Thursday, June 7, 2012

The growing irrelevancy of the mainstream media is now being proven.

I'd like to think I was a bit of a prophet when I wrote this in my novel:

The major networks and metropolitan newspapers largely ignored all facets except for the president’s grandstanding and camera hounding in which he promised to veto a bill that never should have made it past the House, let alone into the Senate. The editorials and commentaries from the major media moguls favorably regurgitated all of this, then waited for the onslaught of negative feedback on their websites. Positive or negative, it didn’t matter because as long as the feedback was significant, it would support their advertising rates. But unlike in recent weeks, very little feedback occurred, giving a case for serious concern to network management and newspaper publishers alike. No feedback meant nobody was listening, nobody was reading. Nobody cared what they had to say.

The real action was elsewhere, like on talk radio where callers lit up the lines with national talk-show hosts Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin and Laura Ingraham, with the overwhelming majority of callers strongly favoring a national castle doctrine. Even faster and more furious was the internet with the bloggers and discussion forums. More and more of America had finally learned to disregard the so-called “news” that emanates from the networks with the exception of the Fox News Channel. One feedback submission to MSNBC pretty well summed up the feelings of most when it read, “You’re simply not relevant anymore, therefore, what you in the media think doesn’t matter.”

Fact is, rather than being prophetic, one would have to be blind to NOT see the growing irrelevancy of today's mainstream media.

Of course, the overwhelming majority of liberals ARE extremely "sight-challenged."

Having spent almost two decades in the world of Madison Avenue, I'm familiar with advertising and how it is the sole supporting source of revenue for television news programs. On TV, you have sitcoms and sports and things that people actually ENJOY viewing. Not so much with news. Don Henley had it right when he penned "Dirty Laundry."

Adding to that experience is the fact that my lovely wife was a veteran television reporter for almost a decade. Towards the end, before she left for the far more financially lucrative pastures of public relations, she often bemoaned the fact that newsroom budgets were being cut because of falling advertising revenues.

When the internet began truly roaring around five to seven years ago, we both predicted that the mainstream media would begin taking major-league hard hits.

We were right.

The local birdcage liners around here are the Dallas Morning News and the Fort Worth Star Telegram--huge papers serving a huge population. Ten years ago, the Morning News was actually tolerable until they brought in some wild-eyed radical woman from an Arizona paper to take over as Editor. The paper went to hell in a matter of months.

Subscriptions have been plummeting faster than the deck chairs on the Titanic. Rather than re-assessing the problem, the newspaper did the typical liberal thing--raised prices for advertisers and then began charging "subscription" rates for online viewing.

Now, not only did subscription continue to plummet, so did readership.

I've been seeing this all over the country. Newspapers are just about extinct. Sad, on one hand, but on the other. . . well, they did it to themselves.

In advertising, we determined rates by CPM--which is Cost Per Thousand, translated this means how much does it cost to reach one thousand viewers/listeners/readers. There are more formulas we used, such as Reach and Frequency and Weight, but at the end of the day, it all boiled down to CPM.

When you lose readers, that means your "thousands" go down, which means your advertisers are reaching LESS people for the same advertising rates. That, incidentally, brings up another nefarious problem that liberals are completely blind to, and that would be ROI--Return On Investment.

So what we have are advertisers reaching LESS readers, but the newspapers wanting to charge MORE for the readers that ARE being reached. I'm sure this makes perfect sense, somehow, to the managers at the New York Times and Washington Post and Dallas Morning News and other fish-wrappers. But it makes absolutely zero sense to the advertisers.

Unlike government, we were in business to make a profit. After all, someone has to support the career politicians and their career welfare constituents. Paying more to get less only makes sense inside the Beltway and those who worship the left side of the aisle in Washington, which is why we're so screwed up.

But according to this story in today's Drudge Report
, even the lame-brained newspapers are finally starting to accept the BIG FACT behind their plummeting readership rates.

People are tuning them out. They don't matter. We already KNOW what they're going to say and how they're going to say it before an event even happens. It's either going to be Bush's fault, or we're all racists, or we support feeding children and senior citizens cat food, or we're all part of greedy big business.

Good is bad, bad is good. It's the liberal mantra parroted by mainstream media sources for decades, and this dodo bird is finally coming home to roost.

That is only fitting that such an idiotic bird come home to poop on the mainstream newspapers who line its bird cage.


Miguel said...

I am old school reader. I like the feel of paper in my hands. But I quit my subscription to the Miami Herald years ago because I found that after i read the latest issue, I was till not informed of what was going on in my local area plus I was not in the mood to be constantly called names or have my intelligence questioned by the editorial staff.
I check the online version for maybe something relevant once in a while, but as for news in Miami, there is not a single true outlet here. Why pay for a product that does not deliver?

Old NFO said...

Good points, and yes they are doomed... I don't think there is any way for them to recover now.

kx59 said...

The local television news is much the same way. I watch in the morning while getting ready for work, to see the weather and traffic and take note of which part of town the latest gang shooting was in. With my Kindle now, I can check the weather and traffic in real time, so the TV news is down to gang shootings with relevancy.
They are typically one to two days behind the curve compared to the internet on everything else.

Liberalmann said...

This country would be better off without the liars and dividers on Fox News and Rush. They are what's wrong with the media and their corporate agenda (while they fool average Americans) is what is destroying our Democracy.

Jim McKee said...

@Liberalmann: Do you mean to say that you can't tell how deep in the tank the mainstream media is for Obama? Oy.

What's really bizarre is how liberals think that Fox is so slanted -- the only way you could possibly think that is by being in denial that all the others are so heavily biased in favor of the left.

The difference is, conservatives would LOVE to see a news organization that cuts it right down the middle, without any bias. Libs couldn't tolerate such a thing.