3 things BuzzFeed News thinks about before sending a push alert

Earlier this month, President Donald Trump met Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull in New York. While the big story in the U.S. that day was the passage of the Republican healthcare bill in the House of Representatives, the meeting was major news in Australia. As a result, BuzzFeed News decided to send an alert to its app users who have chosen to follow Australia news in its news app. The alert read: “There were some delays, but Malcolm Turnbull and Donald Trump finally met in person. Here’s how it went down. 👴🏻 ❤️ 👴🏻 ” Yes, it included the emoji, which has purposefully become a hallmark of the BuzzFeed News app, Brianne O’Brien, the lead news curation editor at BuzzFeed’s London office said on a panel at the ONA Dublin conference on Friday. After BuzzFeed launched its news app in 2015, two-thirds of the downloads were from
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What’s holding back virtual reality news? Slow tech adoption, monetization, and yes, dull content

For news organizations, the promise of VR has been marred by a handful of challenges that have so far made it difficult to justify wholesale investment in the technology. That’s clear from a new report from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism that takes an in-depth look at the state of VR news in 2017. The conclusion: despite some earnest early efforts among news organizations, widespread adoption of the technology among consumers is still years away. “VR has emerged from its early experimentation phase and is now bedding down in news organizations as they address the challenges of content and user experience,” writes Zillah Watson, the report’s author, who has also headed up BBC’s own VR efforts. “But it is still some years from what it could become — in the same way that, ten years ago, no one could have foreseen the role today of social Continue reading "What’s holding back virtual reality news? Slow tech adoption, monetization, and yes, dull content"

“You’re not doing it the way I did”: Public media in Europe gets creative with digital news

“Whenever you get the new generation, you get new language, and whenever you get new language you get people saying it’s not news because ‘you’re not doing it the way I did,'” said Mika Rahkonen, head of development at Finland’s national public broadcaster Yle. In January 2015, the broadcaster launched Kioski, which has evolved into a social video service that covers news and current affairs for younger audiences and publishes across Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and WhatsApp. (Kioski also runs as a Thursday evening program on Finnish TV.) For this project, buy-in from a development department within Yle concerned specifically with facilitating the creation of news products was crucial, protecting the editorial team tasked with coming up with a “youth product” from any resistance to the product’s new voice. Buy-in from the wider newsroom was one critical factor in Kioski’s success, according to a new Reuters Continue reading "“You’re not doing it the way I did”: Public media in Europe gets creative with digital news"

How four international news outlets are creating truly digitally native content (and making money off it)

If you don’t have revenue, you don’t have a product: It’s one of the first things I tell my clients. With the news media facing extreme economic pressure in many countries, I was keen, in my recent report for the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, to focus not only on editorial innovation but also the commercial innovation that is supporting new formats.

I found news organizations around the world answering the questions of how to monetize radically distributed content strategies, grappling with changes in social media use, and finding a new way to connect with their young audiences when Facebook no longer reached them.

Our goal in the report wasn’t to provide an exhaustive look at all of the forms of content innovation happening, but rather to use the lens of non-article formats to look at how news organizations are creating truly digitally native content. Zeroing in Continue reading "How four international news outlets are creating truly digitally native content (and making money off it)"

Another survey finds users aren’t that engaged with online video

News organizations have been producing loads of video content to fill social media feeds and attract higher ad rates, but a new report from the social analytics firm Parse.ly finds that users engage with video much less than other content types. Parse.ly examined the performance of four types of posts within its network of 700 sites: long-form, short-form, video, and slideshows. Video posts received 30 percent less engaged time than the average post, the study found. (Parse.ly defines “engaged time” as being “actively engaged with content — when [users] not only have a page open, but they have also recently interacted with it [via scrolling or clicking, for example]. Visitors are also considered actively engaged if they are watching a video.”) The report suggested a few reasons for why engagement with videos are lower:
— Auto-play: Visitors expecting to read a text article might click the
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What’s the big journalism trend for 2017? Fear (oh, and voice news bots)

The Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism’s annual predictions report, released Wednesday, starts out a little bleak and doesn’t exactly let up: In 2017, “key developments will center on fears about how changing technology is affecting the quality of information and the state of our democracy.” The report also highlights publishers’ conflicting views about the rise of social media platforms: Of the 143 editors, CEOs, and “digital leaders” surveyed across 24 countries:
— 70% said worries over the distribution of fake/inaccurate news in social networks will strengthen their position, while… — 46% say they are more worried about the role of platforms than last year — 56% say Facebook Messenger will be important or very important part of their offsite initiatives this year. 53% say the same for WhatsApp and 49% for Snapchat — 33% of respondents from a newspaper background are more worried about their company’s
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Digital-native outlets in Europe are more pragmatic than innovative, report suggests

Digital-native news outlets in Europe tend to be more focused on delivering quality journalism than on creating new business models or innovating about ways news is presented, according to a new report from Oxford’s Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism that studied 12 online startups in Francuhe, Germany, Spain, and the United Kingdom. The report — written by Tom Nicholls, Nabeelah Shabbir and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen — says that European startups tend to be launched by journalists who’ve often had long careers at traditional news organizations before deciding to strike out on their own. “Although digital born, they seem to have started more frequently with disappointment with the state of journalism (and a commitment to do better) than with wonder at the technological or commercial possibilities of digital media,” the study says. Startups in all four countries tend to be smaller than their traditional counterparts. However, digital news orgs Continue reading "Digital-native outlets in Europe are more pragmatic than innovative, report suggests"