Not only does mainstream media remain relevant, its content might serve as a way to differentiate portals in the future, argues Andres Martinez of The Los Angeles Times.
Newspapers have been agonizing about the degree to which they will
control this revolution via their own websites, and with good reason.
In the digital world, the Yahoos and Googles have built brands that
eclipse those of the Los Angeles Times and the New York Times. As
Murdoch put it in his speech last month, we are digital immigrants and
they are the digital natives. But like Murdoch, I remain optimistic
that there is a great deal of opportunity in this migration, even if
newspaper types in the long run lose direct control over the
distribution of our product, much as movie studios did when they had to
divest their theater chains. Our content, like the studios’, will
remain valuable on other distribution channels.
It’s only a
matter of time before a Yahoo or a Google decides to buy an old media
company in order to differentiate itself by offering high-quality,
proprietary news. Or a company like Amazon could buy a prestigious
newspaper publisher and reinvent itself as a portal, leapfrogging over
those that treat news updates as a commodity.