WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Mon - 21.04.2014


Multimedia

When a speaker at a media conference refers to the traditional desktop-based internet as "the old-fashioned internet," you know that the media world is evolving faster than ever.

In language that was once reserved for newspapers, the PC-based internet took a back seat to mobile and tablets at the just-completed Digital Media Europe conference, which drew nearly 250 participants from 38 countries to London this week.

The reach of the new mobile web was evident in the room itself. Those 250 participants had 309 devices connected to the conference Wi-Fi.

But while the internet may be relatively old-fashioned, the challenge it poses for traditional media companies is as fresh as ever.

"You have to face the same problems on mobile that you face on the internet, so mobile won't save us and Steve Jobs is not our saviour," says Morten Holst, Strategy and Business Advisor for VG Multimedia in Norway. "We have to solve the internet problem. When we convert a newspaper reader to the web, then we lose 70 percent of the revenues. When we convert internet users to mobile, you lose 70 percent again. But we don't have a choice, because our readers expect us to be there. But we have to solve this problem."

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2011-04-18 11:13

Journalists are expanding their boundaries and changing with the times. A new digital world means that they have to not only research and write their story, but also provide pictures and videos. To help them to this end, BBC is giving its reporters smartphones, reported Press Gazette.

After taking a social media course, journalist Chrissy Sturt wrote a letter asking why the BBC didn't supply its journalists with iPhones. "The iPhone is one of the best ways to keep across social media, and when you're out on a fast-moving story they are invaluable," she wrote.

Sturt felt that she and her fellow journalists were being held back by not being supplied with smartphones. "We need these phones, and it's not fair that some people are using their own iPhones to do the BBC's newsgathering."

BBC's head of newsgathering Fran Unsworth took the message to heart. She responded, "We recognise that it is essential for journalists in the field to be connected to the flow of information about the story they are covering. Smartphones, including iPhones, are being rolled out to enable staff to send live and recorded audio, video and stills. A range of models is being used and equipment is being issued as older items come up for replacement."

Author

Meghan Hartsell

Date

2011-04-15 14:12

With increasing use of social media, as well as improved technology for commenting on articles, the potential for a publication to cultivate an online community is growing. And "more than ever before, communities are helping to define the news outlets around which they grow," said Justin Peters, editor of the online version of the Columbia Journalism Review, speaking in a panel on engaging the community at the International Journalism Festival.

As Ed Walker, online communities manager and reporter for Media Wales said, there are two broad types of community: those defined by geographical area, and those defined by interest.

One community that is very much defined by interest is that of Vodafone Italia. Paola Bonomo, head of online services, told participants how Vodafone has not only gathered a collection of 724,000 Facebook fans, but also gives consumers a chance to interact directly on the company's site through Vodafone Lab.

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2011-04-15 09:19

What if you invented a newspaper today without the legacy of 400 years of newspapers? That was the challenge of News+, a Bonnier iPad publication that bills itself as "beginning where newspapers leave off."

In May 2010, Bonnier gave iPads to its existing Dagens Nyheter subscribers and asked them what the company should do with the new device.

Here is how Pontus Schultz, Head of Business Development for Bonnier R&D, described what happened:

"They started to tell us about the downside of tablets. How will we share different sections around the table? It's so heavy, how can I read it in bed? Then they started talking about the digital advantages - beautiful pictures, video and the ability to do updates.

"We realized that the subscribers we had still quite liked their newspaper - they're not out there looking for a new solution. So it probably wasn't going to be a replacement product."

The company then determined what people were willing to pay for. "If you ask the newsroom, they'll say news," says Mr Schultz. "We talked to 300 subscribers, and I'm prepared to say that news is in 4th place, and is moving lower and lower. It's actually behind advertising as a reason to buy a newspaper. That's not so surprising - news is a commodity, you can get it everywhere.

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2011-04-14 12:41

Interested in Bloomberg Business Week? There's an app for that. The magazine launched its iPad app today, April 11. Print subscribers get the application for free while non-subscribers pay $2.99 a month subscribing via iTunes, reported Business Insider. A print issue subscription at newsstands is $4.99.

Many other publications have been reluctant to sign with Apple. Business Week is the first business publication to accept Apple's terms. The head of the mobile team Oke Okaro said to paidContent, "We are very pleased with Apple's terms." Other publications have faltered after hearing of Apple's 30 percent cut and restrictions on pricing for other offers. Despite the conditions, Popular Science, one of the first magazines to sign on to the iPad, and has reported success with its app in the last few months.

Publishers have also been reluctant to let Apple keep their costumer information as having those statistics can help with development and advertising. Okaro said that information was still available to the publication through other opportunities, such as reader surveys.

Author

Meghan Hartsell

Date

2011-04-11 18:26

Reflecting the fact that Facebook is becoming an increasingly essential tool for news organisations, Facebook has launched a new page specifically for journalist: Journalists on Facebook.

The aim of the page - announced a note - is to serve as an ongoing resource for the growing number of reporters using Facebook to find sources, interact with readers, and advance stories. "Since we first launched these initiatives at the beginning of 2010," it claimed, "the average media organization has seen a greater than 300% increase in referral traffic from Facebook."

"The Page will provide journalists with best practices for integrating the latest Facebook products with their work and connecting with the Facebook audience of more than 500 million people", it announced.

The page has, at the time of writing, 18,178 people liking it (and it was launched just two days ago, Tuesday April 5).

This is not the first initiative Facebook has carried out especially for media people: last fall it launched Facebook for Media, but that page is more geared towards the organization while this new page is all about the individual, Journalistics reported.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-04-07 13:46

Etude de la Presse d'Information Quotidienne (EPIQ) has released its yearly results on the French press, claiming the French newspaper industry is doing well. Almost one in two French people read one daily newspaper. It reported the power of the press had been stabilized (at a level of -0.1 percent) in the last year.

Electron Libre reported that while Le Monde, Le Figaro, and Le Parisien saw drops from 2009 to 2010, L'Humanité, France Soir and La Croix saw rises in their audience. At the end of the article, it says, "What a paradox to see the French press progressing while the press in the rest of the world is having trouble conserving its public!"

Not everyone is as inclined as Electron Libre to rejoice over EPIQ's study. OWNI's Erwann Gaucher became curious by the claims after having heard grave statements about the newspaper industry. After analyzing the study, he suggested taking it with a grain of salt.

Author

Meghan Hartsell

Date

2011-04-06 17:38

It seems "paywall" will be the word of 2011.

After the long-awaited and extensively-covered New York Times' metered paywall, two more newspapers announced their plans to introduce digital subscriptions.

The Hearst Corporation is considering a paywall for sfgate.com, the online portal of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Bay Citizen reported, citing Chronicle staffers who have been briefed on the company's plans.

No details are available about when the digital subscription will be introduced (possibly at the end of the month) neither about what will be the monthly subscription fee. However "newsroom employees said the paper would likely establish a "hard" paywall, rather than a metered plan that lets readers click on a certain number of articles before cutting off access", the article said.

The article also reported one staffer said that over half of the stories now available for free on sfgate.com could be cordoned off by the new paywall, especially longer, investigative stories that appear on Sundays and many of the paper's popular columns. The paper currently embargoes such stories, printing them in the newspaper before publishing them on the site two days later. Shorts, daily news and breaking stories instead, would likely remain free of charge.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-04-05 18:32

The Minnesota Star Tribune announced today, April 5, a redesign of its website.

"Today we are introducing a new look for the Star Tribune website, which millions of Minnesotans rely on for their daily breaking news", the site claims.

"Key sections such as Business, Politics, Entertainment and Opinion have been retooled. We've also made Business and Politics easier to find by adding them to the menu bar at the top of every page", a Q&A page says.

Apparently, the site is easier and faster to navigate, and it features more video and photography content.

According to a press release, CEO Mike J. Klingensmith explained the site was also re-architected to enable expanded advertising opportunities. "In addition to a better homepage experience, the new site offers more of what progressive advertisers are looking for: more rich media ad units, behavioural targeting, geo-targeting and search marketing", he said.

As the press release specified, more than 7 million monthly unique visitors generate over 100 million monthly page views at StarTribune.com.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-04-05 17:11

Google is trying to take some of the social network pie away from Facebook. Last week, it launched a +1 button intended to compete with the social media giant's 'like' button. Google members can "+1" search results, which will then be available to their social circle on the site. According to Google's site, +1 is meant to stand for "this is pretty cool" or "you should check this out."

The results could be beneficial to news organizations. This new system could help them see a climb in their articles' hits and in the quality of users sent from the search engine.

Google has declared that the 1+ button isn't a like button, reported Le Point. Unlike Facebook's button, which appears directly on friends' profiles, the "+1" only appears during searches. Like Facebook, Google is working to get the +1 button directly on websites, and not just in its search results.

Users can target ads as well as search results, giving advertisers a step up. The +1 button wouldn't affect current search results or factor into Google's algorithm. The search engine just intends it to help give better results.

Author

Meghan Hartsell

Date

2011-04-04 16:41

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The World Editors Forum is the organization within the World Association of Newspapers devoted to newspaper editors worldwide. The Editors Weblog (www.editorsweblog.org), launched in January 2004, is a WEF initiative designed to facilitate the diffusion of information relevant to newspapers and their editors.


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