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For print newspapers, one Florida retirement community is a better market than Atlanta, St. Louis, or Portland
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Jan. 4, 2012, 10:25 a.m.
LINK: www.shirky.com  ➚   |   Posted by: Joshua Benton   |   January 4, 2012

A new post from Clay Shirky, sure to be widely read:

To understand newspapers’ 15-year attachment to paywalls, you have to understand “Everyone must pay!” not just as an economic assertion, but as a cultural one. Though the journalists all knew readership would plummet if their paper dropped imported content like Dear Abby or the funny pages, they never really had to know just how few people were reading about the City Council or the water main break. Part of the appeal of paywalls, even in the face of their economic ineffectiveness, was preserving this sense that a coupon-clipper and a news junkie were both just customers, people whose motivations the paper could serve in general, without having to understand in particular.

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For print newspapers, one Florida retirement community is a better market than Atlanta, St. Louis, or Portland
For local newspapers, print circulation has collapsed for every audience except retirees. That’s why the daily paper in The Villages, Florida (metro population 129,752) prints as many copies as the one in Atlanta (metro population 6,930,423).
The Tributary, covering Florida’s largest city, will be a worker-directed nonprofit
Staffers will take part in making collective decisions about the organization, from hiring and compensation to developing the budget, along with their journalistic work.
The Los Angeles Times gets a fully staffed “burner account”
The first-of-its-kind team is offering “views, vibes, and commentary.”