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熱門: 穿山甲 遺書 丁允恭

數位「媒」搞頭?:經營路艱辛 數位版《日報》將喊卡

立報/本報訊 2012.12.12 00:00
策劃、編譯■李威撰新聞集團與蘋果公司合作,打造的第一個平板電腦新聞品牌《日報》,7月份先是宣布裁員50人,接著本月3日宣布15日將刊行最後一期。兩歲不到的《日報》為何會如此早夭?這對網路媒體經營又有何啟示?大約2年前,紐約古根漢美術館召開的一場記者會上,引人注目的《日報》(The Daily)首次亮相,然而數位版的《日報》將在12月15日發行最後一期。但新聞集團在聲明中表示,該品牌將「繼續存在於其他通路上」。尋找數位報紙可能性新聞集團投資3千萬美元在這項野心勃勃的計畫,該計畫是為了瞭解民眾是否願意訂購數位報紙而展開的一項試驗。「我們可以、也必須讓新聞業的採編再度找到出路。」梅鐸2011年2月在紐約的發行記者會上如此說道:「我們進入一個顯然是創新與數位復興的時代。」未來,《日報》的創刊編輯安吉羅將出任《紐約郵報》發行人,《日報》發行人克雷曼則負責該公司的數位策略。「如果你跟梅鐸一樣富有,手中又有新聞集團這樣握有龐大資源的公司,」報導媒體的評論家謝弗表示,「關閉像《日報》這種經營22個月的生意,這種放棄不代表就是失敗」。▲梅鐸(Rupert Murdoch)2011年2月2日在紐約的發布會上,推出與蘋果iPad合作的《日報》。圖為編輯設計畫面。(來源/路透)2011年2月推出iPad專屬的《日報》時,梅鐸清楚自己的作為。這位大人物在記者會上表示,推出前已投資3千萬美元,並假定經營成本每週約50萬美元。據《紐約觀察家報》一篇報導指出,《日報》每年虧損達3千萬美元。然而,對於梅鐸這樣的人物來說,3千萬只是一筆小數目;他的《紐約郵報》1年損失7千萬,卻也不見他有收攤不做的意思。謝弗表示:「所以,不用太關注梅鐸為了這個失敗實驗而1年賠3千萬的事。從歷史上新聞業所下過的賭注來看,這不過是個小賭罷了。」iPad非合適載具有關《日報》為何失敗,絕大多數的判斷不無道理。《矽谷內幕人》的卡夫卡認為,《日報》的衰亡,背後與公司因素有關。新聞集團分拆成2家公司:其中一間是《日報》被畫分進去的報業公司;另一家是廣播電影公司。梅鐸的投資組合分拆行為,意味著生存不易的出版品如果不是有所表現,就是被淘汰出局。財經記者薩爾蒙提到,結構性的「平板原生新聞的不可能性」,是《日報》失敗的原因:意即,對於像《日報》這類套裝新聞來說,iPad是不夠靈活的載具,甚至不如印刷新聞。網路是更彈性、更簡易的開發平台。蘋果抽成過高如同許多人的見解,曾幫《日報》撰稿的巴特華斯將矛頭指向付費牆。他抱怨,要創造需求,就不能讓網路新品牌藏在付費牆後頭。《下一代網路》的威爾海姆指出眾多因素,其中一項是iTunes Store從訂閱收入當中抽取高達30%的收益。儘管所有結構缺陷都納入考量,哈佛大學的尼曼新聞實驗室主任班頓認為,《日報》是有進步空間的,它仍然吸引10萬名付費訂戶。雖然《日報》要打平收支,需要再多50萬名訂戶;但對於這一受到侷限及限制的平板媒體,10萬名訂戶已經沒甚麼好嘲笑的了。(路透)The Daily, which made a splashy debut with a news conference at the Guggenheim museum in New York almost two years ago, will publish its last digital edition on December 15. But the brand will "live on in other channels," News Corp said in a statement.The ambitious project - News Corp invested about $30 million - was a test to see if people would subscribe to a digital newspaper."We can and must make the business of news gathering and editing viable again," Murdoch said at the launch event for the digital newspaper in New York in February 2011. "We're entering a remarkable age of innovation and digital renaissance."Jesse Angelo, founding editor of The Daily, will become publisher of the New York Post, while Greg Clayman, publisher of The Daily, will oversee the company's digital strategy.“When you’re as wealthy as Rupert Murdoch and you control a company as resource-rich as News Corp,” the columnist Jack Shafer covering the press said. “Shuttering a 22-month-old business like The Daily doesn’t signify failure as much as it does surrender.”Murdoch knew what he was getting into when he launched the iPad-only publication in February 2011. At a press conference, the mogul (1) claimed to have invested $30 million pre-launch and assumed running costs of about $500,000 a week.According to a report in the New York Observer the operation was amassing annual losses of $30 million. But, for someone like Murdoch, $30 million is chump change. His New York Post loses up to $70 million a year and you don’t see him closing it.“So, let’s not obsess too much over Murdoch’s squandering of $30 million a year on a failed experiment. In the history of journalistic bets, this was a trivial gamble,” Shafer said.Most of the diagnoses of what killed The Daily are right. Peter Kafka, editor of Silicon Alley Insider, captures the corporate reason behinds its demise that the split of News Corp into two companies—a newspaper company into which The Daily was corralled; and a broadcast-film group–meant that the struggling titles in the Murdoch portfolio(2) would have to perform or face ejection.Financial journalist Felix Salmon says the structural “impossibility of tablet-native journalism” as the cause of The Daily’s death: that is, the iPad is a clunky (3) vehicle for a package like The Daily, inferior even to newsprint; the Web is more a flexible and easier platform on which to develop content.Former Daily contributor Trevor Butterworth, among others, faults the paywall (4), complaining that you can’t create demand for a new Internet brand that you’ve sequestered (5) behind a paywall.Alex Wilhelm of The Next Web points to, among other things, the steep 30 percent vig that the iTunes Store was collecting on subscriptions.Nieman Journalism Lab Director Joshua Benton argues that The Daily’s glass was actually half-full, that despite all of its structural faults, it still attracted 100,000 paying subscribers. That was still short of the 500,000 it needed to break even, but 100,000 isn’t anything to scoff at for such a caged and constrained offering.(Reuters)關鍵字詞1.mogul(n.)大人物2.portfolio(n.) 投資組合3.paywall(n.)付費牆4.clunky(a.)不靈活的5.sequester(v.)使隔離

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