Yup, News Corp’s The Daily was the antithesis of what “digital magazines” should be

by Jeff Hilimire on December 5, 2012

I wasn’t at all surprised to read on Monday that News Corp’s The Daily was shutting down. The thing was doomed from the beginning.

Digital or tablet “magazines” were never meant to be daily updated sources of news. That isn’t a problem we needed fixed. We have things like CNN, The New York Times, Google News and, oh yeah, Google itself.

I subscribe to a few digital newspapers/magazines currently: The Week, AdWeek, The New York Times, Macworld, Newsweek, ESPN the Magazine, and The Occasional. Most of these I get digitally for free because I or my company subscribe to the print edition.

Of those, only The New York Times and The Occasional do it right. The Times are a newspaper and they know it. They’re good with that and they don’t try to be anything more. The Occasional is by far the best digital magazine experience I’ve seen and hopefully the others are taking note.

We have to stop thinking the right way to enter the tablet/mobile space is to copy what was done in print or on the desktop. I thought we learned that lesson in the late 90’s when everyone rushed to build a website and simply copy-and-pasted their print collateral to the web. Didn’t work then, doesn’t work now.

  • binary

    Semantics… really…? No. The Daily failed because they went behind the paywall too soon after launching and their (not-unimpressive) revenue wasn’t enough to support a big, traditional newsroom structure. It had zero to do with what they called themselves… and one of the most popular NYT products? The magazine.

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