The Seattle Times shows innovative, productive journalistic atmosphere

19 Feb

The Seattle Times, its work and operations garnered the respect of nearly the entire class after excellent presentations, discussion of proprietary information and talking about how they are innovating in the digital space. Two-thirds of the website’s unique visitors come form outside the Seattle DMA, accounting for one-third of its pageviews. This statistic shows the news organization’s journalistic success in fulfilling its mission to be a national paper. 

Despite this success, editors mentioned that brand confusion still exists between the Times and the PI, which I found interesting to hear. It implies something about human attention to their newspaper when they still do not realize which news brand they are searching for information.

One outlet mentioned at The Seattle Times that wasn’t brought up many other locations on the trip was Reddit. An MU alumnus and reporter said that Reddit is very popular in Seattle, and because of this, many Times staff members are active on the site. I look forward to seeing how Reddit makes a presence in the market and where it fits into journalism.

The most interesting aspect of this visit to me was hearing about the audience segments a research consultancy developed for the newspaper. Because this is a topic of my thesis, I was very engaged with the research portion of our presentation. It was exciting to see a news brand innovate with the notion of having and being aware of a target audience, and the next step is informing the newsroom. Managing editors said this was done through brown bag lunches, but explained that there was still room for improvement in this area. Overall, the Times was one of my favorite stops on the trip and I will be keeping an eye on them to see how their online product differs based on research studies and what they do to cater to the audience segments. 

-Katie Artemas



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