OLD Media Moves

Thoughts from the European Business Press seminar

April 18, 2007

Posted by Chris Roush

John Burke, writing on the Editors Weblog site about the European Business Press seminar earlier this week in Paris, talks about the trends affecting the industry across the pond.

Financial TimesOf particular interest to U.S. business sections and newspapers is the move by the Financial Times to combine its online and print newsrooms into one operation.

Burke wrote, “Having lost a lot of money in its original attempts to ‘integrate’ its newsroom, The Financial Times’ Managing Editor, Dan Bogler, said that the paper’s New Newsroom was working out well. Last July, the paper officially launched fully integrated staff and systems, fitting ft.com reporters into the print functions and vice versa. The team implemented ‘storybuilding,’ meaning that in the morning, a few paragraphs of breaking news are posted to the paper’s website and followed up on throughout the day, eventually resulting in a complete, analytical piece for the following day’s print version. Heads of sections are now responsible for both print and online content and many journalists have embraced blogs. As for multimedia production, the FT has mostly kept a team apart figuring that writers needed time to write and video journalists should specialize in doing video interviews.

“The integration wasn’t all peaches and cream: 50 voluntary redundancies were offered at the start of the project and journalists were almost forced to work three early morning shifts per month. But Bogler said that the paper cut too deep and has since rehired 5 or 6 of the eliminated positions. He also mentioned that the paper has eased off on its early morning demands and that certain journalists have actually volunteered to come in early more often than not, creating an early morning team and providing continuity in the day’s first content.”

Read more here. And just a thought: Why can’t the Society of American Business Editors and Writers hold conferences in places like Paris? I’m referring, obviously, to Paris, Texas.

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