News & Opinion

What newsbrands mean to me

Matthew Patchett, insight executive at Newsworks, on why although the language may have to adapt and evolve, newsbrands still have a lot to say.

My earliest memory of newspapers probably spans from those long, lazy Sundays, sat with my Dad at the dining room table, the air thick with coffee aroma, sunshine pouring through the patio doors, as he slowly made his way through the sections and supplements. Afterwards, I would leaf through the endless pages, looking at the pictures, and getting newspaper print all over my hands and face.

As I got older, I began to look at the words as well as the pictures, as I realised that newspapers didn’t simply provide a good accompaniment to a warm drink, but were an important and valued part of people’s everyday lives. This importance permeated the language of the news industry, as it talked about its ability to investigate, inform, expose and entertain.

Then, getting older still, this language began to change. People would still talk about articles and investigations, but alongside this, a new vernacular was forming, one of circulation figures, revenues and enquiries. Everything seemed a bit gloomy.

But this seemed contrary to the image of newspapers I had grown up with. Or the one that I continued to see as I, along with most people I knew, continued to read the same papers – in one form or another – on a daily basis. Similarly, my newsfeed on various social media sites was still full of people sharing reports and articles from these papers about budget cuts, football transfers and hedgehogs stuck in crisp packets (students are a duplicitous bunch).  

Alongside this, the very news I was still reading, was telling me that British newspapers had some of the most visited news sites in the world. So why had we begun to talk about newspapers so differently?

Addressing this question is what attracted me to Newsworks. Whilst the way we talk about newspapers does have to change – Newsworks talks about newsbrands, not newspapers – it shouldn’t be for the worse. It needs to reflect that people still want the news from the sources they trust, but it is simply how they get it that is changing.

Newsworks offered the chance to help with that change. Although the language may have to adapt and evolve, newsbrands still have a lot to say and, thanks to technology, they can say it to more people than ever before.

19/04/13

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