Communication in the Millennium

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To be delivered at the Communication in the Millennium symposium in San Diego on May 23, 2011.

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Communication in the Millennium

  1. 1. Sniffing Out Shovelware:Millennial Students Analyze News AppsDuring the iPad’s First Year<br />Communication in the Millennium<br />San Diego, California – May 23, 2011<br />Jake Batsell, assistant professor<br />Division of Journalism<br />Southern Methodist University (Dallas)<br />@jbatsell<br />
  2. 2. Methodology<br />The ground rules<br /><ul><li>iPad pilot program
  3. 3. Two semesters
  4. 4. Three classes
  5. 5. 4-to-10-day checkouts
  6. 6. Assigned ratings</li></ul> √ Immediacy<br /> √ Non-linear presentation<br /> √ Multimedia<br /> √ Interactivity<br />
  7. 7. Methodology<br />Sample overview<br /><ul><li>40 female, 3 male
  8. 8. 42 in 20s, 1 in 40s
  9. 9. 41 U.S., 1 Bulgarian, 1 Nicaraguan
  10. 10. 4 Hispanic
  11. 11. 1 Asian-American
  12. 12. 3 African-Americans
  13. 13. Typical participant was white, female American millennial college student</li></ul>Caveats<br /><ul><li>Small sample (43)
  14. 14. Millennials aren’t the news industry’s target consumer for iPad apps – yet</li></li></ul><li>Spring 2011 Semester:<br /><ul><li>Two apps reviewed in-depth: The Dallas Morning News and The Daily
  15. 15. 10-day checkout</li></ul>Fall 2010 Semester:<br /><ul><li>27 apps reviewed
  16. 16. 4-day checkout</li></ul>Image credits: American Journalism Review, The Daily<br />
  17. 17. Findings<br />Immediacy<br /><ul><li>Fall ‘10 avg= 3.1/5
  18. 18. DMN avg = 2.8/5
  19. 19. Daily avg = 2.5/5
  20. 20. Surprisingly stale
  21. 21. “Old news”</li></ul>Standouts<br /><ul><li>ESPN ScoreCenter
  22. 22. Glamour</li></ul>Laggards<br /><ul><li>New York Post
  23. 23. ABC News
  24. 24. The Daily, DMN</li></ul>Image credit: The Dallas Morning News<br />
  25. 25. Findings<br />Non-linear presentation<br /><ul><li>Fall ‘10 avg = 3.1/5
  26. 26. DMN avg = 2.4/5
  27. 27. Daily avg = 3.6/5
  28. 28. Passing grade
  29. 29. Good customization
  30. 30. Awkward navigation
  31. 31. Limited options</li></ul>Standouts<br /><ul><li>The Daily
  32. 32. ESPN ScoreCenter</li></ul>Laggards<br /><ul><li>Fox4 News (Dallas)
  33. 33. Washington Post</li></ul>Image credit: Sports Illustrated<br />
  34. 34. Findings<br />Multimedia<br /><ul><li>Fall ‘10 avg = 3.7/5
  35. 35. DMN avg = 3.4/5
  36. 36. Daily avg = 4.2/5
  37. 37. Occasionally</li></ul> dazzling <br /> qualities<br />Standouts<br /><ul><li>Time Magazine
  38. 38. New York Times
  39. 39. Ebony’s 65thanniv.
  40. 40. The Daily
  41. 41. DMN</li></ul>Laggards<br /><ul><li>New York Post
  42. 42. GQ</li></ul>Image credit: American Journalism Review<br /><ul><li>Dallas Morning News: “The images and video clips are perfectly edited, the color is beautiful, and there aren’t many issues with buffering or mismatching of sounds to images.”
  43. 43. The Daily’s videos “did not just repeat what the article said, but added a different twist.”
  44. 44. New York Post: “Interactivity and multimedia content were very minimal (huge bummer).”</li></li></ul><li>Findings<br />Interactivity<br /><ul><li>Fall ‘10 avg</li></ul> = 3.3/5<br /><ul><li>DMN</li></ul> = 2.4/5<br /><ul><li>The Daily</li></ul> = 3.6/5<br /><ul><li>Largely disappointing</li></ul>Standouts<br /><ul><li>Esquire
  45. 45. New Yorker</li></ul>Laggards<br /><ul><li>DMN
  46. 46. MTV News
  47. 47. The Economist</li></ul>Image credit: American Journalism Review<br /><ul><li>DMN: “The app does a dreadful job at engaging the readers with stories and other users of the app.”
  48. 48. MTV News: “Don’t bother, MTV. Just stick to your website.”</li></li></ul><li>Image credit:<br />American Journalism Review<br />Conclusions<br /><ul><li>First-year versions of iPad news apps weren’t immediate or interactive enough for this sample of millennial students
  49. 49. Students said premium apps aren’t worth the extra money yet
  50. 50. Too many news apps resemble shovelware
  51. 51. Students generally prefer websites to apps</li></li></ul><li>Closing Thoughts<br /><ul><li>Millennials’ iPad news experience differs from the GenX & Baby Boomers in Reynolds iPad study
  52. 52. Why important? 50 million millennials age 18-29 forming lifelong habits
  53. 53. Future research: 2nd wave of tablet apps (Xoom, Galaxy, Playbook, iPad 2)</li></ul>Image credit: Texas Monthly<br />
  54. 54. Thanks!jbatsell@smu.eduTwitter: @jbatsell<br />

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