PublicationsNovember 17, 2006

A Slowdown in Online Advertising?

Virtually every analyst projects yet another record-breaking year for the online advertising industry. But new numbers show a reduction in the rate of growth and are feeding concerns that a general weakening of the ad revenue picture looms. The reasons for a possible softening range from macroeconomic changes in the national economy to the struggles of one of the sector’s biggest names.

PublicationsNovember 15, 2006

Al Jazeera International’s Quiet Launch

It is a controversial global news venture with a reach of more than 80 million homes. Yet, the Nov. 15 launch of the English-language Al Jazeera International channel generated only tepid media interest this past week. Plagued by delays and problems in finding distributors, the outlet became old news even before its debut.

PublicationsNovember 15, 2006

Back to the Age of Local Publishers?

Suddenly, local ownership of newspapers is making something of a comeback. Since the breakup of Knight Ridder last year, and the threat of more cutbacks in newsrooms, private ownership groups and individuals have emerged in cities from Boston to Los Angeles wanting to buy the local paper. Who are they? A rundown.

PublicationsNovember 14, 2006

Post Election Headlines Play it Safe

How did newspapers play the Nov 7 election on their front page? Did they see an ideological realignment in the country, or some deeper shift? A review of the day-after headlines in 230 newspapers across the country reveals that it was nothing quite so dramatic and many tread closer to Sergeant Joe Friday’s “Just the Facts, Ma’am.”

PublicationsNovember 13, 2006

The Election Pundits…Who Got Closest?

There was no shortage once again on cable and elsewhere in which pundits were asked how the midterm election would come out, something that of course by its nature was unknowable in advance. The general consensus among political prognosticators was that Nov. 7 was going to bring Democratic gains in Congress. Among a group of the most widely quoted election oracles, no one hit exactly what the final House tally appears likely to come out, but one prognosticator got very close.

PublicationsNovember 10, 2006

TV News Gains Viewers on Election Night

This year’s midterm election had all the elements of a prime time drama – suspense, high stakes, and a few twists and turns. That might help explain why overall TV viewership on election night was up nearly 20% over the 2002 total. While ABC won the broadcast network ratings battle, there was surprisingly stiff competition among the three main cable news outlets.

PublicationsNovember 9, 2006

Which Polls Had it Right?

The final tally from the mid-term election is in—you know the poll in which people actually vote—and the media polls can now be graded. With each election, there are more media outlets, and more polls. Usually, the polls begin to converge as election day nears. This year, the polls varied widely. How did they stack up against the actual vote?

PublicationsNovember 7, 2006

Rolling with the Polling

Much of the media coverage of the 2006 campaign season has focused on the proliferation of polls trying to track voter sentiment in a crucial midterm election being waged in key battleground states and congressional districts. Is this focus on the horse race obscuring the big issues? Or is it the big issue?

PublicationsNovember 7, 2006

We’re Ready to Project …

As 11 p.m. neared on November 7 and the networks were about to sign off, NBC projected the Democrats would take control of the House though the results of many races were still out. It soon had company. In the next 21 minutes, all the networks and cable channels made their calls as well on what was still a fairly fluid map. This was the most the networks would do on a difficult night.

PublicationsNovember 6, 2006

Can the Exit Polls be Fixed?

Problems with exit polls affected the last three election cycles and wreaked havoc with media coverage of the 2000 and 2004 presidential balloting. With the crucial 2006 midterm election upon us, exit pollsters hope they’ve resolved those troubling issues. What is the status of the poll?