Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Don Knowler

MEDIA: Perfect storm facing digital news. Latest circn figs? Guardian’s great article …

From ad blockers, to Facebook and consumers who refuse to pay. It’s the challenge facing digital news and no one’s sure what the solution is.

ERIC BEECHER: They are heading towards the cliff and it’s not their fault but they are heading towards the cliff really fast … I think that cliff is, for everybody, is within a year or two or less. — Eric Beecher, Chairman, Private Media

Hello, I’m Paul Barry, welcome to Media Watch. And who exactly is heading for that cliff?

Well it’s not just newspapers this time it’s the whole shebang.

According to former Sydney Morning Herald editor Eric Beecher, who’s now a digital publisher, digital news sites are also struggling to survive and public interest journalism is at risk.

So tonight we’re bringing you a special edition of Media Watch because the future of news has never looked bleaker.

In the past 7 months even the stars of the internet have suffered with Vice, Salon, Mashable and Gawker all laying off staff.

Buzzfeed has been forced to cut its 2016 revenue forecast by half or US$250m.

And the famous digital tech site GigaOm was last year forced to shut down operations completely

So what on earth is going on? Well, it’s getting harder and harder for news sites to sell ads for decent money because as Eric Beecher knows from personal experience—and I should disclose I have a small stake in his media business —everyone on the internet has an electronic billboard to fill.

Read the full, fascinating transcript, ABC HERE

• JDDN in Comments: It has nothing to do with the platform of revenue, rather the quality of content that is being produced. I think you’ll find a correlation between loss of revenue and terrible click bait, biased ‘SJW’ themed journalism …

• Mike in Comments: I know it might sound like an absurd idea, but perhaps they could try telling the truth for a change? …

Mumbrella: What appears to be the latest circulation figures … Merc (M-F) down 4.6 per cent; Merc Sat down 6.5 per cent; Suntas down 5.7 per cent …

Katharine Viner, Guardian: How technology disrupted the truth Social media has swallowed the news – threatening the funding of public-interest reporting and ushering in an era when everyone has their own facts. But the consequences go far beyond journalism …

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]
9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. JDN

    July 23, 2016 at 11:05 pm

    More evidence for anyone interested. Facebook is now censoring Wikileaks regarding the DNC email leaks.

    https://twitter.com/RealJamesWoods/status/757074422062735369

  2. Shane Humpherys

    June 17, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    #6 very worrying indeed! And since I had already singled out New Matilda in my earlier post, I may as well add that one needs to have a facebook account to login to their site to make comment on any given article etc. Talk about institutionalised hypocrisy!

    Similiarly, in the feature article by Paul Barry from the ABC’s Media Watch, he signs off the article by imploring us to follow them on facebook and contact Paul via Twitter. The irony off this after having just explained that those social media sites were destroying news media revenues must have escaped Paul or maybe he was just feeling very comfortable in his tax funded position.

  3. Simon Warriner

    June 17, 2016 at 12:07 pm

    re #6, your point is well made, and I agree.

    How to turn the tide is the question though, because the sort of behavior being engaged in is very hard to identify unless one is alerted to it.

    I have begun to wean myself off google searches, and try and use other search engines, but google is ubiquitous and it does take a surprising amount of effort.

    Twitter and facebook are no problem as I don’t use them, but for those that do the same problem applies.

  4. JDN

    June 17, 2016 at 7:24 am

    #5

    “It seems most online media services are now more and more partisan to a particular world view”

    What you may find even more interesting, is the recent exposure of corporate censorship within Google, Facebook and Twitter, arguably the 3 largest social media platforms on the net.

    (apparently I cant link the sources in the comment, so you may have to do a search)

    We have Facebook actively censoring ‘Right wing’ articles political figures according to Julian Assange.

    We have Google allegedly censoring anti Clinton results and in bed with the Clinton campaign – According to the Washington Post.

    To top it off we have Twitter (Majority owned by Saudi Billionaires/Princes) Censoring right wing Gay/LGBT Hashtags such as #GaysForTrump,
    and even this week going as far as banning a homosexual journalist with anti Islam extremist views (Milo Yiannopoulos of Breitbart news)

    It is not the fall of particular left leaning news websites revenue that should warrant a feature episode, but the existence of monopolized private powerhouses of social media censoring News that does not fit their political narrative – A much more important issue for all of us, regardless of which side of the fence you sit on.

    As #3 said, “Google, Facebook and one or two others will ultimately rule the world” – This outcome is beyond bleak, this is very worrying.

  5. Shane Humpherys

    June 16, 2016 at 6:37 pm

    Interesting comments #1. I can’t help but agree with much of what you have said, however I think the avoidance of advertising at every available opportunity by punters is also a significant contributor. I also think that the younger generations see news media as being largely replaced by social media as we continue, seemingly inextricably as a society, towards a collective narcissism.

    It seems most online media services are now more and more partisan to a particular world view, which just sees a constant stream of content that appeals to a small band of slacktivist cheerleaders and groupies that like to have their personal views constantly reflected back at them. New Matilda is great example of this.

    You think a centre left social democrat such as myself would relish in its content, but rather from a journalistic perspective I find it much like a black forest cake – any more than the slightest bite is nauseating!

  6. Interesting Stuffups

    June 15, 2016 at 9:29 pm

    Further to my comment I meant …

    “It is likely that 99% of government IT departments are now NOT needed, the technology and staff being duplicated over and over.”

  7. It's Getting Interesting

    June 15, 2016 at 8:01 pm

    Even the best news sites operate in a world of ad blockers. Many people don’t click ads.

    Re advertising revenue, web surfers are just as likely to see a useful ad on a hard news site as a fluff site.

    Content providers who invest cash in good content unfortunately see it pirated as soon as it is published.

    I believe the internet is a net destroyer of jobs, despite studies finding otherwise.

    With regards to providing information, such as news, think how many people have lost their jobs in mags, books and newspapers – printers, journalists, papermakers, inkmakers, all the secretarial and peripheral staff, the transport delivery drivers, the pulp mills(!), the shops that sold the publications …

    Aside from niche sites, the bulk of shopping will likely move to the largest, cheapest online mega suppliers. There will also be direct purchases from manufacturers, with no middle men.

    The winners – app makers and software writers, and those who own a product they can sell online without easily being undercut by someone else.

    Google, Facebook and one or two others will ultimately rule the world.

    All general information can and probably will be incorporated on a site like Google Earth, useable via filters.

    It is likely that 99% of government IT departments are now needed, the technology and staff being duplicated over and over.

    Whistleblowers with vested interests will publish the major scoops of the future, their stories pushed along by social media.

    I suspect that the older trained journalists feel quite useless now, aside from the few lucky ones on TV and radio. Dentistry, or plumbing, would have been wiser career choices.

    Today, anyone who can string a few words together is a journalist. Hits and likes matter more than ever, not truth.

  8. Mike

    June 15, 2016 at 4:18 pm

    I know it might sound like an absurd idea, but perhaps they could try telling the truth for a change?

    And I am including Media Watch in the list as well, they are certainly as bad as the worst media organisations they have criticised. If there were Logie awards for “Most hypocritical show on television” they would have won it year after year!

    Do they really think that in the Internet age people won’t talk to each other and find out that they are full of lies?

    It’s not that people don’t support good media with their money, only recently a kickstarter campaign to raise funds to start a news service called “Newsbud” achieved it’s goal to raise $150,000 and the campaign is not over yet.

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/141490519/support-a-100-people-funded-online-news-outlet-pha

    Perhaps something like this could be started in Australia where it is desperately needed?

  9. JDDN

    June 15, 2016 at 4:03 pm

    It has nothing to do with the platform of revenue, rather the quality of content that is being produced.

    I think you’ll find a correlation between loss of revenue and terrible click bait, biased ‘SJW’ themed journalism.

    Vice, Salon, Mashable, Gawker, Buzzfeed & Huff post are prime examples of this.

    One example is this racist trash article from salon – http://www.salon.com/2015/12/22/white_men_must_be_stopped_the_very_future_of_the_planet_depends_on_it_partner/

    Then we have Gawker, which considers leaking celebrity sex tapes news worthy, which a lawsuit as a result of this has cost them up 3x their yearly revenue in damages (140 million dollars).

    While i’m at it, the kings of sensationalized titles and diversity promoters (with their editorial team consisting of not one single male) the Huntington Post, which has no problems labeling an entire states as racist, sexist & xenophobic.

    It’s a shame Paul considers these (with the exception of huff) ‘stars of the internet’. This just further confirms his bias, a few weeks ago he was propping up Tens The Project opinionist Waleed Aly, a ‘professional Social Justice Warrior’ according to the heraldsun, as the equivalent to 6pm news anchors around the nation, of which Paul describes as a ‘sea of white’

    Meanwhile independent developing news websites like Brietbart, the Drudge report & The Blaze are thriving.

    We are witnessing a counter culture, people are understating the narratives within media now more than ever, and the successful media organisations of the future will be fact based and narrative free, who don’t answer to ‘faceless men’.

    It’s becoming more & more difficult for the billionaire elites, such as Rupert Murdoch & George Soros to push their agendas behind the curtains, now more than ever.

    In contrary Paul, the future of media has never looked better.

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