Pre-Election Polls: Singapore Media Asks the Questions

Today (Source: Yawning Bread)

… but does it interpret the answers?

Recently, government-owned tabloid Today published the results of a survey of Singapore “heartland voters” and their reactions to a set of yes/no questions about key issues the country is facing as it prepares to go to the ballot box in May. Today opens its analysis with the following:

As the drumbeats of the General Election get louder by the day, a survey of 618 voters commissioned by Today has found that the rising cost of living here is more likely to influence how the voters cast their ballot than supposedly hot-button issues such as the influx of foreigners or housing. – Today

View the full article and write-up of the results from the Today poll. Continue reading

ClickZ Asia: Innovation Among Indonesian Online Publishers

Jalan Malioboro Yogyakarta (Image via Wikipedia)

This is the start of a short piece I wrote on impressions of the start-up scene in Indonesia.

Peacock Coffee is a nice little 24-hour coffee shop on Yogyakarta’s Jalan Affandi near the universities. There are about a dozen universities in town. As someone used to toiling in Silicon Valley’s digital salt mines (aka coffee shops), the thing that strikes you about Peacock is not the quality of the coffee (very good), but the number of laptops, the speed of the Internet, and the buzz. That’s the only way to describe it. Buzz.

More on ClickZ Asia’s Publishing Channel.

Friday Night @ Gramedia Books in Jakarta

I love a bookstore.  I think it says a lot about a place, a people, a culture.

Whenever I am in a new town or even someplace I know well, I seem to eventually – usually within the first 24 hours – end up wandering the aisles of a bookstore. I don’t even need to be able to read the books.  I just love the idea that there are people there who do read the books, write the books and think about the books. Continue reading

Entrepreneurial Journalism

Today I am in Kota Kinabalu observing one of the Level 1 Citizen Journalism training sessions.

During the first break we discussed what entrepreneurial journalism meant. Clearly there is a need for basic news writing skills which is included in the CJ training. But other fundamentals that are missing include basic blogging and social media skills as well as online business skills – how can a citizen journalist gain some monetary compensation for their contributions.

The conversation raises some interesting questions about overall media literacy in the context of the emerging news environment.

Blogging live now but more to come.

Community News Sites and Engaged Community

MalaysiaKini is currently working on a community news site, KomunitiKini, to provide news and information on communities across Malaysia.  The local news situation in Malaysia is a microcosm of the national news situation, but only with fewer dedicated traditional news outlets.  All of the local mainstream media is associated with a constituent party of the ruling coalition.  Local or regional newspapers are relatively limited and coverage tends to focus on crime with limited reporting on community issues. Independent voices or community activism is restricted to online. Continue reading

亚洲中国新媒体研讨会 / Asia China New Media Conference

The Asia China New Media Conference, hosted by MalaysiaKini’s Chinese Service and  sponsored by Open Society Institute and the University of Hong Kong’s Center for Journalism and Media Studies, gathered over one hundred journalists, bloggers and academics to discuss the current state of new media in Chinese-speaking Asia as well as to discuss future areas for cooperation.  Attendees came from China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao, Singapore and the host country Malaysia. Continue reading

McKinsey: Riding Asia’s Digital Tigers

Interesting short piece from McKinsey on Internet in Malaysia, China and India.  In the conclusions, especially interesting is the observation:

“Content and Web services providers need to foster the growth of local and regional advertising markets to help defray the cost of content creation.”

Especially important for independent media, since government involvement in the large national advertisers in all three countries creates an implicit or explicit pressure on coverage.

Link to Report [Registration Required]

Clickz Asia: News Surges and Value

Through a friend in Hong Kong, I have started contributing a short piece for Clickz Asia.  This is the newest expansion for the Clickz network and one that I think online publishers in Asia will find valuable.

Rather than re-post the entire article, I will just re-post the title and a synopsis and a link back to Clickz.asia. Please add any comments to either this site or the Clickz site.

How to Create Value from an Online Traffic Surge

One of the facts of online news publishing is that major news events drive huge traffic spikes.  “Michael Jackson dead!”, As traffic surges into your news site coming up with techniques to capture all of the traffic value are often neglected.  This short piece summarizes a few that I have used, but please add any others that you have used or would like to deploy.

Structure and Content

As part of developing sustainable business models for online media, I have tried to catch-up with what Reg Chua is thinking about the structure of journalism at his blog “(Re)Structuring Journalism”.  I have followed Reg on this topic for about a year.  But I continue to struggle with what are we structuring and what problem are we solving.  I think Reg would argue that through structure we create enduring context, which leads to engagement, which should lead to value.  But there are a lot of turns in that argument and to put some of this into practice, I have tried to break it down a bit further. Continue reading

Journalist as Entrepreneur

Recently, the MalaysiaKini citizen journalist program kicked into expansion mode with a three-day “train the trainers” workshop in Kuala Lumpur.  As part of the workshop, we held a two-hour introduction to “The Journalist as Entrepreneur”, a primer for building a personal revenue stream from the output of the citizen journalist.

Several examples of successful citizen journalist bloggers exist.  Focused commentators on some topic that have grown their blogs into complete media operations.  Talking Points Memo, Paid ContentTechCrunch all grew from the focus of their founders and a little blogging software.  If you want a reminder for where these sites started spend a little time on the WayBack Machine.

[More on my Knight Fellow Blog at knight.icfj.org]