Steep Postal Rate Hike Looms

Digital publishing news for August 28, 2013

The National Journal is reporting that the U.S. Postal Service may increase postage rates next week as much as 10%. Billy House writes, “Postal rate increases are capped at inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index. That would mean an allowable increase of about 2 percent for late January 2014 implementation. But a 2006 law also allows the Postal Service to seek a higher rate increase beyond the CPI in instances of “exigent” circumstances. In crafting that language, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, has said she envisioned extreme circumstances, like terrorist attacks or natural disasters.” Higher postage cost would also be felt by the consumer as stamp prices would rise and would cost the magazine industry $300 billion dollars.

Tweet Highlighting for Articles

Mashable reports that Twitter is testing a new highlighting feature in a few publications. Kurt Wagner writes,”The New York Times tested a new feature last week that allows users to click on a highlighted sentence from a story, and tweet it out directly, instead of just tweeting the headline. Readers who see the tweet and click on the accompanying link are brought to the highlighted part of the story, rather than to the beginning of the article. The idea behind the feature was that while a headline doesn’t always grab you, an enthralling sentence from the middle of a story may do the trick.”

Twitter has been on a new feature release frenzy lately. Wagner adds,”The microblogging site has been actively releasing new features that make it easier to share articles. Last week, Twitter announced a Related Headlines update that automatically lists relevant stories alongside tweets. The feature is meant to provide context to tweets by showing users where they can get more information, if interested.”

These releases from Twitter are good features publishers should be paying attention to.

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Washington Post Sells Native Ads for Print

Ad Age is reporting that the Washington Post is now offering native ads for print. Michael Sebastian writes,”The ad units on offer include one the Post calls an “agenda setter,” wrapped around a portion of the front page and featuring both display advertising and copy resembling editorial content. Another execution sits among true editorial content on the fold inside the paper. The native ads in print, which will be marked “sponsor generated content,” extend the BrandConnect program that has let advertisers post edit-like stories online since March.”

These native print ads will start running in the late third and fourth quarters.

New Editor in Chief for Parent & Child

FishBowlNY is reporting that Elizabeth Shaw has been named editor in chief at Scholastic Parent & Child. Chris O’Shea writes, “Shaw came to Scholastic last year. She had previously served as executive editor of Parenting magazine. During her three years there she also oversaw editorial operations for Parenting Early Years and Parenting School Years.”

Wired Keeps Expanding

Fishbowl NY also has the latest on new team members at Wired. Chris O’Shea writes, “Billy Sorrentino has been named deputy creative director, a new role at the magazine. Prior to joining Wired, he served as a design director of Condé Nast’s editorial development group. Eric Steuer has been named community director. He most recently served as creative director of Creative Commons. Nicole Wilke joins as web producer. She most recently served as a director at media consulting firm Triemt. Wilke begins September 30 and will report to Hayley Nelson,Wired’s director of product management.”

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