When pull comes to push, can The Times let go of print?
Ahmad Hashim via Flickr
Now entering Phase II of the Jill Abramson saga: the NYC media infighting.
Suffice it to say … it's complicated.
So as The Times seeks to reassure its staff after the abrupt ouster, Pinch Sulzberger gets slammed (fave headline: "The New York Times is Run by a Human PR Disaster") and Abramson pursues her "badass new hobby," the future is still out there -- somewhere.
That much is (un)clear from The Times' internal report that paints a dire digital picture. The most august name in news is playing catchup because the homepage is dead, and the social web has won. Proof? Traffic to The Times' homepage fell by half in the last two years.
Meantime, other names in news are innovating and experimenting (CBS is developing a streaming news channel), and you get the picture, drawn by the report: “The newsroom is unanimous: We are focusing too much time and energy on Page One.”
Coming from The Times, the claim is nothing short of remarkable. While newspaper front pages long ago stopped driving the day’s news agenda, A1 of The Times always stood as the exception.
The challenge is that new editor Dean Baquet's first comments made clear he loves ink on paper, not simply as the anchor to The Times’ business, but also as a preferred method for media consumption.
The acknowledgement that the company’s business model is still decidedly slanted toward print is made almost begrudgingly. And that's a big problem -- now and moving forward, even tiptoeing toward digital where pull media has quickly been replaced by push media.
News -- even from The New York Times -- has to go find its audience at all times of day; if it can't it risks hardly being found at all.
New Yorker stands by Abramson salary-gap story
The New Yorker is standing by a Thursday night story by media writer Ken Auletta in which he wrote that New York Times spokeswoman Eileen Murphy conceded that former executive editor Jill Abramson's inquiries into pay inequities at the paper were a contributing factor in her firing. Auletta has had a steady stream of scoops following Abramson's dismissal this week, none more discussed than his report that Abramson confronted upper management upon learning that her pay in her time climbing the editorial ranks had been lower than some of her male counterparts. Abramson, Auletta wrote, recently hired a lawyer to look into the matter.