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Must realize that digital media is not producing much revenue

The Editor,  The Sunday Star Times,  Auckland

12 May, 2017

Dear Business Editor:

Business Editor Jane Atherton (7 May) notes that the rise of Google, Facebook and other social media have led to crippling declines in advertising revenue for print media. This implies that media companies like Fairfax and NZME should be able to overcome this threat by reworking their emphasis out of print and into digital.  But this fails to take into account that social media revenues are not primarily going to media companies but to big communication such as Google and Facebook which are not in the business of journalism.

Less ‘journalism’ and more ‘talk’ is promoted. It can be seen that this is related to the rise of ‘fake news’ and ‘alternative facts’.  This can be considered good only if it is more important to give opportunity for people to experience ‘only the news I want to hear’ as compared to the New York Times famous claim ‘all the news that’s fit to print’.  Politics and publishing have always been influenced by the desire for only the news the populace wants to hear.  But this desperate desire is more widespread today than ever before.  It should be a priority task to understand why this is so; there will not be progress until we do.

Richard Keller

 

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