Posts Tagged IPad

A new paywall doesn’t come for free

Interesting comment by Peter Preston on paywalls in The Observer online today: A new paywall doesn’t come for free

The New York Times is apparently spending $13m on advertising its new paywall.

Mashable.com published this last month on NYT’s readership pre and post-paywall. Here are the stats:


I thought this was a good point raised by Mashable:

“So here’s the big question: Is NYT‘s paywall a success or a failure? When it comes to this big-picture question, we still don’t have enough information to make a conclusion. The paywall simply hasn’t been around long enough and we don’t have the financial data to see whether the paywall has made up for the loss in advertising revenue. What do you think of the paywall? Is it the future of online news or will sites that use a paywall destined for a slow death?”

Information is a strange commodity – we expect it for free and yet it doesn’t come about for nothing. In my view, the paywall system is something we can’t yet analyse. The results won’t appear overnight. Or maybe even the next few years. I subscribe to The Economist as I find it’s easier for a copy to be delivered to my door than for me to remember to have to go and buy one every week. It’s cheaper too and I have access to their archives. Ease and convenience (and more/better information) is a strong point for paywalls for some of the world’s biggest news publications. I do think they’re strongly dependent on our use of technology and this is perhaps why we can’t quite garner their results. As devices such as the iPad become the norm, then maybe we’ll see that paywalls aren’t as doomed as some would suggest.

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Navigating Journalism Online

A nice little piece about bridging the gap between online and offline audiences. 10,000 words interviewed George Kelly, online coordinator at the Contra Costa Times (a Bay Area News Group daily newspaper) in Walnut Creek, California, to discuss this issue. In the interview, Kelly comments that:

“The current digital landscape gives journalism and reporting unprecedented reach and impact. We’ve got cheap, powerful databases that let us sift and sort and display information in amazing ways. We’ve got tools and services to curate real-time information from anywhere on the planet. Now, we need to figure out when, and where, and how to use those tools to give people the information they need to make decisions about their lives and communities.”

I thought his comments on defining ‘new media’ were particularly relevant. I’ve found in my own reading that we seem to have defined this divide between ‘old’ and ‘new’ when really that’s not the case – the media landscape is evolving, it didn’t suddenly change – and we shouldn’t be apprehensive. There have been arguments posed that ‘new media’ will suddenly mean the end of journalism – I think that’s FAR from the case, indeed if anything, new technologies, platforms and methods of information delivery can enhance the way we distribute, search for and recieve news and information. Kelly was quick to pick up on the need for diversity – not as in race, gender etc but in platforms and that these needed to diversify in location – that online journalism shouldn’t be just for big cities or huge audiences. I totally agree!

And some advice for young journalists…

“What advice would you give to any up-and-coming or early-career journalist?

GK: Buy a domain name. Start a blog. Learn to code. Teach someone how to code. Get in the habit of making things. Sign up for new services as often as you wash your hands, brush your teeth or change your clothes. Remind yourself every day that you belong, that what is happening here is still unformed enough and unfixed enough that you can still make a mark — your own mark — with something worth doing and sharing with others.”

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Apps for Photographers

This makes me want to get an iPhone. Proof that journalists, and now photographers, don’t necessarily need cumbersome, heavy and expensive equipment to produce good quality work!

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iPad 2 on sale today!

iPad2 hopefuls wait outside the Regent Street Store (image courtesy guardian.co.uk)

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