Media Insider: Financial Times Improves Approach to Comments, BBC to Cut ‘Soft’ Content, VR Films That Keep Readers Coming Back

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round up of journalism, blogging and freelancing stories from the week.

graphic comments

Photo by Marc Wathieu used under CC BY-NC 2.0

Why the Financial Times Still Believes in Comment Sections (Digiday)

In times of belt-tightening, the Financial Times makes more data-informed decisions around audience development, Digiday says. For this reason, it is improving its approach to comments and commenters on site, Digiday reports. Many news agencies haven’t been able to make heads or tails of the comment sections of their sites. Even the Financial Times previously went with a strategy that was more about damage control, Digiday says.

The New Day Newspaper to Shut Just Two Months After Launch (The Guardian)

Trinity Mirror is shutting its experimental new national newspaper the New Day after just two months. The Guardian reports that the publisher of the Daily Mirror launched The New Day, which aimed to target those who had “fallen out of love with newspapers,” at the end of February with a promotional print run of about 2m. Sales fell to around 30,000 copies.

The New York Times is Trying to Make VR Films That Aren’t One-Offs, and That Keep Readers Coming Back (Nieman Lab)

With virtual reality, The New York Times has told viewers the stories of young refugees, taken them on the campaign trail, and helped them experience mourning in Paris, Nieman Lab reports. Now, The Times is taking them to Pluto. Times science writer Dennis Overbye will take viewers on an virtual tour of the planet’s surface in with “Seeking Pluto’s Frigid Heart.”

BBC to Cut ‘Soft News’ and Recipes From Its Website (The Telegraph)

BBC plans to cut bits from its website after “coming under pressure from ministers to rein in ‘soft news’ content such as magazine articles, recipes, and travel advice,” The Telegraph reports. The internet retreat will come in one of the most important weeks in the BBC’s history, as it awaits the publication, on Thursday, of government plans for its future size and scope, the news agency says.

The Sun Begins to Set on Cornell’s Daily Print Newspaper (FishbowlNY)

The Cornell Daily Sun plans to cut back its print editions, taking Wednesdays and Fridays out of the print schedule. The change will take place in the fall. A note by editor in chief Sofia Hu, managing editor Phoebe Keller and associate editor Paulina Glass says the news organization plans to “expand and strengthen our website, incorporating more graphic and interactive features.”

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Christine Cube is a senior audience relations manager with PR Newswire and freelance writer. Follow @cpcube or check out her latest on Beyond Bylines on PR Newswire for Journalists.

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