• RSS Feed

The LinkUp Blog The Industry's Best-Kept Secret

March 26, 2007 / Toby Dayton

Will The Death Of Daily Newspapers Resemble A White Dwarf Or A Supernova?

Two excellent posts appeared in the last few days on the certain death of daily newspapers. Stowe Boyd makes some great points in his post ‘Newspapers Are Dead Already‘ and links to Doc Searls’ terrific post ‘How To Save Newspapers.’ As both articles rightly conclude, along with countless others, the daily newspaper industry is on its deathbed, afflicted with what must certainly be considered a terminal illness. The causes are too numerous to combat, including gross mismanagement, complacency brought on by years of monopoly status in most markets, technology, ferocious competition, the web, the FCC, an explosion of better media alternatives, etc. Like other business models that have failed to adapt to a changing environment, dailies no longer provide a compelling value proposition for their readers or their advertisers. As a result, they have simply passed into irrelevance and will eventually fade into oblivion. The only questions that remain are how quickly that day will come, what newspapers, if any, will survive, what companies will fill certain aspects of the vacuum created, and how our society will be impacted by that eventuality (both positively and negatively). For those of us who care, it will be a fascinating period of time to watch. I imagine it to resemble how an astronomer might feel, one who is fortunate enough to be able to witness the death of a star as it slowly transforms into a white dwarf or explodes in dramatic fashion into a supernova. Over the next few years, my guess is that we’ll be seeing lots of both on a local level.

Time to read the daily paper this morning: 9 minutes and 7 seconds.

Daily recommendation for the dailies: Create a localized wiki for your local communities. Because wikipedia has standards for relevancy for a global or national audience, local and hyper-local content is often not approved for inclusion into the site. Local newspapers could and should fill that gap with their own wikis that contain a wealth of information, most of it generated by readers, about local people, places, events, organizations, companies, institutions, etc. It would provide an excellent resource/service for communities, engage and attract readers and users, and deliver a compelling value proposition for both readers and advertisers.

[tags]Death of Newspapers, Traditional Media, Publishing, Recommendations For Newspapers[/tags]