Thursday, September 15, 2005

IDEA: Newspapers may give flat screens to readers to save cost of paper, ink, delivery

EXCERPT FROM: Craigslist is just the beginning of newspapers' technological torment by John : Burke:

"Another seemingly futuristic yet nonetheless actual view of newspaper business models is offered by Jeff Mignon, CEO of the New York based media consulting firm 5-W Mignon Media. In a short essay of what his ideal newspaper would look like, Mignon starts by clarifying that it's not a 'paper' but an A4-sized flexible plastic screen. He skips nicely through the criteria that the screen should feature including color, video and sound capabilities, Internet connection as well as Wi-Fi and mobile phone compatibility, infrared keyboard and electric pen, etc. Essentially, he describes a PC you can role up and throw in your pocket. But here's the real kicker: this screen is provided to the consumer free of charge by a major newspaper! Mignon uses the example of the New York Times. He says that the Times would ultimately profit from such a move because it would eliminate fees for paper, ink and physical distribution. Of course, since the New York Times would hand out the screen, its news would be prioritized. But the Times must allow RSS feeds from thousands of other papers and blogs, giving readers easy access to other channels just like the Internet does. And certainly, banner ads would be prevalent, but they would be personalized, allowing readers to choose the topics of advertisements they would like to see. Payment for this service? A mere monthly fee tacked on to your mobile phone bill allowing for unlimited access to content."

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