Last week my state’s largest daily newspaper, The Hartford Courant, (it also bils itself as ”America’s oldest continuously published newspaper“) took a gigantic digital step forward into the future. It created a Facebook page and begun inviting “fans” to join. This week the paper took another big digital step forward and created its own Tweeter feed. Hooray for them.
The Courant brags that 800,000 people read the Courant via the newspaper and online. So, far – as of this blog post “only”192 Facebook users have become Courant Facebook fans. By comparison The New York Times Facebook site has 357,678 fans.
The Courant’s current low fan base probably has more to do with little to no promotion in the paper or the main Courant website that readers can now check them out on the social networking powerhouse. Talk about a soft product launch!
So what are the advantages of news organizations jumping on Facebook? ” Facebook is the “newspaper” for many people,”says Quinnipiac University Journalism Professor Richard Hanley.. ”It is much more powerful than the traditional newspaper because it incorporates news about friends and family into an interface where more traditional news can be posted. I’ve seen the future of newspapers, and it is Facebook.My Take