Ken Klavon at the USGA blog reports on the PGA Tour's now-annual excuse to gather everyone in Ponte Vedra to try out the latest MBASpeak they've picked up in Forbes (and yes attendees, I'm still awaiting a transcript in my email box...chop, chop!).
Judging by the tone of Klavon's piece, not much progress was made in improving media access to players. Then again, PGA Tour players are pretty accessible one on one. Dealing with their agents is another story.
More interesting was the context in which Klavon put the decline of newspapers as compared to Internet numbers. Granted, I still wonder if these U.S. Open and PGATour.com page views include those automatic leaderboard refreshes, but even cutting the numbers, the are staggering.
In my humble opinion, online journalism still isn’t being fully embraced. For those of us who have made the transition from traditional media to the digital age, there is an element of credibility that has been brought along. But that wasn’t the crux of the question. It was based on the following: (and this is where I throw dazzling stats at you):
Consider that in 1990 the total U.S. newspaper circulation equated to roughly 60 million readers. Now chew on this: this year that figure is down to 40 million. Why is this significant? Because the advent of the Internet, with its slew of deliverable content platforms over the past 10 or so years, has overtaken this fossil. (And you’re talking to someone who worked in newspapers and continues to hold it dear to his heart).
Last year usopen.com gleaned 265 million page views. The year before the number came in around 112 million. The reach of the Internet seems limitless. Those figures are more than the entire newspaper circulation combined in the United States. Incredible. Yet some still are having a hard time embracing it. Hate to say it but the ship is sailing. Or has it sailed?
To get back on track, few of the panelists except for Bob Harig, a golf writer at ESPN.com, had much in the way of a solution to my question. Keep trying seemed to be the consensus.