By paulgillin | February 4, 2008 - 8:01 am - Posted in Fake News

Jon Talton takes a bullet list approach to an analysis of what went wrong with newspapers. Some of his commentary is 20:20 hindsight, but there are some interesting insights here:

  • Consolidation and monopolization made newspapers insular and risk-averse. Innovation doesn’t come from companies that are trying to preserve a dominant franchise;
  • New ideas aimed at attracting non-readers (what some call the McPaper syndrome) distracted attention from the reporting that kept loyal readers. The result was a double whammy: those new audiences weren’t going to read anyway, and the traditional audiences became disenfranchised and left;
  • Groupthink in top-heavy organizations created a generation of yes-men who implemented defensive strategies and didn’t question the status quote. In the 1990s, when newspapers needed bold ideas, they were being led by sheep.

Check out the lively discussion that follows. This blog post touched a nerve.



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