Sunday, 12 July 2020

Should we shout ‘Hooray!’ or be sad?

Some industries are suffering worse than others due to the lockdown. Advertising is hard hit. Most businesses cut their marketing and advertising budgets when the cost-cutters take over from the growth junkies.

Tourism, airlines, live entertainment, real estate, and their supply industries are well-publicized examples of those hard hit by the pandemic and panic. For them, the question is whether the recently impoverished masses will want, or be able to afford, a return to past excesses. And how long that might take.

Pre pandemic, the newspaper industry was in a steady decline. Press circulation in all major economies was falling, due to the availability of faster, and often free, on-line news. Much advertising migrated to the more fragmented on-line media, slashing an important revenue stream for the papers.

- paying the bills -

The pandemic has dramatically accelerated this trend. Papers are reporting between 40% and 80% recent falls in advertising revenue. Their other major income stream was from sales at kiosks and other outlets. That has collapsed. Sales outlets are in lockdown.

There are fewer commuters. Many, who once enjoyed reading the news on the train or bus, are either working from home or unemployed. The home office has turbo-charged the computer skills of many former readers, speeding the domination of online sources.

So, we can feel sorry for the printers, newsstand staff, and professional journalists, in an already declining industry. They join the long list of those displaced by change, from coal miners to small farmers. They will have to adapt, reskill or face hardship. The virus has caused widespread hardship, especially for those at the bottom.

On the other hand, who owns the news industry? Ownership is highly concentrated in the hands of very wealthy and often ruthless media moguls, keen to manipulate public opinion. Sadly, they also control the online media. Maybe we will be no better off.
Trust in the veracity of newspapers is low in many countries.

The plethora of competing on-line media increases opportunities for fake news and manipulation. It also allows for faster access to alternative views and information.

- paying the bills -
- paying the bills -
Chris Clarke
Chris Clarkehttp://www.penmanhouse.com/413894516
Chris Clarke writes thrillers under the name Aaron Aalborg and has retired to Costa Rica from New York and bought a house here 6 years ago. His career included international banking. He has degrees in economics and management. In earlier lives he was a Catholic trainee monk; a radical student activist, a Royal Marine Commando, a businessman, a partner in a consulting firm, a professor at a UK business school, an Investment banker and the CEO of a global executive search firm. He has lived in Europe, Asia, New York and Latin America.

Related Articles

MOST READ

Costa Rica reaches 20 deaths from covid-19: new victim spent 20 days in intensive care

(QCOSTARICA) Sunday afternoon, victim 20 of the new coronavirus was registered. This is a 43-year-old foreigner who suffered from diabetes and high blood pressure,...

During first months of the pandemic AyA only read 3,000 of 370,000 water meters in the GAM

(QCOSTARICA) During the first months of the pandemic (March and April), the 62 officials of the AyA (water utility) charged with reading water meters...

Lack of government proposals in economic matters frustrate business sector

Lack of government proposals in economic matters frustrate the business sector.

Hypertension and diabetes most frequent risk factors in deaths of COVID-19 patients

(QCOSTARICA) Eight of the 23 deaths of COVID-19 patients suffered from high blood pressure and diabetes, six suffered from high blood pressure, both diseases...

Find out here how banks will operate to July 19

(QCOSTARICA) In response to the provisions of the Ministry of Health, from Monday, July 13 to Friday, July 17, due to the increase in...

COVID-19 Costa Rica: rising curve picks up momentun, 375 new cases in 24 hrs

(QCOSTARICA) The curve of positive cases of COVID-19b in Costa Rica maintains its ascending escalation this July 5, the Ministry of Health reported 375...

Let's Keep This Going!

To be updated with all the latest news and information about Costa Rica and Latin America.