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Location: Fordham Law School Building, Skadden Conference Center, 150 W 62nd Street, New York, NY 10023
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Wednesday, May 4 • 1:50pm - 2:10pm
Dancing with the giants: A case study of the partnerships between news publishers and online service companies

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In March 2015, Facebook announced a project, Instant Articles. Facebook partners with news publishers who provide news for Facebook page. The partnership has caught huge attention. News publishers, as content providers, have partnered with online service companies, which provide platforms, to reach more readers for more revenue for a long run. However, online service companies not only controls users’ data and traffic but also the power to decide who will be able to read the content. Online service companies become a meta-gatekeeper (Riedmann, 2015). Is it worth exchanging autonomy to reach more readers? The study used case study to compare four cases of the partnerships between news publishers and online service companies: America Online, Yahoo News, Google News and Instant Articles. This study reviewed business models, value creation, and revenue sources from the past to the present to identify the patterns and the consequences of such partnerships. History suggests a fact that the news publishers’ partnerships with online service company are a persistent trend. Four reasons can be concluded from the data: large user bases, service, news reading experiences, and technology infrastructure. These four points are what online service companies have but news publishers do not. Ultimately, the study answered a question: Is it worth partnering with online service companies? Yes, but there are some concerns. Three findings merit notice: (1) Service is more dominant than the news content alone. (2) Visibility enhances credibility. (3) The value of news publishers’ brand name in the partnerships remains ambiguous.

Authors
VC

Victoria Chen

The University of Texas at Austin

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avatar for Hugh Martin

Hugh Martin

Associate Professor, Ohio University
Dr. Hugh J. Martin is associate professor at Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism in the Scripps College of Communication. Martin has 15 years of experience in research and teaching at Ohio University and the University of Georgia. Before entering graduate school, he worked for 12 years as a reporter and editor at The Tampa Tribune when it was one of the largest regional newspapers in the United States. Martin’s research... Read More →


Wednesday May 4, 2016 1:50pm - 2:10pm
Costantino C Law School
  • Manuscript # 1112
  • Session # B24

Attendees (19)