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By Thomas Baekdal - June 2018

Podcasting, Curation, and a Look at Circulation Data

This is an archived version of a Baekdal/Basic newsletter (it's free). It is sent out about once per week and features the latest articles as well as news and trends about the media industry. If you want to get the next one, don't hesitate to add your email to the list.

In this edition of the Baekdal Plus Newsletter:

New things on Baekdal Plus: Podcasting

As we all know, the trend around podcasting is really interesting and many of you have asked me when I was going create a podcast for Baekdal Plus.

I'm happy to tell you that the time for that is now. Over the past several weeks (well... months), I have been preparing and working on the Baekdal Plus Podcast, and it's now ready for you.

In fact, both Episode 1 and Episode 2 are live.

In the first episode I cover two interesting stories. One is what happened when a newspaper in Denmark tried to stop using Facebook. Some of you might remember that we had a similar experiment done back in January, when a TV station tried the same thing. Now we have a second experiment to draw some insights from.

In short, their traffic dropped by 18%, but their subscription rates stayed the same. You can hear more about that in the podcast.

Secondly, I talk about one of the first legal cases about GDPR, that might set a precedent for how the EU handles privacy violations.

In the second episode I talk about curation. This is based on my latest Plus report (see below) on the same topic, but I've specifically chosen an example that works for a podcast. (I appreciate my written reports use a lot of visual sources and examples that don't translate well to an audio recording. I've done my best to make sure that, although the podcasts work differently, they are just as good as my usual reports.)

So, please have a listen and tell me what you think about this new way of getting Baekdal Plus.

Fun side note: To create this podcast, I had to do quite a bit of sound engineering in my home office. It turned out that my office had so much echo and reverberation that recording a podcast was just impossible. So... to fix this I had to make a few changes, as you can see in the picture below (or on Instagram).

The Future of Curation: The Wedding Planner for Publishers

If you haven't seen it already, my latest Plus report takes a look at the future of curation and illustrates why most of the curation that we see today won't make a difference.

The problem with curation is that it's often (but never should be) about giving people a bunch of links from different newspapers. The best curation is about creating a much more specific service that solves a problem for people.

In this 35-page report, we are taking a much deeper look at curation, with examples of what ideal curation could be.

The Updated (and scary) Circulation and Revenue Figures for Newspapers

Following a request from one of my readers, I decided to take a deeper look at the latest Newspaper Fact Sheet from Pew Research.

Pew does a really good job collecting and estimating the circulation and revenue figures for the US newspaper industry, but they are not adjusting to the changes in US population, or even things like inflation.

So, in this article, I'm doing just that. I'm taking the raw data from Pew and then adjusting it to see how that actually looks when you zoom out and compare it to the market as a whole. And, it's not exactly a fun exercise.

It is important though, because it helps you realize some of the larger trends that you won't see otherwise.

Take a look:

Note: After I published this article, several of my readers asked me whether this data was only for print, or whether it also included digital. The answer is, "it's complicated". The problem is that many larger US newspapers no longer report their circulation data the way they used to, so while the data does include digital, it's not perfect.

For the best explanation of the shortcomings of this data, please head over to Pew's original article where they explain how they estimated this.

For next week (or possibly this week), I'm working on an article that will rethink and redefine how to approach advertising for a post-GDPR world. This is something I know many of you are interested in, so stay tuned for that.

For now, have a wonderful week!


This is an archived version of a Baekdal/Basic newsletter (it's free). It is sent out about once per week and features the latest articles as well as news and trends about the media industry. If you want to get the next one, don't hesitate to add your email to the list.


The Baekdal/Basic Newsletter is the best way to be notified about the latest media reports, but it also comes with extra insights.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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