Blogs » Digital Babble » Online newspaper readership on the rise


Image A report released by Nielson Online shows the nation's top 10 online newspapers posted a 16 percent increase in December Web traffic.

This is a good news after all the doom and gloom that has hit the newspaper industry recently.

According to the article I read on, although online readership went up, the Audit Bureau of Circulations, which audits the paid circulation figures of publications, noted the six-month average for the top 25 U.S. Sunday newspapers, dropped by 3.2 percent to 7.2 percent for the period ending in September, over year ago figures. The Washington Post fell 3.2 percent, while the New York Daily News dropped 7.2 percent.

Chuck Schilling, Nielsen Online's research director agency and media, noted in a statement:

The challenge for newspaper publishers today is to learn how to capitalize on this active online readership and translate their increasing engagement into revenue.

This news is interesting, especially after I attended the American Press Institute's Visual Journalism workshop back on Jan. 16 at the Texas State Campus.

Presenters at this workshop included  Zach Ryall, Internet managing editor for the Austin American-Statesman and  Rob Schneider, presentation director for the Dallas Morning News. The workshop was hosted by Mary Peskin who spent 22 years at the New York Times as visual journalist.

Several people from various newspapers around Texas were also at this workshop, and it was great to hear what they are doing to improve their online and video product. I have to say I was impressed when I found that the Victoria Advocate was already up to speed with what much of what was presented at this workshop.

During the morning session we were presented with information related to online design.

All in attendence at the workshop were encouraged to post comments on Twitter, so I've decided to post some of the "tweets" from my fellow workshop attendees here, so you can get an idea of what we learned. Many of us posted what we heard during the workshop, some also posted their own thoughts.

  • Cindy_normal
    croyal: #APIVisJ if you have illusions that your Web site will drive readers to print product, get over it.

  • Cjastillosm_normal
    CjCastillo: Great design has the power to bring context, content and audience together. #APIVisJ

  • N29609765_9772_normal
    kymfox: On the world stage, mobile story telling is the future. #APIvisJ
  • 1_normal
    MairHeard: #APIVisJ Biggest problem online newspaper sites face? Cramming too much on homepage.
  • N29609765_9772_normal
    kymfox: Your newspaper Web site is not your newspaper. Think about them differently. Think differently online. #APIvisJ

  • Cindy_normal
    croyal: #apivisj Statesman gets 20 completely new readers a day just because of Twitter!
  • Keywest_318_normal
    dnolan: #APIVisJ New media is revitalizing the newsroom in interesting ways. Reporters are excited again about what they do.
  • Keywest_318_normal
    dnolan: #APIVisJ Sounds like the Statesman is getting social media. Not many papers are.
  • Dsc_0652_edited-2_256_normal
    joeruiz: RT @kymfox: Statesman had over 300,000 pageviews from Twitter, so Statesman has let Robert Quigley redefine his job to Twitter. #APIvisJ

You can read the rest of our tweets at this link: Twitter - APIVISJ . All Twitter users in attendence used the #APIVISJ hashtag. For more information on Twitter hashtags, check this link out: Twitter Fan Wiki - Hashtags.

Also, our multimedia intern Stephanie Valderrama sent me this link to video from the training session, courtesy of Cindy Royal, an assistant professor at Texas State University in San Marcos who recorded various portions of the workshop. Click here: API Visual Journalism Workshop.

So do you read online newspapers more than print versions? What do you look for in an online newspaper?

As we prepare for our own site redesign (props go out to our Web team, yay!), I'm excited for the future of our Web site. What do you want to see on our new site?