US News and World Report is repositioning
(A request for comment on this entry from usnews.com using their Contact Us page went unanswered.)
Changes at US News and World Report have been happening since at least last spring when it went from a weekly to a b-weekly print edition, and now it is apparently moving to a monthly. They have been placing more and more emphasis on their on-line publication as part of a re-positioning in light of the changes taking place in media industries, due to the rise of the web as a social network that invites- or demands- interaction with readers. This includes a re-design of their website and and a re-structuring of their departments in the organization. A memo to this effect can be seen posted at Poynter Online.
I think this move to become a "multi-platform digital publisher of news you can use and analysis" instead of only a print magazine with a decent website was inevitable although it was projected to take effect a little further down the road in 2009. I think the acceleration of the changes reflects both the willingness and the necessity to react much more quickly to the trends than a major publication would have been able to do in the past. It is a reflection of the times in that the tools of social networking challenging journalism are also the tools that will enable US News to respond quickly and to increase viewership. As the memo says,"For all of you who have worked so hard to make this transition possible, say good-bye to Web 2.0 and welcome to Journalism 5.0... This new model allows us to focus even more energy on our online audience and revenue growth which... has gone from strong to phenomenal in the second half of the year." The new model is clearly evident in the re-structuring of the staff with the creation of "a dedicated interdisciplinary team (that) will be charged with producing even more targeted consumer products, including special reports, daily news updates, blogs, newsletters, rankings, guides and videos, as well as developing lead generation businesses and partnerships."
Do these changes affect the way the publication covers the news, and the 2008 Election particularly? (More here.)