You would have seen it coming eh?
In a small country like Singapore, in which over 3 in 4 Singaporeans use social media with 7 out of 10 them using it on mobile, it’s not a surprise that print newspaper is going the dinosaurs’ path.
After all, the Internet penetration rate here is well over 82%; why would anyone sit in a train and open up a large-ass newspaper (while annoying the surrounding passengers), when you can read everything on your phone?
The latest to take the bullet is TODAY, a free newspaper that was first published in 2000 as a rival to the defunct Streats. This might be a little confusing to people who are too young, so here’s a concise history: in the past, SPH started a TV arm, and Mediacorp started a newspaper arm to compete against each other.
They’ve now “friended each other”, but there have been “residues” of that battle. For example, Channel U was then part of SPH, but is now under Mediacorp.
And let’s just say that TODAY is the residue of the battle as well. Way before new media suddenly came in to take a slice of the pie.
Just today (25 August 2017), it was announced that TODAY will no longer be having its print edition from end-September onwards.
According to Nielsen, TODAY is the second must-read daily newspaper after The Straits Times. At least that’s what the numbers reflect in print edition.
Initially, TODAY was owned by both Mediacorp (60%) and SPH (40%). The change to digitalizing it fully occurs after Mediacorp buys the remaining 40% from SPH, making TODAY theirs completely.
The reason for the change? I guess even your kids would know it: advertisers are going online, and it’s part of a restructuring plan to go full digital because #Internet.
Earlier this year in April, TODAY has turned their weekend edition to full digital.
Now, with this latest change, it means that it’s the first mainstream newspaper to convert from print to digital.
And well, it won’t be the last.
Late last year, The New Paper, a tabloid daily newspaper that used to have 60,000 daily sales before its restructure, converted into a freesheet and target to reach a circulation of 300,000, merging with another freesheet My Paper.
Before the restructure of The New Paper, there is a 10% reduction of staff in SPH.
So, is anyone’s rice bowl being affected in the latest TODAY restructure?
According to Channel NewsAsia, 40 roles will be “redundant”—which means 40 people would be affected. Mediacorp will try to redeploy them to other roles first, but if that doesn’t work out, they would be offered “severance packages and outplacement support.”
Without using euphemisms, it means yes, there’s a chance that people would be retrenched.
Guess in this era, making yourself indispensable might not work because you’ll still be made redundant due to technology.
(Oh, I checked TODAY’s website, and so far, couldn’t find anything about this. Guess you can’t ownself report ownself)
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This article was first published on goodyfeed.com
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