OLD Media Moves

The tragedy of the business media

October 13, 2008

Hamilton Nolan of Gawker has an excellent analysis of the current state of business media, which is covering its most important story at a time when its ad market is drying up.

Economist magazineNolan writes, “Ten years from now, business outlets will be judged by their coverage of this meltdown in the same way that the New York Times was judged by its 9/11 coverage, or the Littleton Independent was judged by its Columbine coverage.

“That said, the business side of business media should be booming, right? Audiences are up! Everyone is addicted to CNBC! The Wall Street Journal has been unmissable for a solid month! And it’s fair to assume that readership and viewership is up across the board for business outlets, to varying degrees. Fear makes people extremely interested in information.

“Here’s the quandary: The biggest story for business media always comes along at the same time as the worst ad market. By definition, unfortunately! Market crashes are great from a reporter’s standpoint. From an ad salesman’s standpoint, they’re horrible. So a site like The Big Money, which would seem to have had the good fortune to launch on the wings of a massive story, is actually getting choked by the very same conditions it’s reporting on.”

Read more here.

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