Communication Leadership Blog
Gawker Media has added another vertical to its lists of blogs, the likes of which include the media gossip Gawker and gadget-friendly Gizmodo. The newest addition, however, is unique among the offerings because it is a sponspored blog. BloodCopy, the new blog, is an HBO project, completely funded and written by the cable channel to promote its vampire series, True Blood. Gawker's site will feature crossposts from BloodCopy just like the rest of its verticals. Gawker's vice president of sales and marketing, Chris Batty, has stated that the site hopes that such sponsored ads become the major funding for their efforts in the future.
David Kaplan of PaidContent shares his advice for newly hired Jennifer Preston, the New York Times' social media editor. Kaplan notes that many of the ways that newspapers are currently using social media, especially Twitter, are working. Thus, he cautions Preston against trying to "fix what isn't broken" or establish too tight a clamp on what editors and journalists can express in these forums. After all, he contends, people aren't interested in interacting with a faceless institution, but with other human beings. And that's what all that twittering presently offers. Read the PaidContent.org post. -- May 27, 2009.
The New York Times has hired its first ever social media editor. Officially, Jennifer Preston will work to expand "the use of social media networks and publishing platforms to improve NYT journalism and deliver it to readers." Recently, though, Times journalists have leaked unauthorized information via their Twitterfeeds, leaving some to wonder whether Preston's main job isn't to monitor and regulate the use of Twitter and other social media. Perhaps a list of rules regarding social media will be forthcoming.
The European Union is launching a new website aimed at a forum for discussion that transcends language barriers. The new site, funded by 3 million euros from the European Commission and run by 10 journalists, will translate content from among 250 titles that cover news in and around Europe. The site will begin publishing in 10 languages, but expects to cover all 23 of the EU's official languages in the next five years. In response to those who questioned the motives of the venture, EU communications commissioner Margot Wallstrom stated, "It has nothing to do with whether we like what the media writes or not." She said that the goal is simply to "prolong the life" of quality journalism.
In Japan and parts of Europe, advertisers have long used QR codes to create an interactive experience from their printed ads. These QR codes are like barcodes--they appear in print and can link cell phones to specific Web sites. The technology could help advertisers determine what appeals to which consumers, and may even help newspapers make more money off of their printed product.
Vivian Schiller, CEO and President of NPR, argues in an interview that newspapers' best bet is to continue to offer their content for free. She says that there are only a few kinds of content that people have proved willing to pay for online--real-time financial news, some fantasy sports and pornography. As the former head of NYTimes.com, Schiller discusses her advocacy to end TimesSelect. While the service gained the newspaper $10 million annually, it seemed unlikely to grow, and therefore would not prove a useful tool to sustain the newsroom.
The editors of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and the Post Register in Idaho both attribute their extraordinary print subscription numbers to the fact that they only offer free web content to their subscribers. All others have to pay to access their articles online. Their success may be why 28% of newspapers say they are considering instituting online fees, according to a recent AP survey. As Journalism Online CEO Steven Brill put it, "Online fees will give people one less reason to stop subscribing to the [printed] newspaper."
A Spanish court has ruled that newspapers have intellectual property rights over their content. Over two years ago, the editors of 55 newspapers sued a press-clipping service Documentacion de Medios for including their stories as part of the service. Henceforth, any group seeking to use newspapers' material in a similar way will have to get prior consent from the editors.
WASHINGTON -- Speakers at a conference of broadcasters here last week described new revenue sources that may make the difference between profit and loss for U.S. broadcasters.
And there was bad news for streaming media on line -- which turns out to be good news for radio stations.
First, here's a look at that new revenue for television.Actually, it's not that new: it's just suddenly getting bigger - billions of dollars bigger. That new money is from political ads, a revenue stream turning into a veritable Mississippi River of money, and it comes at a time when the local TV ad business is falling rapidly - down 20 to 40% year over year - and may represent the margin of profit for U.S. television stations as early as next year.
Carnegie Corporation taps CCLP for examination of government's response to the crisis in the news industry
From a U.S. Senate subcommittee hearing on the future of journalism to a new tax cut for newspapers signed into law by the governor of Washington state, policymakers nationwide are responding to the crisis facing the news business.
"It's ... a time of real hardship for the field of journalism ..... But it's also true that your ultimate success as an industry is essential to the success of our democracy," President Obama told members of the White House Correspondents' Association.
Thanks to a grant from Carnegie Corporation, the USC Annenberg School for Communication's Center on Communication Leadership and Policy (CCLP) is launching a major new research project to document current and past government engagement in the news industry and assess new policy proposals.