The NY Times put out a press release this morning announcing its earnings. Quite a sad situation, the Grey Lady is dying and if they don’t figure out some massive change there will be some type of forced restructuring.
On the positive side, their internet revenues grew 6.7% to reach $87 million. The bad news however is the continued plunge in print advertising which was down by 15.9%. The net result is that overall revenues dropped by 8.9% to $687 million. They have cut costs by 6.7%, but the death spiral continues.
Saturday’s NY Times Television story, You’ve Seen the YouTube Video; Now Try the Documentary, describes a viral video’s journey from YouTube to National Geographic Channel. It’s an extraordinary video of a herd of buffalo fighting off a pride of lions and a croc to save one of its calves, and the video’s adventure is almost as fascinating as the battle footage, with its viral popularity and National Geographic’s interest triggered by an incidental upload to YouTube because it was cheaper and easier than burning a DVD and mailing via USPS.
The New York Times story speaks to the growing power and influence of the internet and YouTube relative to broadcast television. But there’s also a meta-story that reinforces the challenge that traditional media companies face as they come to terms with the internet.