Time to kick off the day with a quick whip-around of the stories making the headlines this morning. First up, online surpasses print. In case you missed it yesterday, online ad revenues and readership exceeded print for this first time in 2010. This is in the US where the Pew Research Centre found that the majority of people surveyed got their news online rather than from a printed newspaper. Newspaper ad revenue for the 2010 year fell a hefty 46% to around $22 billion while online ad revenue hit $25 billion for the year.
Next, tablet PCs are apparently not yet a real replacement for newspapers. The UK’s Telegraph is reporting findings that run contrary to the current tablet PC hype saying that its iPad app is being used only when readers don’t actually have access to a printed newspaper. The Telegraph reports that “on average the Telegraph iPad app was being used only seven times a month, when users … were unable to buy a paper. The devices were being left at home or at work – not being carried everywhere.” This may well be a temporary scenario but is nonetheless interesting as most news publishers have been hoping that devices such as the iPad were going to finally provide a real platform for the future of news.
The Louse & the Flea is reporting that Neutral reporting makes for foggy thinking. An intriguing new report has found that neutral reporting often left readers bewildered. The report from Ohio University found that readers tended to doubt their own ability to determine the truth in politics after reading an article that simply lists competing claims without offering any idea of which side is right.
So, what is like to actually rely on Rupert Murdoch’s The Daily iPad app for your news? Ad Age’s Simon Dumenco spent a month with The Daily and now has some tips for News Corp. on what they are doing right and, mostly, wrong. Overall Dumenco is mostly underwhelmed by The Daily and finds it “erratic and unfocused” and prompting him to urge the publication to “stand for something, damn it!”.
Finally, the debate over the Financial Time’s subscriber numbers rages on. When the Financial Times released its latest subscriber numbers earlier this year, showing that the company topped 200,000 digital subscribers for the first time, there was furious debate over what the numbers actually meant The latest contribution came early in the week from Reuters’ Felix Salmon who argues that the focus on digital successes at Pearson’s flagship daily actually masked the ongoing decline in print subscribers.