Thursday, July 29, 2010

ABC changes US newspaper circulation rules to include digital reach

U.S. newspapers will completely change they way they report circulation beginning October 1, following changes to circulation rules made by the Audit Bureau of Circulations' board, Editor & Publisher reported.
The changes include newspapers now being able to count one subscribers multiple times; for example, a subscriber may be counted once for his print subscription, once for his e-reader subscription, and so on. This also includes online, mobile and other subscriptions. Another major change is that newspapers may include "branded editions" (products published under a different name, such as a commuter daily) in their total average circulation. "The board's aim is to establish a foundation for the future as more newspapers move to bundled print/digital subscription offers and hybrid publishing plans," the ABC board announced in a press release.


Readers in a dilemma: newspapers or untrustworthy Internet?

Based on a recent report of research carried out by the Center for the Digital Future at University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, consumers seem not to be sure of their preferences.
Only 56% of Internet users ranked newspapers as an important source of information, with an even lower 29% viewing papers as a source of entertainment. 18% withdrew their newspaper subscriptions because "they now get the same or related content online."
When asked what they would do if the print edition of their newspaper stopped, a significant 59% said they would go with the online edition, 37% said they would move on to the print edition of another newspaper, and 22% admitted that they would not miss the print edition of their paper.
With the above statistics, it is somewhat surprising that 61% of these same users find "only half or less of online information is reliable," with 14% believing that "only a small portion or none of the information online is reliable." Only 46% have some degree trust in the Internet, with 9% having no trust whatsoever.
In a twist previously explored by Sfnblog, 49% of internet users admitted to using sites such as Twitter, with only 0% willing to pay for the service. "Online providers face major challenges to get customers to pay for services they now receive for free," said Jeffrey I. Cole, director of the Center for the Digital Future.
"Where are people going to find news and information they trust, in a world with a dwindling number of print publications and an ever-expanding number of online publications?" Claire Cain Miller of the New York Times asked, before answering, in summary of the figures above, that "readers have not yet figured out the answer to that." Can newspapers persuade readers that their online versions are trustworthy?

Source: 2010 Digital Future Report, The New York Times

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Crowdsourcing the World Cup at the Boston Globe

Roy Greene, senior assistant metro editor at the Boston Globe, explained in an article on how the paper used crowdsourcing to complement its World Cup coverage.
He described the four steps the Globe took, starting with creating a simple, web-based questionnaire, to identify readers who were travelling to South Africa. The questionnaire asked for information including full name, hometown, email address, job, plans for the tournament and favourite team, and asked whether respondents would be willing to speak to a reporter. The form was posted on the home page and the soccer page just before the launch of the World Cup, and Greene saved the responses that he thought could be valuable: about a dozen, he specified.
He emailed these people to confirm details and seek photos, and then invited those who "showed potential" to contribute dispatches from South Africa. He explained what the Globe was looking for, "an interesting vignette or encounter during a game or with fans, something compelling about where they were staying or visiting."
The paper received several worthy submissions, and Greene concluded that "overall, this was a fun and colorful slice of the World Cup picture that gave our readers fresh local perspective and a diversion from the yellow cards and penalty kicks." Next time that the Globe makes this type of effort, Greene said, the paper would ask broader questions on the first submission form, to get a fuller impression of the potential contributors, and would make it possible for responders to upload photos via the form.
Many news organisations are looking at harnessing the power of the crowd to improve their reporting, now that so many members of the public are armed with cameras and are easily contactable by mobile phone. Greene writes that he was inspired by Amanda Michel's efforts at ProPublica to encourage reader participation in collaborative reporting projects. Other examples of crowdsourcing include Ushahidi, which offers a platform to allow news organisations and others to invite the public to contribute information which is then aggregated on a map, and which has been used in various crisis situations. A recent experiment at the Journal Register Co to produce its papers using crowdsourcing and free Internet tools was deemed successful.
Using readers as sources seems to be a valid reporting technique to complement, rather than replace, traditional reporting, as long as there is a way to establish that what they offer is accurate, and that their contributions are clearly identified.

Source: Poynter

Monday, July 19, 2010

An open letter on the value of Design

Like many of our colleagues, we read with concern this week’s announcement of Gannett’s plans for regional hubs to build pages for many of their newspapers. This plan is similar to others that have sought to template publications and centralize parts of the creative and production process, or, in some extreme cases, eliminate design and graphics departments.
We all are looking for ways to eliminate inefficiencies to ensure a future for newspapers. However, as leaders of the Society for News Design, we would like to challenge some assumptions at the core of this (and similar) plans, as well as offer some ideas to consider at this critical time — a time when there is a need for relevancy, re-invention and creative solutions.

Beyond layout: Design thinking

This is not merely an aesthetic consideration — but also one of product value and usefulness. If one considers the sole value of design to be making pieces fit on pages, an “assembly line” solution may seem attractive. However, architecting publications to meet reader needs is something more complicated, nuanced and essential.
We see design as identifying and understanding user needs and business requirements, conceptualizing solutions and crafting products that directly address those needs.
Good designers are really visual editors who have a mastery of information graphics, storytelling and story layering forms, illustration, photo editing, typography, use of color as a navigational tool, which are used to achieve these goals. If designers are used solely as decorators or mechanical paginators, their publications are not leveraging their full value.
This is an industry that has been change-resistant and fiercely protective of the status quo. We are at a critical moment. Now is the time to embrace innovators in all roles – not abandon them in favor of homogenization. We would caution our colleagues against promoting a creative “brain drain” in our industry at a time when innovation is so critical to our survival.
Effective designers make the complex easier to understand. We organize and prioritize information and make it accessible. We are early adopters of technology and therefore valuable teachers, developers and inventors. We have been at the forefront of newspapers’ major innovations in printing and new platform development. It is our responsibility to be relevant – and valuable – in our newsrooms, but we need to retain a place at the table.
We are vital in story design. The danger of excessive templating is that it eliminates the conversation about what is the most appropriate form for the story to take, in terms of serving the reader with as much information as possible in the clearest, most memorable way. This is what alternative storytelling achieves, and media companies that have embraced this approach have seen proven gains with readers in terms of how they are received. There is enormous potential here, but it requires intelligent design.
Therefore, creativity should be a driver – not a casualty – of the publication evolution. News designers are uniquely qualified to fulfill the promise of collaboration and innovation needed in this environment. Tim Brown, the CEO and president of IDEO, often talks about the relationship between business strategy and design: In order to do a better job of developing, communicating and pursuing a strategy, you need to learn to think like a designer.

The value of proximity and local-ness

Certainly, there is a place for templating and streamlining. In that context, for pure production, Gannett’s moves may make some sense. Yes, newspapers could centralize or semi-automate some routine functions to drive down those costs. If done correctly, this could free resources to concentrate on content creation and more challenging design issues. While some parts of the paper should be done more quickly, others need to be architected more carefully to maximize impact and understanding.
This is where we see a potential gap.
First, the capacity for front-end design thinking appears to be absent in this equation. At our best, reporters, photographers, graphics reporters, editors and designers collaborate to create effective, cohesive stories. We know from industry research that readers are drawn to stories with visual components and spend more time with them. If we separate the collaborative parties, the planning and reporting at the core of visual journalism will be hampered. Front-end collaboration and shaping becomes much more difficult with this remote communication paradigm.
Second, there’s a high danger of detachment from the needs of readers, who look to us to prioritize and curate information for them. Without a firm understanding of the communities we serve, it seems inevitable that these publications will be compromised. If our information is not seen as authoritative and unique, we lose our diminishing competitive advantage in the crowded information marketplace, where many things are free.
And, we fear for the survival of the “magic” – the surprises that delight readers. When it’s working correctly, design takes our best offerings and tunes them into a final outcome worth more than the sum of the parts. Imagine for a moment how different last week’s much-celebrated Cleveland Plain Dealer front page about LeBron James’ departure might have been were it produced hundreds or thousands of miles away, by a staff tasked with deadlining dozens of other publications — simultaneously.

Multi-platform publishing

While we agree that simplifying the assembly of the newspaper can be part of a smart strategy, if we want to work in many media, we need smart ways to direct content to many platforms. We look at it this way: The media is the message; the design is the messenger.
Newspapers at last have begun to learn: A print report posted online does not make for a very successful website. And yet, don’t newspapers’ multimedia strategies ultimately depend on scaling content from one set of reporters across platforms?
In a Web-first world, reporters need to be focused on efficient, economical information delivery. As their partners, they need print designers who can shape, augment, elevate and craft their material to create rich, vibrant newspapers. That’s a collaborative process, not simple assembly. It frees reporting resources to focus on time-sensitive, template-driven formats like the phone and the Web, while allowing their newspapers to deliver analysis and design in print.
Achieving the efficiencies of a single content center probably requires more, not fewer, designers. As we continue to compete for our readers’ attention with multiple channels, it is easy to make the case that our essential roles as information architects and shepherds of user experiences have never been more important.
And, while we are concerned about corporate decision making, we also know the onus is on designers to broaden their skill sets, to embrace digital and to prove their own worth as journalists. Coupled with the centralization trend have been drastic cuts in training. We urge Gannett and all media companies to restore training as a vital component of newsroom culture, so that forward-thinking organizations such as SND can help create a robust future of journalistic innovation.


Kris Viesselman
President, Society for News Design
Managing Editor and Creative Director, The San Diego Union-Tribune

Stephen Komives

Executive Director, Society for News Design

Source: SND

NEWSPAPER ABCs: Tabloids enjoy World Cup lift in June

The Daily Mirror disclosed an average net circulation of 1,248,919 in June, trumping its previous year high in March, according to the latest round of ABCs figures. Its circulation was up 0.87% on May.
The Sun, likewise, had a good month and its average net circulation of 2,979,999, up 1.5% on May, represented its third highest circulation of the year.
The gulf between The Sun and The Daily Mirror remains seismic and Richard Desmond's fast rising rival The Daily Star failed to gain grown on its two rivals in June.
The Daily's Star’s circulation dipped 1.57% to 809,992. However Desmond has instigated a cover price-drop from 20p to 10p in July in an effort to rocket its circulation towards the one million mark.
The Daily Mirror and The Daily Star suffered in excess of 6% drops on the year, more precipitous than The Sun which was down 1.6% on the year.
The extensive World Cup coverage in the national press failed to provide relief for the quality sector in June.
The Daily Telegraph recorded an average net circulation of 681,322, down 2.45% on May, and its lowest circulation of the year. It also fell a staggering 18.45% on the year.
The Times was down 2.28% to an average net circulation of 503,642, indicating that copy sales of its printed issue have not benefited from consumers now having to register before accessing its online content.
The Guardian suffered the biggest month-on-month fall across all the London-based national daily titles, falling 4.74% to a net circulation of 286,220.
The Independent, in line with its quality rivals, fell 3.79% to an average net circulation of 187,135.
Across the mid-market, the Daily Mail and the Daily Express nudged up slightly from May. The Daily Mail up 0.10% to 2,092,643 and Desmond’s Express also up 0.10% to 664,627.

Source: Brandrepublic

Gannett CEO Dubow: iPad App Will Remain Free, Ad Supported Through Q3

With advertiser interest in Gannett’s USA Today iPad app still running high, CEO Craig Dubow said that the app will remain free and ad supported at least through Q3. USAT has a set of free news and travel apps available across Apple’s portable devices, including the iPhone and iPod touch as well as on Google’s Android mobile system. In the year and a half since the first app was released, the various USAT apps have been downloaded 5 million times, Dubow told listeners on the company’s Q2 earnings call.
During the Q1 earnings, Dubow had said that the company planned to introduce a paid subscription plan for the iPad app by July 5th. But that was said three weeks after the iPad first went on sale and Gannett (NYSE: GCI) hadn’t anticipated that ad inventory on the app would be sold out so quickly and that demand would only rise. So, as we reported last month, plans for paid subscription format for the iPad app was put on hold, at least for the time being.
Among the blue chip advertisers Gannett has lined up, Coca-Cola, Chrysler, Barnes & Noble have signed on as sponsors for the USAT iPad app.
Earlier this month, Gannett announced it would begin testing paywalls at a number of its papers as it seeks to find a model that can benefit all its properties. Gannett is now charging $9.95 per month for full online access to The Tallahassee Democrat, The Greenville News, and The Spectrum. Print subscribers will continue to get free online access.
During the Q&A part of the call, Gracia Martore, president and COO, said that Gannett should have a better sense of what works within three to six months. In terms of examples of ways of attracting paying online readers, Martore offered an example being prepared at The Tallahassee Democrat around sports coverage, which has generally been considered one of the few areas that consumers would pay to receive online news (finance is the other area generally considered unique and essential enough to charge for content).


Friday, July 16, 2010

Century-old Brazilian daily to move entirely online

The Rio de Janeiro-based Jornal do Brasil will stop circulating its 119-year-old print edition and appear only online, O Globo reports. The paper’s owner, Nelson Tanure, says he will set the date for the changeover this week.
Before deciding to end the print edition, Tanure tried, unsuccessfully, to sell the newspaper as it is mired in debt and circulation has fallen to 17,000 during the week and 22,000 on Sundays. According to Globo, the attitude among Jornal’s 180 employees – including 60 journalists – is one of sadness and anxiety.
The current paper has fallen far from its storied past, when it was known for its quality coverage of significant news issues and its memorable editions. One of its most famous is from December 14, 1968, when the military government closed Congress and Jornal do Brasil evaded censors by publishing a “weather report” on its front page, saying the temperature was “suffocating.”

Source: Knight Center for Journalism

Friday, July 9, 2010

How to be a social climber on the digital ladder

There are a variety of ways to participate in or experience news via social media. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, FriendFeed, Yelp, Foursquare, Gowalla... the list goes on. But in what ways should a journalist utilize social technology?
A few years ago, Forrester researchers Charlene Li (a Poynter National Advisory Board member) and Josh Bernoff created the Social Technographics Ladder. This graphic (below) defines the behaviors and interactions associated with social media by placing users into overlapping categories. Each rung on the ladder represents a specific set of behaviors, and people can move up and down these rungs. (The most recent addition to the ladder is the "Conversationalists" category.
How many of these rungs should today's journalist climb? I say every rung above "Inactive." Why? Because while there may be a learning curve for using specific tools, these categories describe behaviors that defined journalism before social media became the "it girl." Here's how each rung relates to journalism, from the top of the ladder to the bottom.

  • Creators author a story.
  • Conversationalists talk to people about stories, find sources, break news.
  • Critics review, offer opinion pieces.
  • Collectors research, create contacts and read publications on a regular basis.
  • Joiners are part of a community, professional or personal group.
  • Spectators keep up with competitors and other publications.

I am a Creator, Conversationalist, Critic, Collector, Joiner and Spectator. But, I'm not all of these things on every social network. I focus on the networks that I see being used heavily in my Lawrence, Kansas community: Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and Gowalla.
LinkedIn, MySpace and FriendFeed are not used as often by our audience at the Lawrence Journal-World, so I'm more of a Joiner/Spectator when it comes to those. But our websites have an active presence on them all.
Being an active part of these networks keeps us in touch with a tech-savvy, information-hungry portion of our audience. They're willing to participate in and share our content on a daily basis. On Twitter alone, if a handful of people retweet a link, it could reach hundreds of thousands of users new to
Where are you on this ladder of social interaction today? Have you been a social climber over the last few years?

Hint: If you're reading this, you're at least a Spectator. If you have an account on Facebook, you're a Joiner. If you leave me a comment, you're a Critic.

Source: Poynter Online

A new production model for news reporting: Outsourcing

When your cell phone breaks or your computer crashes you no longer expect to speak to a call center in the United States. Numerous companies have outsourced parts of their business operations to contractors in other countries in an effort to improve their bottom line and increase productivity. Regardless of the public perception of outsourcing jobs, there can be financial benefits. However, a domestic form of outsourcing now is reaching the struggling news industry. It was the topic of a recent Washington Post column by Howard Kurtz.
In The age of journalistic outsourcing, Kurtz argues that while traditional print media struggle, new journalism organizations, mostly non-profits, are “giving the restless and the jobless a second lease on life.” But why has it taken so long for the legacy media to realize the untapped potential of online non-profit organizations?
Many online non-profit news organizations have been around for decades. They produce quality investigative articles about a range of topics. They have been responsible for breaking news, exposing scandal and reporting stories traditional media miss. A new non-profit journalism organization seems to be appearing daily, and with that comes innovative reporting and a new approach to journalism.
However, it isn’t just the non-profit journalism organizations that are seeing the vast potential in providing journalism to the newspaper industry. Large multinational companies have recently launched or expanded their reporting capacity to meet this growing need. Included in the bunch is AOL, which is adding hundreds of journalists over the next year. Yahoo recently opened a Washington news bureau.
One reason for the delay in accepting non-profit journalism organizations as authentic news producers is the misconception that they are competition to traditional media. However, as Kurtz pointed out in his column, collaboration between non-profits and legacy media is producing terrific content that is changing the conversation in media, politics and households around the nation.
Non-profit journalism organizations are assets more print outlets should be taking advantage of if only for the cost savings that come with using non-profit news content. In fact, some of the online non-profits operate under a free “steal our stuff” model. At The Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity, we sponsor two news organizations -- and Statehouse News. These initiatives fulfill a substantial hole in state-based news coverage, and that is why the content produced by and Statehouse not only is free to the public but it is free to the news media.
Illinois Statehouse News (ISN), a product of the Franklin Center, is committed to filling the growing vacuum in state-based coverage. Since going live in December 2009, ISN’s daily content has been used by more than 40 daily newspapers, 11 television stations and numerous radio stations. The coverage is an example of why non-profit journalism organizations are a desperately needed resource for local newspapers as well as national ones.
Non-profit journalism is playing a vital and needed role in the news business. The thirst for news by the American public is not diminishing just because a newspaper in a community collapses. Although traditional media has an important place in the news business, non-profits are a big part of the future of news and should be accepted as such.

Source: The Online Journalism Review

Why Aren't More Print Publishers Cozying Up With The iPad?

The iPad was announced on January 27, 2010 and was quickly heralded by many in traditional print media as a potential rejuvenator for their troubled businesses. Having used the device daily for the last six weeks or so, I must admit it is the perfect media consumption device, among many other things, for all of my reading (books, magazines, newspapers, blogs, tweets, FB feed, emails, web sites). Given my propensity to multitask, I crave multi-purpose devices and find the Kindle far too limiting a product, especially for the price. The iPad is perfect for email, calendaring, surfing, reading books, digesting RSS feeds, browsing real-time web feeds from Twitter and Facebook, watching movies while traveling, listening to music, checking weather, tuning in to baseball games, and countless other things. It is a far better way to consume magazines and newspapers than any other electronic device I have seen.
Given this, more than five months after it has been announced and the developer tools made available, and more than sixty days after shipping, why is Wired one of the few print publishers to make the leap and offer a version? The WSJ has a decent app (but downloads take forever), the NY Times has an anemic reader which showcases only a handful of stories each day (many duplicated in each section), the NY Post released an app which just offers pictures, and Vanity Fair offers a meager PDF of the print magazine for a whopping $5 per issue. USA Today seemed to step up with a nicely designed app. But it’s telling that so few of the traditional print publishers have taken the last five months to rethink the way a magazine or newspaper ought to be delivered digitally and devote sufficient resources to getting something great out on time. Wired’s editor Chris Andersen made some noise about how his staff did this, but frankly their implementation is also mostly a glorified PDF with some videos thrown in. Amazingly, URLs are not hot-linked in Wired nor Vanity Fair, email addresses are not clickable, text is not selectable nor are articles tweetable.
I think the iPad is actually under-hyped as a device that will transform media consumption. I think, thanks to the forthcoming wave of tablet devices and better netbooks, the consumer PC is basically dead within the next three years (not so for PCs for the enterprise). But with this new opportunity comes the need for content companies to be aggressive in adapting to and adopting new platforms. We have seen countless examples of how native (i.e., purpose-built) applications prosper on new platforms whereas those migrated from a legacy platform never quite work. Doodlejump is the best selling game on iPhone, not Halo. Farmville is the biggest game on Facebook, not Mario Bros. Early adopters of new platforms tend to reap the rewards more quickly than the late entrants. Given the rapid pace of technology adoption (Steve Jobs says iPad is the best selling product Apple has ever released), consumers build loyalty to new brands more easily when they are the only ones available on a new platform. I advise our companies to be aggressive in adopting new platforms. Crunchyroll, a leader in the anime video space online, had a great iPad app
available days after the device shipped. It is this level of aggressiveness that the traditional media companies must adopt in order to build consumer mindshare on these platforms.
It is easy to say, “Only 3MM iPads have been sold.” But given there are only 13,000 apps for iPad written so far, there is plenty of room for best-in-class apps to reach audiences much larger than their analog print equivalents. NPR, for example, has a great app that has been downloaded more than 350,000 times (as of mid-June).
Conde Nast had to go the embarrassing route of announcing their intention to deliver iPad versions of their magazines back in March but have only a few examples above to show for it, shortcomings and all. Where is The New Yorker? Cosmo? Glamour? Oprah? Better Homes and Gardens? Architectural Digest? People? The Economist? New York Magazine? National Geographic? Can you imagine what type of experience could be built for the iPad and other tablets with the content of these magazines? Yet none are available. Where are the hip magazines? Paper? Paste? Even Rolling Stone, heralding a rebirth of late, is absent.
Here are the top magazines by circulation (as of end of 2009 by AdAge) and who has at least shipped an iPad app (√). Looks like a whopping six out the top 20:

  1. AARP The Magazine
  2. Better Homes & Gardens
  3. Reader’s Digest √
  4. Good Housekeeping
  5. National Geographic
  6. Woman’s Day √
  7. Ladies Home Journal
  8. Family Circle
  9. Game Informer Magazine
  10. People
  11. Time √
  12. Taste of Home
  13. Sports Illustrated √
  14. Cosmopolitan
  15. Prevention √
  16. Southern Living
  17. AAA Via
  18. Maxim √
  19. O, the Oprah Magazine
  20. AAA Living

This resistance to adopt early and experiment by incumbents is precisely what provides the opportunities for startups to create value quickly and disrupt markets.

Source: Business Insider

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Digital journalism: More work, more pressure but more opportunity

Longer hours, more pressure, decreasing quality and less enjoyable work. Old media is a dark, dark place for journalism - at least that's the mood of many of the journalists who were interviewed for the annual Oriella digital journalism study.
There are some reasons to be cheerful, which include journalists not being quite as pessimistic as the previous year. Are things really that bad?

The Ugly

Oriella PR interviewed 770 journalists in 15 countries including the US, Brazil and several in Europe. More than half the journalists working on traditional newspaper, TV and radio formats said they thought the channel would fold, and one in six say this has already happened. The trend is exaggerated in Sweden where a third of traditional channels have closed and one in six has completely transferred online.
• Forty-four percent said print media will shrink dramatically – pessimistic, but down from 60% in the 2009 survey. Around 43% said lack of profitability online will impact resources and therefore the quality of journalism.
• Advertising will fall a further 10% this year, journalists expect, though they anticipate a smaller drop than 2009.
• Around 46% of journalists said they were expected to produce more work, 30% said they are working longer hours and 28% have less time to research stories. Welcome to our world.

The Bad

• Journalists are producing less video, largely due to cuts in budget and increased time pressures. Last year, the number of news sites offering video reached 50%, but this fell to 39% this year. Blogs and discussion boards were also less used, according to the journalists surveyed this year.
• Journalists are less interested in receiving multimedia content from PRs; 75% want emailed releases and half want photographs. Does this mean less imaginative and experimental editorial?

The Good

• Journalists are slightly more positive about the future; only 14% think the total number of media outlets will shrink (by this, they mean established media rather than blog houses) and 40% think the web provides new opportunities. The most optimistic webbists were in the UK, US, Spain and Brazil.
• Twitter is even more widely used this year with 41% of publications running a feed. But that only increased 6% from the previous year – not much considering the rapid growth of Twitter. It was most popular in the UK, US and Brazil.
• Smartphones are increasingly important to publishers, particularly as they look to apps to provide a new income stream. One in five publications now has a mobile app, but apps are particularly popular in Germany, Italy and the US where one in three publishers offer them.
• One quarter of publishers are looking at paid-access models, with 30% exploring paid-for websites and 22% mulling charges for smartphone apps. Sunday Times executive editor Tristan Davies said there is a broader move to paid-for digital content in the industry: "The arrival of iPad and the explosion of mobile media means we will be able to give people the Sunday Times however they want it, wherever they are and whenever they want it. We think that's worth paying for. The Times and Sunday Times may be the first British newspaper to introduce subscriptions for their websites but it's clear from this survey that other media groups are actively working on ways of making their digital content pay."
• But despite the added workload and that extra pressure, 79% of journalists think the quality of their work has remained high and 84% still enjoy their jobs. The most optimistic journalists regard technology as an aid, rather than a threat. Quite right too.


Metro launches iPad app

National commuter favourite The Metro has launched an iPad app, offering readers bitesize news, sports and showbiz.
The newspaper already has an iPhone app available, launched earlier this year.
The Metro joins other national newspapers, including the Financial Times and Express Newspapers, who have launched iPad apps this year.
In a release, Metro says it was created “with a newspaper in mind, offering digital news in a paper-like experience”.
“It gives readers the chance to swipe between individual headlines and full stories with a single finger, whilst moving between the different sections, including News, Showbiz, Sport, Weird, Music, Film, TV and Tech, using a dual finger swipe,” they say.
The Metro worked with digital design agency Fjord and mobile agency Bluestar, to create the app.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

iPad web browsing overtakes Android

Apple's iPad now accounts for more monthly web browser traffic than all Android-based mobile devices put together, according to data from Net Applications. Despite only being on the market for three months, the iPad comprised 0.17% of browser traffic tracked by Net Applications in June. In comparison Android devices represented 0.14% of web browser usage. The iPad is also outpacing the iPod Touch, which accounted for 0.12% of web browsing in June.
The iPad's share of the market has steadily risen since its launch in April. During the first two weeks after its release, the iPad accounted for the same amount of web browsing as all devices running the BlackBerry OS. After its first month on sale, the iPad hit an average 0.03% of browser traffic despite only being available in the US.
In May, when the device was launched in a further nine countries, that figure tripled to 0.09%, before almost doubling again in June. The highest single day for web use on the iPad was July 3, when it accounted for 0.35% of all browser usage.
Apple says it has already sold 3m iPads in the 10 countries where it is available. However, these figures are well below sales of the iPod Touch and combined sales of Android devices. The high web traffic is due to Apple designing the iPad for consumption of media such as books and video.
The firm has given the iPad a large screen that is suited to browsing the web and long battery life."Browser usage share on the iPad has already surpassed usage share on both the Android platform and the iPod Touch," says Net Applications. "Since Android and iPod Touch units sold vastly outnumber iPad units sold, this is an indication that the iPad is used much more frequently per user for browsing."
Recent figures from Net Applications also reveal that the iPhone OS continues to see strong growth in the mobile browsing market, accounting for 32.8% of all web usage. Symbian comprises 14% while Android's share rose to 6.24%. Java remains the leader with 40% of the market, although it is rapidly losing out to both the iPhone and Android platforms.

Source: StrategyEye

More than 166 U.S. newspapers have closed or stopped printing since '08

Since 2008, more than 166 newspapers in the United States have closed down or stopped publishing a print edition, according to Paper Cuts, SFN's Million Dollar Strategies for Newspaper Companies reported.
More than 39 titles did so in 2008, and the number rose to 109 in 2009. So far in 2010, more than 18 papers have closed down or stopped publishing a print version.
According to Paper Cuts, there have been nearly 35,000 job losses or buyouts in the U.S. newspaper industry since March 2007. From March to December 2007, more than 2,256 newspaper jobs have been reportedly eliminated or offered buyouts.
The numbers increased to more than 15,992 in 2008 and were at more than 14,783 in 2009. As of May 2010, there have been more than 1,797 job losses or buyouts in newspaper companies in the country, according to the report, Million Dollar Strategies for Newspaper Companies, released by SFN and the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers.

Source: SFN Report