Archive for December 21st, 2009

Miami paper collecting readers’ donations

Monday, December 21st, 2009

The Miami Herald is deriving revenue by soliciting donations on its Web site, say Executive Editor Anders Gyllenhaal. Credit card forms linked at the bottom of articles on MiamiHerald.com and ElNuevoHerald.com since last week enable donations to the McClatchy Newspapers properties.

“The first few days of this experiment have elicited an encouraging steam of gifts, ranging from $2 to $55,” Gyllenhaal wrote in Sunday’s paper. “They’ve also provoked an array of reactions, here and across the country, since this has drawn attention as the first effort of its kind.”

He does not provide any further information about the amount raised.

“We think of this as a way to try something new at a time when The Herald has dozens of experiments under way,” he said. “We hope it helps us explore how readers view this whole equation. It also responds to the small but steady group of readers who, like the caller the other day, have asked how they can contribute.”

Radio posting ups and downs

Monday, December 21st, 2009

As the nation’s largest radio station owner, Clear Channel Radio, reported a substantial increase in ad sales in December and January on Friday, Citadel Broadcasting Corp., the No. 3 radio group, filed for  bankruptcy protection.

Together with some positive macroeconomic indicators and glimmers of a turnaround in magazine ad sales, the radio rebound holds out hope for a broader media recovery in the New Year,” Media Daily News said Friday in its Clear Channel report.

‘The ongoing weakness in the economy and advertising spending, compounded by rising debt and leverage’ have left Citadel with an ‘unsustainable capital structure,’ Neil Begley, an analyst at Moody’s Investors Service, said December 11 in a report,” according to Bloomberg.

“Sales ‘will continue to decline’ this quarter, Citadel said in a November 6 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission,” Bloomberg continues. “The company didn’t expect to meet January financial covenants, leading to a default and possibly forcing a bankruptcy filing, Citadel said at the time.”

At Clear Channel, “national spot ad sales increased 13.2 percent in December compared to last year; January 2010 is on track to deliver a 17.4 percent increase over January 2009’s dismal results.”

According to Bloomberg: “Citadel owns and operates 224 radio stations and produces programming for more than 4,000 affiliates. It is the third-largest U.S. radio company broadcasting from land-based antennas, behind Clear Channel and CBS Corp. Sirius XM Radio Inc., which charges subscribers for programming transmitted by satellites, is the second-largest radio broadcaster by revenue.”

Journalism seen winning out online

Monday, December 21st, 2009

The New York Times’ David Carr sees hope in the evolution of online news media.

“Blogs and new-media sites are cartoonishly written off as places where people write up the soup they just ate, but in the past year, many sites have added muscle and resources to the pursuit of news,” he wrote in Sunday’s paper. “Everyone knows about the reporting assets and influence of Politico, but you know things have changed when Gawker, the attitudinous Manhattan media blog, is hiring the kind of reporters who pick up the phone. …

“And just as new media have absorbed the enduring values of traditional media — developing sources, making phone calls [as noted earlier] — so more established players are adopting the tools of the insurgency. For instance, traditional media outlets are not waiting for the much-hyped Apple tablet to land next year before coming up with content that might soar on the device.”

“The long-in-the-tooth technologies still have plenty of life in them,” he says, citing successes in newspapers, TV and even among laid-off journalists.