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THISAM Talks: "Financing News Media in the Digital Age: Sustainable Business Models for Mainstream News Organizations in Pakistan"

Sadia Jamil, Postdoctoral fellow at Khalifa University of Science and Technology, Abu Dhabi talked about Financing News Media in the Digital Age: Sustainable Business Models for Mainstream News Organizations in Pakistan. 

Key points by Ioanna Georgia Eskiadi 

News media in the digital age have reshaped due to the changes enforced. The digitalization process of the past decades has radically changed how news and other media content are produced, circulated and received. It has changed audiences and consumers patterns. And it is causing disruption in the media sector and transforming the economic reality of journalism. We don’t have to pick a newspaper or open the television.

A growing digital and mobile consumption of news has been a catalyst for the decrease in the circulation of print media, coupled with a decline in subscription revenues. In addition, the vast audience reach of major online platforms. Advertising spending has shifted significantly from traditional media companies to platforms, rewarding distribution of content more than its creation. Consequently, journalists, media practitioners and unions to look for innovative ways to remain in business. In the Pakistani mainstream news media, there were reduced government’s subsidy for the state-owned news media and reduced government’s advertising quota for newspapers and television news channel. The shrinking advertising industry and shifting advertising revenue to online platforms. In Pakistan they have initiated subscription-based model.

The public participatory model with micro-payments by readers/or viewers and donor funding. Professional collaborative model with collaboration between public and private news media, fund raising by journalists’ unions and groups. The public response needs to be evaluated towards subscription-based and participatory models to check the viability of this financing model. Then, donor funding can create issues of agenda-setting and unbiased journalism. Finally, a lack of coordination and cooperation may hinder the professional collaborative model.

The 5th Thessaloniki International Summer Academy on Media is organized by School of Journalism and Mass Communications of Aristotle University Thessaloniki (AUTh), Jean Monet of European Union Public Diplomacy along with other partners  under the title: “New trends in Media and Journalism: Turning crisis into opportunity”.

 Special emphasis is given on the topics:
1. Disinformation, Science Journalism / News Literacy
2. Crisis Communication
3. New business models in Media Organisations