Smaller Newspapers Have Fared Better Than The Big Boys

If you work for a smaller paper or you have a favorite local paper that you simply don’t want to see fade into the sunset this is OK news. I can’t honestly say that there is real good news. It’s about the newspaper business after all. TechCrunch reports that statistics gathered by the Inland Press Association show that overall the average drop in profits for the industry as a whole was 77.6%, So how do you find a bright spot in that kind of number? You look at who is floundering the least and go from there.

The sad thing is that even of the economy comes back strong at some point this century newspapers may not even see improvement because it’s the medium, not the economy, which is the biggest culprit in the agonizing demise of a once vibrant industry. The chart below shows just how bad things are for the newspaper industry and there is little hope for recovery.

Google to Enter the OS Arena

google-logoGoogle certainly doesn’t rest on its laurels, that’s for sure. They are, first and foremost a search engine, but the success of their search business has fathered so many products that aren’t search related at all it’s amazing at times. Of course, now that everything is losing its beta status Google needs to get something else in the pipeline that will raise an eyebrow or two.

What about an operation system for netbooks? What about a first step toward a desktop OS? Google is all about the browser and the world available to everyone through it. If there is a way to stir up a little conversation around plans of world domination this is a great one. You have your pick of the litter regarding sources of information on this one. The Official Google blog’s intro to this announcement is as follows

Amazon to Re-Kindle Ad Revenue?

KindleAmazon apparently has some big plans for their Kindle e-reader and it involves advertising. That’s right, advertising. After all, what would a good book be without advertising, right?

cnet news reports about some patents that Amazon has filed in the not so distant past that point to a way or them to deliver an e-book with the traditional book. By putting together ad supported e-books and bundling them at little or no additional cost to the reader Amazon moves a step closer to changing the way people read in the future.

Yahoo Search Pad Launched

Search PadYahoo and search seem to be synonymous with news of whether it is going to be bought or sold. Well, today in an attempt to rise above the bing vs. Google talk that has dominated the news as of late, Yahoo has launched its Search Pad service. The WSJ’s Digits blog reports on the service that can help searchers organize their searches and keep track of where they were and why they were there.

Yahoo has been testing the feature — which allows users to save and take notes on search results they want to revisit — since February, when it first described it in this blog post. Yahoo describes it as a great way to keep track of Web pages related to planning a vacation or renovating a home.

Online Ad Spending Going Up; The Rest Not So Much

Online ad spending is not resilient. That would be the wrong description since it has not really needed to come back from anything yet. Even in this economy that continues to keep many mired in the muck, online spending is going up in ’09 and thru 2011. Sounds like a guarantee, right? Well, of course it’s not, it’s just the latest release of research that you get to play the online version of Ripley’s Believe It or Not.

Actually there is little doubt that the online advertising industry is still growing. The wildcard in any of these prognostications is the amount and for how long. MediaPost reports on research conducted by Publicis’ ZenithOptimedia Group.

The agency estimates that Internet ad spending will expand 10.1% in 2009, an increase of more than 1.5 percentage points over its last forecast in April.

Twitter Can Be Good for Business

Tweety BirdThere are rumors out there. There are rumors of rumors of how people are using Twitter to drive awareness and new business. What has started to happen though is that the rumors tend to stick with the same names like Dell, who attributes some $3 mil plus in revenue to its Twitter presence and Comcast which has turned its customer service upside down and inside out with great success. What we need is more evidence for those that are still unconvinced that Twitter has any real application beyond sharing the inane like when someone has looked out the window and “Tawt Tay Taw a Puddy – Tat” (hat tip to Tweety Bird from Bugs Bunny, the original Tweet).

Google Book Settlement Officially on DOJ Radar

RadarEarlier in June we talked about how the Google book settlement reached with Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers was drawing the attention of the Department of Justice. The settlement between these two parties was reached in October 2008. There isn’t even final approval on the agreement and the fairness hearing to determine that approval is still months away. Under the settlement, Google’s plan to make available millions of titles copied from various public sources can move forward.

Google would have the right to display the books online and to profit from them by selling access to individual titles and by selling subscriptions to its entire collection to libraries and other institutions. Revenue would be shared among Google, authors and publishers.