Skip to comments.News publishers' misdirected online anger -- Aggregators aren't the problem, it's the business model
Posted on 04/11/2009 6:26:49 AM PDT by Zakeet
William Dean Singleton, a newspaper publisher and chairman of the Associated Press, speaks for many of his comrades when he says online news aggregators are making him "mad as hell and we are not going to take it any more."
Singleton and his colleagues threaten legal action against Web sites like Google, Drudge Report, Huffington Post and Digg -- the sites that have been linking to their newspaper stories without paying.
But their righteous indignation is misplaced. Forget that these aggregators push vast amounts of traffic to their sites and readers to stories that would otherwise disappear without a trace. Google alone claims to send a billion clicks a month to news sites.
News publishers easily could block Google's spiders with a simple text file. But then their stories would not appear on Google News or in its search engine. You don't hear news publishers talk about this because that's the last thing they want.
The truth is aggregators aren't the problem. It's the business model.
Article's Conclusion: What's the solution? There isn't one. We are in the midst of a paradigm shift. The big media companies with huge legacy costs pertaining to gathering, printing and distributing information either will adapt or die. That means getting a lot smaller -- and fast.
If you think it's bad now, it's likely to get a lot worse. There was once a whole industry dedicated to the creation and distribution of ice, with trucks delivering door-to-door. The emergence of the refrigerator and freezer melted that business.
After the dust clears, new media organizations, new business models and new journalists will rise from this. And there's a lot of creativity being unleashed by the chaos. All this doesn't mean the death of journalism, it just means the end of a business model.
(Excerpt) Read more at marketwatch.com ...
Essentially, the MSM rags became monopolies with captive audiences. This attracted advertising as long as there were no other viable alternatives.
Today, news readers have other alternatives giving advertisers other, much more effective means, of reaching potential customers.
Even worse for the MSM publishers, the genie is out of the bottle forever. As a result, these clowns are headed the way of blacksmiths and buggy whip manufacturers.
The author is a J-School prof at NYU.
You would think big media would be celebrating the fact that soon, no trees will need to be pulped in order to print their bias.
Once the local store ads went online, toast.
I doubt any real objective analysis of the news would show the MSMS has been fair and balanced for decades. Who actually believed Walter Crankcase was telling people the truth.
There's a world of difference between journalism and reporting. Journalism killed reporting.
This guy concurs in a pretty well-written piece from last month: Newspapers and Thinking the Unthinkable
"Society doesnt need newspapers. What we need is journalism. "
I agree with the Pravda of the DNC. I would take it a step further in saying when you only sell product to 20-25% of the population, you are leaving a lot of money on the table.
Funny thing is the AP is publishing leftwing crap and the MSM is reprinting it word for word. Stringers are more concerned with getting their names out there as an editorialist than with actual reporting. The AP’s own business model is killing the MSM.
My suggestion would be to hire journalism students as interns and reformat the AP stories to the who, where, what.....
Then change your business model to say you are non-partisan. Revenues will increase very quickly.
What we really need is good editorship. The reason I and my colleagues go to Drudge is because Matt Drudge has an eye for compelling stories, the stories that shape and change the world we live in. Some are the big headlines of the day on the latest crisis. Some are new discoveries in medicine and biotechnology. Some are cutting edge trends and issues in personal relationships.
On any day, 95% of the stories Drudge links are interesting to read and for the most part well written.
If the Wash ComPost wanted to fix itself it would hire Drudge, or someone like him, as editor in chief. 90% of what is in the washpost I would not read.
The fatal flaw in lights ...
Once the Internet took hold, about 10 years ago, the end was sealed. I think journalism will take hold as local reporters get the news first ... Journalism: Who, What, When, Where, Why, And How will return as the norm. The rest will just be a bloggers opinion.
Locally, our newspapers have given up, they cover only local stuff in their now wafer thin editions. I went by the library and they were stacked 4 feet high for free, and no one even bothered to pick up a copy.
Mark Steyn talks about this. The Fleet Streeters still actually print news - which is why they are surviving. In contrast, our MSM actually withholds news and has otherwise proven to be an arm of the Democratic Party? Now that is not a good business model.
For an example of how in the tank the MSM is, look at this blog - The curious case of 200 nearly identical MSM headlines
Around here, the newspaper has given up on local stories. Most local news is either AP or comes from the TV station partner.
Yeah, fire all the reporters, the path of do nothing.
One curious trend is local FREE broadsheets are springing up, with local politics coverage, a few good reporters, and lots of local ads paying the freight. Apparently they avoid the AP tax this way.
When they stopped reporting the news and when they started mistaking their own opinions for the truth, when they began to think that everyone should think the way they thought and went about re-educating instead of informing, they started losing but they got away with it until the internet where people can get unbiased truth.
Our leftists media were big Mussolini lovers back when.