Saturday, October 25, 2008

Why newspapers in Japan are still going strong

According to an article in the Washington Post, circulations remain high, and they have an interesting approach to the Internet:
"We only put 20 percent of our content on the Web," said Masaki Satsuka, manager of the circulation section at the publishers and editors association.

Satsuka travels frequently with Japanese colleagues to the United States to study the business practices of American newspapers, which have invested heavily in the Internet and post nearly all their content on the Web, usually free of charge. "The reason we do not do this is because there is no business model to gain sufficient revenue from a Web site, at least not yet," Satsuka said.
The problem with this approach is it doesn't appeal to young people. Another problem: all it takes is one major paper to start an Internet-centric approach in order to dominate the market -- and force everyone else to do the same.

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