The Daily is officially ending its run on December 15, and with that, there’s a whole lot of speculation about what its untimely demise actually means.Some have speculated that tablet-native journalism is simply not viable.I strongly disagree.After reading the Neiman blog’s analysis (scroll down to the bottom for the meat), I agree that The Daily’s primary problem was scale. 100,000 paying subscribers at $39.99 a year is a highly profitable venture — but not if you have an editorial staff of 250. As most Subscription Site Central readers know, online operations have slimmer profits, and therefore require leaner staff numbers.The Daily may have succeeded if Rupert Murdoch had run it like an experimental start-up that had to prove its profitability before hiring staff.Of course, there were other problems, such as launching as an iPad-only publication at first. This forced the publication to target early adopters, whose interest in the The Daily’s mixed content was not a sure thing. Either a multi-platform launch or content more targeted to iPad users would have ensured bigger success early on.In retrospect, The Daily will probably have the same reputation as The League of Nations and the Articles of Confederation — necessary test cases that made way for stronger, more viable institutions.
What The Daily’s Demise Really Teaches Us About Tablet-Only Subscriptions
The Daily is officially ending its run on December 15, and with that, there’s a whole lot of speculation about what its untimely demise