Monday, April 07, 2008

CIL 2008: Learning From Newspaper Publishing

Brian Kroski, New York Observer

{I'm going to try to go to a couple of the talks in the Beyond Libraries track today to hopefully get some good ideas for work. This talk and the Learning From Non-Profits talk this afternoon look particularly promising from the program. Never mind the non-profits. Canceled.}

Web presence of Observer a year ago was pretty basic. Not many visits, not many ad options. Just text of paper online. Now 1.5 million visits/ month and a lot more ads. Using lots of social tools (tags, RSS, etc) now. Better search (SEO, analytics). Providing online archives back to 1997, looking to do more.

Tech: Online pub system made up of core publishing system (open source, handles articles, blogs etc), 3rd party aps, external data feeds. Hosting LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, SQL). Use Drupal for CMS - articles, blogs, embedded media, taxonomy, feeds, publishing scheduling, content promotion. Ajax to pull latest headlines from blogs to display on homepage.

3rd party aps: google/ analytics, advert,, brightcove (slideshows), kaango (classifieds).

They pull in externals feeds on movie box office in NYC, top B&N books in NYC by zipcode, Publishers Weekly feeds. Lots of social bookmarking and commenting to bring in "accidental readers" who get to site from recs from friends. Dynamic homepage for "loyal readers" - content changes 4 times per day. "seeker" somewhat regular readers, know what they want to find when come to site, interested in a couple of topics (need robust search, channels, multimedia). "Opportunist" are infrequent but regular readers who get 3 views (recent news, what editors think important (chosen by EIC), what other readers think important - most read/ commented etc).

Advertisers want targeted marketing, rich media, skins for ads, roadblocks. Very aggressive marketing of site - get word out as many was as possible, allow others to resuse content, not worried about making money off syndication.

Socialite Slapdown - March Madness for socialites, runs on Drupal. Green Channel is partnership w/ Columbia U to cover "green" issues in NYC. Lots of reporter. contributor created video (fashion advice show "Simon Says" syndicated on Blip/ YouTube).

Q&A stuff:
Don't require login to do anything on site including comment. Making people login to comment meant no comments. Struggle w/ spam, but better interaction. Use spam filters to try to handle - filter out URLs but don't filter "naughty" words.

Rich web didn't hurt print subscriptions at all, actually grown print subs after web development. At minimum didn't hurt print, greatly improved paper all the way around.

Move towards more community based online presence instead of traditional publishing. Publisher as community builder in 2.0 world.

Labels: ,


At 5:52 AM, Blogger john said...

Nice post Brian, publications can get more exposure through online publishing and which is the best tool to increase the revenue. As per the surveys, online readership is increasing dramatically from the past three years. Companies like helping to the publishers in digitization process and making easy to publisher in distribution of their publications.


Post a Comment

<< Home