The Newspaper Business Model
July 28, 2010 | Permalink
And I thought is was Al Gore's internet killing the business.
Posted by: Dave | Jul 29, 2010 12:21:48 AM
don't forget politicking for newspaper subsidies.
Posted by: Graeme | Jul 29, 2010 7:27:10 AM
So if newspapers had a more neutral or conservative slant, people would suddenly start paying for content they get for free?
Posted by: Bill | Jul 29, 2010 8:44:38 AM
Bill-take a look at newsbusters dot org every day for a few weeks. Get a handle on the magnitude of the bias. Over-the-air nets which are free are also experiencing this. While your point is well taken, it's also safe to assume that folks are tiring of getting partisan smoke blown up their arses.
Posted by: Fog | Jul 29, 2010 4:46:46 PM
The WSJ does just that. One of few newspapers in the country with *rising* circulation the last few years.
Oh, and it is a pay site on-line, also with increasing sales.
Posted by: john galt | Jul 30, 2010 6:25:00 AM
Fog, I don't disagree there's bias. Certain professions attract certain types of people, and most (not all, but most) of the people I know who are journalists are liberal. This was true even when I went to college in central Nebraska, which is about as red state as you can get.
I'm saying it's a fallacy to say that bias is the reason that the newspaper industry is failing. The traditional newspaper business model is dependent on having yesterday's news printed and delivered to your door. Whether it's a conservative or liberal publication, why would I subscribe to a newspaper when I've already read all the news online?
Posted by: Bill | Jul 30, 2010 8:14:58 AM
John Galt, if they can charge money for online content, good for them. But the WSJ isn't exactly a good example of a typical daily newspaper. The publisher of The Podunk Times can't suddenly decide to become the nation's leading business publication and write for a national audience.
The thing that makes most newspapers different--local news coverage--doesn't have nearly enough appeal to make the WSJ paywall model viable.
The newspaper model worked in the past because it was based on scarcity. Only a few organizations had the means to publish, because paper was the only viable means of publication.
Today, there is no scarcity. Anybody can publish or republish content. Why pay for The Podunk Times when I can find the same news elsewhere online for free?
Posted by: Bill | Jul 30, 2010 8:37:04 AM
Neither accurate nor amusing. Great job.
Posted by: firedmyass | Aug 2, 2010 10:19:19 AM
Bill, your points do have merit, but the fact is that they could reduce the hemorrhaging by attempting to follow the middle of the road rather than shouting from so far off in left field that no one wants to hear.
Posted by: OBloodyhell | Aug 8, 2010 7:00:53 AM
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