Nieman Foundation at Harvard
HOME
          
LATEST STORY
In a corner of Brazil, local reporters are switching to government jobs and the state is achieving “media capture”
ABOUT                    SUBSCRIBE
Sept. 1, 2015, 12:24 p.m.
Aggregation & Discovery

The wave of distributed content is coming ever closer to crashing into shore.

On the heels of Apple News — Apple’s news platform slated to debut later this month with the release of iOS 9 — Samsung announced today it was partnering with the giant German publisher Axel Springer to produce content expressly for Samsung mobile devices.

As audiences continue to move to mobile — at the start of 2015, 39 of the top 50 online publishers had more mobile than desktop visitors, according to a Pew study — news organizations are looking for ways to reach consumers on their phones. And with the average U.S. smartphone users spending 88 percent of their time in apps, outlets must reach those audience through those apps.

That’s why, just in the past few months, we’ve seen the launch of products such as Facebook’s Instant Articles and Snapchat Discover in addition to Apple’s News app. But unlike those — which offer platform access to multiple news companies, in some cases promising eventual wide access — this partnership gives access only to Axel Springer. As Joshua Benton wrote in June after Apple News was announced, this is a shift from outlets owning their own digital real estate through their own websites to, in essence, now renting space from other platforms:

But the broader narrative is clear: Individual news apps and individual news brands aren’t the primary point of contact with news any more. They’re raw material, feeding into broader platforms. The loss of power for publishers in that exchange is obvious; the potential benefits remain mostly undiscovered.

Axel Springer and Samsung didn’t disclose financial terms for their new relationship, but the first byproduct of the partnership will be Upday, a news aggregation app. The app will offer users “access to a range of news content that combines ‘Need to Know’ information selected by a local market editorial team and ‘Want to Know’ information, an algorithm-based service tailored to customers’ individual interests,” according to a release. And Politico Europe reported that Axel Springer will pay other publishers ancillary copyright fees for the content it aggregates in the app.

A beta version of the app will be released on Thursday to a limited number of users in Germany and Poland, two of Axel Springer’s largest markets. The companies said Upday will be released widely in those countries, and elsewhere in Europe, early next year.

Show tags Show comments / Leave a comment
 
Join the 50,000 who get the freshest future-of-journalism news in our daily email.
In a corner of Brazil, local reporters are switching to government jobs and the state is achieving “media capture”
A strategy of “capturing the main professionals from the newspapers, in their respective fields of work, and thus reduce the tensions of being disturbed by the journalists every single day.” “Memory is crucial for journalism, and we are losing it.”
Focus here, not there: These are the gaps in political misinformation research
“Persistent debates about what constitutes ‘fake news’ and distinctions between other types of false information are mostly distracting.” Plus: A guide to covering misinformation without burning your news org or your readers, and a discussion of filter bubbles as not-really-a-thing.
How are paywalled news outlets preparing to serve residents in California’s mega-power shutoffs?
“If we’re going to have news that is paid for by audiences, we have to talk about the news that should never be behind paywalls.”