Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Newspaper Futures

The survey of 435 editors-in-chief, deputy editors and other senior news executives from around the world provides an interesting insight to a content industry in change. The "Newsroom Barometer," conducted by Zogby International for the Paris-based World Editors Forum and Reuters, found that 85 % of editors are very optimistic or somewhat optimistic about the future of newsprint in the digital age.

The survey also found:
40 % of editors believe on-line will be the most common way to read the news ten years from now with 35 % believing print, 10% mobile , 7% cite e-paper. And two out of 10 respondents say it will be technologies that are still in the emerging stage.

50% the respondents believe that journalistic quality will improve over the next 10 years, versus 25% who think it will worsen.

80% view online and new media as a welcome addition. Those with high volume web traffic -- more than 200,000 unique visitors per day -- are more likely to view new media positively, but the majority of editors at newspapers with modest traffic or no web sites also viewed new media positively.

30% respondents view free newspapers as a threat to the market, while 34% welcome them, 28% consider them negligible.

Training journalists in new media is cited most often by editors as a priority to increase editorial quality. Hiring more journalists is the second most frequently cited priority.

According to the survey, 56% believed that the majority of all news would be free in the future, up from 48% who answered yes a year ago. In the emerging markets such as South America, Eastern Europe, Russia, the Middle East and Asia 61% believed news would be free. In Western Europe this reduced to 48%.