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Ifra publishes newsroom and mobile services research results

New Ifra Special Reports published in the second half of 2007

(PresseBox) (Darmstadt, ) During the second half of 2007, Ifra published three new Special Reports dealing with highly topical subjects. The Ifra reports, obtainable in various languages as print or PDF versions, focus on "The Changing Newsroom", "Cross-Media Newsrooms" and "Mobile Services".

The new Ifra Special Reports in detail

The following Special Reports, which Ifra members receive free of charge, were published during the last six months or are at present being translated into German, English or French and prepared for distribution:

05.2007 "The Changing Newsroom II – Change in Practice":

Number of pages: 34.
The first special report in the series ‘The Changing Newsroom: The fundamentals’ provided an overview of changes European publishing houses are currently making to their newsrooms. Many newsrooms are creating new and developing current editorial products across multimedia platforms and working out ways to handle the precarious balance between cost and time with quality, creativity and innovation. This special report, the second in the series, takes this overview of the current climate of change in the newspaper industry to the next level, by looking in detail at four case studies of newsrooms in Europe that are planning and implementing change programmes. The case studies show different approaches towards implementing change. Some have used incremental approaches such as a gradual increase in multimedia awareness for print reporters. Others have gone for more radical change, for instance headcount reduction, moving to a new building and creating completely new organisational workflows, organisational structures and IT infrastructure. All four case studies provide an account of some of the most crucial episodes in the histories of these newsrooms. The lessons learnt, strengths and weaknesses will find their way into the last report of this series which provides principles for those wishing to manage change more successfully in their own newsrooms. The author, Sarah Schantin-Williams, is an Ifra Associate Consultant.

06.2007 "Mobile services – an update: What all media companies preparing for mobile need to know":

Number of pages: 32 (available also in the Swedish language). Future consumers will always be "on" regardless of where they are. Mobile devices will become their life companion and personal assistant. Communication will still be the key function, however, information, personal expression and entertainment are some of the needs that will be fulfilled through mobile devices. Flat fees for data traffic have been launched in several countries, and the mobile development will be similar to that of the fixed Internet – flat fee-based and broadband. This will cause an extension of usage as we have seen with the fixed internet. Thus mobile services have to be part of the strategy of media houses, be it as a return channel for print, as context or location-based services, or as publishing channel for news. There are various possibilities to build up relationships with new customers and to intensify the commitment of existing customers. This is reason enough for Ifra to give its members an overview about which kind of services media houses are currently looking at, and give insights into their service portfolio, their business models and expectations on how the mobile market can be utilised to the good for newspaper publishers. This report can be seen as a follow-up to an Ifra report on "mobile services" that was published in 2003. This report is written by Kristina Bürén, who works for Ifra Sweden as a Business Development Manager.

07.2007 "Cross-Media Newsrooms in Germany":

Number of pages: 28.
Newspaper newsrooms are undergoing far-reaching changes. Since about one year, with the concept of the "integrated newsroom", the trend towards cross-media working methods has accelerated also in Germany. Growing numbers of newsrooms today no longer work exclusively for the printed newspaper, but also for several channels: newspaper, Internet with video and audio, mobile services, and even TV programmes are produced jointly in integrated newsrooms. How do newspaper newsrooms in Germany meet the challenges of convergence? How have they structured newsroom and workflows? What challenges do they face? Nineteen students of the Online Journalism Faculty of Darmstadt University investigated these questions in a project and carried out research on behalf of Ifra in cross-media newsrooms. The outcome was case studies of five multimedia newsrooms: Die Welt in Berlin, Handelsblatt in Düsseldorf, Hessische/Niedersächsische Allgemeine (HNA) in Kassel, Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger in Cologne and Südkurier in Constance. This Ifra Special Report was published by Dietmar Schantin (IfraNewsplex), Torben Juul (CCI Europe) and Klaus Meier (Darmstadt University). The authors are students in the 6th semester of Online Journalism studies of Darmstadt University.

All of the above Special Reports contain numerous illustrations and tables.

Two further "Where NEWS?" reports published

In the second half of 2007, besides the three new Special Reports, Ifra also published the fifth and sixth report on its "Where NEWS?" project on future media consumption that was launched in March of last year:
– No. 5: "Economic and selected institutional framework conditions in Northern America and Europe up to 2020".
– No. 6: "Drivers of change in media channels".
The following reports are scheduled for publication in the first quarter of 2008:
– No. 7: "Future of Printing Technologies".
– No. 8: "Scenario Development Workshop Documentation".

The Ifra research initiative will run for three years and has a budget of more than one million Euros. The corresponding Ifra reports are published as (translated) original versions or as summaries in various languages respectively.

To obtain copies of the reports

Ulrike Leis-Kolb at Ifra is pleased to provide information on how to obtain Ifra Special Reports. She can be contacted by phone at +49.6151.733-772 or e-mail: leiskolb@ifra.com. More details about Ifra Research Reports can be obtained from the Ifra website www.ifra.com/specialreports.

Ifra members can access all information and results of the "Where NEWS?" project free of charge from the web address www.ifra.com/wherenews. They also receive copies of the corresponding reports by post and, on request, a special folder in which to file them. Non-members can order the reports for a fee.