Tuesday, January 17, 2017

It's the Market, Stupid

Amid reports of staff and budget downsizing at The New York Times and The Washington Post and, truth be told, most other papers. Amid declining Nielsens for the network national news programs, we rise to ask why this is happening? Several reasons suggest themselves.

You can blame the 24 hour news cycle, the Internet and its "new media," or you can fall back on a far more basic idea: the market. Free consumers decide what to do with their eyeballs - what to read or watch.

The old media continues to deliver a homogenous blend of 'progressive' and politically correct pap, and the consumers aren't having it, thank you very much. Meanwhile two not-progressive venues - The Wall Street Journal and Fox News - are respectively the most widely circulated newspaper in the land and the nation's most watched cable news programs.

Coincidence? I think not. Old media needs to think about their offerings, and the market's demonstrated preferences, which are not similar.

Can old media reclaim their former market share? Unlikely. Can they stop the erosion? Probably not, they are unwilling to deliver what the market finds palatable.

Somewhere along the line the old media stopped being a business and became a liberal/progressive crusade, without realizing the change demands a new funding source. Ad revenue won't cut it, they need pledge drives and contributions from the virtue-signaling wealthy. Hyper-liberal PBS and NPR long since figured this out.