It's about what to do Next

I'm sure the American Press Institute Newspaper Next study will be a blueprint for something, but Susan Mernit, a former online newspaper pioneer now with Yahoo Personals, takes the newspaper industry to task for continually redrawing the drawings and says do something.

Read her advice.

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According to, some of the suggestions in the "Next" report for what newspapers should do include:

  • Local information websites and local affiliate sites, such as databases of upmystreet-type info, rateable listings of restaurants and local services and chat groups.

  • Special niche editions for commuters, tourists, parents, seniors, teenagers and entertainment and sports fans.

  • Joint online and print ad sales teams and standardised pricing and delivery for online ads.

  • Think like a disrupter and experiment with a portfolio of ventures, even if that means experimenting with services removed from traditional news.
Sounds reasonable, but:

"Isn't this report the embodiment of the problem online newspaper businesses face--that there's way more talk than there is action?"
--Susan Mernit

There's a clarion call in here somewhere.