Taipei’s free municipal wi-fi provides real-time data for cell phones, computers and even TV sets

Taiwan's capital city, Taipei, has launched a free municipal wi-fi network, which provides cell phones, personal computers, video game consoles and even television sets with everything from typhoon alerts to store coupons….

Public-private partnerships drive mobile phone innovation in Taiwan

TAIPEI–Innovations in mobile phone applications here are driven and enabled by public-private partnerships at the national and local levels. At the national level, the government embarked on an eTaiwan initiative ten years ago, which evolved in 2007 into Mobile Taiwan, according to Steve Lin of the country's Ministry of Economic Affairs, during an interview here. Now, Mobile Taiwan is being implemented in Mobile Education and in access to all government services via handheld devices. And these government efforts, says Lin, are to create catalysts to drive innovation in "value-added" industries, patterned after US national laboratories and incubation centers….

Media executives, policymakers and scholars assess public media’s future

Public broadcasting executives, journalists, policymakers, and others met in USC's Washington, DC office on Monday, July 25 to discuss growing threats to public broadcasting stations across the US. The program featured opening remarks by Geoffrey Cowan, director of the Center on Communication Leadership & Policy and was organized by Adam Clayton Powell III, CCLP's senior fellow who has served in top positions at several commercial and public news organizations. USC Annenberg's Dean Ernest J. Wilson III also participated in the forum. Tom Thomas, Co-CEO of Station Resource Group, observed that while public broadcasters have always had aspirations that exceeded available…

Newspapers Dying: The demise of geographic exclusivity

There are so many reasons why print newspapers are failing. Mostly, people complain that newspaper content is available on the Internet for free, so subscribers need not subscribe any longer, even though in reality circulation revenues were usually not more than 20% of total revenues. Or, more importantly, that classified advertising, the largest profit contributor of any newspaper, has been outdone by the efficiency of transactional web sites for homes, autos and jobs. Then there was the retail consolidation of big box stores, who hardly advertise, and chain department stores (only one advertiser rather than three or four). And the…

Landmark FCC Report highlights CCLP research

For its new report assessing the national and local media landscape and offering policy recommendations on how to preserve the public's access to news and information, the Federal Communications Commission appointed award-winning journalist and CCLP Senior Fellow Cinny Kennard to the working group that led research, conducted interviews and drafted the document. FCC chairman Julius Genachowski publicly thanked Kennard in his remarks at the FCC meeting in Washington D.C. on June 9. Kennard (pictured below) assembled a research team that included CCLP junior fellows Rebecca Shapiro and Monica Alba, along with research associates Cater Lee and Sarah Erickson. They investigated…

15 Ways to Generate Revenue for a Community News Web Site

My co-author María J. Vázquez and I recently finished writing a case study on a hyperlocal community news site in Long Beach California, the Long Beach Post. As with so many of these entrepreneurial sites, the founders were doing a great job of journalism and technology. The challenge was on the business and sales side. How do you effectively generate revenues to sustain the enterprise? Here are 15 suggestions to consider if you are building a community news web business, or any web content business for that matter. 1. Webinar. Find a topic of interest to an audience and a…

CCLP researchers examine viability of online community news sites; Report profiles challenges facing Long Beach Post

As local print, radio and television news divisions struggle to stay afloat, online community news sites are increasingly filling the gaps left by traditional news outlets. But, do these hyper-local, online startups offer a sustainable business model different from their traditional counterparts? The USC Annenberg Center on Communication Leadership & Policy (CCLP) seeks to answer that question with the publication of a new case study on the challenges facing the Long Beach Post, an online news website launched in 2006. The report, "Online Community News: A Case Study in Long Beach, California — What It Takes to Survive and Thrive"…

It’s about time newspapers started fighting back

The editor of the Tampa Tribune, Janet Coats, got the attention of her Facebook friends last Saturday when she posted this message: "Janet is preparing to fire a shot over the bow." I figured Janet's staff at the Tribune was about to score a scoop in the Sunday paper. But a quick check of Tampa Bay Online didn't turn up anything that matched her provocative post. Then I saw it. "This Newspaper Is Fighting Back." And before I read on, a quick word came to mind: "Yes!!"…