News / USA

News Business in US Faces Big Challenges

News Business in US Faces Big Challengesi
X
Greg Flakus
April 24, 2014 5:23 PM
The business of providing news and current affairs commentary in the United States is facing big challenges as the older audience diminishes and new digital services struggle to gain a foothold with younger people. The future of journalism may depend on the success of income diversification in media companies.

News Business in US Faces Big Challenges

Greg Flakus
The business of providing news and current affairs commentary in the United States is facing big challenges as the older audience diminishes and new digital services struggle to gain a foothold with younger people. The future of journalism may depend on the success of income diversification in media companies.
 
Newspaper readership is in a steep decline in the United States as younger people seek news on the Internet.

Newsweek magazine went exclusively digital in December 2012, but last month started printing again under its new owner, IBT Media.
 
But IBT’s director of audience engagement, Kate Gardiner, says the print magazine’s target audience is not young.
 
“Those people are going to be an older demographic, they are going to be wealthier, they are going to be much more engaged in international policy and economics and things like that, but our main users on social media are going to be much younger," said Gardiner.

Gardiner was one of the many news company representatives promoting digital online products at the recent South by Southwest Conference in Austin, Texas.
 
The Knight Foundation’s Michael Manness says digital journalism is still in a wild development stage.
 
“Anyone can publish, anyone can produce, anyone can have a voice in it, so it is a lot of noise right now," said Manness.
 
Younger people tend to grab news in short bursts, showing little patience for long format, in-depth stories.
 
Still, Maness thinks news organizations with serious content can win them.
 
“They may not go in depth, but they have a general sense of what is going on, so I think there is a real opportunity for news brands to build out depth, context and think about those new narratives in different ways," he said.
 
Some online news companies have found their niche by focusing on particular issues or news beats, often on a local or state level.
 
One of the most successful is the Texas Tribune, which covers public policy and politics in the state with funding that includes private donations and sideline business ventures.
 
This could be a model for other news sites, according to Jake Batsell, who works under a fellowship at the Texas Tribune. He spoke to VOA via Skype.

“You are basically trying to find five or six streams of revenue that almost operate as mini-businesses that collectively combine to generate enough revenue to keep you in business," said Batsell.
 
The Texas Tribune has won acclaim for its stories and is slowly building a statewide audience through what Batsell says is integrity based on financial diversity.
 
“If a donor were to try to exert influence and control the news content, they have more backing and more standing to go back to that person and say, ‘Here is your donation back'", he said.
 
Batsell says such news organizations keep a watchful eye on government, but their effectiveness ultimately relies on a large audience among the citizens whose interests they serve.

You May Like

US Imposes Sanctions on Alleged Honduran Drug Gang

Treasury department alleges Los Valles group is responsible for smuggling tens of thousands of kilograms of cocaine into US each month More

At 91, Marvel Creator Stan Lee Continues to Expand his Universe

Company's chief emeritus hopes to interest new generation of children in superheroes of all shapes and sizes by publishing content across multiple media platforms More

Photogallery New Drug Protects Against Virus in Ebola Family

Study by researchers at University of Texas Medical Branch, Tekmira Pharmaceuticals is first looking at drug's effectiveness after onset of symptoms More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
April 25, 2014 12:26 AM
If newsmedia relys finantially on personal funds, I am afraid journalism would lose their neutral pision and trust from the pubric.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebolai
X
George Putic
August 20, 2014 8:57 PM
While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ferguson Calls For Justice as Anger, Violence Grips Community

Violence, anger and frustration continue to grip the small St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri. Protests broke out after a white police officer fatally shot an unarmed black teenager on August 9. The case has sparked outrage around the nation and prompted the White House to send U.S. Attorney Eric Holder to the small community of just over 20,000 people. VOA’s Mary Alice Salinas has more from Ferguson.
Video

Video Beheading Of US Journalist Breeds Outrage

U.S. and British authorities have launched an investigation into an Islamic State video showing the beheading of kidnapped American journalist James Foley by a militant with a British accent. The extremist group, which posted the video on the Internet Tuesday, said the murder was revenge for U.S. airstrikes on militant positions in Iraq - and has threatened to execute another American journalist it is holding. Henry Ridgwell has more from London.
Video

Video Family Robots - The Next Big Thing?

Robots that can help us with daily chores like cooking and cleaning are a long way off, but automatons that serve as family companions may be much closer. Researchers in the United States, France, Japan and other countries are racing to build robots that can entertain and perform some simpler tasks for us. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As the Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities from pro-Russian separatists, residents are getting a chance to rebuild their lives. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the town of Kramatorsk in Donetsk province, where a sense of fear is still in the air, and distrust of the government in Kyiv still runs deep.
Video

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improving

The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video China Targets Overseas Assets of Corrupt Officials

As China presses forward with its anti-graft effort, authorities are targeting corrupt officials who have sent family members and assets overseas. The efforts have stirred up a debate at home on exactly how many officials take that route and how likely it is they will be caught. Rebecca Valli has this report.
Video

Video Leading The Fight Against Islamic State, Kurds Question Iraqi Future

Western countries including the United States have begun arming the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq to aid their battle against extremist Sunni militants from the Islamic State. But there are concerns that a heavily-armed Kurdistan Regional Government, or KRG, might seek to declare independence and cause the break-up of the Iraqi state. As Henry Ridgwell reports from London, the KRG says it will only seek greater autonomy from Baghdad.
Video

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

In some Kenyan communities, female genital mutilation remains a rite of passage. But activists are pushing back, with education for girls and with threats of punishment those who perform the circumcision. Mohammed Yusuf looks at the practice in the rural eastern community of Tharaka-Nithi.

AppleAndroid