Wednesday October 4, 2006

More about the future of newspapers

A great article about the dangers and opportunities newspapers face in case my rant from Monday wasn’t long enough.

Internet advertising revenues account on average for no more than 10 percent of total ad revenues because online readers of newspapers still have small value for advertisers. Newspapers need to expand their Internet readership very substantially and, particularly, persuade their online readers to stay hooked to their digital versions much longer. The way to do that is to embrace the cultural change.”

It goes on to suggest customization as one way to embrace cultural change. In one way, the Herald is doing this: they have hundreds of RSS feeds, so anyone who knows about RSS can get a customized version of the Herald. Which makes me wonder: why not a customized home page, ala My Yahoo?

Unfortounately, even the RSS feeds are slightly snafu’d: right at the top is Liz Donovan, who hasn’t written for the Herald since July. And just this morning, when I clicked an item from the Local section’s feed for a brand new article, I got this error message page. Great, I guess I’m back to wading through web site. Good thing I caught it today, because by tomorrow I’d be forced to use the dreaded search engine. (thanks, Val)

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