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Monday, August 1st
by The Fix Team

News media in the post-Facebook era

Hello and a big welcome to our new subscribers from European Journalism Centre,  Freedom House, GlobalData, Reach, Czech News Center and many more.

The past months have not been great for big social networks – Facebook has lost billions in ad revenue due to Apple’s new privacy rules, Twitter has been mired in the Elon-Musk-buying-it-and-changing-his-mind saga, and the whole US tech sector has been struggling on the stock market. 

More broadly, however, there’s been growing talk of the social networking era as we know it coming to a close, or at least to a new chapter – particularly with Facebook’s recent news feed redesign that puts forward algorithmic recommendations of content from people you don’t follow, just like Meta’s competitor TikTok already does.

Axios’ Scott Rosenberg argues that “Facebook’s TikTok-like redesign marks sunset of [the] social networking era” with a greater move from the family-and-friends social graph towards a discovery engine that “shape[s] your online life around the algorithmically-sorted preferences of millions of strangers around the globe”.

What are the implications of these changes for the news media? That’s the topic David Tvrdon tackles in his latest column for The Fix. The age of social networks made it easier for the media to find an audience, but now “TikTok-ization of everything is going to make audience building harder”, David writes.

David predicts that, with the looming changes, Facebook and Instagram will soon become a much smaller source of website traffic, especially for “hard” news as opposed to entertainment. Therefore, news publishers will have to look for alternative traffic sources.

The only major traffic source left is good old search. Newsrooms will need to pay even more attention to search optimisation, and SEO specialists will be in even hotter demand.
From The Fix
 
NYT misses chance to do better in Ukraine
Zakhar Protsiuk and Jakub Parusinski
Kramer appointment risks continuing a flawed approach to Ukraine coverage, viewing it through Moscow’s twisted prism
The rise of short content and summaries: What if you turned all your texts into TikTok, Instagram videos?
David Tvrdon
Creating a good and engaging summary is a skill you need to earn
How European publishers report in the Ukrainian language – cases from Poland, Germany, and Moldova
Sofiia Padalko
Some projects have already been shut down, but the supply of Ukrainian-language news is greater than ever
What’s next for media without Facebook’s traffic? Here are 5 predictions
David Tvrdon
Social media is front and center when it comes to building an audience. Even for newsletter writers or podcasters. TikTok-ization of everything is going to make audience building harder

 
Top grants for media startups: where to find funding
The Fix Team
Top opportunities newsroom or freelancers can apply to
 
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This week's newsletter is supported by Arc XP, a cloud-native digital experience platform for publishers and broadcast media to create and distribute content, drive subscriptions and reach audiences across channels.
 
Arc XP offers everything publishers need to efficiently create, manage and deliver content at scale in one solution. A division of the Washington Post, Arc XP was built to meet the complex needs of a media organization with over a thousand content creators and editors across the globe. Some of the world’s largest media organizations – including El Pais, MADSACK Mediengruppe  and Le Parisien  – now rely on Arc XP as the backbone of their digital business. 
 
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What we are following 
 
We’ve long known that young people are getting their news from social media. In a recent report, the UK’s communications regulator Ofcom highlights that younger audiences in the United Kingdom are predominantly getting their news from YouTube and TikTok. The Guardian reports on how social media personalities are excelling in the news game.

What’s the secret behind a successful podcast that drives subscriptions? For Slate, podcasts are half of the company’s revenue. CRO and president of Slate Charlie Kammerer in an interview with Digiday explains why they made a bet on the frequency of podcast publishing.

The way people consume is changing – while text is still popular, audio and video formats are increasingly important. One of the ways to cater to the audience's needs is to turn your articles into audio or video. The Fix’s David Tvrdon already shared how to create audio articles, and now Journalism.co.uk explains how to repurpose your texts into video.

Print editions are not only hard to sell but also hard to create. Producing a printed daily is a special challenge. For some, it means to be more of a weekly rather than a daily. Greg Burns from Local News Initiative looks into local and national print dailies in the US, to see how they are managing the pressures of daily news delivery.

Industry news
 
Russia Today lost a court fight in the European Union and remains banned in the EU. The Russian state propaganda broadcaster, was trying to appeal its ban in the EU, a decision taken in March. However, the European General Court dismissed the appeal. The Kremlin condemned the decision and promised to retaliate with similar measures against Western media in Russia.
At the same time, Russian propaganda and particularly RT are expanding beyond Europe. The broadcaster is setting up its first Africa hub in South Africa as the Kremlin seeks to increase its support in the African region. RT’s South Africa bureau will be headed by Paula Slier, a broadcaster who led RT’s Middle East bureau, Bloomberg reports.

Africa has disproportionately suffered from increasing food prices resulting from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and especially Russia’s naval blockade of Ukraine, but many African countries have stayed largely neutral on the invasion. Now Russia seeks to expand its influence on the continent.
The French parliament approved a bill that abolishes the country’s TV licence fee – an annual €138 tax that finances the bulk of French public broadcasters’ budgets. Today the TV licence raises €3.7 billion a year. The rationale behind scrapping the fee is increasing French people’s purchasing power, part of President Emmanuel Macron’s broader strategy.

Public broadcasters will now be funded from the state budget. The amount of funding has not changed, but the reforms have raised worries about the broadcasters’ editorial independence, as the publishers will be more directly reliant on the government for funding, as well about the fact that it might now be easier to cut their budget in the future. 
Opportunities and deadlines
 
Global Reporting Summit. One World Media will be hosting the Global Reporting Summit, which aims to “discuss the challenges and surprises when working on the frontlines of war and peace”. This is a two-day event held in London, Ramallah, and online. Online events pass costs £10 (€12).
More info: https://bit.ly/3beAaah
When: September 21-22

Information Futures Fellowship. The Information Futures Lab at the US-based Brown University invites experienced media professionals to apply to their program. The fellowship will address misinformation and how the media can respond effectively in a crisis. Selected fellows will receive training, networking opportunities, and financial support.
More info: https://bit.ly/3S6yxfv
Deadline: August 15

Supporting local and regional news media proposals call. European Commission has launched a call for project proposals to support local and regional media in emerging news desserts. Applicants need to propose a funding scheme that will help regional media in at least 5 EU member states. 
More info: https://bit.ly/3OLIcFf
Deadline: Ongoing

Job Openings
 

Creative Strategist. Politico Europe will hire a person to create campaigns for their advertisers. As a future Creative Strategist, you need to have experience in brand storytelling, digital marketing and communications. The position is hybrid, located in Brussels, Paris, London or Berlin.
More info: https://bit.ly/3Jed7c2
Deadline: Open till filled 

Head of Audience Insight. You will work for Euronews London – an advertising sales division of Euronews. Your primary responsibilities will be to define the audience research strategy, work on survey analysis & internal reporting, and manage the audience insights team. At least five years of similar experience and fluent English are required.
More info: https://bit.ly/3OtT7Di
Deadline: Open till filled 

Program Officer, Ukraine. Internews is looking for a program officer to manage programs in Ukraine. The ideal candidate will have a good understanding of the Ukrainian media sector and civil society. Native-level English, proficiency in Ukrainian and Russian and four years of experience of working in international affairs are a must. The position will “ultimately” be based in Vilnius, Lithuania.
More info: https://bit.ly/3PN7J20
Deadline: Open till filled 

The Fix Hiring 
Contributors. The time has come for us to expand our amazing team of contributors. We are looking for an experienced professional, with an interest in the media business. The position is remote and the workload is flexible. 
 
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