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Monday, January 14, 2013

How much value is Facebook?

Newspapers, like The London Free Press, see themselves as riding the crest of change. They have a Facebook page and Twitter account.

Only 16 Likes, two Comments.
Ah, the all important social media. I'll bet the department heads at the paper thought the readers would find the Facebook page indispensable. But I checked a page of pictures posted from the Knights vs. Ottawa 67s game and found only 16 likes and two comments.

I checked a few more photo groupings. The post that did best attracted 26 likes and five comments. Another got nothing, nada, zilch. It got absolutely no likes and not even one comment.

Wow! Those numbers are low. Heck, back in December I did a little shoot at a London school of Irish dance and got 201 hits, 19 likes and six comments. Of course, not being as cool as the LFP, I didn't post to Facebook.

Maybe newspapers would do better if they paid more attention to their core business: news. Maybe Quebecor and Sun Media should consider hiring a few more reporters, photographers and copy editors. (For a story on the loss of copy editors, read Copy editors laid off more than other newsroom staffers in the King's Journalism Review.)

A dedicated online copy editor might cut down on errors like this one found on the Free Press Facebook page: National Ballet School audtions (sic) in London


My photo essay attracted more than two hundred hits.

Some of my online posts have attracted nearly 8000 hits on their own and some months I get more than 5000 hits for just one blog. I've got seven blogs!

I use both Facebook and Twitter but I find Google sends me the most readers. And Google is the gift that keeps on giving.

Since the early '90s, at least, I've wondered if newspapers would profit by forming an alliance with Google. Possibly they should consider making it easier for Google to track all of a newspaper's content. Newspapers should negotiate a deal along the lines of Google Adsense. Everyone would benefit.

Maybe Google could show the papers a trick or two on how to make money on the Net.

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