Monday, March 19, 2012

State of the News Media 2012

A big event in the world of journalism & mass communication is the annual "State of the News Media" report issued by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism.  Of particular interest for our course is the section on digital media:
Two numbers symbolize the intensifying challenge and opportunity the digital world poses for the news industry:  In 2011, social media giant Facebook grew to 133 million active users from 117 million in the U.S.1 And in the final months of the year, tablet ownership in the U.S. nearly doubled, to 18% of Americans.
Each is a threat and a promise. Facebook and other social media are additional distributors of content, but they are also are rivals for advertising revenues. The new tablets, smartphones and other mobile technologies represent new ways to reach audiences, but they are also a new wave of new technology that news companies need to react to. Even as traditional media institutions continue to struggle to find a sustainable model after more than a decade of declining advertising revenues and digital upheaval, the new wave threatens to shift the media landscape out from under them once more.
Check out the whole report if you like; there's lots to talk about on your blogs.


  1. I think this article solidifies and gives concrete support that the Internet is, for lack of a better term, threatening to transform the world as we know it. As advertising is a main source of revenue for many companies, this trend of losing advertising to online sources has been steadily increasing as the years go by. This being said, I think it is critical for older companies to keep up with the times and put up some competition for these newer industries threatening to send all the advertising online.
    Katie Slavin

  2. I think that many "traditional" news outlets (I assume the author is talking about newspapers), while definitely struggling to keep up with the digitization of information, are too crucial to our society to go under. In J201 last semester we discussed the importance of citizen journalists and news bloggers; however, we also touched on the fact that without an original source (newspapers) of information, such "grassroots" news sources would be inept. The news outlets that are important enough to our system of information diffusion will survive this. The news outlets that represent shoddy work will go under. Regrettably, many decent/good publications may also go under, but hopefully we'll keep enough of them around to maintain the culture of the newspaper.

    1. I agree with you Andrew. Newspapers have become so commonplace in our culture that it's hard to imagine a world that doesn't have any hard-copy forms of news available. While I love the easy access of online media, there's something about physically reading a newspaper that brings a different connection and understanding to the information. It will be interesting to see what becomes of traditional news outlets in upcoming years as new media continues to expand and become more prominent in our society.


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