The Italian media have signed an agreement with the government to help revitalize ailing news publication. The pact, reportedly worth 40 million euros annually, will support development of digital media, prop the distribution system, protect author online rights, and shield worker pensions. The aim is to help media transform, not build state dependence, and many of the measures have very swift implementation targets.
The British Office of National Statistics reports that, for the first time, more than half of adults are using the Internet to receive news. Some 55 per cent reported doing so. The Guardian reported that those 25 to 34 were the highest online users (72%), but nearly half (49%) of those 55 to 64 reported doing so.
TechCrunch, owned by AOL, is reporting that AOL will close some 400 of the Patch.com hyperlocal sites in the next week and that hundreds of employees will lose their jobs (layoffs expected Friday did not materialize, but will be staged over the next several days). Patch CEO Steve Kalin will leave the firm and AOL will take greater charge over the remaining sites.
Howard Finberg, writing for Poynter, examines the challenges for journalism education. Finberg notes that journalism is changing faster than how it is taught, that professionals are less convinced that educators of the value of such education, and that disruptive technology and economics pose new challenges that aren't always being met in schools. His post is adapted from a study he co-wrote with Lauren Klinger, which includes an extensive survey of journalism schools.