I have been reading about the decline in print readers, subscriptions and now advertising revenues for a while now. I have generally been ok with the trend becauase I am such an online person that I am not really going to buy print news anmore myself. I think the internet makes information far more accessible for the masses and more people can benefit from it there.
What I have realized though, is that on the internet there are very few original sources for news. Drudge Report and Perez Hilton make a fortune just linking to other people’s news. (and drawing obscene pictures on it) The technorati bloggers go buzz about stuff before it hits the market or anyone has even seen it. And twittering is half talking about stuff that someone else has reported too.
So while newspapers and magazines are afraid their model will be obselete soon and their businesses bankrupt by the high cost of going out to really get and report on the news first hand all over the world, they should find a new business model linking to these 2nd and 3rd tier sources. These people obviously would like to know in advance when something is going to be released or reported, maybe for some fees they could get an inside scoop. A professional type look and authoity to write about it for the news source. Maybe there are other models too?
I just see articles about $0 content business models (like bulletin boards and other consumer generated content that the viewers write for you and you make money running ads against it.) and think that it won’t last long without a first hand news source bringing it to the people first. Then people can analyze and chat about it all they want. There is still a value in that first hand news and getting access to it.