In this Q&A, media veteran Shereen Siewert talks about the biggest move in her career—an exciting but risky gamble in which she would give up the security of a weekly paycheck to strike out on her own as an entrepreneurial, independent publisher.
To find out what the Summit of Local Independent Online News Publishers accomplished, I went to longtime journalist Steve Beatty, who was editor and CEO of the award-winning, investigative website The Lens in New Orleans for eight years before joining LION as a consultant last January and who, with DeRienzo’s departure, has been named interim director.
“I’m not saying that an audience-first culture didn’t exist at the newspaper, say, 75 years ago. But how do we reach today’s audience? It’s not enough to put all the news that we decided is important on the front page and expect everyone to read that as part of their shared experience,” says Nicole Stockdale, director of digital strategy at the Dallas Morning News.
I went to Bill Church, senior vice president of news at GateHouse Media—the biggest publisher of newspapers in the U.S.—with questions about the quality of GateHouse sites that were put under the microscope in a 100-community study from Duke University that painted a critical picture of news deserts across the country.
But Reddit and the LMC each has something that the other wants. Reddit would like to tap into the LMC’s huge pool of 470 million unique visitors and turn many of them into subscribers. LMC publishers wants to learn from Reddit how to make their readers more engaged. Now, old media and new media are teaming up.
Last November, discount-stock-brokerage billionaire Joe Ricketts summarily shut down his DNAinfo operations in the Windy City and New York. But in a fast-paced reinvention, the DNAinfo/Chicago team has Kickstarted its way back onto the streets and into the neighborhoods with the June launch of Block Club Chicago.
To accurately gauge the quality of digital local news and assess its impact on communities, you would have to do what no one has wanted, or dared, to do. You would have to look at enough websites, enough stories and videos, in enough communities until you were glassy-eyed. Researchers behind a new study did just that.
According to new research from Pixalate, a cross-channel fraud intelligence company that works with brands and platforms to prevent ad fraud and improve ad inventory quality, about a quarter of all smartphone app video and smartphone app display activity is “invalid traffic” (the technical term for what is largely fraud).
Revenue was, naturally, very much on the minds of the 12 publishers, broadcasters, and other news media executives who took part in the Local Media Association’s June 2018 San Francisco Innovation Mission. But Jed Williams, LMA’s chief innovation officer, said the event focused on audience engagement.
A year-long study of newsrooms in the U.S. and Europe by two Danish journalists has singled out 16 local providers in the U.S. who are meeting the researchers’ main criterion: structural changes “to forge closer ties and stronger relations to their communities and audiences”—with a special focus on journalism over commerce, technology, and business models.
On accuracy, news organizations across the board have to address more forthrightly the public’s concerns about the truthfulness of what is presented. Those concerns do not appear to be as great as expressed in the Gallup/Knight numbers, which exaggerate a widespread talking point about growing distrust in the news media.
In an under-the-radar move to grow their revenue substantially, local media companies are putting major resources into developing a broad suite of digital marketing services (DMS). Media companies make this pivot as B2Cs rethink their own marketing goals, aiming not just to reach potential consumers but to convert them into paying customers, closing the path to purchase.