The past few weeks have been incredibly hectic for me, so I’m only now catching up on news items that were relevant weeks ago. I was struck by Paul Carr’s recent piece about Jack Schafer’s firing from Slate. I’ve previously written at length about the economics of online publishing. The TL;DR version of that article is that making money online is extraordinarily difficult. Paul Carr agrees:
The blunt truth is, online advertising is a numbers game. And, even on niche sites, the number of salable page impressions required to even break even is huge. There are just too many pages of content being produced for advertising to remain a viable long-term business model. The New York Times can’t make money online, the Guardian can’t, Slate can’t and Salon barely can.
If the people at Slate can’t make the numbers work, what chance do the online film/entertainment blogs have?