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Media Theory Revision Guide

All A level theorists covered alongside revision summaries and exam practise exercises.




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The Times

Technology threats


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Hesmondhalgh tells us that newspaper revenues have been heavily threatened by new digital media technologies. 

Newspaper advertising revenues, he explains, have been substantially reduced as a result of internet based competition - particularly those revenues that were raised from motoring and recruitment oriented advertising. Free-to-view blogs, moreover, and other online news based services have created further competition for the print edition of the paper.

Unusually for the newspaper industry, the Times has opted to pursue a content driven subscription service, hiding lucrative story content behind a subscription based paywall. Whilst that paywall has restricted the number of viewers accessing the Times online, it also enables the set text to display content without personalised advertising. 

This approach has helped to maintain the high journalistic values of the publication by guaranteeing The Times a relatively stable income from online subscribers. The advert free layouts of The Times online also creates a far smoother online reading experience for subscribers. 

It could be argued that the Times subscription based approach is uniquely viable as a result of its affluent (and loyal) ABC1 readership.


An online subscription system used by some newspapers. Paywalls produce small readerships and tend to be restricted to titles that have a loyal and affluent audience. The Times newspaper uses a pay wall.

Media terminology used


Increasingly, media content is packaged for subscription rather than free viewing. Fee-to-view systems tend to carry fewer adverts, thus producing a cleaner viewing experience for audiences.

Personalised advertising

Online advertising that uses web cookies to tailor page advertising to a user's profile. Ad's might chosen to reflect the user's browsing history, gender, age or geographical location.

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