Recovering Journalist Outlines Future of Newspaper Industry

Came across an interesting blog called Recovering Journalist. As a recovering journalist and editor myself, I found it noteworthy. After all, if you love making no money, all the while wondering which of society’s finest you’re about to get an irate phone call from, then journalism is the profession for you! (My recruitment pitch needs work, I know.)

But this post discusses the future of the industry and what we may see in the coming year in order to improve profitability for newspapers nationwide. Here are some highlights (or lowlights). For further detail, read the full post:

  • More downsizing
  • More bankruptcies
  • Death of two-newspaper towns
  • Reduced publishing frequency
  • Better Web/print balance
  • Sharing, clustering and consolidation
  • Outright closings

Regarding the Web/print balance, reporting veteran Mark Potts contends:

Forward-thinking papers will do a better job of making their Web sites stand as solid alternatives to the print product, and may reduce the size of the print edition as an alternative to shutting certain days. This goes double, at least, for advertising: Newspaper sites need to get much smarter about Web advertising, to make the Web edition a much more robust contributor to revenue (and a more realistic replacement for lost print revenue). That involves going way beyond the banner ad to make real strides in contextual ads, search ads, targeted ads, non-traditional revenue sources, premium services and, especially, stepping up efforts to sell to small local advertisers that large newspapers traditionally have ignored.