Tribune Co. may go the cellphone route; Are you reading “The Facebook Gazette?”

Some nuggets to munch on:

* CNN this week reported that the Tribune Company is reportedly developing its own tablet device, which, according to sources, would be given to subscribers for next to nothing if they sign up for extended period subscriptions or partner with cellular services.

Give TribCo credit for finally looking up at what other industries are doing to maximize. Hmmmm. give the hardware to consumers at next to nothing, lock them into a long-term deal for services provided to the device, and make those services somewhat exclusive.  Sound familiar?

As the folks at Apple, AT&T, Verizon, Amazon and others have been showing us for the past decade, the money is not necessarily in the product (though Apple may be exempt from that fact), the real profits are to be made in the services provided and the timely and convenient delivery of those services.

Nice to see at least one newspaper company acknowledging they are looking at the success of others and trying to adapt that into a model that may work for them.

* The Business Insider recently ran a piece entitled “Facebook is Your New Local Newspaper.”  Now, while I agree I can get more gossip about friends and relatives off of Facebook than I can out of my local newspaper, I really question the logic behind the story.

Certainly, I can get ads and coupons off Facebook, but is the content provided by friends, relatives and  bloggers writing “just for fun.” (and I have to question whether they really are writing “just for fun.”) providing the care and non-partisanship that professional journalists put into their works?

In a few years, perhaps journalism will find its way onto Facebook (or whatever replaces it by then). But for now, when it comes to local news presented in a professional, non-biased fashion, I’ll take my local gazette over the Facebook one.

 

 

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