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cnbc dot com

CNBC.com has record December


CNBC.com was visited by 7.9 million unique users in December, up 25 percent compared to the same month last year, making it the site’s best December ever, according to data from comScore Media Metrix.

The business news website also recorded a total unique video viewer audience in December of 3 million, its highest level ever and up 181 percent year-over-year.

The CNBC mobile web recorded its third-highest monthly unique visitors ever with 4.1 million, up 71 percent year-over-year, according to Omniture.

CNBC’s iPhone application posted 551,000 unique visitors for the month, while its iPad application posted 423,000 unique visitors.

For 2013, the average monthly unique visitors to CNBC.com in 2013 were 8.2 million, a 22 percent increase as compared to 2012.

Average monthly uniques to its Android phone application in 2013 was 95,000, a 7 percent increase as compared to 2012.

The average monthly unique visitors to CNBC.com mobile web in 2013 was 3.2 million, a 29 percent increase compared to 2012.

Business Insider new

A Business Insider editor explains its headline philosophy


Rylan Miller, contributors editor at Business Insider, spoke with UNC-Chapel Hill editing professor Andy Bechtel about how the business news website operates, including its headline philosophy.

Here is an excerpt:

Q. Headline writing for digital media is seeing a shift from SEO to “shareability,” as demonstrated by sites like Upworthy. What is Business Insider’s approach to headline writing?

A. One of our editor’s mantras is that headlines should “get clicks without being annoying.” It’s very easy to tease someone into reading a story online—I’m sure we’ve all fallen for the “7 Things That Will Completely Change Your Life” headline at some point.

But when you actually read the article and see that the headline is hyperbole, skewed, or a flat-out lie, you start to resent that publication. I think BI does a great job of getting people interested while also delivering a great story.

As a site that does breaking news, features, photo-centric slideshows, videos, syndication, and now longform, there really isn’t a magic formula for how we write headlines. Above all, we consider the reader and what he or she should know immediately before we think about SEO and “shareability.”

If a headline isn’t working for us, we can change it. The priority is still focusing on writing (or in my case, choosing) excellent stories that are worth sharing in the first place, and then pulling out the most interesting nugget or angle for the headline.

Read more here.


TechCrunch names co-editor, managing editor


Tech news site TechCrunch has named Matthew Panzarino as its co-editor and Leena Rao as its managing editor.

Panzarino replaces Eric Eldon.

Co-editor Alexia Tsotsis writes, “Our esteemed Senior Editor Leena Rao will become Managing Editor as part of these changes. The force behind ‘Ask A VC,”’ Rao has become a fixture in the Silicon Valley community since she moved back from Chicago to San Francisco. She will be instrumental in making sure TechCrunch stays true to its roots as it grapples with an increasingly competitive news cycle.

“Our Senior Editor Matthew Panzarino, will be joining me as TechCrunch co-editor, because not only is one the loneliest number, but because managing the most influential startup publication on the planet is really a two-person job.

“Panzarino is a photographer by trade, who got interested in technology when he began working in a local electronic store, in order to support his photo business. He got the blogging bug and decided to parlay his electronics knowledge into an aptly named iPhone site, The iPhone Guru, which had 150k unique visitors at its height. Thinking he could probably do this professionally, he then applied for a job at The Next Web where he became Managing Editor in no time flat.”

Read more here.

Yahoo Tech

The never-ending business news content


Jack Marshall of Digiday looks at how some online business news publishers such as Yahoo Tech and Quartz are leading a change in how content is being presented.

Marshall writes, “Look no farther than Yahoo’s new food and tech sites. The sites present users with an infinite list of image tiles and headlines which, after clicking or tapping, expand to reveal full articles. At the end of the content, the feed continues. A user could, in theory, consume content on Yahoo’s new sites infinitely without ever being aware of the fact that data is being loaded in the background. It’s a far cry from clicking a link and waiting while a blank “page” populates with new content, which is how most publisher sites work today. That’s the same approach The Atlantic took with Quartz, its ‘mobile-first’ global business publication that has a viewing pane in which stories (and ads) are shown in an endless stream.

“‘Anyone who makes stuff for the Web wants anything that reflects the idea of a page to go away’ said Kevin Kearney, CEO of digital design firm Hard Candy Shell, which has worked with major publishers including the Wall Street Journal, Gawker and Newsweek. ‘Even the idea of talking about them as pages is non-digital. It’s an archaic concept.’

“Social media has also changed the way users interact with digital content. They’re now used to flicking through feeds of content on networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and they’re beginning to expect the same from media publications, too. The rise of touchscreen devices has had a smiler effect. It’s easier for users to swipe their way through content than it is to have to tap and wait for it to load.

“‘The traditional news webpage has become what felt like a real dead-end for readers,’ explained Quartz editor-in-chief Kevin Delaney. ‘We thought to ourselves: Why do so many sites offer such a bad user experience? The Web doesn’t end, so why don’t we just let users scroll into the next article?’

“That’s exactly what it did, and Quartz’s site has been praised by many for breaking new ground as a result. Its design and content might not be to everyone’s taste, but there appears to be a rapidly developing consensus that webpages as we know them won’t be around much longer.”

Read more here.

Yahoo Tech

Yahoo unveils new tech site


Yahoo rolled out its new tech site on Tuesday, showing it off at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The site is run by David Pogue, who left the New York Times last year.

Yahoo Tech’s coverage will be anchored by five different columnists:

Other tech journalists involved in the site include editor Jason Gilbert, editorial director Rafe Needleman and Daniel  Bean.

Alyssa Bereznak and Brian Heater will write how-tos, reviews, and news, and games coverage will be led by Ben Silverman.

Features on the site wil linclude Pogue’s Inbox, What to Buy Now, Unsung Features, Daily Meditations, and exclusive Kickstarter Reviews.


Life after All Things D for Wall Street Journal


Jonathan Krim, the technology editor of The Wall Street Journal, was interviewed by Brian Braiker of Digiday about how the paper is handling its split with All Things Digital founders Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher.

Here is an excerpt:

If you type in AllThingsD.com, it redirects to the new tech vertical. Do you still own the name, and are you going to do anything with that brand going forward? 
Yes, we do own it. I think we’re going to retire that specific name.

AllThingsD would cover media as well as tech. That doesn’t appear to factor in with the new site.
We have a separate bureau that works on media and advertising issues. We may well feature some of their content. There’s a lot of crossover obviously with tech. But that’s not something my team works on, per se.

How are you guys going to differentiate among a very crowded field of tech blogs and journalists?
We have a global reach that no one else has. Technology is a global story. We have a dedicated staff in places like Korea, China, Southeast Asia. We’re adding a full-time dedicated reporter in Israel. We have someone based in Paris; we have London. So we’re uniquely qualified and suited to cover the global tech story in a way that no one else can.

Read more here.


AOL offered between $100M and $150M for Business Insider


AOL Inc. offered between $100 million and $150 million to acquire Business Insider, reports Katie Roof of Fox Business Network.

Roof writes, “The early stage discussions took place during the second half of 2013, with AOL considering the possibility of paying between $100 million and $150 million, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter. The talks ended after officials at Business Insider indicated they wanted a more lucrative offer, this person said.

“It’s unclear what Business Insider would sell for; a source has suggested that it may be looking for an offer of about $250 million. FOX Business previously reported that at least one unnamed suitor made a play for Business Insider but was rebuffed.

“The previously undisclosed details of the buyout talks indicates the appeal of new-economy media outlets like Business Insider — which provides analysis on business and technology news — to more established web players like AOL.”

Read more here.


What is different about tech news with Re/code?


Laura Baverman of the Upstart Business Journal examines the new tech news site Re/code and doesn’t find much different than other tech news sites or what its predecessors did at All Things Digital.

Baverman writes, “But perhaps most interesting in the new site launch—promised since the pair parted ways with AllThingsD parent News Corp. last September—is Re/code’s stated mission to reimagine tech media and for Mossberg and Swisher to reinvent themselves.

“There’s little hint of what this might mean in a blog post introducing the new site yesterday. And so far, they’re writing the same types of stories as in the past. There’s already a conference on the calendar for May, likely to continue the success of the 11-year-old D: All Things Digital conference series. Many of the same staff members are involved in both the site and the conference preparation.

“But we can’t discount the legacy that Mossberg and Swisher carry with them into this new venture. Atypical of most startup tech news sites today, the two co-founders—Mossberg, age 66, and Swisher, 51—have covered technology since the consumer Internet began, becoming experts on the industry throughout the first tech boom in the 1990s and early 2000s.”

Read more here.


Mossberg, Swisher discuss new tech site


David Faber of CNBC interviewed former Wall Street Journal reporters Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher about their new tech news site, Re/code.


Re/code to share content with CNBC, others


Dan Primack of Fortune reports on the new tech news site Re/code launched by former Wall Street Journal reporters Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher.

The duo have brought over all 18 full-time journalists from All Things Digital.

Primack writes, “In addition to its investment, NBCUniversal has signed a separate operational agreement that will, among other things, provide it with access to Re/code content and codify NBCNews as the new company’s preferred media partner. That means you should expect to be seeing lots of Swisher and Mossberg on CNBC, MSNBC and NBC News properties like The Today Show.

“‘This gives us an expanded and deeper presence in Silicon Valley, and they are just the best in this space,’ says Patricia Fili-Krushel, chairman of NBCUniversal News Group. She adds that Re/code will complement an expanded NBCNews.com tech vertical that recently began staffing up, but that the two organizations will operate independent of one another.

“The Windsor Media relationship is more about advice than synergy, with Swisher and Mossberg expected to regularly bend the ear of group founder Terry Semel, a onetime Warner Brothers chairman who is best known for running Yahoo between April 2001 and June 2007. (And, yes, there is all sorts of irony that Kara Swisher’s new venture is being funded with Yahoo-related riches.  Swisher is notorious in media circles for breaking so much news about Yahoo that the board went out of its way to make sure she didn’t learn about Marissa Mayer becoming CEO, and have also taken various other unsuccessful defensive maneuvers to thwart her.)

“Both Semel and  Fili-Krushel acknowledge that Re/code’s conference business is what currently fuels margin, but that they see additional revenue opportunity on the content side as well. Neither had previously entered into serious negotiations to back another tech-focused media property.”

Read more here.