Up Close with New Yorker Magazine Columnist Ken Auletta


This is a gripping conversation with Ken Auletta, who has written the Annals of Communications column for The New Yorker magazine about declining newspaper readership, the public’s loss of trust for the mainstream news media, the challenges the traditional advertising industry faces as a result of digital video recorders and audience fragmentation and the impact of all this on US politics.

Ken is also the author of ten books, including four national bestsellers:

  • Three Blind Mice: How the TV Networks Lost Their Way
  • Greed And Glory On Wall Street: The Fall of The House of Lehman
  • The Highwaymen: Warriors of the Information Super Highway
  • World War 3.0: Microsoft and Its Enemies  


6:07 – Ken Auletta talks about how new media technology is impacting the news media business.  

7:08 – Auletta mentions the reasons behind readers shifting from print media to online media.  

7:40 – Auletta explains media expenditures, comparing online advertising to print advertising.  

8:05 – Auletta discusses the financial community’s perspective on the newspaper business.  

8:43 – Auletta discusses the affect of internet advertising on traditional news media outlets.  

10:26 – Auletta on the challenges newspapers face generating revenue.  

10:36 – Auletta talks about The New York Times’s tactics for growing circulation.  

11:45 – Auletta discusses the downside of the online subscription model.  

14:29 – Auletta on whether the news media businesses may adapt to participating in digital conversations on the internet.  

16:39 – Auletta on the challenges of sustaining traditional advertising models.  

18:51 – Auletta’s response on whether we are entering the age of corporate generated media: “You’re already there…advertisers are increasingly buying a stake in programming.”  

21:58 – Auletta talks about blogs, podcasts, online news media, and alternative, subtle sources of advertising like product placement.  

23:44 – Auletta discusses the reasons why the public trusts the press less and how the media needs to be “more professional and do a better job… [and be] more transparent and humble and more willing to admit our mistakes…” to regain that trust.  

26:35 – Auletta talks about how the public’s distrust of the mainstream media has impacted the Bush administration. 


Photo by JD Lasica from Pleasanton, CA, US – Ken Auletta, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=68478179

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