Rupert Murdoch has launched the Daily, the first iPad-specific newspaper, as he bids to gain a stranglehold on the only medium yet to come under the spell of his News Corporation empire.
The octogenarian media tycoon has conquered the TV and print industries, but has seen his social networking site MySpace fall from grace while his online newspapers reap little reward from being marooned behind paywalls. Aiming to change that part of his legacy, he unveiled the latest venture at the Guggenheim museum alongside a representative from Apple, claiming it would breath new life into journalism.
He said it would combine the “serendipity and surprise” of newspapers with the speed and versatility of new technology, and make newsgathering “viable again”. It would play a seminal part in what he called the digital renaissance, insisting that the iPad “demands that we re-imagine our craft”.
He claimed that because the Daily had “no paper, no multimillion-dollar presses, no trucks” to deal with it will free editors to experiment and innovate.
The currently US-only Daily will be published every night in time to read over breakfast is free for the first two weeks. Murdoch has invested $30m (£19m) in launching the project and will spend another $26m a year to cover its costs, including the pay of 100 staff.
His outlay would be covered if two per cent of the 50 million people expected to own an iPad by the end of next year sign up for the 99 cents per week publication, say analysts.
Murdoch said the paper’s editor, Jesse Angelo, would decide whether it would take the same political stance as News Corp’s media organisations – such as the controversial Fox News – and declared that he would measure its success “when we are selling millions”.
Photo taken from the World Economic Forum‘s Flickr account, licensed under Creative Commons.