Thoughts About Amateur Phonecam Photojournalism

I’ve recently been testing a Sony Ericsson P900, the state-of-the-art in mobile devices: It’s a tri-band mobile phone, PDA, MP3 audio and MPEG4 video player, and digital still & video camera, with 65,536 color VGA screen, a Web browser, e-mail access, SMS, MMS, MS Word, GPRS, and Bluetooth to sync with headset or my desktop’s MS Outlook, 16 hours of talk time and 20 days of standby power, all in a 150 gram package. I’ve particularly been having fun with its camera. Which has led me to consider some pundits’ predictions that phone cameras will revolutionize photojournalism. No, I don’t […]


During the past 10 days, we’ve been taking time away from consulting and also from posting here. Instead, we’ve been working on two new projects: A report about paid online content (which we plan to publish next month); And a report about Newspapers in the 21st Century, specifically their business plan (which we plan to publish in late February).

The Future of Television

Hong Kong already is the world’s most telecommunicative major city, having more wired and more wireless access than any other. San Jose Mercury News Columnists Dan Gillmor (who’s doing his annual sabbatical teaching gig in Hong Kong) says that the future of television is there in PCCW’s NowBroadband TV, which lets consumers pick channels a la carte and is delivered through regular telephone circuits. It’s a commercial example of what can be done elsewhere in the world, if only corporate inertial and resistance weren’t elsewhere in the way.

OJR Looks Back & Forward

Online Journalism Review includes my perspectives in its Look Back at 2003, and What’s on the Horizon for the Online News Universe. It’s an excellent article by Mark Glaser and requires no corrections. Glaser wisely omitted a sentence (in italics below) in one of the paragraphs I contributed: The content management applications known as blogware greatly simplified the complexity of publishing online, allowing almost anyone easily to publish online. Just as how a million monkeys using typewriters will produce some bits of Shakespeare, three million humans using blogware produced a few hundreds sites worth regular reading. (A difference is that […]

NYTD Probably Will Profit in 2004

We like to closely examine the financial results of New York Times Digital as a bellwether of American online publishing. Most American newspapers’ Web sites should now be earning a profit, seven to ten years after they began publishing online; however, very few — probably less than 20 our of approximately 1,400 — are, for a variety of reasons. So, we’ve become resigned to watching if America’s premiere newspapers can profit online. Among the points that New York Times Company President and Chief Executive Officer Russell Lewis disclosed on Wednesday at the CSFB & UBS Media Week Conferences: “The letter […]

Donn Friedman's 10 Steps From Free to Fee

Although last month I harshly questioned the Albuquerque Journal‘s, decision to charge for access to its Web site, I think that the individual steps that Donn Friedman, the newspaper’s Assistant Managing Editor for Production Technology and New Media Innovations, had formulated deserve positive publicity. Thus, I’ve devoted my December Publishing: Free to Fee column at to his excellent Ten Steps for anyone faced with carrying out the decision to convert a site from free to fee access. — Vin Crosbie

Needs Versus Technology

     Tech for tech’s sake      does not a market make. The world can have as many waves of new technologies as serendipty, venture capital, or the right combination of both can muster. But the technologies that are accepted by, and make a difference in, society are those that satisfy needs. Not the technies’ needs, but the needs of the average (fair to middling) educated persons’. Moreover, indigenous culture can play a major role in which new technologies actually get used. Several articles that read today reminded us of all this: The ROAR consortium (The Guardian and Observer, Emap Advertising, Channel 4, […]

NAA Legal Advice to E-Mail Publishers

On the Newspaper Association of America’s Digital Edge Web site, Attorney William Baker offers some basic advice to e-mail publishers about U.S. anti-spam laws. In our experience, the Editorial departments at newspaper, magazines, and broadcasters generally obey anti-spam laws.However, we’ve seen (and stopped) some tabloids from forcibly opting in (an oxymoron) potential subscribers, and we’ve often seen print publications’ Circulation or Advertising departments send unsolicited commercial marketing e-mail (which can include subscription solicitations). All should e-mail only to people who have expressly opted-in to receive those e-mails from that specific publication.

Mobile Marketing Association Issues Code of Conduct

The Mobile Marketing Association has released its ‘Code of Conduct for Wireless Campaigns‘. We think that online publishers should fit within this code, if not do even better. The MMA Code’s pertinent points: Choice Consumers must “opt-in” to all mobile messaging programs. Consumers may Opt-in to a program by sending a text message, calling a voice response unit, registering on a website, or through some other legitimate paper-based method; they opt-in for a specific program only. Control Consumers must also be allowed to easily terminate — opt-out — their participation in an ongoing mobile messaging program through channels identical to […]

OJR Interviews Nikkei's Hirotsugu Koike

Japan Media Review interviews Hirotsugo Koike, the editor-in-chief of Nikkei Net Interactive, the electronic publishing division of Nihon Keizai Shimbun, the world’s largest (3 million print circulation) daily financial newspaper. “I personally am very concerned about the tendency among young people in Japan to no longer read newspapers every day … I ask my boys to read the newspaper every day, though I don’t know if they actually do.” Although Japan is a more literate country than the US, there are striking similarities in the challenges both countreis’ newspaeprs face.

Still Not the Last, London Daily Mail Begins Online Publishing

A decade after the Internet was opened to the public, the Daily Mail of London will begin publishing online. The Media Guardian quotes Murdoch MacLennan, Group Managing Director of Associated Newspapers Ltd, which owns the 2.4 million daily print circulation newspaper, as saying the “increasing editorial and commercial success” of his company’s other newspapers’ sites demonstrated it was time to launch online versions of the Daily Mail. Although most of the online edition will feature content from Daily Mail’s print edition, Associated plans to hire a team to write exclusive online content, such as polls, message boards and email newsletters. […]