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Não há nenhuma publicação à prova de recessão

28 de Maio de 2020

O mercado dos media nos EUA é um dos mais dinâmicos e flexíveis, graças, entre outros factores, ao volume de publicidade e aos modelos de financiamento alternativos. Apesar disso, não é imune à crise geral dos media e nos últimos anos tem sofrido cortes drásticos nos orçamentos e no pessoal. Mesmo uma publicação sólida como “The Atlantic” não escapa à recessão. «Maus tempos para o bom jornalismo», afirma a jornalista inglesa Kirsty Lang, apresentadora da BBC Radio 4, citada na newsletter de Gregory Galant

It was only a week ago that we were sharing the news of The Atlantic’s massive increase in subscribers over the past few months. And yet, due to the pandemic’s economic fallout, the publication announced that it’s laying off 68 employees, or 17% of its staffNew York Times media reporter Marc Tracy writes that the development is “evidence that even the most robust media businesses are vulnerable to the crisis that has ravaged news organizations nationwide.” 

Tracy calls the piece “Our read on layoffs at The Atlantic, and what it means that this even happened at a news media outlet that would seem to have everything going for it.” As Katharine Murphy says, “Hard to be hopeful when the hits keep coming. This publication has some of the best coverage of US politics and the pandemic. No publications, however venerable, are recession proof.” 

“Bad times for good journalism and we need it more than ever. Please subscribe to a news magazine or #buyapaper,” Kirsty Lang urges. Particularly since the coronavirus has closed more than 30 local newsrooms across America. And counting, as Poynter’s Kristen Hare reports.

“Now, small newsrooms around the country, often more than 100 years old, often the only news source in those places, are closing under the weight of the coronavirus,” writes Hare. The result: “the end of news dedicated to those communities, the evaporation of institutional knowledge and the loss of local jobs.”

And then there’s the threat to critically important community news organizations. As Nicole Acevedo explains at NBC News, these media outlets serving immigrant families are a ‘lifeline’ for Latino families. Acevedo takes a look at how outlets like Jambalaya News are countering potentially deadly misinformation and innovating while on “survival mode.” On Twitter, she shares, “It’s not everyday I get to highlight the work of fellow Latina journalists doing incredible work during tough times. I truly felt inspired by these women.” 

What’s the solution??

Axios’s Sara Fischer and Scott Rosenberg wrote about the mass layoffs across media outlets over the previous week and how those cuts are weighing on the industry’s moraleJeffrey Cunningham calls it “A strong article by @sarafischer @scottros on the media shipwreck. Goes back to a decision to go mass vs. class that valued great journalism (Economist, Wall Street Journal).” 

“Just when reporters are needed the most. What’s the solution??” Shachar Bar-On wonders. It certainly still seems elusive. As Fischer and Rosenberg point out, “the industry, now entering the third or fourth round of this cycle, doesn’t seem able to change its behavior,” which means the pendulum swinging between ad revenue and subscriptions income “now feels like a wrecking ball.”

Where are they now

Of course, the media was in crisis before the pandemic hit. Another piece from Poynter’s Kristen Hare updates us on the 161 Times-Picayune staffers who were laid off last year

Hare tracked down about 40 of the 65 from the newsroom, and Michelle Rafter says, “This @Poynter story on where reporters laid off from Times-Picayune last year is a small sample size but still gives a good look at where people land – very few went freelance. It’s harder than it looks. But if you get it, it can be a great career.”

Haley Correll, who’s now a social media manager for the American Red Cross, expressed this sad truth: “I think there are also a lot of stories being left untold. There just isn’t the journalism manpower in this city that there used to be, and as New Orleanians, we’re worse off for it.”

“Honest, touching reflections from my lovely former colleagues a year after the Times-Picayune layoffs. Thanks,” tweets Diana Samuels.

One more reason

Matt Rosoff says, “This piece from @megancgraham is an indictment of the entire broken ad tech industry. As thousands of journalists lose their jobs, news sites are ripped off left and right by scammers who copy and paste their content for a quick buck.” He’s referring to Megan Graham’s CNBC story on how a broken internet ad system makes it easy to earn money with plagiarism

Graham shares, “Last month, I started finding my stories on ad-supported sites that were ripping off content from publishers. To see how easy it was to monetize these sites, I made one. Within days, I was approved by adtech co’s to run ads on stories ‘stolen’ from CNBC.”

Conrad Quilty-Harper says, “If you work on a news website, you know that plagiarized news sites are almost impossible to fight,” and that’s why Barbara Demick says it’s “One more reason, real journalism is in trouble.”

Gregory Galant – Newsletter on Linkedin

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