What are you doing reading the Web Publishing Roll Up? You should be out there hoarding free news from the Wall Street Journal or New York Times. They are just giving the stuff away -- but not for long! So hurry and get it while you can.

Rupert Murdoch has been talking again and this time he's saying that come 2010 his newspapers will be charging fees for reading the paper online. It's a move to save his empire from more financial losses and an effort to take back the newspaper from the endangered species list. He's in "to win" but he doesn't say at what cost. So go, go, go. Get all the news while you still can.

Online Ad Spending Down

It must be a recession if people are spending less. It has been reported that spending on Internet advertising declined in the United States and worldwide for the second quarter of 2009. US spending dropped 7 percent and worldwide spending was off 5 percent, with classified advertising seeing the greatest decline. Though the third quarter may see more of the same, it is not predicted that online advertising will get worse, but that recovery is a long way away.

Speaking of online advertising, it is also reported that for 2009, online video advertising will account for just 4.3 percent of total online ad dollars. Web video spending will account for a measly 1.6 percent of television ad dollars, according to eMarketer’s analysis. Unlike traditional online advertising, which is seen to bounce back eventually, web video is only expected to pull in 11 percent of online ad spending and 5.5 percent of the TV ad budgets by 2013.

The Ten Best Newspapers Who are Doing Something Right. Anything. 

Move over Murdoch, Editor & Publisher has announced ten newspapers that they believe "do it right." The list is E&P's ninth annual and it's the second time they asked newspapers to nominate themselves if they think they're excelling in a particular area. Now to be fair it's a collection of newspapers that are doing one (or more than one) particular thing very well, rather than everything. But recognition is recognition. Among the list, recipients include:

Enterprise and Investigative Reporting

Las Vegas Sun: In 2005 the Sun became a section tucked inside copies of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, and since then has been producing and publishing an eight-page, usually ad-free daily section with enterprise reporting and investigative journalism. 

Giving Readers "Something to Talk About" in the Paper and Online

Sioux City Journal: In the past 12 months, according to researchers Tom Wilkerson & Associates, Journal readership is up about 5% on weekdays and 6% on Sundays. Total market reach increased 5.3%, and the number of readers accessing its website "yesterday" jumped 86%.


Star Tribune, Minneapolis: Thanks to a stalled election from Democratic Senate hopeful, Al Franken and Republican Senate stronghold, Norm Coleman, StarTribune.com users could inspect all 6,600 ballots disputed by one side or the other. One immediate effect was to highlight the many illegally frivolous challenges -- embarrassing the campaigns into dropping thousands of disputes.

Online newspapers can take heart in knowing that people are engaging with their content in some way. Although readers may not be devouring it whole, it is appreciating the sum of its parts.