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Huh, ain't that something ... Should newspapers abandon digital?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by JayFarrar, Oct 14, 2015.

  1. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    Reflections of a Newsosaur: Should newspapers abandon digital?

    Choice bits include

    Newspapers are so bad at digital publishing that they should just give up and focus on print.

    That’s the bracing thesis of a recently published mini-book from journalism professor H. Iris Chyi of the University of Texas, who likens what she calls the “inferior quality” of online newspaper offerings to the desiccated ramen noodles that constitute the primary food group for many a starving student.

    She urges publishers to “acknowledge that digital is not your forte” and abandon the “digital first, print last” strategy that has been widely adopted in the business.
    “That is not to say that you don’t need to offer any digital product,” she adds, but “one may conclude that it is easier for newspapers to preserve the print edition than to sell digital products.”
    “In retrospect, most U.S. newspapers outsourced their homework to business consultants such as Clayton M. Christensen, whose disruptive technology thesis served as the theoretical foundation behind the newspaper industry’s technology-driven approach. The problem is that most assumptions on the all-digital future have no empirical support. As a result, during nearly 20 years of trial and error, bad decisions were made, unwise strategies adopted, audiences misunderstood and product quality deteriorated.”

    Read the whole thing, well worth your time
    jr/shotglass likes this.
  2. I Should Coco

    I Should Coco Well-Known Member

    Will read it later when I have time, but her argument sounds familiar.

    We've had TV people speak on SJ.com about how they love seeing newspapers stress online videos. Newspapers emphasizing something TV does much, much better. Great plan.
  3. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    Of course they should abandon digital. Fredrick has been saying this forever for gawdsakes!!!
    Doc Holliday likes this.
  4. spadjo martin

    spadjo martin Member

    What's next, bringing back photogs to shoot quality stuff instead of relying on reporters with Iphones?
  5. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    Perhaps the paper version could be delivered on horseback.

    Or, just return to the Town Crier-based system.
    YankeeFan likes this.
  6. BDC99

    BDC99 Well-Known Member

    Methinks Fredrick would make a fine Town Crier.
  7. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    Parents will be chasing the Town Crier with pitchforks and torches after he cries out about Junior's snap over the punter's head.
    SFIND, Batman, murphyc and 2 others like this.
  8. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    Did you forget? It was a high snap that the punter got off safely but the sports writer tweeted it, and assistant coach Daddy threatened to kick the tweeter's ass.
  9. jr/shotglass

    jr/shotglass Well-Known Member

    Just to shoot down the first of E&P's defenses of digital-first: Sure, newspaper circulation is dwindling. When execs decide that they're steering the concentration away from print, they're certainly not working as hard to sell the newspaper.
    Hokie_pokie and Frank_Ridgeway like this.
  10. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    Who cares if their cries are accurate? They always can cry out a correction.
    Doc Holliday likes this.
  11. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    The suggestion here makes sense. I've never understood why newspaper executives/management embraced digital technology like they did, just throwing their content on it for free. They didn't do that with Television and they didn't do it with radio. While I know the print edition would still eventually die, I've always felt newspaper publishers and executives sped up their deaths with such horrible decision making by at least 10-20 years.

    Hiring a consultant to tell you what to do is basically admitting you have no fucking clue how to do your job. What in the hell made newspapers think consultants knew more than they did is beyond-fucking-me.
  12. Riptide

    Riptide Well-Known Member

    And don't forget focus groups. Fuck a buncha focus groups.
    SFIND, murphyc, Doc Holliday and 3 others like this.
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