Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Will the IHT become the International New York Times?

In response to a posting I had done about iht.nytimes.com, a Think! reader wrote to me, posing this tricky question:

Which of these scenarios do you see as more likely to occur:
a) in two years NYT decides this website integration is not working and splits off a completely separate IHT.com...in Paris!
b) in two years NYT decides to once and for all go full-on with NYT International and the IHT name and newspaper ceases to exist?

The answer to that particular question - I stress the particular because these are just two of many scenarios that could occur - would be 'b'.

In today's world it just isn't possible to imagine an organisation like the NYT being unable or unwilling to intergrate the web operations of the IHT and the NYT. If they can't pull if off, then I'd say you might as well pose scenarios about the NYT going out of business.

So that's scenario 'b' being more likely than scenario 'a', in response to the question posed.

As to scenario 'b': that's another matter altogether.

I'd say there is a reasonable chance of that, yes. And that's what this blogger hopes to avoid, and hopes this blog will contribute to its avoidance.

But the problem isn't what to do with the IHT; it's what to do with the mothership and newspapers in general.

Newspapers are in a mess every which way you look at them.

The solution lies in coming up with Newspaper 2.0 because at the moment they are still trading with Newspaper 1.0, a product that hasn't broadly or conceptually changed since the beginning of newspapers.

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