Newspaper Says Threat Of Internet Is Overstated, While Others Team Up To Deal With Internet Challenge

from the a-tale-of-two-newspaper-strategies dept

The internet's ongoing impact on the newspaper business has been covered in great detail over the last few years, as newspapers have struggled to deal with significant changes to their marketplace. While people may still be reading newspapers, the rise of things like Craigslist and basic internet publications are challenging traditional newspaper business models. Of course, different newspapers have very different responses to the challenge. Over in the UK, Trinity Mirror's CEO is saying that the impact of the internet is actually overstated, and, while it does represent a challenge, there's not much to worry in the near future, as newspaper advertising is perfectly safe. That may be true, but if it leads newspapers to assume they can wait before taking on the challenge, it will likely be too late when they finally decide to make the move. Meanwhile, over in the US, some of the big newspaper companies are teaming up to deal with the internet, as Gannett, McClatchy, and the Tribune Company are going to create their own online ad network so advertisers can places ads across all of their properties. It's not the first time these firms have worked together, either, as all three also own a stake in Topix.net, the local news aggregator service. Just doing an ad network, alone, isn't all that interesting, but perhaps combining it with some other innovations shows how stodgy old newspapers are finally starting to shift strategies in face of the internet challenge -- whether or not it's an immediate threat.


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  1.  
    identicon
    misanthropic humanist, Jan 10th, 2007 @ 8:36pm

    need to integrate more

    This market is going into fission. Schism on top of schism. The one that seems to have got it right here in the UK is the Guardian, with GuardianOnline as their web division backed up by a solid base in print. Neither side seems the poor man, they share out resources and integrate content. You can find features appear in both. They don't seem to address two audiences (okay maybe there's a bit more tech in the online part). I think at its root their operation is coherent and properly coupled. Many of the old broadsheets only brought in internet copy as an afterthought and are still working under the schizophrenic mentality that Web is some strange, different and new frontier. You can tell that when you read the print versions - their online content may as well be from a different company.

     

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  2.  
    identicon
    Someone, Jan 10th, 2007 @ 9:07pm

    The newspaper is possibly dying the death, but if it is, its dying a very slow one. The most common place newspapers are 'consumed' is on public transport (I'm FAIRLY sure of this, google with sources if you want to argue), and no matter how easy it is to set up ones laptop on a train, personally (and I'm pretty sure Im not alone here) I'd rather open a newspaper, even if its a fourty minute train ride.

    Anecdotally, most people I know get their online newspapre-esque content from sites completely unrelated to their newspapers, so online newspaper content is unlikey to make a difference.

    Personally I think that the newspaper will not die in our lifetimes, even if 'digital paper' gets invented, because of the difference in the ways we want newspaper news sources and online news sources to be (I'll extend that point if people argue... and if I can be bothered)

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Redbeard, Jan 10th, 2007 @ 10:22pm

    Isn't this like ten years too late to be dealing with?
    Those that get their morning newspaper are going to continue doing so; the ones relying on the net for info, whether fabricated or not, will pretty much continue to do so.

    I think today's college kids on down are so accustomized to Tech that only the radicals will read newspapers to be different.

    Imo, I see newspapers having to reinvent themselves to a particular nitch in society. I do think the paper industries' mocking of "the paperless office" may come back to bite them quicker than anyone imagined.

    Look at what technology has currently phased out or diminished:
    1) Western Union's telegraph like a year or so ago. Turned off supposedly forever. I always wanted to receive a telegraph, now it looks like I never will :-(
    2) Pagers or beepers: whereas nowadays any bubba can get a cell phone, I haven't seen a pager in about 6 years.
    3) Speaking of phones, where can you find a pay phone anymore? Cell phones knocked them (or are knocking them) out also.
    3) Didn't one on the major magazines (Time, Newsweek, US News, or similar) cut back from their weekly frequency to publish every other week? I'm sure there's as much news now as there every was. It's just that mag sales are dropping.

    I think in this age of fast food, fast coffee, and wanting everything NOW, that to wait til the next morning to read the complete story will not work like it used too.

    Newspapers will either have to make a online presence, or find a nitch, like the local news (Mrs. Odday's cat climb a tree. Fire Department called out).
    or customize to a particular group, like Wall Street Journal (rich cats and rich cat wannabes).

    One last thought: after all this - without newspapers, what would we put in the bottom of the bird cages? :-))

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    misanthropic humanist, Jan 11th, 2007 @ 7:20am

    Re:

    "I think today's college kids on down are so accustomized to Tech that only the radicals will read newspapers to be different."


    Interesting. That's how new trends and whole cultural movements start. Some fools believe the media leads the youth, but I've lived long enough to see it happen t'other way about and that's just the way it goes. Before you know it tens of millions of kids eschew their mobile phones and conspicuously sport books and newspapers as a statement of intellectual identity or something. I'm not saying that's going to happen, but as an example of a backlash fashion movement it wouldn't be unthinkable. That's the sort of contingency the astute businessman will spot. Markets can be cyclic and new generations do often take up old torches.


    "1) Western Union's telegraph like a year or so ago. Turned off supposedly forever. I always wanted to receive a telegraph, now it looks like I never will :-("

    It's the little guy in the hat running up and shouting "Telegram for ya mister!" that really made it work imho.

    "2) Pagers or beepers: whereas nowadays any bubba can get a cell phone, I haven't seen a pager in about 6 years.

    No those still exist. Some doctors, fire chiefs and lifeboatmen still carry them. They work an a different (and more reliable) low frequency than the cellphone network.


    "One last thought: after all this - without newspapers, what would we put in the bottom of the bird cages? :-))"

    Four letters, ends in IT " _ _ I T"

     

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