US newspaper, TV news executives gloomy about future

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The Independent Culture

Nearly half of US newspaper and broadcast TV news executives believe their organizations will fold within 10 years unless they find new revenue streams, according to a survey released on Monday.

Forty-six percent of the executives surveyed by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism said they could remain solvent for more than 10 years.

Seventeen percent said they could go out of business within a decade without "significant new funds, revenue streams or partnerships" while 24 percent put their life-span at three to five years.

Six percent said they could last one to two years while one percent said they risked going under in less than one year.

For the December-January survey, the Project for Excellence in Journalism received 353 responses from members of the American Society of News Editors and the Radio Television Digital News Association.

With traditional advertising revenue in decline, newspaper and TV news executives were asked what they are doing to try to generate new revenue.

Among newspaper executives, 18 percent said they are working on erecting pay walls around their websites to charge readers online and 58 percent said they were considering such a move.

Among other revenue options, the news executives were massively opposed - by 75 percent - to receiving government subsidies.

Sixty-four percent of the broadcast news executives said they believed their profession was headed in the wrong direction.

Newspaper executives were evenly split with 49 percent saying the profession was headed in the wrong direction and 51 percent saying it was headed in the right direction.