19 August 2008

Is The Future Mobile?

Could revenue generated by mobile sites and services fill the gap left by declining ad sales and print circulation?

According to washingtonpost.com executive editor James Brady this is the current $64 million question facing newspaper publishers and he’s maintaining a positive outlook.

He told American Journalism Review (AJR): “We’re not filling that gap yet with either Web or mobile, which is leading to financial turmoil.

“But my own opinion is that we’ll come out on the other side in five to seven years, and we’ll probably get pretty close to filling the gap.”

His comments appear in a new AJR article looking at the current mobile site trends among US media organisations.

The piece discusses some of the services which have proved a surprise hit with mobile users - such as the Sudoku puzzles from regional publisher Gannett.

Other success stories are the mobile sites affiliated to Hearst titles such as Cosmopolitan and Good Housekeeping.

Hearst digital mobile director Sophia Stuart reveals that these mobile and web services are also helping the print counterpart by acting as a “subscription generator”.

The full article from academic Arielle Emmett is entitled Handheld Headlines and is on the AJR website.

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