It’s been a tough week in media, with hundreds of reporters being laid off and media investment cuts. You can catch up with the most important highlights in this weeks issue. Also included: Patreon just keeps growing, more and more publishers are planning paywalls and email is more important than ever.
Get at it here 👉
💯 Top picks
The big story this week
This week in media may go down in history as we saw several young startups laying off staff and losing funding. First BuzzFeed announced that it would be laying off 15 percent of its staff, followed by Verizon Media Group announcing layoffs of up to 800 employees which could affect publications like HuffPost, Techcrunch and many others.If that wasn’t enough doom and gloom, investment group WarnerMedia have shut down its investment arm that has previously backed digital media startups such as Mashable.
Many of these new-media startups that were for some years seen as the modern success story, have fallen into the trap of not living up to investor expectations. Is it time to shake things up and move away from huge media orgs, and on to something more sustainable?
💸 Business models
Patreon hits growth milestones with 3 million patrons & expects to pay out more than half a billion this year
Patreon is growing fast, and now has 3 million patrons supporting over 100,000 creators each month. The platform is expected to pay out more than half a billion to creators this year.
Arkansas Life are strong advocates of keeping a quality printed publication alive, and are using paid digital subscriptions to keep theirs going. They even sent a letter to readers warning the magazine would cease to exist unless more readers became subscribers…
Magazine publisher Conde Nast announced plans to put all of its U.S. titles, from GQ to Vogue to Glamour, behind a paywall this year.
This is a long, interesting read with deep insight into how the book publishing industry has changed over the years, and why email is so important today. There’s lots of parallels in here for publishers of all kinds.
✍️ Modern journalism
In light of the recent media news, Jeremy Littau takes a step back to explain history’s part in all of this in a Twitter thread. Add this to your must read list!
“This research suggests people make judgments about a news site based on the predominant tone of the comments, not on whether the first comments are civil or uncivil.”
Take a trip down memory lane and read this engaging piece about how LiveJournal paved the way for independent publishing known as blogging long before competitors like Tumblr and social media entered the space.Fun fact: LiveJournal was (and still is) so popular in Russia that the the Russian translation of its name serves as a shorthand way to describe blogging — just as Google is a synonym for “search”.
The Google News service could be pulled from Europe entirely, as regulators are working toward a controversial copyright law that gives publishers the right to demand money from large organisations who publish fragments of their articles in search results.