Category Archives: publishing

McGraw Hill vs Ritholtz

In the annals of unconvincing excuses, McGraw Hill’s stated reason for dropping Barry Ritholtz’s book comes pretty high up the list: McGraw Hill spokesman Steven Weiss this afternoon said the publisher dropped the book because of a conflict with Ritholtz … Continue reading

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The WSJ Breaks the External-Link Taboo

Many congratulations to the Wall Street Journal! Here’s a little bit of today’s WSJ.com front page — you can click on the picture for a big screencap of the full front page. The important thing here is the second link, … Continue reading

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Quote of the Day: Rupert’s Surprise

Michael Wolff on how Rupert Murdoch discovered there was more to Dow Jones than just the WSJ: I don’t believe he had any idea there was an enterprise side of the business. I believe I was the one to explain … Continue reading

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The WSJ’s Subscription Model

I’m at the Future of Business Media conference, where the wifi is painfully slow and where Robert Thomson, the editor of the WSJ, spoke this morning. He spent some time addressing the subject of whether wsj.com should be free, and … Continue reading

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Diluting the WSJ

In a presidential campaign, candidates triangulate towards the center. The Democrat knows he has his party’s hard-core supporters in the bag; the Republican likewise. So both tend to take those hard-core supporters for granted and chase after other voters. According … Continue reading

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The WSJ’s Broken Subscriptions System

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp today announced a 57% rise in annual profits, to $5.38 billion. Please, Mr Murdoch, spend a tiny, tiny amount of that money on fixing the Wall Street Journal’s horrendously broken subscriptions system. I’m spending the summer … Continue reading

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Bad Ideas at the WSJ, Customization Edition

Jon Fine had a long chat with WSJ editor Robert Thomson, and got some interesting statements out of him: Also coming: extensive customizing tools for readers to find, through search, much more Dow Jones content. (In Thomson’s groan-worthy formulation, "In … Continue reading

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The WSJ’s Last-Man-Standing Play

Nat Ives talks to WSJ publisher Les Hinton, who explains the paper’s move into general news. Is it driven by Rupert Murdoch’s desire to compete head-on with the the NYT? Quite possibly, yes. But Hinton’s on-the-record justification also makes sense: … Continue reading

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WSJ.com Will Go Free, Eventually

Congratulations to wsj.com for posting impressive growth in both pageviews and unique visitors over the past year. Don’t pay too much attention to the numbers quoted: they’re "based on the company’s internal traffic numbers," and therefore not much use in … Continue reading

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Why Newspapers Must Embrace RSS

Last week, Research Recap featured a Forrester study entitled "The Fragmentation Of Yesterday’s Newspaper". A mention of RSS feeds piqued my interest, and Forrester was kind enough to send me a copy today. The conclusions of the report are, I … Continue reading

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Regional Newspapers are Doomed

The panel on the future of print media was really rather depressing, and not necessarily because the panelists were downbeat. The panel comprised four late-middle-aged business guys. They’re all reasonably bullish on how newspaper companies can transform themselves into web-era … Continue reading

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When the WSJ Competes with the NYT

David Carr’s column on the WSJ today is excellent: when he describes the behavior of the WSJ’s editors before and since Murdoch’s takeover as "a pattern of rolling complicity," he really couldn’t put it any better. But he goes further … Continue reading

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Why the NYT Shouldn’t Attack the WSJ

Barry Ritholtz thinks that as the WSJ becomes newsier and more like the NYT, the NYT should beef up its business coverage and try "to go after the Journal’s audience" of executives who expense their subscriptions. I don’t think this … Continue reading

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Murdoch in Welcomed-by-the-Union Shocker

This might be a first: has an acquisition by Rupert Murdoch ever before been welcomed by a newspaper’s unions? “We’d appreciate anybody coming in here that has a newspaper background, that knows New York, whether it’s Zuckerman or Murdoch or … Continue reading

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Murdoch Returns to his Mass-Market Roots

Rupert Murdoch seems to be quietly nearing a deal to buy Newsday from Sam Zell for about $580 million. That’s almost exactly the same amount of money as he spent on buying MySpace – an investment which Gillian Wee weirdly … Continue reading

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Why Bloomberg Won’t Buy the New York Times

Newsweek and the NY Post are today resuscitating one of the perennial rumors in medialand: that Mike Bloomberg will somehow end up buying the New York Times. If the Sulzberger family was amenable – and that’s a big if – … Continue reading

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WSJ.com Gets its Redesign

Rafat Ali reports today that after spending "millions" on a redesign, the all-new WSJ.com will launch "in the next few weeks", with a simple aim: "to drive more traffic in a bigger way". At the margin, resdesigns can and do … Continue reading

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News Corp’s Cutest Board Member

"I’m not just some idiotic girl in piggytails yodeling," says Natalie Bancroft in an interview for the March issue of Portfolio, who was photographed by João Canziani. "I’m working my little butt off." The daughter of Joyce Bancroft, a Dutch-Brazilian … Continue reading

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Why Personalized Advertising Means a Free WSJ.com

Esther Dyson has a thought-provoking op-ed in the WSJ today, which really ought to be read by the paper’s new owner, Rupert Murdoch. "The Coming Ad Revolution" is the headline, and a close reader of the piece will immediately understand … Continue reading

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Why WSJ.com Will Go Free

Last week, Henry Blodget made a good point about WSJ.com going free: The first indication that you WSJ holdouts may not suddenly get your free lunch is this: Murdoch’s owned the thing for several weeks now and it hasn’t yet … Continue reading

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Why FT.com Charges for Subscriptions

Jeff Bercovici has an interesting interview today with John Ridding, the chief executive of the Financial Times. He does his best to defend the FT’s weird and counterproductive online pricing model, and it’s worth reading between the lines of some … Continue reading

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How a Free WSJ.com can Beat Yahoo Finance

PaidContent’s Joseph Wiesenthal has found a research note from Bear Stearns analyst Spencer Wang which is bearish on the revenue prospects for a free WSJ.com, compared to the amount it currently generates in subscriptions. Bloggers love to fisk Wall Street … Continue reading

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The WSJ Still Has Editorial Independence

Rupert Murdoch has installed his hand-picked man, Robert Thomson, as the boss of WSJ editor Marcus Brauchli. That doesn’t violate the letter of the agreement Murdoch made to preserve the WSJ’s independence: Thomson is nominally the WSJ’s publisher, and Brauchli … Continue reading

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Will Traders Ever Get News From Websites?

When was the last time you saw a trader using a web browser? I ask because there seems to be some worry that if WSJ.com goes free, that might mean fewer people subscribing to Dow Jones Newswires. I also believe … Continue reading

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Why Advertisers Won’t Desert a Free WSJ.com

In the wake of the latest news about WSJ.com going free, the old arguments against such a move have been emerging from people who think they’re smarter than Rupert Murdoch. They’re not. The main argument is summed up by Barry … Continue reading

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