Thompson: The Local News Business Model is Obsolete

It’s hardly controversial to note that the traditional business model for most publishers, particularly newspapers, is obsolete. Absent the geographic monopolies formerly imposed by owning distribution, newspapers have nothing to offer advertisers: the sort of advertising that was formerly done in newspapers, both classified and display, is better done online.

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4 thoughts on “Thompson: The Local News Business Model is Obsolete

  • May 11, 2017 at 9:29 am
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    Not sure I’ve read a bigger load of crap. A tech company lying about newspapers, what a shocker.

    Reply
    • May 11, 2017 at 9:39 am
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      Had to add, one can’t overlook the fact that what they are suggesting is a huge job killer. One or two people. Obviously they don’t care about news, only how to mass distribute “anything.” That is all they are good for. In the real news world, they are Amateurs.

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    • May 11, 2017 at 3:27 pm
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      Randy, your comments are spot on. As a local newspaper owner who utilizes both the print and digital platforms effectively, we totally disagree with this absurd notion that print is either dead or dying. It’s neither to those of us who actually produce a vibrant product that both entertains and informs. Plus, our advertising revenue has increased each year for the past five years without utilization of any subscription model. Thompson is either very naive or simply uninformed and shouldn’t be granted space for his negativity.
      Newspapers continue to evolve and I for one think tech companies, who have not a clue as to what newspapers actually do on a daily, weekly or monthly basis should focus on whatever it is they specialize in, other than spewing negativity regarding an industry they obviously don’t have a clue about.

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      • May 12, 2017 at 6:25 am
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        Keith,

        Yes indeed. This “vision” described by Thompson is oddly very much the same as what Patch has been doing the last few years in their re-building. I wonder if that is a coincidence? What these sites can, and probably will do, is look at a local newspaper’s headlines and create their own little version of it as their own. Considering one person will not be able to do the same amount of work to cover everything. I do feel at some point, any news organization that really cares about news, will need to pull their content from being online. Subscriptions could be okay, but still, when it comes down to it, online news is really just not necessary.

        Lastly, I have a 10 and 14 year old. Both they and their friends agree, it’s a better experience reading a real book or newspaper, than a screen. Normally when they read from the screen, it’s just because they can, not because it’s better.

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