The Future of Print

More Newspapers Outsourcing Stories To Online Content Farm Demand Media

Posted in Doom by futureofprint on May 26, 2010

Demand Media is the robotic online content mill that pays freelancers paltry sums to churn out stories based on “what’s hot” search algorithms. Guess who’s about to start “creating articles” for your local newspapers?

Erik Sherman got hold of a memo that Demand Media just sent its contributors, telling them that “We have entered into a partnership with Hearst Newspapers to produce articles for two of their premium publications, San Francisco Chronicle and the Houston Chronicle. Specifigawkercally, we are creating articles and videos for the Real Estate section of and the Small Business section of”

In short, this sounds like the first step down a very slippery slope for newspapers. Outside of the core of hard news, much regional newspaper content is crap, anyhow. Why pay a full time newspaper staffer a living wage to write real estate or small business stories, when you can contract those tasks out to a writing sweatshop whose typical “rate for an article of a few hundred words is $7.50”? You Hearst employees might want to start calling your union reps right about now.

via More Newspapers Outsourcing Stories To Online Content Farm Demand Media.


Revealed: Google’s Keeps 32% in Publisher Revenue

Posted in Boom by futureofprint on May 24, 2010

Google has finally released its revenue share breakdown for AdSense.For your background: AdSense has two products: one is AdSense for Content, which allows publishers to generate revenue from ads placed alongside their content.

The other is AdSense for Search, which allows publishers to place a custom Google search engine on their site and generate revenue from ads shown next to search results.The majority of AdSense publishers are using the content product, says Google. Publishers apparently earn a 68% revenue share worldwide, meaning Google pays 68% of the revenue that they collect from advertisers.

Since launching AdSense for Content in 2003, this revenue share has never changed.

via Revealed: Google Keeps Less Than Half Of AdSense Revenue.

IDC: Online Ad Revs Poised To Grow Higher Than Expected | paidContent

Posted in Boom by futureofprint on May 20, 2010

Despite worries about Europe’s financial problems over the past few weeks, expectations for online ad spending this year are continuing to rise. Just two months after researcher IDC projected U.S. online ad spending to shoot up 12.6 percent by end of 2010, it has now raised that number to 19 percent to $31.5 billion. The change follows a string of surprisingly strong numbers for all segments of online advertising, even display, which had been in decline for the past two years. As for individual categories, like mobile, IDC expects a significant rise, but despite the best efforts of Google NSDQ: GOOG and Apple NSDQ: AAPL, it will remain small relative to other parts of the industry, at least for the next four years.

Last week, the Interactive Advertising Bureau said internet ad spending rose 7.5 percent in Q1 to $5.9 billion, which was a return to the familiar refrain of “another record-breaking quarter,” a phrase that had accompanied much of the organization’s reports before last year. Even before the doldrums of ‘09, online ad growth rates had been slowing significantly since the days of 30- and 40- percent gains of the middle part of this decade.

via IDC: Online Ad Revs Poised To Grow Higher Than Expected | paidContent.

iPad users are big news consumers: study

Posted in Boom by futureofprint on May 10, 2010

In good news for the news media, iPad users are twice as likely to be interested in news, sports and finance than the typical visitor to the various websites operated by Yahoo, according to an analysis provided by the web portal.Marking one of the first efforts to understand the burgeoning iPad population, Yahoo found that the initial audience for the Apple tablet is weighted toward men between the ages of 30 to 54.

With the audience skewed most strongly to those between the ages of 35 and 44, the iPad generation appears to be younger than the Kindle crowd, which trended into the 50s and beyond in an informal poll of users at the Amazon website.In comparing iPad users to the over-all traffic at the various Yahoo properties, the portal found that iPadders are 2.2 times more interested in financial news than the average Yahoo visitor, 2.0x more interested in general news and 1.9x times more interested in sports. iPadders also accessed Flickr, the picture-sharing website, 2.4x more than the average Yahoo visitor.

via Reflections of a Newsosaur: iPad users are big news consumers: study.

Washington Post Swings To Profit; Newspaper Display Up 17 Percent

Posted in Boom by futureofprint on May 7, 2010

For the most part, The Washington Post Co. NYSE: WPO had a pretty good Q1—except, of course, for the magazine division i.e., Newsweek, which saw revenue plunge 36 percent to $29.4 million. While Newsweek had a for sale sign hung on it this week, the newspaper division’s troubles have sharply abated. In Q1, newspaper revs declined 3 percent, a vast improvement over last year’s deep 22 percent drop. But the good news on the newspaper publishing side, which is primarily represented by WaPo’s flagship, came from the web, as display revs jumped 17 percent. For more details on Newsweek’s dismal Q1, see Staci D. Kramer’s piece here.

Earlier this week, the WaPo’s online-only Slate Group said that its ad revenues were up 52 percent. The positive results at Slate, which is part of the newspaper division, weren’t able to obscure the continued struggles for its print-based sibling as the’s classified sales were down 22 percent, hardly better than Q109’s 23 percent fall.

via Washington Post Swings To Profit; Newspaper Display Up 17 Percent | paidContent.

Murdoch: iPad subs more profitable than on the Kindle

Posted in Boom by futureofprint on May 5, 2010

The iPad has already been very successful for the Wall Street Journal as an e-reader, News Corp’s chief Rupert Murdoch said during a call discussing his company’s latest results. About 64,000 are subscribing to the newspaper in just the first month; it’s also significantly more profitable than the same subscription on the Kindle, he said. Unlike Amazon’s insistence on a revenue split, the WSJ keeps all of the nearly $18 it costs for a month of reading.

The number didn’t explicitly track those who have passed their free trial periods and are paying for the subscription, although the adoption rate is 20 times higher than just 3,200 in the first week.

via Murdoch: iPad subs more profitable than on the Kindle | Electronista.