Newspaper editors struggling with shift to Web: survey

A new survey of U.S. newspaper editors questions whether newsrooms are planning ahead. The survey, conducted by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ), showed that only 5 per cent of editors felt confident predicting how their operations would work in five

A group of U.S. newspaper editors meeting this week in Las Vegas for the Associated Press Managing Editors conference, heard from Tom
Rosenstiel, director of the PEJ, reports the Canadian Press. According to CP:

said newspapers are being asked to shift from a product – the physical
newspaper – to a service encompassing the Web, mobile devices and other
forms to deliver information to consumers. ‘It can be subtle, but it’s a fundamental change,’ he said.”

The survey included interviews with newspaper editors in 15 cities
in four regions of the United States and senior news executives at 259
newspapers across the United states.

The report’s summary reads:

“The newsroom staff producing the paper is also smaller, younger,
more tech-savvy, and more oriented to serving the demands of both print
and the web. The staff also is under greater pressure, has less
institutional memory, less knowledge of the community, of how to gather
news and the history of individual beats. There are fewer editors to
catch mistakes.

Despite an image of decline, more people today in more places read
the content produced in the newsrooms of American daily newspapers than
at any time in years. But revenues are tumbling. The editors expect the
financial picture only to worsen, and they have little confidence that
they know what their papers will look like in five years.”