Nieman Foundation at Harvard
Can Canada build its own independent podcast industry in the True North strong and free?
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What We’re Reading
We keep an eye out for the most interesting stories about Labby subjects: digital media, startups, the web, journalism, strategy, and more. Here’s some of what we’ve seen lately.
November 21, 2017
“Among the publications that have moved to Arc are the Los Angeles Times, Canada’s Globe and Mail, the New Zealand Herald, and smaller outfits such as Alaska Dispatch News and Oregon’s Willamette Week. In aggregate, sites running on Arc reach 300 million readers; publishers pay based on bandwidth, which means that the more successful they are at attracting readers, the better it is for Arc Publishing. The typical bottom line ranges from $10,000 a month at the low end up to $150,000 a month for Arc’s biggest customers.”
Fast Company / Harry McCracken / Nov 21
“Giving everything away appears more than ever to be a path to commoditization and low margins, if not outright ruin.”
Slate / Will Oremus / Nov 21
Entry to the half-a-trillion-dollar club — which includes Apple, Alphabet, Facebook, Microsoft and Amazon — comes a week after Tencent posted a profit of 18 billion RMB ($2.7 billion) on revenue of 65.2 billion RMB ($9.8 billion) for the third quarter of 2017. Overall profit was up 69 percent year-on-year and revenue rose by 61 percent thanks to Tencent’s games business. SW
TechCrunch / Jon Russell / Nov 21
“Podcast platforms popular elsewhere are little used in Myanmar. SoundCloud puts off many because Android users must download the app to listen, and few people in the country have iPhones. To get around that, Doh Athan can be streamed directly from Facebook, a platform that dominates Myanmar’s internet.”
The Splice Newsroom / Joshua Carroll / Nov 21
“Partners tell me FB is prepared to spend more in the search for a hit show.”
Twitter / Alex Heath / Nov 21
“It was a company-wide and coordinated push — from our excellent editorial coverage, with a string of strong exclusives and beautifully written features, to smart marketing, customer service and product and tech. It was also the result of many individual efforts, such as sending gift articles to friends and contacts and spreading the message about the FT.” Next step: 1 million.
The Financial Times / John Ridding / Nov 21
“We’re doing well on Facebook, but we were also looking at the retention numbers, and those were not as high as we would like them to be, especially on the content that we were putting a real investment into, which is our in-depth and investigative reporting.”
Digiday / Sahil Patel / Nov 21
The European Forest Institute and the Global Editors Network are joining forces to launch the pilot project which supports journalists produce 360-degree videos on climate change and people’s lives. Lookout360° combines in-field training and a three-month mentorship to support journalists produce immersive stories with a focus on climate change.
Global Editors Network / Nov 21
“This job represents a fantastic opportunity to empower local journalists to use the huge amounts of data now available, to ensure that people across the UK feel their local services and local representatives are working in their best interests.”
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism / Nov 21
“‘It came from Pete on down — ‘What’s going to be our version of Ben Smith?'” a former insider said. “‘They got Ben Smith, so we need someone,'” said another, describing the philosophy. “‘They started BuzzFeed Studios; let’s start Mashable Studios.’ I’m surprised they didn’t call it ‘MashFeed’ at some point.'” But as an ex-editorial staffer said, the pivot to general news made Mashable a ‘jack-of-all-trades, master of none. Everyone was aware BuzzFeed was beating us on stuff, and the tech pubs didn’t take us seriously.'”
Digiday / Lucia Moses / Nov 21