Cauthorn and Defense Minister Challenge Asian Publishers

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People sometimes mistake me as a radical within the newspaper industry. I’m fortunate that my Rebuilding Media compatriot Robert Cauthorn exists as a contrast to dispel that notion.

While we’re on the topic of him, Cauthorn addressed the the Publish Asia 2006 conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, yesterday. Here are two short videos (QuckTime ) of his speech. Cauthorn challenged traditionalist beliefs in order to encourage a new period of innovation and growth within the newspaper industry. He told Asian newspapers that they might not be declining in circulation but that does not mean they are being spared from the world’s newspaper crisis, because circulation in Asian countries is not growing in pace with the growth in the middle economic class. He also asked newspaper executives to think about their business in a different way:

    “If the car industry realizes that they are not selling enough cars, they create new models, change their products… Newspapers publishers are not selling as many newspapers as before, but continue doing the same kind of newspapers. Therefore, you are taking wrong decisions and in a continuous way.”

Cauthorn was the first newspaper industry speaker at the conference. He followed the Honorable Y.A.B. Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister od Defense of Malaysia, who opened the conference and also encourage publishers to fulfill new audiences requirements:

    “There are many publications trying to inform in real time with sms alers, 24/7 websites… because if you don’t move with the times and give audiences whay they want, you won’t only be left behing but also force to leave the game. Change is not anymore a possibility but a real necessity.”

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