Graph(s) of the day: Two terrifying charts for newspapers

December 3, 2012

It's not exactly a newsflash that the newspaper industry has seen better days. But I still found these charts, which I came across in Business Insider's expansive presentation on the future of digital media, striking:

Ouch. Then there's the comparison with Google. If you look closely, the convergence is less about the rise of Google than the fall of print media:

The argument of this chart is that, since 2004, the fall of newspaper advertising revenues has outpaced the rise of Google's ad revenues. That's astonishing. 

I don't have any profound thoughts on the future of newspapers to end with here. I wish I was half as confident about the potential of paywalls as the evangelists over at the Columbia Journalism Review, but I'm not. I think paywalls might well prove a disaster for The Washington Post, and for many others. I don't envy my bosses their jobs.

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Dylan Matthews · December 3, 2012