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NYTimes.com most visited newspaper site in US last month

NYTimes.com was the most visited newspaper site in the US last month, according to statistics released by comScore.

The New York Times website had more than 32 million visitors and 719 million page views in May, with the average visitor to the site viewing 22 pages of content.

A short way behind was Tribune Newspapers, with 24.8 million visitors.

Jeff Hackett, comScore senior vice president, says the numbers prove online news is the future.

“The good news for publishers is that even as print circulation declines, Americans are actually consuming as much news as ever – it’s just being consumed across more media,” he said. “The internet has become an essential channel in the way the majority of Americans consume news content today with nearly three out of five internet users reading newspapers online each month.”

See the full statistics here.

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AP updates Stylebook with social media guidelines

The Associated Press (AP) has updated its Stylebook to include 42 new entries under a special social media section. The new edition of the style guide, which is widely used in the US and internationally, has changed its recommendation for “web site” to “website” and now includes terms such as “app”,” blogs”, “click-throughs”, “friend” and “unfriend”, “metadata”, “RSS”, “search engine optimisation”, “smart phone”, trending, widget and wiki. (Not all necessarily in keeping with the Journalism.co.uk house style…)

The new Stylebook also includes advice for journalists using social media for their work, in particular tips on how to use Twitter and Facebook effectively.

Full release at this link…

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American Society of News Editors fights back with ‘mythbusting’ columns

May 18th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick

In the US, the American Society of News Editors (ASNE) is publishing a series of opinion pieces aimed at “reinforcing the vitally important role of newspapers and professional journalism in the digital age”. The pieces will be available for reproduction by ASNE members and news outlets and will address the following “myths”, says the Society:

  • Newspapers are washed up;
  • Newspapers are no longer relevant;
  • News media are biased;
  • Newspapers are not connected to community;
  • The web and digital technologies are killing news organizations.

In April 2009 the ASNE changed its N from newspapers to news; three of the five myths up for busting, however, focus on newspapers…

Full release at this link…

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#Tip of the day from Journalism.co.uk – work directory for freelancers

March 31st, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Freelance, Top tips for journalists

Freelancers: Aimed at US freelance journalists, copyeditor Katharine O’Moore-Klopf has compiled a list of sites and organisations listing freelance work. Tipster: Laura Oliver.

To submit a tip to Journalism.co.uk, use this link – we will pay a fiver for the best ones published.

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Boston Globe launches midday video news update

March 25th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Multimedia, Newspapers

The Boston Globe has launched a daily news video update. The 90-second broadcast is available on the paper’s homepage, Boston.com, between 11:45 and 1:45 pm EST. As reported here earlier this week, the Globe’s sister paper the New York Times has also launched a midday video news update, TimesCast.

Globe Today is more of a traditional news broadcast than TimesCast, which takes a behind-the-scenes approach, and is significantly shorter, weighing in at less than a quarter of the length of the Times’ feature.

The other significant difference is that Globe Today also appears on YouTube, making it embeddable, meaning I can embed it for you right here:


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Herald Online: AOL’s hyperlocal network Patch gets charitable to fund community news

March 25th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Online Journalism

Patch, AOL’s growing network of hyperlocal news and information websites in the US, has announced the foundation of a new charitable arm, Patch.org:

Patch.org will partner with community foundations and other organisations to launch Patch sites and bring objective local news and information to communities and neighborhoods around the world that lack adequate news media and online local information resources.

The Patch.org sites will employ a local journalist to produce original news and content, and aggregate material and information created by the community. Any revenue earned by the sites will be invested back into the community they serve, a press release says.

Full release at this link….

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Advertising Age: US newspapers cut 109,500 jobs in past five years

March 25th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Advertising, Editors' pick, Job losses

Advertising Age’s article from earlier this week on the difficulties faced by media advertising staff making the transition from selling print space to going digital is worth a read – not least for the statistics it offers on media job cuts in the US:

Between January 2005 and January 2010, newspapers eliminated 109,500 jobs and magazines shed 19,400, according to an Ad Age DataCenter analysis of Bureau of Labour Statistics’ jobs data. During that same period, jobs at internet media companies, portals and search engines grew by 18,300.

Full story at this link…

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Video: US TV reporter loses it – technology failure?

March 12th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Journalism

Courtesy of YouTube user MindElation, the clip below has been doing the rounds, but it’s worth a Friday viewing. The footage shows a US TV reporter losing his cool while presenting a live report – which his anchor later attributes to a technology failure. As the description says: “Every newscaster has similar things happen, but if they’re lucky it’s never captured on video.”

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NewsTrust.net: The hunt for bad journalism

March 5th, 2010 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Journalism

US professor Howard Rheingold and his Stanford University students have been reviewing coverage of politics by US newspapers, broadcasters and news sites, assessing levels of trust and bias in news stories, opinion pieces and coverage by media watchdog organisations.

This ‘News Hunt’ looked at stories published between 18 February and 2 March:

For this News Hunt, NewsTrust editors hand-picked stories for review, focusing mostly on political topics covered by mainstream sources, with the goal of highlighting flawed or questionable stories from some of the news outlets that people read and watch most (e.g. cable news and talk radio). We also took great care to feature stories representing political viewpoints from the left, right and center. What we wound up with is not a “worst of the worst” list, but a round-up of stories from a variety of media that our staff and community found to be examples of bad journalism.

Read more about the News Hunt’s findings at this link…

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US Digest: paidContent 2010; Tiger Woods, Scientology vs; journalism, and more

February 22nd, 2010 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Journalism, Journalism Daily, Online Journalism

Starting today, the editor’s blog will feature an afternoon roundup of all things media from over the pond. From the hugely important to the very inconsequential, check in for a choice of America’s journalistic goings on.

paidContent 2010

The issue of paid content was high on the agenda at the end of last week with the paidContent 2010 conference in New York. In attendance were big names from the New York Times: Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., chairman and publisher; Janet Robinson, president and CEO; and Martin Nisenholtz, senior vice president of digital operations, who were interviewed at length by ContentNext’s Staci D. Kramer on “metered news and more”.

According to the paidContent coverage, “while they were willing to buy lunch, they weren’t ready to feed the appetite for detail about plans for NYTimes.com to go metered in 2011″.

See the video here

And the full conference coverage from the paidContent site here

“Does the bleeding ever stop at 425 Portland?”

image courtesy of Stephen Cummings

Presumably, ways of making newspaper journalism pay were also high on the agenda over in Minneapolis at the end of last week, where the Star Tribune announced that five voluntary redundancies would be offered to reporters and editors. “Does the bleeding ever stop at 425 Portland?” asks MinnPost.

Staff memo here

Pessimistic stories of this kind, including this one, continue to be thoughtfully aggregated by blogger and pessimist extraorinaire Fading To Black. Not featured on this chronicle of US newspaper decline was the story that down in South Florida, rather than asking him if he’d like to pack his things, the Sun Sentinel handed production maintenance manager Bob Simons a $25,000 spot bonus and a Caribbean holiday. Simons’ suggestion of a different supplier for equipment apparently saved the paper $1 million.

A very different staff memo here

AP underperforms on non-profit content distribution

An interesting story from the Nieman Jounalism Lab reports on the outcome of Associated Press’ decision to distribute content from America’s top four non-profit news outlets: ProPublica, Centre for Public Integrity, Centre for Investigative Reporting, and the Investigative Reporting Workshop.

The six-month project was launched back in June 2009 at the Investigative Reporters and Editors conference in Baltimore, “with great fanfare” according to Bill Buzenberg, executive director of Centre for Public Integrity.

It seems however that the scheme hasn’t been successful so far, with admissions from both the AP and the non-profit directors that very little content has made it into print. A poor distribution model is to blame apparently, with new non-profit content not being sufficiently flagged.

“They haven’t done the technical backup work to really make it work,” said Buzenburg. “They haven’t made it a priority.”

However, hope remains for the project from both sides. Buzenburg added: “This is a good idea. I’d like it to work [...] The potential of this remains.”

“It’s early yet – we’re only six months into it,” said John Raess, AP’s San Francisco bureau chief.

“We want our celebrities to show a little leg”

image courtesy of Jim Epler

Much of the weekend’s media coverage in the US was given over to Tiger Wood’s much-publicised public apology on Friday morning. Mediabistro nailed the best format for coverage by inviting readers to pen Haikus for the Mediabistro facebook page. Submissions include this clear frontrunner from Pamela Ross:

“Questions? Don’t go there.
My Thanksgiving meal was ruined.
Thanks. Now. Watch this swing.”

With more syllables at his disposal, David Carr of The New York Times’ Media & Advertising pages goes into a little more detail, considering the relationship between celebrity sportsmen and the media:

Athletes and actors would like for us to focus on the work, while reporters know that their editors and audience want more, because while the work is visible, we want our celebrities to show a little leg.

But once this bit of leg, so strictly concealed by Woods for so long, has been shown, why are the media who feed on it so relentlessly owed some sort of apology?

Those of us who have had some experience with human frailties all know why Tiger Woods did what he did last Friday, which was to get in a room with people he had hurt or embarrassed to say he was “deeply sorry” for what he had done. That part made sense, the beginning of a process of amends.

I just don’t know what the rest of us were doing there.

A sentiment echoed this side of the pond by Charlie Brooker today in the Guardian.

There are those that must hope that, now this enigmatic character has addressed his hushed audience, and delivered his much anticpated talk, that the hype, rumour, pontificating, and endless media coverage will die away.

Apple wields knife over TV show prices

It is fair to say that at least a few people thought exactly the same thing about Steve Jobs’ unveiling of the iPad. But the so-called saviour of the newspapers is back in the media spotlight this week with news that Apple are considering halving the current price of television shows on iTunes from $1.99 to 0.99 cents. Media commentators have hailed the iTunes store’s 125 million registered customers as a potential liferaft for sinking newspaper publishers, and major networks may be wary of waving a pin anywhere near that customer base by rejecting the move, instead gambling on even a small percentage increase in those paying for TV offsetting the significant price drop.

image courtesy of curiouslee

Meanwhile, Adobe and Conde Nast have jumped right aboard the good ship iPad, unveiling “a new digital magazine experience based on WIRED magazine” at the TED Conference in Long Beach, California.

The Church of Scientology vs. the St. Petersburg Times, Round 1

And finally, from Howard Kurtz’s Media Notes at the Washington Post, the improbable story that the Church of Scientology, in a tit-for-tat response to investigations by the St. Petersburg Times of Tampa Bay, has organised some investigative journalism of its own.

image courtesy of Ben Sutherland

The church has officially hired three ‘veteran reporters’ – a Pulitzer Prize winner, a former “60 Minutes” producer, and the former executive director of Investigative Reporters and Editors – to look in detail at the newspapers’ conduct. Steve Weinberg, the former IRE executive, who was paid $5,000 to edit the study, says that the agreement stipulates the church publish the study in full or not at all.

Weinberg claims that in spite the study being bankrolled by the church, it will be objective. Neil Brown, executive editor of the St. Petersburg Times, thinks otherwise:

“I ultimately couldn’t take this request very seriously because it’s a study bought and paid for by the Church of Scientology.”

Brown seems to feel a bit hard done by in this instance:

“I counted up something like six or seven journalists the church has hired to look into the St. Petersburg Times. I’ve just got two looking into the Church of Scientology,” he complained.

No fair.

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