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Check out Cleveland.com! Is this what being sports journalist has come to?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by sporty, Apr 15, 2019.

  1. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    I agree there's a lot of people who don't know about or give a shit about Twitter, so there is value in what you are saying. I also think the canned content of a text sent to hundreds of subscribers will get old and prove not worth the $3.99 over time with many cancelling, especially in the slow months between May and July. Like I said, we send this stuff out through a texting service and ours is free. Once the readers at Cleveland.com realize they're being screwed or they can just get twitter for the same content for free, they'll quit paying for the service.
    Fredrick likes this.
  2. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    It looks like the writers who are texting still use Twitter to link to stories and such, but if I was the boss I'd consider telling them to stop tweeting altogether. Don't let subscribers find "their reporters" anywhere else for free. As for linking stories, why not send those as a text with an extra sentence or two of context? Maybe take a reader question or two every day and send the answer to all followers, take polls, etc. As I've said, I really like the idea, but it has to be always getting better, especially as you said during slow periods.
    Doc Holliday likes this.
  3. wicked

    wicked Well-Known Member

    And as you alluded to earlier, once someone subscribes they pretty much forget about it and consider it a sunken cost.

    I would like to see what happens the next time the economy goes in the tank. Nowadays people are unbundled and have small subscriptions to everything. Before someone might ditch the $150-a-month cable plan. That’s easy, just one phone call to cancel or bargain them down. Will folks take the time to cancel a bunch of separate $10-a-month subscriptions to Netflix, Hulu, Dollar Shave Club, Spotify and whatever else they buy?
  4. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    Actually what Cleveland.com is doing is 10 years too late. Basically the reporters are sending longer Tweets (read the Mary Kay text Cleveland.com used as an example; a long NFL stream of conscious from her beat) to subscribers. As much as I hate to support more work for underpaid reporters who work 60 and get paid for 40, what actually should have happened 10 years ago is newspapers should have ignored Twitter and sold these texts to their readers only. Keep their reporters from breaking news on Twitter and only send it directly to subscribers. Unfortunately this won't work now. No newspaper is going to tell its reporters to ignore Twitter. What's going to happen is the poor Cleveland journalists will still Tweet out the important stuff and send a couple texts a day to subscribers. Those texts will be stream of consciousness type texts, perhaps entertaining, but not worth paying for. Not when there is still Twitter. (Is it too late for newspapers to abandon Twitter altogether? The suits fell in love with Twitter and its value to a newspaper is so exaggerated it's ridiculous. Twitter is of no monetary value to a newspaper; never has been; never will be).
    Sorry, Cleveland.com; your idea is 10 years too late. As it stands, it's just more work for your overworked staff.
  5. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Sure, this should have been done 10 years ago. Like paywalls. Doesn't mean you shouldn't start now. As for Twitter, a paper can't tell reporters to ignore it as a news-gathering tool, but they can definitely tell them to stop posting and save their best stuff for the text service. Follow the money. Also, who's to say it's not worth paying for? Again, you're assuming that everyone is on Twitter, which simply isn't true -- perhaps some of these text subscribers are old folks whose tech skills end at text messages. And maybe they're excited when a Browns nugget comes through their phone.
    Fredrick likes this.
  6. Screwball

    Screwball Active Member

    Roughly 80% of Americans are not on Twitter.
  7. cake in the rain

    cake in the rain Active Member

    Here's the thing I don't get:

    You can pay a $4 dollars a month and get in-depth writing and reporting from hundreds of the best writers stationed around the country (i.e., the Athletic)....

    or you can pay a $4 dollars a month and get a couple of texts a week from Mary Kay Cabot that basically duplicates the stuff she was (or still is) giving away for free on Twitter over the last 10 years?

    (this is not a criticism of MKC, who is a great reporter)

    I just don't get it. If people are paying for it, great. But I don't get it for the life of me.
    Fredrick likes this.
  8. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    I totally follow where you're going with this and I think you're on to something. Stop the Twitter bullshit and become exclusive to your readers. This is an excellent idea. This might work or at least keep your subscribers and keep them engaged. I like it.
  9. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    Every now and then Frederick, you strike gold. You have never been more right in all your life.
    Fredrick likes this.
  10. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    Thank u Doc. I think if a newspaper organization does make their people text and actually make some money off those texts, then indeed they should be told to never tweet again. It might require the suits to give up twitter for a year, however, cause by not tweeting, your paper will not be part of the daily conversation/daily breaking news tidbits on twitter. The suits will have to let somebody else break the news 10 seconds before everybody else has the same news.
  11. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    Yeah, it really is so stupid.
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