Court rejects revised cross-ownership rules
The U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia issued an opinion on July 7 vacating a 2008 Federal Communications Commission order that would have modestly relaxed the decades-old prohibition on newspaper/broadcast combinations.
Unlike its 2004 decision, when it issued an opinion that the outright cross-ownership ban was no longer in the public interest, the court did not reach the merits of the 2008 standards. Instead, the court vacated the new rules after accepting the complaints of advocacy groups that the FCC had failed to give adequate notice and opportunity for public comment before adopting the new regulations.
"By hanging its hat on what appears to be a convenient procedural hook, the majority of the court succeeded in turning the clock way back to 1975 and, in the process, squelch the very limited deregulation passed by the FCC in 2008," said John F. Sturm, NAA president and CEO. "Enormous change has taken place in the media marketplace that has spawned robust and effective competition to local print and broadcast media — from cable, satellite and the Internet. Sadly, this decision does nothing for local communities that rely on local journalism."
The decision effectively sends the cross-ownership rule back to the FCC, where possible rule changes will be considered in the context of the FCC's quadrennial review of all media ownership rules — a review mandated by Congress in the Telecommunications Act of 1996. The FCC is currently in the midst of its 2010 review. MORE
Three-part webinar series focuses on single-copy sales
NAA's Single-Copy Committee has organized a three-part webinar series that examines single-copy sales opportunities and how to overcome obstacles to success. The series, which begins July 28 with "Sunday Coupon Craze," looks at increasing sales with proven ideas, seizing opportunities, building lasting partnerships with retailers and addressing operational challenges. Learn more about promotions that work in an environment of higher prices and limited budgets. All sessions are free for NAA members. MORE
Metered model shows promise in Missouri
Last December, the Columbia (Mo.) Daily Tribune joined the growing list of newspapers charging for online content. The paper introduced a metered model and simultaneously stopped allowing nonsubscribers to comment on website articles. The 18,000-circulation daily immediately secured hundreds of online subscribers and experienced only a slight hit in traffic numbers. A new NAA-generated paid content case study details how the Daily Tribune has weathered the shift. MORE
'New Age' of creative newspaper advertising
The Media Online Share
When The New Age launched late last year, it broke "the rules" of newspaper design by placing an advertisement for Game above its masthead. Now it's done it again, with what CEO Nazeem Howa calls a "creative execution" for major cellphone company, Cell C. The ad shows a "word cloud" streaming across the page through the body of an article. More
Auto ad spending slows in the second quarter
The combination of a weaker economy and the devastating earthquake/tsunami in Japan were a one-two punch to the advertising sector. Kantar Media reports that spending on advertising by the auto sector slowed to one-fourth to half of the growth rates seen prior to the Japan crisis. The growth rate for auto ad spending in the U.S. was just 6.7 percent. More
The future of video advertising? Focus on the present first
U.S. video ad spending online will reach $5.5 billion in 2014, up from $1.5 billion in 2010, eMarketer predicts. With so much money on the line, a lot needs to happen before digital video can fulfill its potential and grow to the point where it's competing with the likes of TV and even digital display advertising for ad dollars. More
The Internet has turned the news industry upside down
The Economist Share
By undermining advertising revenue, making news reports a commodity and blurring the boundaries between previously distinct news organizations, the Internet has upended newspapers' traditional business model. But as well as demolishing old ways of doing things, it has also made new ones possible.
Another perk for New York Times subscribers: Share your access
Nieman Journalism Lab Share
The New York Times announced that subscribers will now be able to share their digital access with a family member of their choosing. The move is another way for the Times to differentiate its price points. It also shifts the calculus of the Times' porous paywall, for which the locus of subscription has been a single person. More
Cleveland Jewish News lays out '24/6' plan
Cleveland Jewish News Share
For the past 46 years, the Cleveland Jewish Publication Co. has provided news and commentary in a weekly newspaper supported by advertisers and readers. Buoyed by its first profitable year in the past three years, Cleveland Jewish News is expanding its digital presence and partnerships. More
Publishers' paywall appears to be success
When nine of Slovakia's leading news organizations went behind a collective paywall in May, the world's eyes turned on this small eastern European country and waited impatiently for the public's response. Now we know. Unique visitors to most of the publications' sites have actually increased, and Piano Media, the company behind the venture, claims to have met its subscription target within two days of launching the system. More