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Scott weighs in for NPR report on recent newspaper layoffs

Glenn Scott, associate professor of communications, talked with WFDD's David Ford this week for the radio piece that examined recent layoffs at the Greensboro News & Record and Winston-Salem Journal. 

A recent report by NPR station WFDD 88.5 looking at what's driving recent layoffs at two of North Carolina's largest newspapers featured insights from Glenn Scott, associate professor of communications at Elon.

​Scott, whose professional background includes reporting and editing for a wide range of newspaper outlets, talked extensively with WFDD Reporter and Host David Ford about how business forces are driving changes in newsrooms not just in North Carolina but around the country.

"So, newspapers have been reporting declines of up to 13 percent, year on year, for quite a long time now," Scott told Ford. "As they’ve had less money coming in, they have to restructure. They have to think about doing things differently. Newspapers know that they need to migrate to more online. The future is online news, but most of their advertising still comes from the newspaper—the print version."

Scott also explored how newspapers could be exploring different modes to monetize the original content they provide, perhaps mirroring what has gone on in the music industry with a shift toward buying individual digital versions of songs rather hard copies of complete albums. 

"What newspapers need to be able to do is say, ‘If you want the story about who won the high school baseball game last night, you need to pay ‘X’ amount of money,’" Scott said. "News organizations haven’t wanted to get into this micro-transaction business much so far, so they’re not too interested in a 99 cent purchase. But the day may come when software makes that a little more possible."

Listen to Ford's complete interview of Scott here​.  

Owen Covington,
4/6/2017 9:15 AM