Monday, November 14, 2011

Morning Brief: YouGov survey shows erosion in trust in newspapers following phone hacking scandal; 'digital first' pop stars; first Kindle Fire reviews begin to appear

The Guardian this morning is reporting the results of a survey conducted by YouGov, commissioned by PBS, that shows that 58 percent of those surveyed in the U.K. say the phone hacking scandal involving Murdoch's British newspapers has had a a negative effect on their views concerning the British press.

The survey asked opinions of 1,108 people in the U.K. and 1,095 in the U.S. concerning the British press.

While surveys in the U.S. generally find that newspapers are the most trusted source of news, ahead of TV and magazines, in the U.K. newspapers lagged behind TV and radio, with 64% saying TV is a trusted source of news, while only 38% sited newspapers. (It should be remember, however, that the BBC remains an important news institution in the U.K. and that Murdoch's News International is a dominant newspaper company in the U.K., as well.)

David Carr profiled John Paton, chief executive at MediaNews and the Journal Register Company, this Sunday, calling Paton "something of a darling among media thinkers." Indeed he is.

So is Lady Gaga.

I found it interesting that The Telegraph dedicated an enormous amount of space Friday to a guid to downloading its iPad app.
The issue they are attempting to address is that expats are running into problems with iTunes when attempting to subscribe to the newspaper's digital product through the App Store.

The problem, you see, is that iTunes will not accept your credit card if it is not issued in the same country as the iTunes App Store. That is, if you are subscribing to The Telegraph through the U.S. App Store you need to use a U.S. issued credit card. Obviously, many U.K. citizens who are working in the U.S. may still be using credit cards issued from U.K. banks.

The solution that takes up so much space really isn't much of a solution at all, it is simply a reminder to use a local credit card. The only other option is to set up an iTunes account without any payment information at all. This will allow the reader to "buy" free apps, and to redeem gift cards. Through this mechanism one can then make purchases.

There are currently 123 different national App Stores established by Apple, 41 in Europe alone.

The first Kindle Fire reviews are being published just ahead of the official of the tablet's official release tomorrow.

I would recommend, as usual, the review from Andy Ihnatko in the Chicago Sun Times. He runs downs the new tablet's features, its design flaws, as well as good general observations (such as the fact that the tablet feels heavy simply because it is a Kindle and so expectations are set for it to be very light instead of the usual tablet weight).

Ihnatko's biggest complaints lie in the areas you would expect: software.
The interface is a big step up over stock Android, but it still needs some fine-tuning. The rotating carousel of recently-accessed item is on a hair trigger and as often as not, I still wind up scrolling just past the item I want to select even after three days of heavy usage. There isn’t quite enough communication between the UI and the user, either. Often I tap a button (to move from the carousel to the Movies area, or to purchase an item) and have no idea whether or not the Fire is actually doing the thing I believe I’ve just asked it to do.
I have absolutely no idea when I can expect my own Kindle Fire to arrive. (You see I'm not a big shot blogger apparently so no one sends me tablets for my evaluation. Bummer, I know.)

But as I've mentioned before, the real problem lies with the way Amazon is handling customer shipments – they are just considering them just another purchase within their system. As a result, their won't be the big anticipation for this device because they are not guaranteeing shipment on a specific day the way Apple launched its iPad last year.

The advantage of doing it this way, though, is that there won't be a rush of registrations all occurring tomorrow.