Court overturns FCC changes in media-ownership rules 9/24/19

A federal appeals court threw out changes to media ownership rules approved by the Federal Communications Commission in 2017, saying the agency should have looked more closely at potential impacts on minority ownership.

In its ruling Monday, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said it agreed with public-interest groups that “the Commission did not adequately consider the effect its sweeping rule changes will have on ownership of broadcast media by women and racial minorities.”

The Philadelphia-based court said it would vacate and remand “the bulk of” the FCC’s actions over the last three years for further consideration by the agency.

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Employees open only 60% of the emails they get: Study 9/24/19

Inbox clutter is on the rise – so much so that professionals are opening fewer emails than they once did, according to State of Email, a report by Hiver.

Employees opened only 60 percent of the emails they received in 2018 compared to 75 percent the year before. And they replied to only one in 10 messages.

Yet work email volume rose by 13 percent, with employees now getting almost 180 emails per day. They spend 33 percent of their time reading and writing emails.

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RJI links 9/23/19

News and commentary of interest to journalism innovators and entrepreneurs. Read the latest from the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute.

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Key findings about the online news landscape in America 9/17/19

The digital news industry in the United States is facing a complex future. On one hand, a steadily growing portion of Americans are getting news through the internet, many U.S. adults get news on social media, and employment at digital-native outlets has increased. On the other, digital news has not been immune to issues affecting the broader media environment, including layoffs, made-up news and public distrust.

Here are some key findings about the way Americans get news online – as well as how digital newsrooms in the U.S. are faring, compiled from recent Pew Research Center surveys and analyses.

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Good stuff first: Google moves to prioritize original reporting in search 9/17/19

In an effort to put original reporting in front of users, Google’s VP of news Richard Gingras announced Thursday that the company has changed its global search algorithm to “highlight articles that we identify as significant original reporting,” and to keep such articles in top positions for longer.

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Local newspapers are suffering, but they're still (by far) the most significant journalism producers in their communities 9/9/19

Despite the economic hardships that local newspapers have endured, they remain, by far, the most significant providers of journalism in their communities. And while there is great hope and expectation that newer, online journalism sources will emerge to compensate for the cutbacks and closures affecting local newspapers, a study has shown that this has yet to take place.

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Alabama Media Group's hit social media series also wins big with advertisers 9/9/19

Alabama Media Group’s social brand division Red Clay Media aims to entertain, inform and share stories through powerful identity content. It’s a Southern Thing has cultivated a highly engaged audience of more than 1.2 million on Facebook and nearly 100,000 on Instagram, with the spin-off Facebook show, So True Y’all, garnering an average of 200.8 million views.

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A way out of the woods for the future of journalism? Medill survey of news leaders gives it a shot. 9/9/19

It's a new twist on the now-familiar exercise: trying to find solid, hopeful initiatives when so many in and outside of journalism are pessimistic about the profession.

The Medill Local News Initiative at Northwestern University has interviewed 50 news leaders, "seeking markers of success" in the ongoing search for new business models for local news.

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Tighten up that paywall! (And some other lessons from a study of 500 newspaper publishers) 8/19/19

When The New York Times first launched its paywall back in 2011, it offered readers 20 free stories a month. A little over eight years later, that figure seems crazy generous – today you can read just five free Times stories a month before being asked to pay – and where the Times goes, so will other papers go: New research suggests that most newspaper publishers with successful metered pay model strategies do better with higher “stop rates,” not letting a reader sample too much before they’re asked to pay up.

Read more from NiemanLab.

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Who works best in a revenue development role? Here's what these local news organizations have found 8/19/19

Folks, it happened: The key to sustainable local news has been discovered. And it involves making money.

Spoiler alert: It's all about making money, and that takes having people whose job descriptions are specifically devoted to that task – along with tying the money-generating to the journalistic mission. And okay, maybe they haven't found the key: "No organization we spoke to claimed to have found the solution to revenue generation, but each had useful lessons for other civic news organizations at different levels of maturity."

Read more from NiemanLab.

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