See All Topics

Home / Section: Newspaper industry

iPad news-reading eating away at print media

Interesting news from MacWorld regarding the iPad’s impact on journalism

Many thought that the iPad would save journalism?but, as it turns out, you can?t save journalism without breaking a few eggs…wrapped in newspapers. A survey by the Donald W. Reylonds Journalism Institute (RJI) at the University of Missouri found that the iPad could have a deleterious effect on print newspapers, with many iPad users being likely to axe their print subscriptions in favor of consuming news on their tablets.

The survey talked to more than 1600 iPad users, who were mostly well-off men with bachelor?s degrees, averaging 48 years old. News, for these folks, is serious business: 84.4 percent of respondents said that following breaking news and current events was one of the main tasks they used the iPad for, with almost half of those surveyed saying they spent an hour or more reading news on a typical day. Other popular pastimes were reading books, magazines, and newspapers; browsing the Web; and e-mail.

As an iPad user myself, I consume more news with my iPad than when I just had my iPhone. There are several subscription based news apps (WSJ, NYT) available, but I’ve honestly not purchased them as there is a plenty of other news apps for free. I’ve tried, but news is a commodity product and I can’t distinguish one’s reporting (from a fee app) as better than reporting coming from a free app.

Read the rest.

Community Comments

#1 Beth Cravens
December/10/2010
@ 10:51 am

Yeah, but can you spank the puppy with it? Can you fling it down in disgust? Will it clean glass? I mean, it’s neat and all, but …

#2 Jesse Cline
December/10/2010
@ 11:02 am

I started using an iPad to light my fireplace every evening.

#3 John Cole
December/10/2010
@ 12:25 pm

This comes as a shock how, exactly?

#4 Clay Jones
December/10/2010
@ 12:37 pm

Dude, people without Ipads aren’t subscribing to newspapers.

Everything is eating at print. Cell phones, Apps, internet, TV, craigslist, Ebay…and on top of all that you have newspapers putting out crappy content.

#5 Tom Pappalardo
December/10/2010
@ 4:52 pm

It seems like asking iPad owners if they would use their iPad for [Activity X] is going to yield a slight bias towards “Yes,” because they’re iPad owners.

#6 Ted Rall
December/11/2010
@ 10:54 am

We have to save print. Ad rates online are too low to sustain high-quality gathering of original news, and that is not going to change. But how?

There is only one possible solution. The news industry–TV, radio and newspapers–should remove their online content or put it behind a paywall. This works. It is being done in other countries, and the news media remains profitable.

The problem is, an industry-wide pact is illegal collusion. So the news biz should ask Congress for an exemption to anti-trust laws. News gathering as a business is in mortal danger. It ought not be allowed to perish.

Of course, I know there is no chance of this happening. But it’s still the only solution.

#7 steve skelton
December/11/2010
@ 11:57 am

Ted, I agree. I have been saying this for years. It’s insane to give away your content for free. It is destroying journalism, and the sad thing is IT DOESN’T HAVE TO HAPPEN.

I agree the only real solution is to have all newspapers start to charge for content simultaneously. And unfortunately, it won’t happen. So we will watch them slowly die.

#8 Tom Wood
December/11/2010
@ 2:33 pm

The current news model will die. Then the free sites won’t have anyone to leech off of, so the quality of their material will erode to the point that discerning people will demand high(er) quality journalism. Pay sites will step up and fill the demand. Transition achieved.

Not good for an informed idiocracy though, when only the people who can pay will be informed.

#9 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/11/2010
@ 2:38 pm

“The problem is, an industry-wide pact is illegal collusion. So the news biz should ask Congress for an exemption to anti-trust laws. News gathering as a business is in mortal danger. It ought not be allowed to perish.

Of course, I know there is no chance of this happening. But it?s still the only solution.” – TR

Oh, Ted…you are such a subversive satiricist.
We already have a controlled media that is nothing more than the propaganda arm of the multi-national corporates. Today’s definition of news is infotainment…to distract, occupy, and amuse; and disinformation to keep Americans stupid, confused, and arguing with each other instead of going after the crooks and criminals that continue to steal from and impoverish the rest of us.

If iPad users are getting their “news” from this conventional newspeak source, then they may as well spend their time obliviously networking on facebook and calling that “news”.

I would say that there are multiple solutions, but they are made on an individual basis.
When one lives in a land of thieves, one can become a better thief; or one can change their lifestyle/vocation; or one can move.
Really, we don’t have any collective ability to do anything in this country anymore except to be exploited and manipulated, and to get drunk with our toys.
One has to be their own moral agent and do what’s best for themself. The country as a whole is cooked.

#10 Stephen Beals
December/11/2010
@ 2:47 pm

Newspapers and magazines are insane for giving away their content for free. That’s like car lots allowing people to borrow a car without buying it.

Does it have to be an industry wide pact for it to work? Can’t a biggie newspaper go behind a paywall, then another, then another, then another…until the only thing that’s free is the Westside Flyer in Brownsburg, Indiana?

I know Time Magazine went behind a paywall, then stopped. I’m not sure why. How was it bad for business? How was the New York Times’ partial paywall bad for business and giving it all away for free a better idea?

People just love going on and on about the death of newspapers, but I don’t see any joy in reading crappy news because there’s no money in it. The type of “news” that can make money, the endless opinionated commentary, can be found in any workplace breakroom in the country.

#11 steve skelton
December/11/2010
@ 3:20 pm

Think about this…rewind about 8 years or so…..

If newspapers would have collectively started allowing only paying subscribers to look at their websites, then the state of newspapers would be completely different, I believe. Instead of struggling with diminishing ad revenues, they would probably be stronger than ever today. And relevant.

#12 Stephen Beals
December/11/2010
@ 3:28 pm

I would rewind further than that. I know I was reading the Miami Herald for free in the ’90s. How are they doing these days?

#13 Rich Diesslin
December/11/2010
@ 3:47 pm

Ditto Tom. All contrived solutions have unintended consequences. How quickly people give up their freedoms when they feel the least bit threatened. Not a criticism really … it’s the the natural first reaction. I find it amusing when proclaimed anti-capitalists try to find solutions to protect their piece of the pie though. I guess we all like to eat. ;)

#14 steve skelton
December/11/2010
@ 4:28 pm

I don’t see how the idea of charging for your content is a contrived solution. And I’m not talking about a lot to subscribe. I’m talking about the cost of a bucket of chicken, so I think everyone can be as informed as they’d like.

Right now, news organizations are still focused on getting a lot of traffic to their site to sell higher priced ads. That paradigm, I would think, will wane and eventually be transitioned into a paywall concept. The result, however, is that journalism and everything that goes along with it will suffer dearly during this period.

#15 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/11/2010
@ 5:45 pm

” I find it amusing when proclaimed anti-capitalists try to find solutions to protect their piece of the pie though. I guess we all like to eat. ;)” – RD

Oh, absolutely ! Socialists, Libertarians., and other Civilizationalists. think that people should be adequately rewarded for their labors. Everyone that works in the arts, sciences, or everyday manual labor deserves to be compensated fairly…and then we can buy our food and other necessities of life.

Zombie Objectivists feel they have the divine, inherent right to eat other people….and not to pay for it, because they are so obviously superior.

That’s the difference.

#16 Rich Diesslin
December/11/2010
@ 6:57 pm

Steve, nothing wrong with charging for their services, just messing with anti-trust laws, meant to protect consumers from price fixing, etc, to protect newspaper profitability is a contrived solution. Let them come to what works on their own and individually. If it will work you can be sure others will follow quickly. The unintended consequence is that it probably still wouldn’t provide the solution as non-print news is still present on the net and giving it away and in a more timely manner than print media anyway. Quality may be questionable, but so is print medias’. So, knee-jerk regulation won’t sort this mess out (IMHO), but the markets will eventually. Ted’s long ago idea of papers focusing more on local news or finding other niche markets makes more sense to me than a jump to a paywall.

Joe, you wrote words but I don’t have a clue what you are trying to say.

#17 Robert George
December/11/2010
@ 7:08 pm

I guess my questions are: a. I do not see how a paywall can protect print from NPR or CNN or Fox News online. They are and will continue to be free, they are far more “native” to the web than print companies. And it’s hard to argue NPR at least has an inferior product. The pressure to free is pretty strong.
And b. Will ad revenues ever comeback? Googles metric based approach to print ads has demonstrated that, above all else, print ads are not very effective. And it’s hard to imagine physical print ads proving to be better.

I think it is likely that what is happening is that print based technology duplicated alot of efforts in a way that is no longer supportable, and that media consolidation, leading to higher traffic for the surviving papers, is the future instead of pay walls.

#18 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/11/2010
@ 9:34 pm

Rich… you used the term “anti-capitalist” . I was working from that predicate .
I am “anti-capitalist” in that I am “ANTI-THIEF” or “ANTI-CRIMINAL”.
Capitalists thought that SLAVERY was OK, a good thing.
I don’t.
Capitalists thought that CHILD LABOR was OK.
I don’t.

You don’t agree with that. I get it.

You reveal yourself. Keep talking.

I AM A CIVILIZATIONALIST! I am FOR civilization.

Others are AGAINST civilization.

We KNOW who they are.

#19 Robert George
December/11/2010
@ 9:57 pm

Capitalist were actually anti-slavery. It empowered agrarian elites who opposed their undustrialization efforts, Joe. The horror of free white men becoming wage slaves like in the North was popular arguement for the ennobling affects and moral superiorty of the Southern slave civilization.
Don’t confuse today’s political divides for the pasts.

#20 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/11/2010
@ 10:12 pm

What ?

Republicans are the ANTI-INTELLIGENCE morons that would like to IMPOSE their idiocy on everyone else.

They ARE the hatetful morons that we THRUTHFUL liberals describe. The Republicans are HATEFUL hate-filled imbeciles intent on DESTRUCTION.
Simply, the WORST of the WORST. The DUMBEST of the DUMB.

#21 Ted Rall
December/12/2010
@ 9:00 am

Until the Revolution comes, we are all forced to survive under the present system. That’s not hypocrisy. That’s reality.

#22 Phil Wohlrab
December/12/2010
@ 10:54 am

@Joe #20.. did you hit your head/ become possessed or something after post #18?

#23 Rich Diesslin
December/12/2010
@ 11:04 am

Okay, I get it now Joe. The Kranky part anyway. ;) Yes Ted, good luck with that (funny stuff). I’ll defer to the “wisdom” of the Beatles on that from their song “revolution.”

The horse is once again beat to death to the usual old arguments. In the words of Stan Lee “Nuff said.” (by me anyway … but by all means have at it).

#24 Ted Rall
December/12/2010
@ 1:25 pm

Of course, the Beatles were multi-millionaires. They had a lot to lose from a free society.

#25 Terry LaBan
December/12/2010
@ 3:47 pm

“Of course, the Beatles were multi-millionaires. They had a lot to lose from a free society.”

Do tell, Ted!

You know what? I think that Joe character does a shot every time he posts a comment.

#26 Shane Davis
December/12/2010
@ 5:23 pm

I personally hate hate-filled hating haters that hate the anti-hate of non-hating hate-haters their hateful hatingness of all thing hatey.

Oops, did I spell ‘hatey’wtong? Dammit, I hate it when I do that…

#27 Pete Murphey
December/12/2010
@ 8:47 pm

?Of course, the Beatles were multi-millionaires. They had a lot to lose from a free society.?

I guess if ?free society? means a committee of enlightened proletariat members limiting how much people can give artists of their own free will because they like and value their work, then yes, The Beatles would have much to lose. So would the people that listen to them, subversive cartoonists and people who type in caps.

#28 Ted Rall
December/13/2010
@ 10:28 am

There can be no freedom in any society in which some people benefit at the expense of others. All you have to do is look around at the armies of homeless people who live in the richest country in the world. You may not care about poverty, but one day the poor will care very much about you. And not necessarily in a good way.

#29 Pete Murphey
December/13/2010
@ 10:45 am

“There can be no freedom in any society in which some people benefit at the expense of others.”

OK, please tell me how a million people giving the Beatles $1.00 for a copy of the song “Taxman” takes money away from someone else or makes anyone poor?

#30 Steve Skelton
December/13/2010
@ 10:51 am

“There can be no freedom in any society in which some people benefit at the expense of others”

That means no one has ever been free.

#31 Ryan Sohmer
December/13/2010
@ 11:03 am

Ted’s mad rants aside, this topic began productively.

Saving print does not equal saving journalism. Like what came before it, I believe print should be allowed to continue to fade away. Journalism does not solely rely on print, and should continue to explore other mediums.

Journalism was on the decline even before the dreaded internet popped into existence.

#32 steve skelton
December/13/2010
@ 11:09 am

Ryan,

I agree with you. Saving print does not equal saving journalism. I was merely saying that during this period (where content is free and our society has gotten used to free content) journalism and everything that it supports (cartoonists, writers, photographers, editors, printers etc) will suffer. But that is really nothing new, as the transition has already displaced many careers. It is just a tough time to be a professional in one of these fields. The upside, of course, are the new opportunities being presented daily. I mean, who could have predicted the app craze that exists today?

#33 Ted Rall
December/13/2010
@ 12:01 pm

The problem with the brave new Internet future is that reporting is no longer going to be a professional occupation. When you take the money out of a profession, you take away the incentive for intelligent people to go into it. Nothing I have read or heard about how great the Internet will be in the future has convinced me that this is no longer true.

#34 Ted Rall
December/13/2010
@ 12:03 pm

Apps are a case in point. Right now I am using an incredible dictation app on my new iPhone. I love it. But there is something seriously wrong with the fact that I was able to get it for free. This should cost a considerable amount of money.

#35 steve skelton
December/13/2010
@ 12:08 pm

“The problem with the brave new Internet future is that reporting is no longer going to be a professional occupation. When you take the money out of a profession, you take away the incentive for intelligent people to go into it. Nothing I have read or heard about how great the Internet will be in the future has convinced me that this is no longer true.”

Unfortunately, it has been replaced with youtube and videos of lighting your farts on fire.

#36 Pete Murphey
December/13/2010
@ 12:21 pm

“When you take the money out of a profession, you take away the incentive for intelligent people to go into it”

I’m guessing Ted has an evil twin who does the revolutionary posts, and Ted himself does the freemarket ones, extolling the virtues of the money incentive on creative output (like the one above). Surely both thoughts can’t be coming from the same brain.

Ted, call the twin and get him back online to answer my Beatles question.

#37 Dave Stephens
December/13/2010
@ 1:17 pm

That free dictation app is being used by Ted Rall who, therefore, benefits at the expense of the creators…

The irony is so thick around Ted, it’s like an exo-skeleton, isn’t it?

Must be handy to deflect all the criticism he gets from being so hypocritical… LOL

#38 Robert George
December/13/2010
@ 2:24 pm

Ted: “This should cost a considerable amount of money.”

Why? There are a considerable number of dictation apps out there, its fairly old technology, and there is limited demand, and the per unit cost to distribute is very, very low. One would expect it to be very, very cheap.

#39 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/13/2010
@ 3:02 pm

After the passing of Conrad, I’m working on becoming the resident curmudgeon. Sometimes I parody others, in absurdum. I guess some don’t “get” the humor.

Anyway, new technologies always create a different dynamic. The Gutenberg press and movable type put hundreds of cloistered monks “out-of-business”, so to speak.
I have maintained that the greater hazard is a broader economic downturn than any advancements or innovations. Radio did not ruin print, nor did film or TV.
……………………………………………………………………………..

“The problem with the brave new Internet future is that reporting is no longer going to be a professional occupation. When you take the money out of a profession, you take away the incentive for intelligent people to go into it.” – TR
Isn’t this exactly what is transpiring ? Any unprofessional with a microphone, or a computer and a keyboard now has a forum. As such, all kinds of wild opinions get tossed around as fact, free-of-charge.

In what we do, humor will always have currency and various formats. …The surprise “rimshot” factor so evident in varying applications. The successful cartoonist will combine the humourous with the serious ( imo ), just to stay active and making enough.

#40 Ted Rall
December/13/2010
@ 3:28 pm

Yes, Dave.

It is indeed ironic to have to live in the real world while you’re trying to change that real world into a better world. I know that this is a complicated concept for you. Possibly this is because you graduated from a public school. But then again, so did I. Don’t worry. I am sure that the mall caricature business will keep you going for many moons to come.

#41 Ted Rall
December/13/2010
@ 3:32 pm

Sorry, but the Beatles question is so obviously stupid that it is not worthy of an answer.

So I’ll answer it anyway.

Economics is a zero sum game. Every cent that I earn comes out of someone else’s pocket. That’s why it’s important for society to make sure that no one accumulates too much money at the expense of other people. Otherwise, we end up with a huge disparity of wealth that creates social instability and results in widespread injustices.

#42 Dave Stephens
December/13/2010
@ 4:04 pm

Ted – it is obvious you won’t be changing the world anytime soon because doing so requires the ability to listen.

And you clearly don’t listen. Because I’ve said it before:
I am NOT a mall caricature artist.

I draw at PARTIES. Events. Special occasions. Oh, and I also draw cartoons and caricatures for books, magazines, advertising, etc.

Use those facts to dismiss me out of hand instead of made-up things, ok? Meanwhile, I’ll use the crazy things you say to do the same to you…

#43 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/13/2010
@ 4:33 pm

Check out these excellent renditions done almost 100 years ago by Art Young :
http://www.goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2008/10/31/stars-of-political-cartooning-art-young/

“Economics is a zero sum game. Every cent that I earn comes out of someone else?s pocket. That?s why it?s important for society to make sure that no one accumulates too much money at the expense of other people. Otherwise, we end up with a huge disparity of wealth that creates social instability and results in widespread injustices.” – TR

Yes…and it is quickly becoming a universal zero-sum game, as “capitalists” devalue the reserve currency to worthlessness.
Soon, toilet paper will be worth more than paper dollars. ( PS, I have already done this as a cartoon. )

#44 Ted Rall
December/13/2010
@ 6:39 pm

“Meanwhile, I?ll use the crazy things you say to do the same to you?”

What a change that would be.

#45 Phil Wohlrab
December/13/2010
@ 7:53 pm

I wanted to do caricatures for Six Flags awhile back but it was just too far away.

I like the setting of talking to people and working as opposed to working in total solitude and becoming an awkward social recluse.
On the whole caricatures make people happy… political cartoons generally do not spread that sort of joy. There is absolutely nothing wrong with with it and you haven’t got to prove yourself to anyone. Dave.

#46 Robert George
December/13/2010
@ 8:09 pm

Important point Ted: economics is not, at all, a zero sum game. Trade is not a zero sum game. Steve Jobs is not taking anyones dollar to sell you an iPhone. Not even the people at Foxconn, who get more real dollars than they would without foxconn for the same labor. That is not to defend sweat shops or hyper libertarianism. But still, you are dead wrong here.

#47 Dave Stephens
December/13/2010
@ 8:25 pm

Ted talks like he’s from Mars, but I would never call him a martian because that would be untrue… I have nothing against caricature artists who work in malls – more power to ’em, it’s challenging work they do. But I’m not one of ’em.

It IS fun to talk to people and joke around with ’em while I draw their likeness. It pays well and makes folks happy and it’s been a good living for 17 years, full time.

#48 Pete Murphey
December/13/2010
@ 8:33 pm

“Sorry, but the Beatles question is so obviously stupid that it is not worthy of an answer.”

Huh, and I thought you weren?t answering because it would reveal you as being utter clueless about the economy and free-markets.

“Every cent that I earn comes out of someone else?s pocket.”

Ted, I?m going to let you in on a little secret that will make a big difference in helping you grasp economics: every cent you earn comes out of somebody else?s pocket because they willingly give it to you in exchange for something they think is of more value. When I buy the White Album, I do it because I believe the White Album is more valuable to me than the $16.00 I parted with to get it, otherwise I wouldn?t make that trade. Rather than anyone being made poorer by that transaction, both parties are enriched by it. I can play ?Revolution Number 9? all afternoon and that makes me happy, and all the people involved in creating that record and getting it to me, including the Beatles, get
a cut of my $16.00, which makes them happy.

Of course the Beatles don?t just earn money for themselves, they generate income for all the people and industries that are part of their music, which in their case is enormous.
Record stores (in the old days anyway), factories that produce CDs, toys, posters, books, people that work in stadiums, record companies, plastic manufacturers, radio and television, Beatle wig companies, people who rent space for Beatle conventions, people who print tickets, people who make clothes for groupies, the orchestras hired by George Martin to provide background tracks on Sgt Peppers, etc, etc, were all either EXPANDED or CREATED with the arrival of the Beatles.

If your Utopian cabal steals money from the Fab-Four, or anyone else that you deem to be earning too much, to try and equalize incomes, you end up destroying jobs and suppressing incentive, creativity and production, creating more poverty not less. As you as you yourself have noted, when you take money out of a profession, you take away the incentive for smart people to get into it. This is why the Beatles and The Rolling Stones stopped living and recording in England during the 70s because the tax rate on high earners there was 98%. Of course all that accomplished was take jobs out of the English economy but hey, viva la revolution!

#49 Pete Murphey
December/13/2010
@ 8:42 pm

?utterly clueless?

If it?s not one thing it?s an utter.

#50 Joe Rank ( KRANKY )
December/14/2010
@ 12:02 am

” ?utterly clueless?

If it?s not one thing it?s an utter.” – PM

Then sometimes, one runs into pure unadulterated Bull that is cluely utterless.

[ Couldn’t help myself ].

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.