Newspapers the rise and decline of modern journalism
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Newspapers: The Rise and Decline of Modern Journalism. Chapter 3.

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“U.S. newspapers have lost readers as well as their near monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”


Newspapers today
Newspapers Today monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Newspapers have historically acted as chroniclers of daily life.

    • Inform and entertain

  • In the digital age, the industry is losing papers and readers.

  • Losses raise big concerns for future of newspapers.


The early history of american newspapers
The Early History of American Newspapers monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Colonial papers

    • Benjamin Harris: Publick Occurrences (1690)

    • Benjamin Franklin: Pennsylvania Gazette (1729)

    • John Peter Zenger and the Popular Party: the New-York Weekly Journal (1733)


Partisan press
Partisan Press monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Critiqued government

  • Disseminated views of different political parties that sponsored newspapers

  • Offered updates on markets

  • Reported ship cargoes from Europe

  • Directed at wealthy, educated readers

  • Evolved into modern:

    • Editorial pages

    • Business sections


Penny press
Penny Press monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • 1833—Benjamin Day’s New York Sun

    • Local events, scandals, police reports, serialized stories

    • Blazed the trail for celebrity news

    • Fabricated stories

  • Human-interest stories

    • Ordinary individuals facing extraordinary challenges

  • Success spawned wave of penny papers.


Changing business models
Changing Business Models monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • 1835—James Gordon Bennett’s New York Morning Herald

    • Bennett first U.S. press baron, completely controlled paper’s content

    • World’s largest daily paper at the time

    • Targeted middle- and working-class readers

  • Penny papers increased reliance on ad revenue.


News wire services
News Wire Services monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Commercial and cooperative organizations

    • Relayed news stories around world by telegraph

    • Began with Associated Press (AP) in 1848

    • Later used radio waves, digital transmissions

  • Increased speed of news distribution

    • Set the stage for modern U.S. journalism

  • Provided more people greater access to information


Yellow journalism
Yellow monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”Journalism

  • Pulitzer and Hearst

  • Overly dramatic

    • Crimes, Celebrities, Scandals, Disaster, Intrigue

  • Exposed Corruption

    • In business and government

  • Developed elements of modern journalism

    • Investigative reporting

    • Advice columns

    • Feature stories

    • Journalism awards


Competing models of print journalism in 1800s
Competing Models of Print Journalism in 1800s monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Story-driven model

    • Dramatized important events

    • Characterized penny papers, yellow press

  • “The facts” model

    • Favored impartial approach

    • Characterized six-cent papers


Objectivity in modern journalism
Objectivity in Modern Journalism monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Ochs and TheNew York Times, 1896

    • Distanced itself from yellow journalism

    • Focused on documentation of major events

    • Attracted more affluent readership through marketing

    • Lowered price to a penny, attracting middle-class readers


Objectivity in modern journalism cont
Objectivity in Modern Journalism monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”(cont.)

  • Inverted-pyramid style

    • Developed by Civil War correspondents

    • Answered who, what, where, when, why, how first (top)

    • Placed less significant details later (bottom)

  • Limits of objectivity

    • Prevents readers from obtaining a fuller picture of events


Interpretive journalism
Interpretive Journalism monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Explains key issues or events

    • Places news in broader historical or social context

    • Developed partly in response to poor reporting of causes of World War I

  • Provides more analysis than objective model


Lippmann and interpretive journalism
Lippmann and interpretive journalism monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Press should remain objective but also

    • 1) Supply facts for the current record

    • 2) Give analysis

    • 3) Suggest plans on the basis of both

  • Timeline

    • Began in 1920s

    • Debate over role of newspapers and radio,1930s

    • Op-ed pages become popular in 1950s


Literary new journalism
Literary (New) Journalism monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Fictional storytelling techniques applied to nonfictional material

  • Timeline

    • Originated in 1930s–40s

    • Gained popularity in 1960s (Rolling Stone)

  • Journalists working in this tradition include:

    • Tom Wolfe, Norman Mailer, Hunter Thompson, Jon Krakauer, Adrian Nicole LeBlanc


Technology age changes
Technology Age Changes monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • USA Today (1982)

    • First newspaper to use color

    • Mimics broadcast by using brief news items

    • Writers use present tense for immediacy


Online technology changes
Online Technology Changes monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Online journalism reshapes news process

    • Readers find news through sites like Google

    • Real time updates

    • Stories stay in public eye longer

    • Trivial stories get more emphasis


Categorizing news and u s newspapers
Categorizing News And U.S. Newspapers monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Smaller local papers

    • Focus on consensus

    • Promote social, economic harmony in community

    • Publish weekly

    • Use consensus-oriented journalism

  • Regional and national papers

    • Use conflict-oriented journalism

    • Front-page news defined as events, issues, or experiences deviating from social norms


Ethnic and minority newspapers
Ethnic and Minority Newspapers monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • African American

    • Freedom’s Journal (1827–1829), Amsterdam News, ChicagoDefender

  • Spanish language

    • New York’s El Diario–La Prensa merged with Los Angeles’ La Opinión to createImpreMedia.

  • Asian American

    • Sing Tao Daily serves Chinese immigrants nationwide.


Ethnic and minority newspapers cont
Ethnic and Minority Newspapers monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”(cont.)

  • Native American

    • Cherokee Phoenix (1828), Native American Times

  • Arab American

    • Arab American News, Aramica


The underground press
The Underground Press monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Inspired by

    • socialists, intellectuals from 1930s, 1940s

    • New wave of critics and artists in the 1960s

  • Mid to late 1960s saw explosion in alternative newspapers

    • Critiqued government and social institutions

    • Challenged mainstream depictions of news

    • Village Voice: most enduring alternative paper


Economics money in
Economics: Money In monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Majority of revenues derived from advertising

    • Large dailies devote one-half to two-thirds of pages to ads.

    • Ads range from expensive full-page spreads to classifieds.

    • Newshole refers to space left for front-page news, regional stories, features.


Economics money out
Economics: Money Out monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Salaries and wages for staff

    • Economic downturn and industry consolidation have caused layoffs

    • Staff expected to do more jobs

    • Independent bureaus are closing

  • Wire services

  • Feature syndicates


Challenges facing newspapers
Challenges Facing Newspapers monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • Declining readership

  • Decreasing number of cities with competing daily newspapers

    • Joint operating agreements (JOA)

  • Newspaper chains

    • Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. multinational

    • Congress exploring nonprofit models to keep papers alive


Challenges facing newspapers cont
Challenges Facing Newspapers monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”(cont.)

  • Going digital

    • By 2010, more newspapers moving bulk of operation online, while dramatically decreasing news staff

    • Some print papers folding

  • Rising blogs

    • Now considered major source of news that rivals print papers

  • Competing citizen journalists


Newspapers in a democratic society
Newspapers in a Democratic Society monopoly on classified advertising, much of which has shifted to popular Web sites like craigslist.com. By early 2010, newspapers’ advertising revenues seemed to be in freefall, along with their stock price. Industry observers began asking, ‘Can this mass medium survive much longer?’ ”

  • The survival of a free press is not certain

    • As more newspapers fold or consolidate, what will fill this void?

    • Where will citizens outside of the mainstream obtain information vital to them?

    • How will diverse opinions and ideas be heard?


“…Reporting is absolutely an essential thing for democratic self-government. Who’s going to do it? Who’s going to pay for the news? If newspapers fall by the wayside, what will we know?”*

*John Carroll, “News War, Part 3,” Frontline, PBS, February 27, 2007, http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/ newswar/etc/script3.html.


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