Home > Media > NZ Herald changes – For Real?

NZ Herald changes – For Real?

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typewriter-bleed

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The following two reports were posted on Radio NZ’s website within a few hours of each other on Friday 18 September (ignore the date given on one item; Updated at 2:39 pm on 20 August 2015).

The first item reported that “APN [parent company of the NZ Herald] plans to begin registration of visitors to its New Zealand Herald website before the end of the year, as the company’s profits fall“.

The article went on to outline how “The Australian-based APN News and Media – parent company of NZME which owns the Herald – has indicated it wants to charge customers for online content“.

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NZ Herald to start digital registration of readers

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The next item reported that some of NZ Herald’s most experienced columnists were being dumped;

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High-profile NZ Herald jobs under review

 

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Now call me old-fashioned, but it strikes me as a rather bizarre business strategy that, on the one hand, the owners will shortly be raising a paywall on NZ Herald’s on-line content, and demanding payment to read material…

… whilst on the other, they are cutting some of their most experienced contributing writers?!

How does that work?

Actually, it doesn’t.

Expecting consumers to pay for a product that the company owners are busily gutting is an insane proposition. Reducing the content of the paper, written by some of the most insightful, respected columnists in this country,  is a self-defeating policy. It will only achieve one thing; a reduction in quality leading to an eventual  loss of readership.

In commercial-speak: No sound business model can succeed if consumers are presented with a lower standard of quality of product.

In plain english: gutting a newspaper is bad business, and harmful to the democratic process.

This is not a solution, this is an ill-considered panic-move. As usual, it is workers who will pay for bad management decisions that any fool can see will not work.

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References

Radio NZ: High-profile NZ Herald jobs under review

Radio NZ: NZ Herald to start digital registration of readers

Previous related blogposts

Pay Walls – the last gasp of a failed media business-model?

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"WTF?!?!"

                                                   “WTF?!?!”

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This blogpost was first published on The Daily Blog on 19 September 2015.

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  1. Steve W
    24 September 2015 at 10:19 am

    I suspect we’re seeing a mix of:

    1. Cutting costs. Top priority.
    2. Positioning the Herald for a paywall. This has been in progress for two years.
    3. Positioning the Herald for next year’s local body elections (purge the left – but leave right-wing folk like Bernard Orsman and Fran O’Sullivan in place). Can’t have another left-leaning Council!

    It makes sense for them. Not sure how much sense it makes for NZ’s biggest city to effectively have NO newspaper online.

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