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A New Model for News

A New Model for News

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Published by Billy Shipp

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Published by: Billy Shipp on Jul 09, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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A NewModelfor News
Studying theDeep Structureof Young-AdultNews Consumption
A Research Reportfrom The Associated Pressand the Context-BasedResearch Group
June 2008
Behavioral Field Studyand Findings
APs Understandingof the Model
5 1
The Telegraph,a Case Study
© 2008 The Associated PressAll rights reserved.May be downloaded for personal use only.
In the spring of 2007,
 The Associated Press embarked on some business research that beganquite routinely but would end up reshaping our thinking about jour-nalism in the digital age.As part of our strategic planning process, we sought to understandnews consumption patterns beyond what traditional market data andconsumer surveys could tell us. We had a senior management retreatcoming up, and we needed something more exciting than regionalgrowth rates to stimulate discussion.An analyst on the planning staff suggested doing an “ethnography”of young adult consumers, and after a quick Google search to under-stand exactly what that meant, we decided to give it a try.To be frank, our expectations were modest. We sought some realpeople to put a human face on the accelerating shift to online and mo-bile consumption of news around the world. We knew young peoplewere at the leading edge of that movement and a cultural sciencestudy of their media habits sounded like fun.In the end, it proved to be as transformative as it was fun. The hu-man stories were only the start. From there, the professional anthro-pologists we commissioned to conduct the research created a modelfor news delivery that distilled the challenge to its essential elements.Based on the observed behavior of the subjects in the study, four ba-sic news entry points were identified as the main components of thesubjects’ news diets: Facts, Updates, Back Story and Future Stories.The essential finding: The subjects were overloaded with facts andupdates and were having trouble moving more deeply into the back-ground and resolution of news stories.

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