is a Journalist? Here We Go Again…

Digital media Law Project reporting:
When considering whether to grant legal protection for the gathering and dissemination of information, the question should not be the person performing those acts, i.e., “who is a journalist?,” but “is this an act of journalism?” Before the user-generated content revolution, focusing on journalists (i.e., people defined by their institutional affiliations) served as a functional if rough approximation of the true interests at stake (i.e., debate on issues of public concern). That is no longer the case...
But professional journalists now share the information ecology with a much wider array of members of the public who care about particular communities and issues. These individuals can often speak from deep personal knowledge and identify important information that others might miss. And from the Rodney King incident forward, there has been recognition that sometimes informing the public is not about education and professional commitment, but about being in the right place at the right time. Institutional media organizations still play an important role in conveying information gathered by individuals to the public at large, but the Internet provides many other paths to an audience. The citizens involved in bringing this information to the public don't need to be called "journalists" for the information they possess to have value (although these people are entitled to respect and are free to argue their right to that title). Regardless of names, the manner in which this information of public importance is gathered and conveyed is entitled to no less protection than traditional newsgathering.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The newsonomics of selling Main Street

Nieman Journalism Lab reporting:
Ken Doctor:
Main Street is finally going digital. With the digitization of smaller business, newspaper companies believe they’ve found that elusive third leg of a business model — a model that could keep them standing, maybe even taller, into the second half of this decade.

...The business push goes by several names: marketing services, digital services, “becoming a regional agency.” Those terms all point to the same business, which targets small and medium-sized businesses (SMB). It’s a category of businesses many dailies long ignored — in the good times of 20-percent-plus profits, why focus on pennies, nickels, and dimes when the dollars were busting down the door? When Macy’s, Best Buy, and Safeway were subsidizing ink by the barrel, paying high rates, insertion orders were worth five figures.
Let’s look at the newsonomics of selling Main Street:
  • Well over a thousand new dedicated-to-marketing-services salespeople are roaming Main Street. The strategy espoused by Hearst-owned market leader LocalEdge: Hire a sales staff separate from the newspapers’ ad sales group, and use a different brand in the marketplace to differentiate the marketing services offer from that of traditional advertising sales. The Star Tribune’s chief revenue officer Jeff Griffing explains why he hires non-ad salespeople — like former 3M salespeople — to sell marketing services: “They are used to walking into businesses and being truly consultative.”
    LocalEdge is a Buffalo-based Yellow Pages company that Hearst bought 10 years ago and has made into the newspaper industry’s marketing services leader; it now syndicates its platform and training. CEO Jeff Folckemer says that there are 1,000-1,200 full-time marketing services salespeople pitching its products. The Star Tribune (Radius) and the Dallas Morning News (508 Digital) have each hired more than two dozen full-time marketing services salespeople for their big 2013 push; both use the LocalEdge platform. Other LocalEdge affiliates include Morris Communications, Wehco Media, Newsday, and the New York Daily News.
  • Price points range from $300 to $3,000 a month, depending on the degree of customization offered...

The newsonomics of value exchange and Google Surveys

Nieman Journalsim Lab reporting:
Ken Doctor:
What happens when a reader hits the paywall?
Only a small percentage slap their foreheads, say “Why didn’t I subscribe earlier?” and pay up. Most go away; some will come back next month when the meter resets. A few will then subscribe; others just go elsewhere.
So what if there were a way to capture some value from those non-subscribing paywall hitters — people who plainly have some affinity for a certain news site but aren’t willing to pay?
Welcome to the emerging world of value exchange. It’s not a new idea; value exchange has been used in the gaming world for a long time. As the Zyngas have figured out, only a small percentage of people will pay to play games. So they’ve long used interactive ads, quizzes, surveys, and more as ways to wring some revenue out of those non-payers.
It’s a variation on the an old saw that says much of life boils down to two things: money and time. It also brings to mind the classic Jack Benny radio routine, “Your Money or Your Life.” If people won’t pay for media with currency, many are willing to trade their time...
Now the idea is arriving at publishers’ doorsteps. It is being tested mainly, but not exclusively, as a paywall alternative. Yet, as we’ll see it, there may be many other innovative uses of time-based payment.
In part, this is part of the digital generational shift we might call “beyond the banner.” Static, smaller-display advertising is increasingly out of favor, with both prices and clickthrough rates moving deeper into the bargain basement. But marketers want to market, readers want to read, and viewers want to watch, so new methods that combine the marketing of brands and offers and the go-button on media consumption are au courant.
That’s where value exchange fits. Publishers are seeing double-digit, $10-$19 CPM rates from value exchange, and that’s more than many average for their online advertising. Annual revenues in the significant six figures are now flowing in to the companies that have gotten in early on the business.
The big player in publisher-oriented value exchange is Google Consumer Surveys (GCS), a year-old brainchild born out of the Google’s 20-percent-free-time-for-employees program (and first written about here at Nieman Lab). GCS now claims more than 200 publisher partners, including the L.A. Times, Bloomberg, and McClatchy properties. It says it has so far exposed some 500 million survey “prompts” to readers....

At The Miami Herald, tweeting’s about breaking news in the a.m. and conversation in the p.m.

Nieman Journalism Lab reporting:
Have you ever tried tweeting at a major news organization? How often have they responded or retweeted? Probably not often — and that corresponds to the findings offered by a GW/Pew study of 13 major news organizations which found “limited use of the institution’s public Twitter identity, one that generally takes less advantage of the interactive and reportorial nature of the Twitter.”
So when I went to The Miami Herald as part of a much larger project looking at newsrooms and news buildings, I was pleasantly surprised to find it, like some other newspapers, has actual people manning Twitter — breaking news “by hand,” interacting with readers, and having a genuine public conversation over the main @miamiherald Twitter account, with its 98,000 followers. (Aside from Twitter, The Miami Herald is making ample use of its Facebook account, posting new stories once an hour and relying on feedback from the 46,000-plus audience for stories and tips — and as an extension of the Public Insight Network pioneered by American Public Radio.)
In Miami, Twitter takes on two distinct modes during the day — in the morning as headline service and in the afternoon as conversation. “In the morning, we try to get the audience between 6 and 8 a.m. on Twitter and on the website,” says continuous news editor/day editor Jeff Kleinman, who says he wakes up at 4:30 to begin monitoring the news.
Kleinman uses Twitter to break news — whether or not it’s on the paper’s website. “We want to be first,” he noted, as he quickly dashed off a tweet about a boat fire in front of me. More often then not, though, there will be a link to a short two-paragraph story begun on the website. But not always...

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

News industry revolution must begin with evolution

INMA reporting:
As Earl Wilkinson, executive director and CEO of INMA, put it in his closing presentation of the 2013 World Congress: “The mood of the news industry is different than four years ago, when media leaders felt desperate and ready to hit rock bottom. Today, they’re anxious and hungry.”
This was manifest by a breeze of fresh air and opportunity from the North, when Anna Rastner, editor of digital content at Expressen in Sweden, and Espen Egil Hansen, executive editor of Verdens Gang (VG) in Norway, took the stage.
The two major Scandinavian dailies each presented a strong case of how video is being integrated as a core element of their news organisations. Rightfully so.
Video — online and mobile — is growing exponentially. In 2011, video exceeded half (51%) of the global consumer Internet traffic for the first time. Just one year later, by the end of 2012, mobile video reached 51% of mobile traffic.
You could say that it took roughly 15 years (from the mid-’90s) for online video to become the major part of Internet traffic. Whereas it took a mere five years A.i. (Anno iPhone) for mobile video to exceed 50%.
By 2017, two-thirds of mobile data traffic will be video, a 16-fold increase between 2012 and 2017. In a couple of years, 1.2 million minutes of video content will cross the network — every second!
“We come from a tradition where we write articles, but this is changing now,” Espen Egil Hansen said.
He stressed the importance of using video to develop stronger storytelling. “Text and video, together, is more effective than text or video,” he concluded.
Anna Rastner, during her presentation, advocated to go all out: “Train all your newspaper reporters and photographers to do video,” she said... 

New York Times CEO calls digital pay model “most successful” decision in years

paidContent reporting:
In a commencement address to business students at Columbia University, New York Times CEO Mark Thompson hailed the company’s digital subscription strategy and dismissed skeptics who say media outlets can’t reinvent themselves.
“[T]he launch of the pay model is the most important and most successful business decision made by The New York Times in many years. We have around 700,000 paid digital subscribers across the company’s products so far and a new nine-figure revenue stream that is still growing.”
Thompson added that media pundits predicted that the Times’ subscription model, which is based on a so-called “metered paywall,” would be a disaster when it launched in 2011. Since then, he noted, it’s become a standard for the rest of the newspaper industry. ”In modern media, you could make the case that the best way forward is to listen carefully to what the industry has to say and then do the exact opposite.”
Thompson also equated disruptions in the news business to what’s happening in other industries, like high tech and car rental, and said that risk-taking is the secret of America’s culture of innovation and entrepreneurship.
Commencement speeches are, by nature, restricted to this sort of soaring stuff. A skeptic, however, might note that the New York Times‘ digital subscription model has already begun to plateau and that the company is still shedding ad dollars and assets. Likewise, Thompson, who arrived from the BBC only months ago, still has to prove he can run an institution that isn’t supported by mandatory contributions from the public.
But the tone of Thompson’s speech is the right one, and it’s welcome to see the New York Times waving its banner not just in the safe halls of Columbia’s journalism school but among the MBA crowd as well. If you want to read more of what he said, here’s a longer excerpt:...

E-book sales almost doubled in 2012, rising to $3.04 billion

LA Times reporting:
The total revenue generated by e-book sales in the U.S. in 2012 was $3.04 billion, a 44.2% increase over the year before. That gain was announced in the preliminary year-end report released Wednesday by BookStats, a joint statistics project between the Assn. of American Publishers and the Book Industry Study Group.
In 2012, e-book sales accounted for 20% of trade book sales revenue. Overall, trade book sales rose 6.9%. Trade books are those found in brick-and-mortar bookstores and online retail booksellers.
And the increase in e-book sales did not take a bite out of print books -- at least, not in the aggregate. Print sales were $12 billion in 2012; they were $12 billion in 2011, too.
Hardcover sales rose 1.3% to $5.06 billion. Trade paperbacks edged up 0.04% to $4.96 billion. Figures are not yet available for mass market paperbacks, but their sales are expected to fall. Most industry watchers believe that mass market paperbacks stand the most to lose as the popularity of e-books continues to rise.
Publishing often has a single runway hit that swells its annual numbers; in recent years Harry Potter, "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and "The Da Vinci Code" have greatly improved sales. There's no question that in 2012, publishers have the "50 Shades of Grey" books to thank for an improved bottom line.
As would be expected with a rise in e-book sales, online book sales rose 21.3% in 2012.,0,1144088.story

Pottermore Wins Digital Strategy of the Year Award

goodEreader reporting:
The Bookseller Industry awards has just occurred in the United Kingdom and Pottermore came away with a huge victory. The Harry Potter focused digital company beat out some hefty competition by Random House, Harlequin, Kobo, Penguin, and Bloomsbury.
The Pottermore strategy as a gateway to sell ebooks has been a bit of a case study on how to start an e-commerce site and maintain control over the entire experience. Normally, books are sold and distributed by the publisher and seldom does the author maintain any control over the companies that send the books to libraries and bookstores, let alone international rights and sales.
The essence of Pottermore was to serve as an online destination for people to buy the entire Harry Potter series and their spin-off books. The crew at Pottermore established their own prices and were not held at gunpoint by any outside publishing interest. The books are compatible with almost every major e-reader and tablet, in Kindle and EPUB formats. The one big factor is Pottermore is hardware agnostic, they don’t lock you into a specific device to enjoy reading the books.
Being able to truly enjoy a book, means that you should be able to load it on your phone, tablet, and e-reader without having to rely on bulky third party programs like Adobe Digital Editions. Pottermore took the innovative approach of ditching Digital Rights Management altogether and instead went with digital watermarks. These watermarks bind the owners information on the cover of the book, putting the onus on them if they decide to pirate the books.
The one thing Pottermore did was adopt the trans media approach, which few companies in the world have been able to match...

Monday, May 20, 2013

Responsive Design Aims to Solve the Multiscreen Dilemma

eMarketer reporting:
Device fragmentation is a tenacious problem for content providers and advertisers. The rapid adoption of smartphones and tablets, the growing popularity of internet-connected TVs and the promise of web-enabled everyday devices like watches and eye glasses means digital content will need to be served to an ever-increasing number of screens, according to a new eMarketer report, “Responsive Design: A Solution for Publishers, a Question for Advertisers.”
Responsive web design—a single-URL site configuration that enables content providers to dynamically adjust content to fit the screen of any internet-enabled device—is seen as a way of addressing the challenge of a multiscreen environment.
To understand which screen sizes were most widely used by consumers worldwide, and determine where to begin when thinking about responsive design, app measurement firm Flurry Analytics analyzed the top 200 device models as measured by active users on Flurry’s app platform, which represented more than 80% of all usage. Dissecting the data by operating system showed the vast majority of Android and iOS devices in use on the Flurry platform—and all Window devices—were “medium phones.”

Ad serving systems are not fully ready for responsive sites and neither are marketers. Serving display ads to a fluid content environment requires extra coding and tagging on the publisher’s side. Ad servers are likely to evolve quickly to relieve this burden. However, marketers are wary of the idea of responsive ads for fear a dynamic “one size fits all” ad will fail to take the site user’s context into account. For now, advertisers prefer to stay with fixed ads and publishers are happy to accommodate them.

New York Times Plans to Expand via Digital into Other Countries

goodEreader reporting:
The New York Times attracts over 40 million readers to its website every month and the company sees it as a drop in the bucket. The newspaper is planning to expand into foreign language markets with a localized edition and unique content written by reporters based in those countries.
One of the big reasons why the New York Times is expanding its digital unit outside of the US is because 30% of its internet traffic stems from outside the US. This will increase the amount of advertising revenue generated. NYT obtained $191 million via advertisements in Q1 2013 and the expansion into the Portuguese market in the next few months should bolster the bottom line.
Other markets of consideration according to Marc Frons, the senior vice president and chief information officer at The New York Times, are “Arabic, Chinese, Korean and Spanish. We don’t know the timing [for launch], these things are a little more complicated than just going abroad.”
Currently the NY Times has close to 700,000 active digital subscribers that can read as much as they want on the website every month.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Back to the future: What if the ‘mass media’ era was just an accident of history?

paidcontent reporting:
When it comes to the traditional media business, there is often a pervasive nostalgia for “the good old days,” when a handful of newspapers and TV networks ruled over the media landscape and profitability was so taken for granted that huge family dynasties with names like Sulzberger and Bancroft were built on that foundation. Many media executives no doubt dream about magically returning to such a time. But what if those days were just an illusion — a kind of accident of history? What would that mean for the future of media?
This idea has come up before, but I was reminded of it when I read a Nieman Journalism Lab post about some research being done by Lee Humphreys, looking at the way that communication — and particularly personal communication, through letters and diaries and other pre-digital tools of expression. Although this doesn’t seem to have much to do with how we use ultra-modern services like Twitter or Facebook, there is a lot more to it than you might think.
The idea that mass media was a kind of historical accident has been raised by others as well, including Tom Standage of The Economistboth in his upcoming book, called “Writing on the Wall,” and in a series of pieces in the magazine about the nature of digital media. The latter described how the interconnected qualities of social media and “networked journalism” mirrored the way that media used to function before newspapers were invented, when the local tavern or coffee house was the center of the information ecosystem. The title of his book...
If this is in fact what we are experiencing — that is, the unbundling or dismantling of a mass-media infrastructure that was constructed to serve the needs of readers (and advertisers) at a specific time in history — then what can we expect? Among other things, probably further downsizing and layoffs and bankruptcies of media companies whose size and cost structure and print focus no longer corresponds to the needs of the marketplace...

Hearst Moves from ‘Months to Moments’

Digiday reporting:

Troy Young has spent nearly 20 years on the digital side of the fence. Now, he’s going over to traditional media, as the ex-Say Media executive takes on the new post of president of digital media at Hearst Magazines.
In announcing the appointment, Hearst Magazines president David Carey praised Young’s “pure-play” expertise. Like all traditional media companies, Hearst is in the midst of a transition. It is still a magazine-heavy company, but it also has over two dozen online properties.
The challenge, according to Young, is to get all those pieces to work together. It is also to embed a startup mindset into a large, successful media company with its own established ways of doing things.
Going from relatively small digital companies to a behemoth like Hearst will be a big change. Is the hardest challenge for Hearst this big media transition from analog to digital?
The biggest challenge is moving from months to moments. Corporate cultures and media types create structures and behaviors. We know we have great brands. We create great content. Changing the reflexes and muscles to develop relationships with consumers every moment rather than every month is a very different thing. We need to fundamentally change the basis for how we create relationships. You then work backwards from there.
Can Hearst make as much money in digital as traditional media?
They can make as much...

Saturday, May 11, 2013

15 Alarming Stats About Banner Ads

Digiday reporting:
The banner ad is now 18 years old. It has become a symbol of all that’s wrong with online advertising. It is more often than not devoid of creativity; it stands out as an intruder on webpages; and it is mostly ignored by readers.
And yet it continues to be a bulwark of the online advertising system. Many publishers would like to change that. (See Buzzfeed cobbling together a network of like-minded sites to run its sponsored content posts.) Here are 10 facts about banners that might make you wonder if there’s got to be a better way.
1. Over 5.3 trillion display ads were served to U.S. users last year. (ComScore)
2. That’s 1 trillion more than 2009. (ComScore)
3. The typical Internet user is served 1,707 banner ads per month. (Comscore)
4. Click-through rates are .1 percent. (DoubleClick)
5. The 468 x 60 banner has a .04 percent click rate. (DoubleClick)
6. An estimated 31 percent of ad impressions can’t be viewed by users. (Comscore)
7. The display advertising Lumascape has 318 logos. (Luma Partners)
8. 8 percent of Internet users account for 85 percent of clicks. (ComScore)
9. Up to 50 percent of clicks on mobile banner ads are accidental. (GoldSpot Media)
10. Mobile CPMs are 75 cents. (Kleiner Perkins)
11. You’re more likely to survive a plane crash than click a banner ad. (Solve Media)
12. 15 percent of people trust banner ads completely or somewhat, compared to 29 percent for TV ads. (eMarketer)
13. 34 percent don’t trust banner ads at all or much, compared to 26 percent for magazine ads. (eMarketer)
14. 25-34-year olds see 2,094 banner ads per month. (ComScore)
15. 445 different advertisers delivered more than a billion banner ads in 2012. (ComScore)

U.K. Publishers Hit Book Sales Record for 2012 Amid Digital Growth

LONDON - British publishers brought in their highest-ever annual sales in 2012, with stronger sales for digital formats outweighing a slight decline in printed books.
Overall, spending on printed and digital books rose 4 percent to more than $5.1 billion (£3.3 billion) last year, the Publishers Association said late in the week.
Printed books saw a 1 percent sales drop to $4.5 billion (£2.9 billion), but digital sales jumped 66 percent to $640 million (£411 million).
The Publishers Association didn't mention any specific book titles as drivers of growth, but Nielsen Bookscan previously said that EL James' Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy topped the British chart of retail book sales.
Other big sellers of 2012 included Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games series and JK Rowling's first non-Harry Potter novel, The Casual Vacancy.
Digital formats, including e-books, audiobooks and online book subscriptions, accounted for 12 percent of the total value of sales in 2012, up from 8 percent in 2011 and 5 percent in 2010.
Sales of consumer e-books, which are in the field of mainstream fiction and non-fiction, were up 134 percent to $336 million (£216 million).

Page Views Are Dead, Long Live Engagement

SAYDaily reporting:
For the last 10 years, media watchers and content creators have been talking about how consumers are time-poor, and advertisers have to fight that much harder to get the attention of consumers. And yet media is not sold based on how much time people spend engaging with the content. I'm not talking about buying a 30-second TV spot, or a 15-second radio ad here. I'm talking about people reading an article and taking the time to comment on it or share, people playing a game and posting a high score, or watching a video – again and again.
Advertisers are still, despite all the research into online habits, buying into supposed impact strategies. The worst of these are homepage takeovers (often found on content site homepages – the traditional portals and media properties). Never mind that the average time spent on these content pages can be fractions of a second. If you go to MSN's homepage, you're probably there to go to Outlook (formerly Hotmail), similarly with Yahoo! or AOL. If you're on a showbiz gossip site like MailOnline, TMZ or DigitalSpy, you’re busy scanning down the page for headlines or images that catch your eye...
... The reason we talk about Point-of-View publishing here at Say Media, is because it represents the value that lies in premium content. Premium content creates an engaged readership – which by extension makes for better advertising opportunities. When we talk in page views and uniques alone, we ignore the magic at work in the editorial offering and the relationship that a content property has with the reader. It's also interesting to note that ad-supported content online is deemed wholly acceptable by the Internet public. A recent U.S. poll showed that 92 percent of those surveyed felt that free content was 'very' or 'somewhat' important to the Internet, and 75 percent of the same sample said they preferred an ad-funded model....

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Why the outlook for tablet magazines is getting better

TabTimes reporting:

Tablet readers will pay for content

Adobe’s study further details that readers are increasingly prepared to spend money on these tablet magazines.
When looking at the consumer’s willingness to pay for digital content, Adobe found that this stood at 65% of consumers in February last year before rising to an “all-time high” of 80% figure a year later.
“It is also interesting to compare subscriptions against single issues,” said Schambers-Lenox. “A year ago, that ratio was at 2:1 but now it closer to 3:1. People are definitely seeing value in digital magazines and want to have a long-term relationship with publishers.”
Adobe’s research found that total digital readership has grown an average of 30% across all publishers in the last year, with some publishers seeing that figure rise as high as 150%.
“We think that tablets are driving this growth. The iPad mini came in the fall and that’s definitely driving a huge number of readers, but there’s also a bit of movement around Kindle Fire and the Nexus 7.”

PDF rendering is a thing of the past

Some publishers are having more success with tablet publishing than others; case in point, the BBC's car magazine Top Gear.
Just three months ago, the magazine was reliant on using PDF replicas for its tablet magazine, something Hearst and others have previously admitted to using, but it has since moved to using Adobe’s DPS.
The results have been staggering. Adobe says that total tablet magazine downloads have since risen 48% with paid-downloads and single-issue sales up by 62% and 79%, respectively. Ad revenue has also increased by an impressive 200%, while the reader time-per issue has quadrupled from 10-12 minutes to 40 minutes.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Millennials expect a steady diet of quick-hit, social-media-mediated bits and bytes.

CJR reporting:
However, studies show that several emerging shifts—from print and broadcast television to digital news, from computers to mobile devices, and from homepage browsing to social-media filtration—are all widespread among millennials.
How does it change the value of journalism to strip away the context that a credible publication provides? A reader who comes through a social-media side door is given no sense of a story’s relative importance. A blog post on the latest fad diet that would never have made it onto the front page, or even into print at all, can go viral and attract far more readers than the latest news from Syria. Readers who no longer page through a newspaper or sit through the evening news are bound to miss some information they might not click on but could benefit from knowing nonetheless.
To get a sense of these evolving patterns of news consumption, and their implications, I interviewed some two dozen young journalists (mostly editors of new digital publications), as well as social-media directors, digital-media executives, academics, and researchers.
I found four overlapping, and mutually reinforcing, trends:
  • Proliferation of news sources, formats, and new technologies for media consumption
  • Participation by consumers in the dissemination and creation of news, through social-media sharing, commenting, blogging, and the posting online of photos, audio, and video
  • Personalization of one’s streams of news via email, mobile apps, and social media
  • Source promiscuity Rather than having strong relationships with a handful of media brands, young people graze among a vast array of news outlets.

Newspapers need to stop lying to themselves — and to advertisers — about their circulation

paidContent reporting:
A trade group says that newspapers like the New York Times have seen large increases in circulation, but that’s partly because they are allowed to count their readers multiple times. The industry needs to do better.
There has been much hue and cry about the New York Times passing USA Today in circulation to become the second-largest newspaper in the United States, thanks in part to a boost from the NYT’s digital susbcription plan, which reportedly boosted circulation to almost 2 million daily readers. These numbers are notoriously dodgy, however — and if anything, they have gotten worse instead of better with the arrival of online measurement and new digital devices.
The latest circulation gains for the NYT and others came courtesy of the Alliance for Audited Media (formerly known as the Audit Bureau of Circulations), an industry group composed of advertising agencies and publishers. The group noted that the numbers are not really comparable to the previous year’s results for a number of reasons, including the fact that some newspapers have launched new subscription formats, stopped printing every day and so on.

Counting readers multiple times

As Edmund Lee at Bloomberg points out, the AAM survey — which is somewhat ironically locked behind a paywall — also allows publishers to count their readers multiple times, according to rules adopted recently by the group. In other words, newspapers can count someone who reads the newspaper in print, on the web and on their Kindle as three separate readers. But doesn’t this inflate their readership numbers unreasonably? It sure does. The bottom line is that no one really knows what the “real” readership numbers are for newspapers.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

5 qualities of innovative leaders in today’s media

Poynter reporting:
What qualities distinguish successful leaders in media today?
I see five qualities common among the current crop of innovators — at a time when it’s perhaps even harder to lead, given all the challenges the industry faces. As I distilled these qualities, I also realized they are distinctly Naughtonian.

Innovators run at what is growing.

The strongest pull in the news industry, as in any disrupted business, can be to preserve the part of the business that, though shrinking, provides the biggest share of revenue. Innovators, such Clark Gilbert at Deseret Media, know this is a seductive mistake and focusing most of your energy on preserving what is shrinking is a strategy for slow death....

Hearst Gets Its Million Digital Subscribers

All Things D reporting:
Last year, Hearst Magazines head David Carey said his company would have a million people subscribing to its tablet editions by the end of 2012.
That didn’t happen, and they ended December with something like 900,000 subscribers. But now it has: Carey said Hearst hit the one million mark at the end of March.
“I’m glad we got there,” Carey said. “We were just 90 days late.”
In February, at our D: Dive Into Media conference, Carey said he thinks that in 2016, Hearst will have three million digital subscribers, or about 10 percent of his entire base.

'National Geographic' Named Best Tablet Magazine of 2013

Mashable reporting: he winners of the 2013 National Magazine Awards, often called the "Oscars of the magazine world," were announced in a ceremony held in midtown Manhattan Thursday night. National Geographic, which nabbed the most nominations of any magazine, also picked up the most awards, including two for its digital media efforts.
Nat Geo was recognized for General Excellence in four categories: News, Sports and Entertainment Magazine; Photography; Tablet Magazine; and Multimedia, the last of which for the "Cheetahs on the Edge" feature in its November issue.
ASME judges said Nat Geo won the tablet category because it offers everything one could want in a tablet magazine: in-depth reporting, world-class photography, beautiful design, smooth navigation, immersive interactivity, social media integration, plus engaging extras like a cheetah darting across a cover.

The full list of winners is here: