France: GammaAgency Facing Danger
of Closing Down
the renowned French photo agency is facing the danger of closing down as it can
no longer pay its bills, according to it’s owners, the Eyedea Presse group.
Eyedea Presse CEO Stephane Ledoux said the business of photojournalism is no
longer viable as it has to adapt to globalisation and technical developments.
Many French professionals and public figures signed a petition to save Gamma.
On the same topic, the European Federation of Journalists is finalising a
survey on press photographers in Europe that
shows the difficulties faced by the profession: high competition with “citizen
photographers”, clear drop of photo fees, cuts in media photo budget cuts and
grab of authors’ rights by media employers. Press photographers are often
freelancers who cannot survive on this sole activity and wo have to undertake
other commercial jobs.
Investigation into Google News’ Dominant Position
Italian Competition Authority (ICA) began an investigation into Google news’
dominant position on the internet. According to local news reports, the ICA searched Google’s office in Milan following a complaint by the Italian
Federation of Newspaper Publishers on the lack of transparency in how Google
handles Google news.
UK: More Job Losses, Concerns Over Future of The Observer
- Northern & Shell to axe 70 journalists from Express and
the 80 job cuts at the Daily and Sunday Express last September,
Northern & Shell, owners of Express Newspapers and OK! Magazine, has announced its plan to further axe 70 journalists’ posts. The
company is also seeking voluntary redundancies from staff. According to the NUJ
spokesman, the plan will affect staff at the Daily Express, Sunday
Express, Daily Star and Sunday Star. http://www.journalism.co.uk/2/articles/535630.php
- GMG to Close the Observer?
The Guardian Media Group (GMG) is considering closing the
world’s oldest Sunday newspaper, the Observer, due to its mounting
losses. The Scott Trust, owner of the GMG will meet some time in September or
October to decide the closing of the Observer. It is estimated that
around 80 journalists will lose their jobs if the Observer closes.
US: Seattle Times Partners with Local News
Seattle Times initiated the ‘networked journalism’ to partner with other
four US newspapers and local news sites to gather and distribute news. This
initiative is a part of the project on Interactive Journalism found by the
American University to share news tips and news gathering information; linking
to and promoting stories on partner sites “to avoid gaps in coverage”, and
explore advertising opportunities across the sites.
Goes Local to Provide Local News
As many local
newspapers close down in the mist of recession, the media giant, MSN has introduced
MSN Local to replace local newspapers. The concept of MSN Local is to use
user-generated content from local ‘citizen correspondents’. Readers can search
postcode-based news and aggregated news from local newspapers from MSN Local.
- News Aggregator
Tewspaper Collates News from Twitter
With many major news media having their twitter accounts,
the news aggregator Twespaper collaborated with Twitter to introduce its
‘online newspaper without writers’. The concept of Tewspaper is to
aggregates tweets from major news organizations and organized them in a
newspaper format online. So far, the Twespaper is only available in five
cities. However, this initiative might ruffle some mainstream media feathers.
Newspaper Headquarter in LA to Become Library
newspapers are beginning to give up their prime locations and moving to cheaper areas. The Daily Comet in Thibodeaux, LA,
has sold its $2.3
million building to the Lafourche Parish Council to be converted into a public
library. Following this, The Atlanta Journal-Constitutionhas just announced it would leave downtown for a smaller space in the suburbs.
Post Editor Signaled to Go Weekly
As Trinity Mirror announced its plan to cut costs, its business-oriented daily, the Birmingham
Post confirmed to go weekly. As many as 85 jobs could be lost as a result
of this shake-up.
-Guardian the Most Bookmarked Newspaper on 'delicious'
Guardian took the lead over its competitor as the
most bookmarked newspaper on the social book-marking tool ‘delicious'. Guardian has 10,914 bookmarks compared to the 3, 994 bookmarks on Times Online and 3, 196 bookmarks on the Independence.
Express had the least bookmarks as 197.
US: Print Newspapers Takes the Lead
over Online News in Ads Sales
Print newspapers made 10 times
more in advertising revenue than their online versions last year according to
the Columbia Journalism Review. In 2008, printed newspapers had
$34.7 billion of advertising revenue compared to the $3.1 billion made by the
online versions. However, print newspapers only have 49 million subscribers
compared to the average 67.3 million unique visitors to their online versions
per month. This means that a print subscriber is worth more than 20 times the
revenue of an online reader ($940 per print subscriber versus $46 per online
UK: MediaGuardian Advertises for Readers’ Club Manager
Guardian plans to offer a ‘welcome pack’ and ‘exclusive content’ to
increase readership through its readers’ club. An advertisement, featured in
the MediaGuardian’s print and web sections, says that the readers’ club “aims
to move us decisively away from the traditional rather distant relationship
that newspaper companies have had with their readers”.
Sweden: Public Broadcaster
Opens its Doors to the Public
The Swedish television
has recently launched an interactive and transparent news programme called Öppen
Redaktion (open newsroom) to give viewers direct access to the decision
making process involved in the news production. Following the success of the
Swedish initiative , the US
daily newspaper, the Spokesman Review, is currently undertaking a
similar project ‘Transparent newsroom’.
News International to Close Thelondonpaper
Murdoch’s News International is planning to close the loss-making free evening
newspaper, thelondonpaper, thus
making 40 people jobless. Thelondonpaper recorded a pre-tax loss of £12.9m in the year ending June 2008 on a turnover of
- First User-generated Printed Newspaper to be Launched in
September in London.
Theblogpaper, a website and printed paper compiled by
an online community of writers will release its first edition in print on 25
September with an initial run of 5,000 copies to be distributed in selected
areas of London
as well as to bloggers, media and advertising agencies.
Huffington Post Goes more Social with Facebook
user generated Huffington Post has launched a new ‘social news’ in a
joint venture with Facebook. The new ‘social news’ service allows Facebook users to connect to the Huffington Post news website and share their
comments and news articles they read.
Huffington Post is not the first media to integrate social networks
since CNN already collaborated with Facebook to stream live video
of Barack Obama’s inauguration and other traditional media like the New York
Times and the Telegraph in the UK have built a similar service
called TimesPeople and MyTelegraph.
Step for Bloggers’ Accountability as Google is
Forced to Reveal a Blogger's Identity?
Vogue Australia cover girl Liskula Cohen has won a landmark court battle
to reveal the identity of an anonymous blogger who called her a
"skank" and an "old hag". On 17 August, Google's Blogger
service was forced by Judge Joan Madden of the Manhattan Supreme Court to
reveal the identity of the blogger, thus opening the way to a completely new
legal approach over the accountability for user generated content on the
Global: Website to Rank
Credibility of Blogs and Non-Professional Media
new website, Allvoice,s plans to sort news items from various non
professional media by rating their popularity and their credibility, using
algorithms similar to the ones of Google. It claims an average of more than 3
million unique users each month, one-third of whom are in the United States.
Despite the effort to promote credibility of non-professional media, the
question of accountablity of the authors or the verification of the sources is
still not guaranteed in all the cases.
US: Business Week for
US business weekly, founded in 1929, lost 30 percent of its advertising revenue in the second quarter of 2009 as a result of the recession and
competition from the Internet. Its owner, The McGraw-Hill Companies, has
hired an investment bank to sell the magazine, according to Bloomberg press
Strike Against Government
organised the first bloggers’ strike on 14 July against the government’s
decision to regulate information on the Internet. The proposed legislation
would allow anyone feeling defamed by a blog post, forum thread or status
message on Facebook to request the author to rectify the post within 48 hours. If
the author does not comply, a €10,000 fine would be imposed along with
potential moral damages. The strike came a few days after a US Court had forced
Google to reveal the identity of a blogger who insulted a former top-model.
India: Extension of
Stimulus Package for the Print Media
Indian government decided to extend its stimulus package for written press by
another six months until 31 December. The package included a waiver of 15 per
cent agency commission on directorate of advertising and visual publicity
(DAVP) and the abolishment of fringe benefit tax (FBT) which would bring major
relief to the media and entertainment sector.
Advertising Market at its Lowest in Second Half of 2009
According to a report by the
media group ZenithOptimedia, the global advertising recession will reach its
worse point in the second half of this year and North America and western
Europe are not expected to return to growth until 2011. However the report also
points out that out of the 79 markets it covers, 25 are actually still in growth,
in particular China.
Co. to Cut 1400 Jobs by end of Next Week
President of Gannett Co., the largest U.S. newspaper owner, announced in an
internal memo to the staff that the company will eliminate about 1,400
publishing jobs by July 9. Earlier in the year, Gannett already enforced two
weeks of unpaid leave for most employees as advertising revenues decreased by
34 percent in the first quarter.
-Washington State Allows
Tax Breaks for Newspapers
A new law of the
Washington state gives newspaper printers and publishers a 40 percent cut in
business taxes. “It is our way of saying to the newspapers that we do believe
you're incredibly important to our state and our democracy,” said House
Majority Leader Lynn Kessler, the Democrat who sponsored the measure. The tax
cut will cost the state about USD 1.3m a year.
UK: Daily Mail Goes
The Daily Mail &
General Trust launched a pilot experience of “grassroots online presence” with
the first 50 hyperlocal community websites in the Southwest of England. The sites should cover areas with between
10,000 and 50,000 inhabitants. They will not focus on general news but are
rather aimed at encouraging interaction between users with profiles, stories,
images, forums and reviews. Each site will have a paid community publisher to
oversee the site and advertising will be open to local businesses targeting the
public via Google Maps.
Germany: Bavarian State
to Renew its Support to Local Television
order to guarantee regional information and pluralism, the SPD (Social
Democratic Party) of the Bavarian regional government pleaded for the
continuation of the support for the local private TV via tax money. The SPD
told the Bavarian Journalists' Federation on 1st July that 9 Million
Euro per year has been earmarked from the regional budget for that purpose
until 2013. The SPD wants to tie the support for the local TV in Bavaria to
quality criteria in future.