Friday, July 29, 2005
"Prior to [a] stats upgrade, where Web site stats came into play was with identifiable waves of interest -- which sometimes resulted in high play of a story over several days. Editors left to their own judgment might not have played the stories in the same way or kept them highlighted so long."Now I think I'll headline my next article "Necrophilia among ducks ruffles research feathers."
From Guardian assistant editor Neil McIntosh: "Stats can inform decisions and help with the business of allocating resources during a crisis."
"Another important data point: most e-mailed articles."
From OrlandoSentinel.com editor Anthony Moor: "Stats are just another, new set of data that we can mine to understand better the relationship between our users and the news. ... [My editors] know that they must apply standard journalistic values to what they learn before taking action."
"Editors must consider not just how much traffic certain features receive, but where that traffic comes from," warns Meredith Artley, editor of the International Herald Tribune's Web site in Paris. "[T]he big traffic may not point to pure popularity, but rather to the existence of a bridge or link that leads readers from one site to another, she says."
"A great way to handle a story that does drive a lot of traffic, says [Jim Brady, executive editor of Washingtonpost.com], is to extend the life of the story not just by promoting it longer, but by adding a Live Online follow-up discussion, creating a photo gallery or video piece to go with it, re-running the story in a feature slot on subsequent days, or buying search terms related to the story to make it more visible outside [the site]."
"the concept of dayparting -- that is, changing the homepage content based on time of day and/or the week"
"Web site user-registration databases [can show] what groups are gravitating to what stories."
A paper created by readers
More good news for digital editions
Strangely, ABC apparently don't include digital editions in their numbers because, says Richard Withey, The Independent's global director of interactive media, "advertisers argue that an advert seen in a facsimile edition is not comparable to an advert seen in print"
Also interesting is the money made by The Scotsman after it decided last year "it had to digitalise its archive, which goes back to 1817 and was daily from 1860, to preserve it. One benefit of digitalising it was that it could also be made available to the public and for research through Scotsman.com.
"The Scotsman charges users for a timed access — £7.95 for 24 hours, £39.95 for a month up to £159.95 for a year. Multiple access licences are sold to universities and businesses for a few thousand pounds and they are currently discussing a project with the Scottish Executive to make it freely available to all schools in Scotland. The paper has now digitalised up to 1950 and found the 20th century content to be the most popular.
"But the biggest surprise to The Scotsman has been the demand, which means its "substantial six-figure investment" will be paid off within three years."
Comment can be found at Poynter, which calls the article "an outstanding piece, marred slightly by its focus on just one of the major digital publishing companies, Olive Software. No mention of NewsStand, Advanced Publishing, Zinio, and several others, which ought to have been at least incorporated briefly".
Wednesday, July 20, 2005
A useful blog listings site
Why? Simply because of its focus on British blogs. For a journalist looking to get the blogosphere's feelings on a current issue, or just expertise on a British issue, it can be difficult to escape the fact that most blogs are American. Britblog allows you to search by keyword as well as location, so if you're looking for political blog in Birmingham, you can (sadly at the moment you can't cross-reference the two in a search but have to go through the list of either). The UK map (which represents each blogger with a clickable dot) is also a nice touch.
Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Blogging for profit
"His blogs include Digital Camera Review, Camera Phone Review, and Laptop Review.This is the third time I've covered this issue (Rowse's ProBlogger site was quoted in May; Simon Waldman's analysis on making money from blogs in February), so from now on I'll be collating links on this article.
"Much of his income comes from Google's AdSense -- contextual ads placed on his blogs, in which Rowse shares some of the money. Things appear to be going well for Rowse, because he reports that in May, Google sent him a check for $14,436.45 -- his best month ever. The bulk of that money came from three of his blogs."
Murdoch puts his money where his mouth was
"Jewel in the crown of the $580m (£331m) deal is myspace.com, a two-year-old site which allows friends to share weblogs, photos, instant messages and music online. MySpace is one of the fastest-growing sites on the web, currently ranked fifth in terms of page views, and the cash deal is expected to more than double the number of unique users visiting News Corp site, especially the number of advertiser-friendly 16-34-year-olds.".[Source: MediaGuardian]
Monday, July 18, 2005
Thankfully the Online Journalism Review have not only come up with this article about the pros and cons of various software (and an explantion of the jargon), but also this comparison chart of what services each blog provider offers. Handy.
The Sun launches TV bulletins; Mirror Group expands
"The paper has expanded its Web site to include a TV-style breaking news offering that willbe updated four times each weekday with the latest high-profile stories.Meanwhile, Mirror Group Newspapers is reported (NMA, 30/6/05) to be "planning to launch a range of Web sites and revamp[ing] its existing national titles over the next few months"
"Content [will be supplied by] The Press Association, which will work to ensure that each bulletin is in keeping with The Sun's news agenda.
"... the Sun is also launching a weekly online entertainment bulletin focusing on red carpet events and film premieres."
UPDATE (July 20 2005): Trinity Mirror acquires Smart Media Services, reports The Guardian, in a deal that seems reminiscent of football transfers: "£11.3m, with a further £5.3m being contingent on the site meeting earnings targets".
Saturday, July 16, 2005
TV news without a TV
Tuesday, July 12, 2005
A welcome move, especially as "Companies buying a .mobi address must adhere to a style guide which will ensure that the site can be viewed on a phone". Presumably this will involve getting more sites to use XHTML and CSS (although I'm not sure why the consortium has to assign the names rather than Icann).
*Hutchison 3, the GSM Association, Ericsson, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung, Syniverse Technologies, TIM, Telefónica Móviles, T-Mobile and Vodafone.
Monday, July 11, 2005
What's also interesting is how wikis and keyword-driven hosts such as Flickr have been used. Flickr in itself gives an interesting insight into how people react to the tragedy - from taking pictures of TV coverage, to images of the floral tributes, to tube tickets for the day in question.
UPDATE (July 13.05): Mark Glaser at the OJR also provides an overview of coverage, including tales of people vying to take cameraphone images of the dying.
Thursday, July 07, 2005
Why ITN online is rubbish
Wood is quoted as saying:
"If you look at activity on the internet, bbc.co.uk is a fantastic service, but its budget is of a size that commercial competitors can only dream of. The effect has been to push out commercial competitors. That's not good for innovation," he said.
"We were forced out of that market [for online news]. We are now a market leader in providing content for video phones, but that could be wiped away [by the BBC]," Mr Wood said.
"The problem is that the BBC is able to channel large-scale resources into new activities in a way commercial operators are not. It's a Rolls-Royce operation in terms of funding."
Monday, July 04, 2005
"Associated New Media's move comes after News International carried out a survey last year which indicated that 93,000 readers could "potentially" stop buying the paper if they could get most of it free online.
"The Sun has now reformatted its website, scaling back on some areas such its popular Page 3 site."
Friday, July 01, 2005
Shortage of skilled staff in online publishing
"Publishers must encourage journalists to make the leap to online as the industry braces itself for unprecedented growth, according to Bill Murray, managing director for information strategy at Haymarket.
"Speaking to dotJournalism about the shortage of skilled staff in online publishing, Mr Murray said journalists have been discouraged from making the transition because it has been seen as a risk, lacking the commercial support and investment of traditional media.
""Most companies have been relatively conservative about their online activities. It's no surprise that journalists have said 'if my employer is not serious about online, that's not where I want to put myself'," said Mr Murray.
""There is a big opportunity for journalists to further their careers in a way that was not possible even a year ago. Much more money has been invested into developing online presence.""
"Global leaders in explanatory online information graphics"
"Check out how ElPais.es uses 3-D with this piece on the Sistine Chapel, or how its designers effectively integrate photography in this piece on the burial of John Paul II.
"ChannelOne.com ... use[s] video, interactivity, and other media forms to effectively explain the situation in the Sudan.
"Other innovative work from SND.ies winners can be seen at the redesigned contest website. Awards are given out monthly, with annual awards presented in the fall."
Creative news podcasting
What makes a successful magazine website
"The survey isn't scientific, and relies on self-reporting by publishers who consider their sites to be "successful" by whatever standards they wish. But the findings are interesting:
- The publishers' top goals are developing new online audiences and attracting new readers for the print editions.
- When it comes to money, building revenues and profits for the long term is deemed twice as important as building the business in the short term.
- More than 8 in 10 publishers expect to expand their Web efforts within the next year.
- More than half the publishers say their site has expanded the magazine's audience by more than 20 percent.
- Most of these self-described "successful" sites -- whose print counterparts typically publish monthly -- update their online content once or more a day.
- Six in 10 sites offer chat or online discussion.
- Two-thirds have attracted new, online-only advertisers."