For traditional media companies savaged by sharp-eyed digital natives, the problem seems to be all about new channels and low costs. But it is so much more: the technologies that have revolutionised the supply of information have also fundamentally altered the appetites and attitudes of consumers.
That explains why so many readers are now satisfied with bite-sized reading from free newspapers, Twitter feeds, Google Alerts, and online digests, where once only a single-source, long-read seemed enough.
Less is more
This change in ‘information appetite’ is evident even in high-value reference data. Professionals in law, finance and medicine frequently settle for information that is second-best or “good enough” because it is delivered conveniently (often through Google). This emphasis on functionality and the power of online search underlines the deteriorating prospects for traditional media which fails to understand the impact of the technologies that are rattling their windows and doors.
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