Friday, January 12, 2007

Brighter prospects for news companies?

The studies and reports cited in this USA Today story are contrarian on the surface: they indicate continued strength for established media companies, praise our strong cash flows, and show that younger non-readers tend to tune in more as they mature.

What makes the studies somewhat suspect is their origin: they all were commissioned by media critics who will use them to fight changes proposed to loosen FCC cross-ownership requirements.

Their forecasts run counter to a widely held view that digital media and the Internet have dramatically altered the economic landscape for traditional media.

Companies that have run into trouble, including Knight Ridder and Tribune (TRB), "mangled the transition to the digital age," says Mark Cooper, research director for the Consumer Federation of America. "It's management, not the business."

His group, as well as Consumers Union and Free Press, prepared their relatively upbeat studies ahead of the Federal Communications Commission's Tuesday deadline for public comment in its pending review of media-ownership rules ...

... the consumer groups ...argue that Internet blogs and community sites, and even local cable news channels, still are not much competition for newspapers and broadcasters. People still prefer to get local news from familiar institutions and reporters, they say.

The story doesn't offer any details about who did the studies, or how, or link to them. If I find them, I'll add that info to this post.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous3:46 PM

    When are you going to write a post about the Star Tribune sale other than that self-serving "correction" a few days ago? You're posing as a journalism crusader for a company that sold its jewel for 30 pieces of silver and a tax benefit. Credibility gap, anyone?