Date

Sun - 21.01.2018


December 2008

TV beat other media as the medium consumed by most Britons on a daily basis, according to a UK Newspaper Society study released in 2006, SFN's World Digital Media Trends 2007 reported.

More than nine out of 10 British people consume TV every day, while more than 80 percent read local newspapers. Radio reached nearly three out of four, while news Web sites and national papers are consumed by more than 60 percent of Britons on a daily basis.

Magazines reach 55 percent of Britons, but cinema and posters only penetrate less than 40 percent on a daily basis, according to the Newspaper Society.

In addition, local newspaper advertising is picked by most Britons (23 percent) as relevant and useful. Advertising on magazines and the Internet are picked by 14 percent and 10 percent, while only less than 10 percent of British people say so for TV and radio advertising, according to the report, World Digital Media Trends 2007, released by SFN and the World Association of Newspapers.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-31 05:35

The New York Times Co. has told regulators it might be selling shares and/or other securities in order to raise some seriously needed cash, Reuters reported Tuesday.

The Times has a $400 million payment on one of its two revolving lines of credit due in May, and is already set to borrow up to $225 million against its Manhattan headquarters building.

On Dec. 8, Times Co. spokeswoman Catherine Mathis confirmed that the publisher hired real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield Inc. to assist with refinancing through a mortgage or sale-leaseback agreement. The Times Co. headquarters, a 52-story skyscraper designed by architect Renzo Piano, is located on Eighth Avenue in Manhattan, and is jointly owned with Forest City Ratner Cos. The Times moved into the new building in June 2007.

"While cash will buy the New York Times some breathing space, it hardly solves the long-term problems that are crushing the newspaper business," Reuters blogs reported.

Meanwhile, third-largest publisher in the United States has a remaining $366.3 million in its second line of credit, the bill on which is due in June 2011.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-31 00:47

Bolivia will see the launch of its first state-sponsored newspaper, President Evo Morales announced, according to an article by gipp.ru on Monday.

Morales said that for the first time the country's government will have its own publication that will help it to report "the truth" each day.

The president previously accused the country's journalists of lacking objectivity and leaning towards the opinion of "conservative-leaning" political parties, AFP reported nearly two weeks ago.

Morales refused to hold press conferences for Bolivian reporters. The leader said he would instead focus on "more responsible" international media outlets.

Gipp.ru did not mention the title of the future newspaper.

Author

Alisa Zykova

Date

2008-12-31 00:27

Following in the footsteps of newspapers like U.S.-based Orange County Register and France's Le Monde, Gannett-owned USA Today will now be available on Amazon's Kindle e-reader, mocoNews.net reported last week.

A monthly subscription to USA Today will cost US$11.99 and the first issue for sale launched Monday. The paper's Kindle December 26 issue was available for download for free. Single Kindle editions cost almost 75 cents for newspapers like The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.

USA Today is the 21st U.S. paper and the 28th paper around the world to be available on the Kindle reader, mocoNews.net reported. Kindle has gained popularity since its launch more than a year ago, but may be struggling with supply problems. Newer models, which cost $359, are currently out of stock and may be available within 8 to 10 weeks.

Author

Alisa Zykova

Date

2008-12-31 00:25

Online video enterprise Blinx has released optimised advertising technology called the Un-roll Unit that may help boost profits from videos on the Internet, MediaGuardian reported Monday. The video format entails overlay ads and logos that reappear throughout an online video during "contextually relevant moments," according to a Reuters report Monday.

Instead of having a longer pre-roll, which viewers may dislike, the technology unravels digital curtains with an advertiser's logo and immediately starts the video. Ads or click-through links are added in certain areas and towards the end of the clip, and a click-through to a sponsor's site may be inserted. The system is being employed by Shell Oil through its agency, MediaCom.

According to MediaGuardian, video viewing amongst Web users has grown. However, even if users are shifting focus away from TV and toward the Internet, advertisers may be lagging behind. Revenue from online videos may not be as great as from search or display ads.

"The exponential growth of online video - both long- and short-form - presents tremendous opportunities for advertisers and publishers alike," said MediaCom's Director of Digital Stefan Bardega, according to Reuters.

Author

Alisa Zykova

Date

2008-12-31 00:18

Sina Corp., which operates of the biggest Web portal in China, plans to expand beyond the Web. It will purchase Focus Media Holding Ltd.'s digital out-of-home advertising networks. The deal is worth about US$1.3 billion in stock, Bloomberg reported.

The deal will generate ad revenue from at least 120,000 flat-panel TV screens in office buildings and public spaces in more than 90 cities.

Online advertising contributed 73 percent of the company's sales last quarter, according to Bloomberg.

The deal has been approved by both companies and is expected to be completed in the first half of 2009, Bloomberg reported. Focus Media will keep its online ad department, its movie theatre ad network and some billboards.

According to Bloomberg, Sina will issue 47 million new ordinary shares, which Focus Media will offer to stockholders after the deal closed.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-31 00:04

Spanish newspaper El Pais employs the highest paid newspapers journalists in the world, according to Juan Antonio Giner, founder of Innovation Media Consulting Group.

Excluding directors, the average salary at the newspaper is €79,472 per year, with journalists making an average of €94,592 a year. Meanwhile, advertising and administrative staffers make an average of €70,159 and production staff makes about €69,775, Giner reported Saturday on his Innovations in Newspapers blog.

Giner also writes in his blog that 95 percent of staff at the Prisa-owned newspaper are under full-time and permanent contracts.

"The average salary of more than (US)$132,000 makes this newsroom the most expensive in the world," Giner states. "With salaries like this, change will not be easy."

But even though the newspaper's salaries would likely be envied by those at newsrooms around the world, Prisa's share prices are lower than ever, and the media holding company is looking at options to make more commercial sense, and "open the capital to new investors very soon," according to Giner.

"El Pais is going to change a lot. And the journalists know that they will not be able to enjoy the best salaries in the world anymore," Giner predicts.

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Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 23:40

Five media companies have expressed interest in buying some or all of the daily and weekly Connecticut newspapers put on the auction block by Journal Register Publishing Co., the Associated Press reported Monday.

"Just as with any negotiation that we have with any business, we don't put the specifics of who we're discussing with out on the table until such time that it is appropriate," Joan McDonald, Connecticut's economic development commissioner, told the AP after a private meeting.

The state's Department of Economic and Community Development sent letters at the beginning of December to 16 media companies detailing Journal Register's plans to close daily newspapers The Herald (New Britain, Conn.) and The Bristol Press, as well as 11 weeklies, if a buyer does not come forward by January 12, the AP reported in an article posted by the Hartford Courant.

Journal Register, based in Pennsylvania, also hired a company in New Mexico to help locate possible buyers, according to the AP.

McDonald said her department may be able to assist buyers financially or technologically, such as low interest loans or training, as it does with any business.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 23:36

More Americans are getting their news online than from print newspapers for the first time, yet neither media has surpassed television as the top source for national and international news, a Pew Research Center study released last week announced.

According to the study, 40 percent of respondents said they get most of their national and international news from online, compared to 35 percent who cited newspapers as their top source. Seventy percent said TV is their main source.

In September 2007, just 24 percent said they got more of their national and international news from the Internet, while 34 percent cited newspapers and 74 percent cited television, the Pew study found.

Although television is down in 2008 compared to 2007, it continues to maintain a large lead, ahead of online and newspapers. However, for young people, online and TV look to be tied as of December 2008, the Pew report stated. Fifty-nine percent of those ages 30 and under said they the Internet is their main source for national and international news, and 59 percent also cited television as a main news source.

Meanwhile, 28 percent of young people said newspapers are a main news source, up from 23 percent in September 2007, and close to 29 percent in August 2006.

Also in September 2007, 34 percent of young people said online was a main news source, just slightly up from August 2006, when 32 percent said so.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 05:41

The top three mobile phone operators in Thailand, AIS Dtac and True Move, are together introducing a system that will allow their customers to block unwanted SMS messages, including spam, the Bangkok Post reported last week.

The "smart pool mobile number" system is planned to be unveiled by the beginning of 2009.

To enroll in the system, a customer would need to call his operator's call centre and request that unsolicited text messages be blocked, no matter where they are coming from. Customers currently only have the power to block messages sent through their own networks, according to the Bangkok Post article, posted by AsiaMedia.

The mobile operators have created the system in response to criticism from mobile owners that their privacy was invaded when the Democrat party sent SMS messages to people asking for the support of new Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, without their consent, the Bangkok Post reported.

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Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 05:30

Music companies are planning to create their own video site, which would compete directly with YouTube, owned by Google, the Sunday Times reported.

Warner has demanded that YouTube takes down videos that feature songs the record label owns the rights to. This even includes Happy Birthday to You and Winter Wonderland, which Warner owns the rights to.

Google is currently in talks with other music groups EMI, Universal and Sony. Although Warner stated it made little from YouTube, Universal, the largest music firm, announced it made "tens of millions" from its contract, according to the Sunday Times article, posted by Times Online.

Labels make most of their money from "pay-per-play" fees YouTube pays them each time a video is viewed, as the site has a hard time selling ads against its content, most of which is created by users.

Meanwhile, music industry executives are modelling their plans for a music site on Hulu, which shows videos following a short advertisement, according to the Sunday Times. The AP also named Hulu the Web site of the year for 2008.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 05:28

Newspaper insert magazine Parade added 71 new newspaper partners this year to its national distribution, an additional circulation of 2.42 million, MediaPost reported Tuesday.

The magazine's total circulation is now at 33 million, and Conde Nast-owned Parade claims it has a readership of 73 million. It is now inserted into 470 newspapers across the United States.

Of the 71 new newspapers, including the Napa Valley Register (California), Sioux City Journal (Iowa) and Journal Star (Lincoln, Nebraska), Parade stated that 53 of them switched from USA Weekend, another top newspaper insert magazine, according to MediaPost.

Most of the new partners are in smaller cities and towns, which are "faring surprisingly well" in terms of circulation and ad revenue, compared to their larger metro daily counterparts, MediaPost reported.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 04:45

Norway-based media company Schibsted has bought a 34 percent share in Lithuanian free daily 15min from Lithuanian paid morning paper Lietuvos Rytas, Newspaper Innovation reported Friday. The move makes Schibsted the majority shareholder.

Schibsted closed its paid tabloid in the country, L.T., earlier in 2008. It bought its initial share in 15min in 2006.

15min is published in three editions, in Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda, and has a total circulation of more than 100,000, Newspaper Innovation reported. The free daily was launched in 2005.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-30 04:32

Local news is the topic that draws most people to newspapers, while most TV viewers are usually attracted by international topics, and online users by headlines, according to a Pew study in 2006, SFN's World Digital Media Trends 2007 reported.

About 35 percent of the survey respondents said local news is the most interesting subject to them in newspapers, while 28 percent and 21 percent picked headline and sports news, respectively. Thirteen percent said international news is the most interesting.

Among TV audiences, 24 percent said international news is the most interesting. "Headline" was picked by 23 percent of respondents, while "local news" was chosen by 20 percent. Another 12 percent and 11 percent chose politics/elections and weather as the most interesting topics on TV, according to the Pew study.

On the Web, headlines were the most interesting topics, picked by 27 percent of respondents. Another 22 percent picked international instead. Sports, politics/elections and business were also picked by 15, 13 and 11 percent, respectively, according to the report, World Digital Media Trends 2007, released by SFN and the World Association of Newspapers.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-30 04:31

UK freesheet Metro will cut up to 10 employees and terminate the services of about 30 casuals, a spokeswoman for the Daily Mail & General Trust subsidiary Associated Newspapers confirmed to MediaGuardian.

This action followed an announcement in October that the title intended to lay off some employees to streamline the business in order to face the tough market next year.

MediaGuardian reported that it "understands that the cuts could affect those working on its arts and entertainment section, MetroLife, and some of the paper's regional offices."

DMGT said in November that it plans to cut up to 400 jobs, most of which expected in its regional publishing business, Northcliffe Media, MediaGuardian reported.

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Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-30 04:18

The New York Times Co. announced Wednesday that advertising sales plummeted 20.9 percent in November, the biggest drop of the year, due to the global recession, MarketWatch reported.

Online advertising was also weak, down 4 percent during the month.

Shares of The New York Times declined 4.5 percent to US$6.04 early on Wednesday. It hit an historical low of $4.95 in November, down more than 70 percent since the beginning of the year.

The decline was due to "weakness in the studio entertainment, national automotive, book and financial services categories, which offset growth in technology, media and advocacy advertising," according to the company. Retail advertising revenue also decreased on lower department store, mass market and fashion/jewellery advertising, MarketWatch reported.

The Times Co. experienced a sales drop of 16.2 percent in October. The company's New England Media Group, which publishes the Boston Globe newspaper, saw ad sales go down 23.3 percent while the NYT media group declined 21.2 percent and the regional media group was down 22.2 percent.

However, circulation revenue rose 4.2 percent for the month, according to Market Watch.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-30 04:07

U.S. newspaper publisher GateHouse Media has sued The New York Times (NYT) for violating copyright terms by permitting its Boston Globe office to include headlines and beginning sentences from sites owned by the publisher, CNet reported Tuesday.

The links featured on NYT's Boston.com Newton Web site navigate users to the original GateHouse content that also displays advertising. However, GateHouse states in the lawsuit that the Massachusetts-based publisher was losing advertising revenue because users go straight to the articles, and do not see the its homepage ads.

Furthermore, the actions may have fooled users into thinking that GateHouse supports this type of linking practice, the lawsuit states, according to CNet.

"Far from being illegal or improper, this practice of linking to sites is common and is familiar to anyone who has searched the Web," said NYT Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications Catherine Mathis. "It is fair and benefits both Web users and the originating site."

A GateHouse spokesperson refused to comment on Tuesday, CNet reported.

Author

Alisa Zykova

Date

2008-12-24 03:59

The U.S. presidential elections at the beginning of November sent more people in the United Kingdom online seeking quality news Web sites, causing the Times Online, Indepndent.co.uk and Guardian.co.uk to all record boosts in traffic, MediaGuardian reported Tuesday.

Guardian saw traffic reach 26 million uniques for the first time, while the Times Online and Independent.co.uk each saw traffic increase by more than 5 percent month-on-month.

The Guardian network, including GuardianAmerica.com for U.S. audiences, saw unique numbers reach 26,043,707, an increase of 0.26 percent month-on-month, and a 48.8 percent increase from the same time in 2007, MediaGuardian reported.

Meanwhile, Times Online's traffic reached 21,598,720, a month-on-month rise of 5.5 percent, and year-on-year increase of 75.8 percent.

Independent.co.uk's traffic was up 5.7 percent from the previous month, to 8,888,221 uniques, a 92.4 percent increase from the same time in 2007, according to MediaGuardian.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-24 03:53

Many newspaper companies are selling their buildings amid tough financial times, but as poor credit markets cause commercial real estate deals to become fewer, who will buy these landmark buildings?

At least six newspaper companies have announced intentions to sell their buildings this year, as commercial real estate values have taken nosedives, the Associated Press reported.

"It's pretty well known that (newspapers) are going through a tough time," Ross More, director at real estate services firm Colliers International, told the AP. This means buyers have leverage to hold out for big bargains, he said.

Another hurdle is that many buildings, such as the Chicago Tribune's Tribune Tower, are subject to historic preservation laws, which are good for the buildings, but could deter buyers, the AP reported.

"Everyone has a warm place in their heart for the building," James Peters, head of the Landmarks Preservation Council of Illinois, told the AP. "So anyone coming along to destroy it or change its character would face intense public scrutiny."

Historical landmark-protected Tribune Tower

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-24 03:37

German-based business networking firm Xing announced Friday that it acquired U.S. social network Socialmedian for US$7.5 million, Computer Business Review (CBR) reported. The social network is expected to have news networking as a result of the deal.

Users may join "news networks" focusing on different issues and may receive updated news stories as well as share the content within their social network, CBR reported. The news articles are collected from around 19,000 outlets (such as Digg, Twitter and Google Reader) and are then filtered according to a user's social networking contracts.

Almost 510,000 of Xing's users pay nearly $90 per year for a premium account with full networking capabilities. Xing's revenue between January and September this year was $32 million, CBR reported. Socialmedian's mostly professional user base adds up to 7 million people.

The company's main business social network competitor is LinkedIn. Since 2006, Xing has turned its attention towards acquiring "smaller, country-specific" business networks in Europe. It has already bought Spain's eConozco and Neurona and has merged Turkey's Cember into its own network in 2007, according to CBR.

Author

Alisa Zykova

Date

2008-12-24 03:21

Social networking sites, such as Facebook, MySpace and Bebo, are important catalysts to drive traffic on the mobile Internet, as average mobile users check their profiles more than eight times a day, according to new research, Brand Republic reported.

According to Orange, 640,000 of its users access social networking on mobile devices, contributing 166 million page impressions every month.

Gains on mobile users with 3G broadband networks were also huge since July, according to Orange, with additional 1.3 million 3G customers, which was up 86 percent.

Currently there are 2.9 million Orange customers under the 3G network, Brand Republic reported.

"The popularity of mobile Internet continues to rise and our customers now use the service as part of day-to-day life," said Paul Jevons, director of products, portals and services for Orange. "Daily repeat customers are up 12 percent since the last report - in part this is due to the rise in social networking as customers regularly update their online statues and log-on to stay up to speed on friends' news and gossip."

Orange mobile users accessing social networking have boosted by 40 percent since July and monthly page views by over 57 percent.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-24 03:12

Daytime is the prime time for online video, according to Nielsen Online's October VideoCensus report.

About 65 percent of online video viewers streamed at least one piece of content in October, during the traditional nine-to-five working hours in weekdays, compared to 51 percent who did so on weekends from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m., Media Week reported.

One of the catalysts for the heavy concentration during working hours is that 96 percent of those people have broadband access, said Nielsen.

The third most popular streaming time is 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday, when 49 percent of online viewers streamed at least one clip in October.

The traditional TV prime-time (8 p.m. to 11 p.m.) during weekdays also ranked high, with 43 percent of viewers watching video online during that time, Media Week reported.

Although the average online video viewer seems to be consuming longer, the overall universe seems to reach the plateau, according to Nielsen Online's latest VideoCensus report. The number of total viewers dropped slightly from 124,023 million uniques in September to 120,711 million in October, while the total number of video streams remained flat.

However, average time spent per viewer was up by 10 percent, from 156.4 minutes in September to 171.7 in October, according to Media Week.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-24 03:03

Yahoo has acquired a 30 percent stake in Info Network Management Company (INMAC), an Indian company in the telephone directory search market, PC World reported.

According to Keith Nilsson, senior vice president and head of emerging markets at Yahoo, this deal will allow users in India to access information about local businesses and services through Yahoo Web sites as well as by phone through the Call Ezee service offered by INMAC.

Other than data integration of the two companies' lists, Yahoo also plans to seek for other ways of integrating the business models of INMAC and Yahoo, according to Nilsson, PC World reported.

Although the amount of money paid for the stake was not disclosed, the deal offers Yahoo representation on INMAC's board. The two companies also have a revenue-sharing agreement, added Nilsson.

With current coverage in 14 cites across India, Call Ezee allows users to call from mobile or fixed line, and request contact information of a business, PC World reported.

INMAC expects the funding from Yahoo could help its development in technology, as it seeks to triple its reach in the country over the next two years, the company said.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2008-12-24 02:58

News Corporation will move its stock market listing in the United States to the more technology-focused Nasdaq exchange, from the New York Stock Exchange, on Dec. 29, The Australian reported.

"We are confident that Nasdaq's broad offerings and exceptional service, coupled with a cost-effective structure, will provide more value to our stockholders," Reed Nolte, the company's investor relations manager, said in a statement.

News Corp. has a market value of US$22 billion, and is the largest company to switch to the Nasdaq in the past year.

The company's shares will continue trading under current symbols, NWSA for non-voting shares and NWS for voting shares, according to The Australian.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2008-12-23 05:58


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