Newsweek Getting Beasted

Posted: November 18, 2010 in Journalism


With the sale of Newsweek for $1 to the Daily Beast, the future of the publication couldn’t have been too optimistic. Now, the Beast is considering dropping the online site altogether. Due to the changing trend in journalism, which is focusing on an online interactive approach to news, the Beast has a better chance at succeeding in the long run.

Newsweek does have a more credible brand name than the Daily Beast and also receives more visitors per month, according to gigaom.com article by Mathew Ingram. However, Beast newsers tend to visit more often and view the site for longer periods of time while looking at more articles. This is more in tune with what advertisers are looking for when choosing sites to display their ads. If a single person visits newsweek.com and only looks at two articles and that same person visits thedailybeast.com and views five articles, the advertising space is more valuable with the latter. For a website that doesn’t have a paywall, advertising is king. I agree with the idea to maintain what is already archived on the site and forward viewers to new content on the Beast. If the journalists working on Newsweek’s website move over to the Beast, the same quality of reporting can be done under a different name. It would also be more economically feasible to put all expenses towards running one site as opposed to two.

Newsweek’s fate hasn’t been sealed yet, but its well-known reputation seems to be the main factor keeping the site alive. The Beast’s audience is growing, so providing more articles from respected journalists from Newsweek.com will only help improve its reputation. By combining the efforts of the two sites, it could bring the viewers from Newsweek over to the Beast instead of eliminating the popular following altogether. The merger can be reaped for all its benefits whether newsweek.com survives the overhaul or not.

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