the few who control the media and a non-profit


Would you want to see COMCAST buy NBC News, MSNBC,  CNBC, the Spanish-language Telemundo network, and the USA and Bravo cable channels with one fat check?  Gee whiz! They just might do it soon.

Investing in the Online Newspaper

This article mentions  investors by name who are buying and building online newspaper businesses. You can read about current  projects and learn about non-profit companies that have been formed from the investments.  In one business plan,  $5 million in private money was put up for 120 journalism students to work with a radio station with 28 reporters to make an online newspaper.

Journalism Online is another well capitalized effort. They are dead set on taking over the hosting of newspaper web sites so they can insure they’ll get paid when they get read.  On a their sites, a  consumer would  sign up  for annual or monthly subscriptions, day passes, and single articles from multiple publishers.  The publishers set the prices and viewing options.

The Black Press Boston Update

The Roxbury Center for the Arts at Hibernian Hall has a 200-320 capacity space.  It can be configured for a variety of events such as conference.  On September 30th it was reported that 200 people met with the operators of the Boston Banner newspaper, to conference with them about their plans for becoming a continued success story.  { ]

There’s a directory of black newspapers all over the country.

What Will People End Up With?

For the past 60 days or so  this writer  turned off the TV set and switched off  Obama bashing radio talk shows.  They were all replaced by my FM/AM battery-operated radio that cost about $19.00 from Radio Shack.  I began paying more attention to my Facebook  newsfeed.  When I glanced at magazine covers or turned their pages at the store,  I rarely bought them.

During my media-blackout, I  would read the NYT, WSJ, the Globe the Herald, etc. but from a distance. I’d  scan them quickly, then put them right back on the shelf where I got them. I brought the Boston Banner, the JP Gazette,  and the Boston Phoenix papers home with me.  I’d stuff  litle LOLA and COLOR magazine into the brief then bring them home as well.

Information Overload

I think a less newsy world is not a bad thing really.

Newspapers in print rarely have been  arranged to give a person exactly what they are looking for.  The online editions aren’t much better. There is some customization but showcasing the ads often trumps the convenience of having a completely user-controlled experience when you view the material online.

I think print or electronic information that provides an answer to what people are looking for is something people want and likely to pay for.   With 411, that happens.

Time after time, I have found information I needed faster by using the Yellow Pages directory, than I have using either Bing, Google or Yahaoo Search Engines.  The advertisers pay for both.

A person called  the other day seeking a “black” investor for his medical device product that would help solve the problem of sexually transmitted diseases.  He wanted a person’s name and contact info.  Frankly, I don’t think a “product” is going to solve that problem but it was an interesting question to pursue getting an answer for.

I had an hour to figure out where to go to obtain a duplicate  social security card the other day in Boston.  I was out and about so I decided to stop by  FEDEX/KINKOS to rent computer time to look it up.   At $0.25 a minute, time flies.   It cost me a bit more than $3  to pin down where Room 148  is in the Tip O’Neil Office Building.  When I got there, the office was closing at 4PM, although their web site said 5PM.   I had 8 minutes left to go but got the deal done.

“Time”  is manufactured by human beings in the UK

I don’t know how much time is left for newspapers to maintain an adequate revenue stream. Its hard to say really but I have seen a few trends that I’d like to remember.

[ here today, gone tomorrow ]

I’ve seen custom wordprocessing shops with people in them charging $1 a page to type pages for you get replaced by computer word processing software.  Seen music recording studios that charge by the hour get replaced by home pc variety ProTools/Logic and Audacity software working in concert with hi-quality portable electronic audio processors.  I’ve seen BYTE magazine, PC WORLD magazine and others like them who thrived on the Mail-Order advertising customer like the DELLs, Gateways and IBMs,  get replaced by online Internet catalog sales, ebay, craigslist and etc.

The last Craigslist Killer

Craigslist by most accounts, is an amazing success story, but on the other hand – they have a hard time controlling SPAM  Listings and its totally pissing off a lot of people.  With newspaper want ad listings THERE IS NO SPAM.  Spam may kill Craigslist.