Tuesday, September 02, 2008

NYTimes.com senior VP talks with readers

Worth clicking into: The online discussion by Vivian Schiller, senior VP of NYTimes.com, as she takes readers' questions all this week.

Some good insight on the economics of the business. A few of quotes:

Probably because of my television background, I did believe at first that video should be front and center to our online future. But I’ve come to believe it is but one means of journalistic expression among many. ...

To oversimplify a somewhat complicated smorgasbord of efforts, our strategy is twofold: scale and context. ... First, scale. Here our goal is to scale our audience as much as possible to attract and retain advertisers who want to reach a large number of online readers. ... The second strategy appeals to the kind of advertisers who want to reach an audience in context. ...

Lastly, I do want to mention one other favorite New York Times product that I haven’t yet called out in this posting. It’s light, portable, easy on the eyes and well suited for the kind of serendipitous experience that many readers enjoy. It’s called a newspaper. And still one of our very favorites.

Meanwhile, the Greensboro News & Record has announced that three days a week it will cut its op-ed pages from two to one. It's also killing the book review page and scrunching Sunday Ideas to four pages. Editorial page Editor Allen Johnson didn't try to sugar-coat the reason: "Less advertising means less space for printed content."

He promises readers: Content that regularly runs on the opinion pages will not disappear although it may move. In some cases it will shift to the main editorial page. In others, it will find a new home on another day of the week.

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