What I’ve been reading: The NY Times’ new CMS and local successes (and struggles)

Why, as an online journo, I take no joy in newspapers’ decline

“If the print business-model is broken in South Africa, the business model for online has yet to take off. It is very difficult to make sustainable money from online news sites, especially niche ones. “

journalism local media print newspapers revenue models

*Subsequent to the publication of the above story on http://www.grubstreet.co.za, Media24 issued a statement saying “all current operations will remain intact”.

The mobile majority: Engaging people on smartphones is the next big challenge to the news

“It would be an exaggeration to say that the rise of the smartphone is a shift on par with the rise of the web. But it wouldn’t be that much of one. Seven years after the iPhone, smartphones have moved from a tool of the tech elite to a handheld computer in everyone’s pocket. They’re radically changing how people are getting their news. And I fear that many news outlets still haven’t wrestled with how big a change they represent.”

mobile smartphones revenue models google facebook twitter advertising

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What I’ve been reading: Andreessen on the future of news

Netscape founder Marc Andreessen got a lot of attention towards the end of February for his fundamentally optimistic thesis The Future of the News Business: A Monumental Twitter Stream All in One Place. In this post on his blog, he proposes that the way in which technology has broken 60 year old monopolies in the media industry along with the emergence of a new and enormous, mobile phone-wielding and news-hungry market (particularly in places like South Africa where I live) heralds the beginning of a golden age for news media and professional journalism.

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Jelly journalism: Some thoughts on Biz Stone’s new answers app

I guess Jelly’s appeal among journalists might be that it asks questions and that’s what journalists do – ask questions. So it seems reasonable to ask, what can Jelly do for journalists?

Asking a question on Jelly

Asking a question on Jelly

If you haven’t already discovered it, Jelly is the newish question-and-answer app launched by Twitter founder Biz Stone at the beginning of the year.

Where Twitter used to ask “What are you doing?” and Facebook (still) asks “What’s on your mind?”, Jelly asks “What is this?” by allowing users to photograph an object or upload a picture, annotate it with a finger-scribble if necessary, and send it out with a question to their extended networks.

It’s not the first service of its kind – the closest thing to it of any scale I imagine is Quora. While both services allow users to crowdsource answers and both ride on the back of users’ existing social networks, Jelly has a few important features that set it apart:

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