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July 20 2010

15:02

Top 100 media list suggests print power is losing ground to digital

The MediaGuardian’s top 100 list illustrates the growth and influence of digital over traditional media, according to an analysis by the EditorsWeblog.

And if the list is anything to go by, digital appears to be winning in regards to influence hands-down.

Referring to panel comments in a Guardian blog, the report highlights how those who created the list felt newspapers’ influence was “continuing to wane”.

Far too much credence has been given to the influence of newspapers. The election was evidence that they are not the power we once thought.

Digital and social media pioneers claimed the majority of the top spots – prompting a number of questions for the future of traditional media.

Is the influence of newspapers actually waning? Can publishers still compete with Apple or Google for influence over the public? What can they do to work with such companies, and with social networking platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, to maintain newspapers’ relevance in an increasingly digital society?

In another post commenting on the top 100 list, Kevin Marsh from the BBC highlights what he perceives as a lack of interest in content over platforms.

For those of us who think news – in the traditional sense – still matters, the highest placed newspaper editor is Paul Dacre, at 13 … and there’s not another journalist ’til Helen Boaden (BBC), at 21, and Nick Robinson (BBC), at 26 – and there are only three other journalists in the top 50

[T]he power of platforms – whether physical, social media or multi-use – is now greater than that of the content they carry.

Read the EditorsWeblog post here…Similar Posts:



June 01 2010

15:38

Public service broadcasting symposium to discuss digital future

Places are still available for a one-day symposium on the Future of Public Service Broadcasting, on Thursday June 10th 2010. The event is the result of the Public Service Broadcasting Forum project, which has debated public service broadcasting issues to coincide with the public consultation period for the BBC’s Strategy Review.

The symposium is organised by openDemocracy, hosted by City University London’s Department of Journalism, and chaired by Steve Hewlett, presenter of BBC Radio 4’s The Media Show.

The aim of the day:

The symposium embraces the current consultation on the BBC’s Strategy Review in asking a broader question: what is the future for pluralism in the supply of public service content in the UK?

The schedule includes: The role of the licence-funded BBC and the significance of the Strategy Review with Caroline Thomson (chief operating officer, BBC), Professor Steven Barnett, Mark Oliver (Oliver & Ohlbaum Associates), Professor Richard Collins; How to identify, supply and fund the PSB needs the BBC cannot fulfil with Jonathan Thompson (Director of strategy, Ofcom), Geraint Talfan Davies (former controller of BBC Wales), Blair Jenkins (former head of news, BBC Scotland), Helen Shaw (Athena Media); and The public service media content that merits support in the digital future, and how it can be funded with Tim Gardam (Ofcom board member), Tony Curzon Price (openDemocracy), Claire Enders (Enders Analysis), and Jeremy Dear (NUJ).

Tickets can booked at http://psbf.eventbrite.com for £25 (including coffee/lunch) / £15 for students. Any enquiries should be sent to the PSBF’s moderator, Daniel-Joseph MacArthur-Seal via daniel.macarthur-seal [at] opendemocracy.net.

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March 08 2010

15:58

#IWD: Chie Elliott – ‘Sidelining of TV’s older women could be reflective of society’s warped views’

Blogger and freelance journalist Chie Elliott (@orangeblossomer) has written a wide-ranging piece to mark International Women’s Day and its relevance to the media/publishing industries. The post can be read in full on her own blog at this link.

It wasn’t that long ago that BBC boss Mark Thompson came under fire for replacing a mature female judge in a popular dance show with a pop star 36 years her junior.

The fact that in television, older, grey-haired male presenters carry on commanding respect well into their retirement age, whereas their female counterparts get sidelined as their age starts to show, could be a reflection of a society’s warped views about women, and not exclusive to the industry.

Women’s value and employability should not be conditional to age or appearance, but women in highly visible jobs such as television or film, do not always seem to have a choice. Anna Ford, a journalist worshipped by her male peers as something nearing a sex goddess in her heyday, decided to retire in April 2006, at 62, saying:

“I might have been shovelled off into News 24 to the sort of graveyard shift.”

The BBC’s  drive to recruit older female newsreaders, announced soon after the Strictly Come Dancing judge swap saga, strikes me as laughable. I can visualise a screaming headline: “Older women join ethnic minorities and the disabled under positive discrimination scheme.” Or, more bluntly, as The Independent put it: “Must be Female. Young Need Not Apply”.

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March 04 2010

14:57

Is the BBC really falling out of love with blogging?

From reading recent media news you might think the the BBC’s passion for blogging was cooling.

First off, we learnt (via the Times initially, and then confirmed by the BBC) that the corporation is to significantly cut back its web content and reduce the number of online staff.

Then on Tuesday evening, BBC political editor Nick Robinson said he no longer read the comments on his own Newslog. Rather than widening the political debate, commenters were “people who have already made their minds up, to abuse me, to abuse each other or abuse a politician”, he said at an Election 2.0 debate at City University London.

Finally, as academic and blogger Alfred Hermida flagged up, the BBC Strategic Review labelled the blogosphere as “vast and unruly”. The report says:

Above the vast and unruly world of the blogosphere, professional media power may actually concentrate in fewer hands. Individual plurality may increase but collective, effective plurality decrease – with societies around the world left with fewer reliable sources of professionally validated news.

Professor Hermida, who specifically researches the BBC,  was surprised by the language and suggests reminding director general Mark Thompson that the BBC is part of the blogosphere itself:

Perhaps Forrester analyst Nick Thomas when he says that “Mark Thompson does not ‘get’ digital in the way that even his much-maligned predecessor John Birt did.”

But before we get carried away with the BBC’s blogging / web apathy, let’s take a step back. Malcolm Coles’ easy-read guide to the Strategic Review comes in handy here.

For one, as Coles notes on Econsultancy, halving the number of sections on the site is not quite the same as halving the size of the site. “The overall quality will be improved by closing lower-performing sites and consolidating the rest,” he reports.

And proactive web interaction will be developed. From Coles’ post:

The BBC also plans to open up its programme library (outside the areas with high commercial value) “over time” within BBC Online as a publicly accessible ‘permanent collection’.

The review says it will make programmes available on demand “alongside the component parts of those programmes (segmentation), programme information (full catalogue) and additional, complementary content (programme support”. And the site will look to deliver audiences through propositions like the BBC’s Wildlife Finder “which maximise the public value of archive programming”.

(…) It’s pledged to “turn the site into a window on the web” by providing at least one external link on every page and doubling monthly ‘click-throughs” to external sites: “making the best of what is available elsewhere online an integral part of the BBC’s offer to audiences”.

Anyway, read the report – or Coles’ summary – for yourself. PDF at this link.

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February 05 2010

16:42

Peston to tackle audience questions in TV debate

BBC business correspondent and blogger Robert Peston is to take live audience questions for BBC Three’s ‘Peston on Money’ – and the BBC is calling for audience members for recording on March 1.

Put your money moans to business guru Robert Peston in a live audience debate: For the last two years this country and the rest of the world has been hit by the biggest financial disaster in half a century. But who’s to blame and why does it matter? Award winning business journalist, Robert Peston, has been at the centre of this storm, unearthing stories of financial greed and mismanagement that affect us all. Robert will be tackling questions, such as: Why does my boss earn 100 times more than me and what do they do to deserve it? How does a bank work and why do we need them? Does debt really matter and how much debt is dangerous?

I like this warning:

Please note that throughout the recording you will be asked to contribute and interact with the show. For example, the audience will be asked to give a show of hands if they are in debt.

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January 25 2010

09:51

Sunday Times: BBC considering sale of magazine division

While rumours circulate about the future of the Sunday Times, the newspaper reports on another potential sale – the magazine division of the BBC:

Radio Times and Gardeners’ World magazine could soon have new owners. The BBC is considering the sale of its magazine division, which produces 50 titles, after being ordered to curb its money-making activities.

In response, the BBC said that “no decisions have been taken about any of our businesses”.

Full story at this link…

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