Print is Dead! Long Live Print?

Surviving the Digital Media Storm . . .

Jordan Kurzweil of TechCrunch.com’s news reporting section dealt with a tough issue on Feb. 25th: when are traditional news reporting venues going to realize that the move to digital is here for the long haul?

 

Kurzweil has a distinguished career in the digital medium: “Jordan Kurzweil is Co-CEO of Independent Content, an agency that helps media companies launch new digital products and businesses. Prior to starting Independent Content Jordan worked at AOL running original programming, and News Corp bringing its traditional brands to digital.”

 

He knows the field. And he’s given nine very useful tips on how traditional news reporting mediums can move forward in today’s digital environment. http://techcrunch.com/2012/02/25/print-is-dead-long-live-print/

 

This ties in nicely with Vadim Lavrusik‘s article on Mashable.com, “The Future of Social media in Journalism,” on September 13, 2010. Lavrusik delivers several instances where a traditional news reporter needs to rethink how he/she gathers, processes and delivers the news. In particular, citizen journalism is now a key factor in reporting the news, and journalists would be well-advised to incorporate their audiences as both reporting sources and consumers of news.

 

A new technological “fad” currently sweeping the markets is the astonishing rise of tablet use amongst media consumers. Doug Drinkwater reported on TabTimes.com in an article entitled, “The 8 industries and professions most rapidly impacted by tablets,” dated Feb. 25, 2012, that tablets are becoming the new wave of media reporting instruments for both reporters and citizen journalists.

 

“Tablets are not just a great way for journalists to keep on top of stories using productivity-enhancing apps like Evernote or Dropbox. They are also a great way to expand coverage and reputation worldwide.”

 

Traditional print media would be well-advised to take note of the new tablet craze and adjust their digital media accordingly, from both a news reporting standpoint and their consumers’ predilections.  And developing a useable “app” for their digital media on tablets would be one step in the right direction.

 

There’s An App For That!

“Using Facebook Like the Experts Do”

 

The Publishing Industry is rocking the social media craze by creating apps for smartphones and tablets. In a Gigacom (a technology website) article written by Matthew Ingram entitled, “Memo to media: A Facebook app is not innovation,” he touts the publishing industry’s immersion in Facebook apps that tie together a user’s reading history with a particular publication’s Facebook page. Everyone can now see who is reading The Washington Post, The Guardian, even Forbes magazine. While their ingenuity is less than timely, since Facebook pages are the norm now, not the standard, the publishing industry’s enthusiasm is admirable. These companies are embracing social media in an attempt to keep readers interested and engaged, while giving them a platform to voice their opinions and respond to news articles.

 

However, Ingram states that these publishing companies are not creating anything of innate value for their users. The Facebook pages are just recreations of content that is already on a web page somewhere. There is nothing new and compelling about using their Facebook apps. He opines that the companies would better spend their time in creating interactive pages that present something new rather than rehashed news bits.

 

While the value of individual journalists using Facebook to “brand” themselves in the public’s eye is immense, it remains to be seen how publishers can best use the medium. Currently, journalists are finding Facebook platforms to be of particular benefit in many areas that publishers would be wise to consider. For example, Vadim Lavrusik states in his article, “How journalists can make use of Facebook Pages,” that journalists benefit through their Facebook pages by a wider distribution of news. In particular, Lavrusik wrote, “The average news site saw Facebook referrals increase by more than 300 percent since the beginning of 2010.” This is a tremendous amount of coverage via Facebook. In addition to branding their names, journalists having Facebook pages also allows them to showcase multimedia, such as photos and video, along with their text. Breaking news can also be uploaded wherever and whenever a journalist acquires it. This leads to up-to-the-minute reporting of events that you can’t get with a television viewing audience.

 

The publishing industry should take note of how journalists are using Facebook pages and revise their Facebook apps more in line with what is working out in the field. Just rolling out a Facebook app doesn’t cut muster like it used to.

How to Create a Facebook Page

 

What’s Wrong With This Coverage?

Publishing Industry Up in Arms

 

The Publishing Industry is undergoing a radical change in its business model, and many booksellers and publishers are feeling the pinch. In particular is the oncoming tsunami created by Amazon.com in its bid to become the leading publisher and seller of both print books and e-books. The big question everyone is asking is: is Amazon playing fair?

 

There have been several articles over the past week or so that have come from different sources, but they are all proclaiming that Amazon is out to take over the entire publishing industry to the detriment of all others.

 

“From their perches in Midtown Manhattan, many publishing executives, editors and publicists view Amazon as the enemy — an adversary that, if unchecked, could threaten their industry and their livelihoods,” written by Julie Bosman of The New York Times.

 

Other media sources report similar stances: Patrick Stafford quoted an article from BusinessWeek entitled, “Meet the Amazon employee killing the publishing industry,” referring to Larry Kirshbaum, who is now moving forward Amazon’s strategy to become the next big publishing house.

 

Southern California Public Radio’s website included an article entitled “Does Amazon want to burn the book business?” There were several articles from sources such as The Globe and Mail and The Washington Post that detailed plans by Barnes & Noble and other indie book stores that are banning sales of Amazon published books in their stores as a means of protest against Amazon’s predatory manner of underselling brick and mortar stores’ prices.

 

While the coverage was extensive, what it lacked was Amazon.com’s viewpoint. Not one article mentioned any word of Amazon’s side of the story. In Richard Taflinger’s “The Myth of Objectivity in Journalism:
A Commentary,” he states, “[Reporters] will not only accept, but allow for and consider that no one person’s world view is the only reality. They will examine their work to be sure that prejudice, bias and a personal world view is not the one that dominates in gathering, preparing and disseminating the news.” None of the articles mentioned any attempts to interview anyone from Amazon.com. I find this an egregious oversight on the reporters’ parts.

 

The Publishing Industry

Hello world!

Welcome to Putting Pen to Paper, a blog highlighting the media coverage of the ever-changing publishing industry. I try to pinpoint what works in the news reporting and what definitely fails.