Posts Tagged 'media'

Trouble with democracy: It doesn’t pay well

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If there’s anything I write about or comment on that is sure to draw a hot and negative response, it’s the insistence that journalists start to get in tune with their true market value. It’s not that I don’t see a huge social value to the work they do. I credit journalists with keeping our democracy alive. But they’ve never been paid by democracy; they get paid by a business model.

My point is twofold:

  1. Journalists have always been part ...
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Even low-cost social media campaigns need to be measured

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There is an entire industry of consultants that didn’t exist three years ago, telling people how to collect thousands of followers on Twitter; how to gain friends and fans on Facebook; and how to leverage large networks on LinkedIn. These consultants are writing books, conducting web-seminars and selling services.

The thing that gets too little attention is what all this is worth? Sure, you can grab a small nation’s worth of Twitter followers, but will it make you any money if ...

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Not-for-profit news is no panacea

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In the effort to save newspapers, one idea that’s been passed around is that of the newspaper as a not-for-profit institution. The argument is that its role is so central to the public good that it can be protected as a non-taxed, not-for-profit entity.

While the argument may be compelling, I don’t think you can call it mainstream. Well-known newspaper analyst Lauren Rich Fine says for-profit newspapers haven’t done all they can to adapt to new market realities. I ...

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What’s the economic value of a journalist?

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Journalists are historically thick about the notion that they are part of a business model; that they are employed not so much for the public good but because somebody has figured out how to make more money from their work than it costs to produce. That thickness is part of what makes them good at what they do; good journalists tend to follow the trail of information regardless of how they fit into someone else’s profit motive. It’s also why ...

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Will marketers ever learn?

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Another concise and dead-on blog from Seth Godin, marketing guru.

His premise: Marketing used to be easy because all you needed to do was find the money to buy a pile of ads and you could be sure to reach your target audience as well as any of your competitors.

Now, however, the Internet requires marketers to bring skill, nuance, strategy and all sorts of other rarities to the table. Will they? A few already are. As for the rest, you ...

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BPA Worldwide freezes rates, remains arrogant and irrelevant

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BPA Worldwide, a leader in providing third-party circulation audits, has announced that it’s freezing membership dues and audit rates at their July 2008 levels — good through June 2010.

If you’re in the business, you know that BPA is especially strong among magazines with controlled circulation. If you’re not in the business, you need to know that third-party circulation audits are how publications validate their readership claims to advertisers.

BPA is facing obsolescence at an astonishing rate. If BPA ...

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A new tipping point in favor of paid content

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PaidContent.com reports that the annual media study by media investment banker VSS (Veronis Suhler Stevenson) showed a tipping occurred in 2008: It was the first time people spent more time with media they paid for — such as books and cable TV — than they did with media that is primarily ad-supported. That report raises a few points:

1. Cable TV is not predominantly ad supported? I must be watching the wrong cable stations.

2. It should come as good ...

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A financial plan for the news’paper’ of tomorrow

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Peter Kafka, former media writer for Forbes and now blogging his own MediaMemo, asks the question (non-rhetorically), “What happens when your newspaper goes digital?” His immediate conclusion: Most of the staff gets canned.blackberrypd3_4001

In his blog, Kafka channels Outside.in CEO Mark Josephson whose business is to support local news operations with broad-based content as they make the move to digital themselves.

Josephson tells Kafka that his prototypical digital newspaper would ...

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If you can’t bring journalists to the computer, then bring geeks to journalism

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Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism is turning out its first group of graduates in a master’s program that teaches computer geeks to be journalists, according to Time magazine. The idea is to combine advanced programming for computer applications and other interactive tools with reporting and journalism — making data and databases an integral part of the news.

Here’s a paragraph from Medill’s master’s degree course catalog:

The Digital Innovation Project (JOUR 435-0, 435-1)
This project challenges students to answer ...

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