Content and Context are Key to Any Publication's Success, Reveals Michael Golden at AMF 2010

Published May 13th, 2010 - 10:20 GMT

Opinion/editorial pages define the tone and personality of a newspaper, while the other pages need to present news objectively, providing in-depth analysis and accurate context – all of which are vital to how readers’ experience the consumption of news, according to Michael Golden, Vice-Chairman, Board of Directors, The New York Times Company
President and Chief Operating Officer, The New York Times Company Regional Media Group.


Golden’s comments came during a seminar on ‘Opportunities in Journalism’ on the second day of Arab Media Forum 2010 that opened on 12 May at The Atlantis-Palm. The event, themed ‘Shifting Mediascape: Inspiring Content…Expanding Reach’, is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.


Commenting on the changing patterns of news consumption, Golden added: “Websites and electronic vehicles have made news readily available, but offer a distinctly different experience as compared to a newspaper. Newspapers have the ability to take data and information, apply their insight and context to convert it into knowledge and understanding.


“While websites and mobile phones cannot challenge the print media on these counts, tablet devices such as the iPad are increasingly going to be able to provide the same experience. The key to sustenance here is to be able to cater to readers through all these new media vehicles.”


Through his interactive session, Golden also commented on New York Times’ revised business model, revealing that up to 800,000 of its subscribers have been engaged for two years or longer. He ascribed the success of The Economist as a news vehicle to the fact that while it faced the challenge of having to compete with the increasing immediacy of the news cycles, it made up by reporting news with ‘a lot of attitude’, relying greatly on ‘opinion delivered thoughtfully, which its readers greatly value.’


Golden is also Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors for the International Center for Journalists, a Washington DC-based non-profit organization that raises journalism standards through offering hands-on training workshops, seminars, fellowships and international exchanges. Additionally, Golden serves on the boards of Graham-Windham Services to Families and Children, New York, NY, the oldest non-sectarian childcare agency in the country.


More than 2,000 media personalities and specialists from Arab countries and across the world are participating in the event with eminent media personalities debating and discussing key industry topics that impact today’s media world. Individual seminars and workshops held as part of the forum witnessed in-depth and insightful discussions on issues including citizen journalism, sports media, media in Asia, and Arabic channels’ diffidence to expand into other languages.


Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Majid Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, the winners of the third edition of the Sheikh Majid Bin Mohammed Youth Media Awards received their prizes at a gala ceremony on the first day of the Forum.


The Arab Media Forum 2010 will conclude with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid honouring the winners of Arab Journalism Awards, the region’s most coveted distinction for journalistic excellence

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