Smart Businessmen Still Buy Newspapers

NY Times from 1960. (Flickr Creative Commons: The U.S. National Archives)

The New York Times recently reported that New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg might buy The Financial Times.  Why are billionaires thinking of investing in newspapers, the dying breed of media?  AdAge suggests it may be because several papers (including The New York Times) are doing quite well.  The piece also says that struggling papers don’t dissuade shrewd buyers either, as evidenced by Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev’s purchase of The Independent.  The AdAge compiled graphics showing some of the current winning and losing papers.

Murdoch’s News Corp. Shuts Down the Daily

Murdoch in 2009. (via Flickr Creative Commons: World Economic Forum)

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. said Monday that The Daily, its iPad-only “newspaper,” will shut down December 15.  While Murdoch is facing financial turmoil with most of his print publications, The Daily served as an experiment of how newspapers could respond to their technological armageddon.  The Daily launched in February 2011 and fired a third of its staff in July, according to the Columbia Journalism Review.

Marco Arment pointed out that The Daily’s staff size was unsustainable and its content not up to par with things The New Yorker or The Atlantic published.  “There’s no room in today’s market for publications like The Daily,” he said, “and their heyday ended long before the iPad launched.”

Another CJR piece said the fact that viewers had to download the whole publication each issue made The Daily look impractical next to simpler mediums.  The piece also looks at numerous ways the iPad provides less than an ideal format for reading stories.

BBC offers live soccer video

From Media Guardian: Broadband users in the United Kingdom will be able to watch this weekend’s Six Nations international soccer tournament on the BBC’s site. The live streaming video is part of a one-time trial running through mid-March, in response to the fact that there are now more than 5 million people with broadband connections in the UK. “We are finding increasingly that people want to have the option of watching sport via broadband and the BBC wants to be at the front of the curve,” said Andrew Thompson, BBC Sport’s head of development. The BBC did not have to pay extra for the online rights.