Right before the new year, a popular meme floated around social media called the 10-Year Challenge, where people compared their 2019 self to their 2009 counterpart. Some people posted embarrassing hairstyle and wardrobes choices they made; others posted their accomplishments and how far they've come. As for me, a decade ago, I was preparing to move from Michigan to California, and now my "winters" consist of a few rainy days instead of the usual snow blizzard and freezing temperatures (can't say I miss that).
I thought it would be interesting to do the same challenge for the news industry, so I looked up the State of the News Media (an annual report put out by the Pew Research Center) and compared some stats from the 2009 and 2019 versions to see how much changed in 10 years.
* The top four news sites were Yahoo, MSNBC, com, CNN.com and AOL. They saw unique visitors grow by 22 percent to 23.6 million visitors a month.
* U.S. newspaper print circulation fell 4.6 percent daily and 4.8 percent Sunday.
* Total ad revenue for newspapers fell 16 percent in 2008, and online ads amounted to less than 10 percent of revenue.
* Online video advertising only represented 10 percent of internet advertising.
* Advertisers spent $1.3 million on mobile advertising in 2008, up 59 percent from a year earlier.
* U.S. newspaper print circulation decreased 12 percent and Sunday print circulation decreased 13 percent.
* Total estimated advertising revenue for the newspaper industry in 2018 was $14.3 billion. (In 2009, it was $27 billion.)
* Digital advertising accounted for 35 percent of revenue.
* Circulation revenue was $11 billion.
* Employment in digital-native newsrooms grew to 13,470 compared to 8,090 in 2009.
These are just a few select figures from two reports, but they paint a very clear picture of this past decade--and where it might be heading for 2030.
Print advertising and circulation will continue to decline (and despite how some experts incorrectly predicted 10 years ago that print would be gone by now, newspapers will continue to "rage against the dying of the light.") Digital will continue to grow, but there will be more rules and regulations for tech companies who are finally facing the music when it comes to the roles they play in spreading...