Jack Shafer: The Odds Are Against Newspapers

From Jack Shafer’s column in Slate today:

Newspapers embraced the new platform when it arrived in the mid-1990s, but they weren’t very inventive. All the great innovations in advertising, search, and social networking have come from outside the newspaper industry, which, given its 20 percent margins, it could have afforded to fund. Today, with the Web beating newsprint as a distribution platform and gaining on it as advertising destination, the odds are against conventional newspapers.

I keep waiting for one of these distressed, failing newspapers to realize that it has nothing to lose and get a little crazy and create something brand new and brilliant for readers and advertisers. I keep being disappointed.

More here on how newspapers are but the latest institution to fall in this new digital age.

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