Newspapers are having a hard time and the future continues to look bleak

From the Financial Times:

In recent weeks, LinkedIn, the networking website, and the Council of Economic Advisers have reported that the press is “America’s fastest-shrinking industry”, measured by jobs lost; the Newspaper Association of America has shown that advertising sales have halved since 2005 and are now at 1984’s level; and the Pew Research Center has found that for every digital ad dollar they earned, they lost $7 in print ads.
As media from television to billboards bounce back from the recession, newsprint is being left behind. Zenith Optimedia this week predicted that internet advertising would pass newspaper advertising next year around the world – but in the US, where internet penetration is high and newspaper audiences are shrinking, digital will overtake newspapers’ and magazines’ combined ad sales this year, eMarketer estimates.
“There’s no doubt we’re going out of business now,” one unnamed executive told Pew’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, which predicted a future of shrinking newsrooms, print deliveries only a few days of the week and more papers closing altogether. A USC Annenberg School study reached the stark conclusion that most printed US dailies would be gone in five years. . . .

More info is available here.



Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

This trend has been going on for years now, Dr. Lott. As the costs of computers and internet has dropped, the costs of doing business with newspapers has not.

As a former head pressman at a few newspapers / commercial printers, I have witnessed this trend first hand.

The costs of printing presses run into the millions of dollars for a single web press. EPA regs concerning inks and the chemicals used in the printing process also have added costs. Then, we have the time difference between printing, and the internet to contend with. As an example, one shop I worked at, printed advertisements for Sears. This job was printed six months in advance of the upcoming sales being touted in the material. Printing 4th of July sales in January was normal. With the internet, former print customers can wait until the last minute to advertise, and in doing so, can adapt to changing circumstances in the market in a much more efficient manner at a much lower cost.

3/19/2012 1:30 PM  
Blogger John Lott said...

Thanks very much, Martin!

3/19/2012 5:42 PM  
Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

You are very welcome sir. We've been losing print shops at an alarming rate over the years due to changes in technology. Many a shop I worked for has closed it's doors. It's a dying trade. Kinda sad to see it go, but I am not a Luddite, and I understand change happens.

3/21/2012 1:03 PM  

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