Thursday, December 07, 2006

O, So Fast 

How fast are media changing? Well consider this and this and this and this. And yes, this too. All are stories just from the last couple of days. The shift is wrenching. Firings, of course, have been going on for a while, as has circulation shrinkage. But change is relentless. It seems every week, sometimes every day, there is news of yet another mainstream medium cutting back, changing course, experimenting with something, anything, to survive a decline in advertising dollars.

The New York Times story highlights that actual dollars from its fast-growing online business do not begin to match in raw dollars what newsprint still brings in. The Times, as are all other newspapers, is facing the same meltdown that another mighty company, Kodak, is suffering. Digital revenues are less than traditional business.

There are days when I wonder if there will be enough business news reporters about to handle the kinds of stories our firm merchandises. In local media, business news departments appear to have collapsed back to the old days when business news was consigned to the end of the sports pages and before the comics.

I'm not going to despair. Change is difficult, and one rides it or quits. There is reduced coverage, but there is coverage. One has to compete a little more for attention. That means our facts and stories must be more persuasive than ever. In other words, there is no substitute for doing homework. That hasn't changed.


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