Newspaper Group Expands Focus to Include Digital Publishers
With a name change and an expanded membership base, the former Newspaper Association of America is ready for the future of the news industry.
Emblematic of a larger realignment strategy in the face of a disrupted industry, the Newspaper Association of America has changed its name to the News Media Alliance.
The name change comes as the organization expands its membership qualifications to include digital-first and digital-only news publishers, as well as introduces new products to better serve and connect members.
“At the highest level, disruption is good for any business because it means it pushes you to a point to … innovate and to change. And if you don’t, you always risk that you’re going to continue to potentially perform not as well as you could,” Vice President of Innovation Michael MaLoon said. “We have the opportunity and saw the opportunity to work with folks outside of what we would have called traditional newspaper properties for that reason.”
As the News Media Alliance works to accommodate the new ways news is distributed and read, it has already welcomed its first two digital-only charter members: the Independent Review Journal and BillyPenn.com.
Because the news industry has changed so drastically since the advent of the internet, “Reporting from the smallest towns to the largest metros, opening up our membership to [digital-only publishers] just made sense in the way the industry as a whole has evolved,” MaLoon said.
The official changes to the membership model, the name, and the website took effect September 7. Now the association will continue rolling out new services to bring the news industry together—which include a new online community called ideaXchange hosted on the new website, a digital benchmarking tool that allows for industry comparisons and analytics called metricsXchange, and a redesigned annual meeting focused on the news industry’s future called mediaXchange.
“Our transformation efforts are designed to show the positive trajectory of the industry and to share the innovation and growth taking place, especially in the digital space,” MaLoon said in a statement. “There are so many great things happening in our industry right now, and our job is to tell those stories.”
As the news industry has been changing for years, causing other groups—like the American Society of News Editors, which changed its name from the American Society of Newspaper Editors in 2009—to adjust, so it will keep evolving. And the News Media Alliance intends to keep up.
“All industries periodically face disruptive market and technology changes, and like many others before us, I believe we will come out of it stronger,” President and CEO David Chavern said in the release.