Yahoo Media’s Future, 2016 Predictions, Hearst-Airbnb Talks, Print Comeback, Women in Media, TFP’s Infographic Pick of the Week, DPS 2015 Tip: Bulk Editing Metadata, InDesign CC Tip: InDesign CC 2015.2 Release Notes

Welcome to Technology for Publishing’s roundup of news and tips for media industry pros! This week, we’re sharing stories about Yahoo Media chief Martha Nelson’s challenges as spin-off plans unfold, key trends and how they’re likely to play out in 2016, talks between Hearst and Airbnb on a new travel magazine, signs that print may just be making a comeback, and more.

Martha Nelson photo

  • While news spread about Yahoo’s plan to spin off its core Internet and media businesses from its stake in Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba and the potential for a sell-off, Politico reported that recently hired global media chief Martha Nelson is holding steady. “Remember, I lived through five CEOs in five years at Time Inc.,” she told the news outlet, adding that she’s “planning on a long working relationship” with Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer. However, the report notes Nelson is facing a number of challenges, including a lack of brand identity among original content sites, as well as complaints by editorial brands that traffic, product, and audience development support is inadequate. On top of that, cuts and staff reductions may be in the works. Still, Nelson says she’s working toward “better communication, planning, and execution” within the media organization, and the industry veteran appears to have the backing of Mayer and editorial execs like Yahoo News EIC Megan Liberman. “[Nelson] is trying to bring ever more editorial and operational rigor to the organization,” Liberman says. “She will be an important and powerful voice for us.”
  • Yes, folks, the season for year-in-review posts and new-year predictions is officially here. Digiday was one of the first out of the gate with its Digiday 2016 Year in Preview report, which, instead of trying to guess what new innovations the coming year will bring, examines key industry trends as they stand today and how they’re likely to unfold over the next 12 months. Topping the list is how publishers’ distribution of content on platforms like Facebook and Snapchat will play out. Ad blocking is another issue publishers will continue to grapple with, it says, along with tension around so-called fast fashion, diversity in the publishing and advertising business, and targeted advertising, among other trends. The full report is available on Digiday’s site as a downloadable pdf.
  • The Wall Street Journal reported Airbnb is in talks with Hearst on a joint venture to develop a new travel publication, though it’s unclear whether it would be launched under the title of the home-rental company’s currently stalled Pineapple magazine. The potential deal, reportedly being brokered by Cosmo EIC Joanna Coles, would provide Airbnb with a Hearst-backed content marketing vehicle after its plans to publish a quarterly edition of customer, arts, and culture stories fell through after just one issue in November 2014. Part of the challenge the earlier project faced was lack of executive backing and budget, a WSJ source said.
  • Love print magazines and cringe every time you hear predictions of their inevitable demise? Check out a post from Columbia Journalism Review, which argues that print is the new “new media.” While “digital first” has been the mantra for the past several years, the article points to signs that print is making its way back into the hearts and minds of audiences who’ve grown weary of the noise, speed, and fleeting nature of online consumption. According to Samir Husni (Mr. Magazine), 204 new print magazines have been launched this year alone, with brands such as CNET, Catster, Dogster, Allrecipes, and WebMD among those making print a key component of their content strategies. “Print is the faithful spouse,” says Husni in the report. “Ninety-five percent of the money is in print.”

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Image: Politico

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Posted by: Monica Sambataro

Monica Sambataro is a contributing editor and copyeditor for Technology for Publishing. Her publishing background includes work for leading technology- and business-related magazines and websites.