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Posts Tagged ‘Robert Thomson’

‘Wall Street Journal’ Integrates Newsroom

Okay, we’re not going to report about layoffs. Really. That would be speculating and right now, courtesy of JimRomenesko, there is news that a major Dow Jones property is streamlining efforts.

What we will mention, however, is an excerpt from an email fromĀ Robert Thomson, managing editor of The Wall Street Journal as it outlines integrating staff into one “single newsroom.”

“We must now begin a new phase of integration, creating a single newsroom that does away with duplication and puts extra emphasis on scoops, thoughtful analysis and deeper reporting. The aim is to fashion an editorial engine that will drive content for all of our platforms, from the print Journal to a real real-time news service and customized digital feeds for specialist readers. For that strategy to be successful, total integration must be our imperative, not to cut costs (though spending, like imbibing, should always be done in moderation), but to make the most of our peerless journalism.”

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Breaking: WSJ To Close Boston Bureau

The Wall Street Journal is closing its Boston bureau, announced today, with all nine reporters invited to “apply for openings elsewhere on the paper,” we’ve learned.

The “unthinkable” closure is a response to the “profound economic downturn,” according to a memo sent by editor in chief Robert Thomson.

Thomson also wrote that “there are no plans, nascent or otherwise, to close any other U.S. or international bureau.”

The Boston bureau was led by Gary Putka, who has been at the Journal since at least 1986..

More on this as it develops, and after the jump, the memo:

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The State Of Paid Content

Walled Garden
Jusben and MorgueFile

Yesterday two big nuggets of info came down through the blogosphere: first, the news that the Wall Street Journal is launching a micropayment system this fall. And Rob Grimshaw, publisher of, told that newspapers are “going to need some other way to make money other than adverts.”

UPDATE: Today, Romenesko posted a MediaNews memo saying that that newspaper company, too, is exploring pay options. “To be clear, the brand value proposition to the consumer is that the newspaper is a product, whether in print or online, which must be paid for,” the memo says.

Is this the first flickerings of the Walled Garden coming back?

There’s more after the jump.

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The WSJ Thrives When Other Papers Die

0,,6567172,00.jpgIt’s never pleasurable when we report on the decline of the newspaper industry. We always heave a heavy sigh, pick up the pen…urgh laptop, and start writing. According to The Australian Business, Robert Thomson, publisher of the Wall Street Journal, might actually be doing a happy dance every time he reads our reports.

So far this year at least four major US newspapers have closed or moved entirely online, hit by a near one-third decline in advertising revenue, which has made it more difficult to service their large debts. But that does not faze Thomson, who sees the demise of others as an opportunity for The Wall Street Journal.

“I think we are benefiting from that. One of the reasons our core circulations are rising so strongly is because papers around America are diminishing,” he says.

“And whether it’s in San Francisco or Los Angeles or Detroit, it creates a tremendous opportunity for us to gain readers who are increasingly internationally aware and also aware of their need to be well informed about the world.”

After he drinks a toast to their demise, he does also go on to note that these times are creating new and innovative ways for news to be published. From digital to mobile we know the industry is changing in unimaginable ways. Just the other day we learned that it would be cheaper for the New York Times to send every print subscriber a Kindle versus printing and delivering the paper to their doorstep (thanks Silicon Alley Insider). All this is to say, there is an upside to the downturn, the opportunity for growth and change.

WSJ Creates Urgent And Goes Head To Head With The AP

wsjimage.jpgIn the digital age, the speed of information is essential to the health and wealth of a media outlet. Recognizing this, the Wall Street Journal has decided to remake their old newswire to adapt to this society’s new need for faster information. In a memo, reprinted by the Carolina Business News Initiative and The Society of American Business Editors and Writers, Robert Thomson, managing editor for the WSJ announced the following:

We are sending Speedy to the knackery and saddling up a successor, the URGENT. New nomenclature alone will not generate news, so there must also be basic changes of principle and practice at the Journal. A guide to the new system will be published next week and we are aiming to launch on April 15.

According to the memo,the Speedy system&#151the WSJ and Dow Jone’s old newswire service&#151faltered and failed due to the staffs’ inability to publish the latest breaking news immediately upon receiving it. “Too many of these items were written in a way which neither made sense to Newswires users nor maximized the value of the news they sought to convey,” Thomson chastised his reporters. “Given that revenue reality, henceforth all Journal reporters will be judged, in significant part, by whether they break news for the Newswires.”

Thomson also sees this as a way to generate new revenue. “There is much angst-ridden, vacuous debate about the fate of American journalism,” writes the managing editor. “This is an important practical measure to secure the long-term future of journalists at Dow Jones.”

Whoa, going head to head with the newswires and, dare we say, the internet?! On the outset it seems like a bold move, but when you think about it, isn’t it the job of journalists to break stories first? Well, here’s to hoping Thomson’s group can finally do what they have all been employed to do.