Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Obama’s Post-Election Media Bump: Over

Remember last week? When, in the aftermath of a historic presidential election, things were so giddy that it seemed even newspapers might be valuable again–at least as collector’s items? Well, that’s over.

EBay (EBAY) sellers are still trying to sucker buyers into paying extra for a copy of the Nov. 5 copy of the New York Times, but prices have come way down. This likely has to do with the fact that the Times (NYT) printed an extra 50,000 copies after the first run sold out.

Meanwhile, a MediaMemo correspondent reports from Washington D.C. that commemorative copies of the Washington Post’s special edition–which people stood in line to buy last week–are mounting up, unsold, throughout the city:

There are a lot of week-old commemorative edition newspapers available for the buying. I was at one Safeway and two 7-11s in Washington, all three flush with copies of the Post. And in NW DC there are side vendors–different guys from the news kiosks–selling stacks of them.”

But don’t gloat, Web publishers. Your Obama bump is diminishing, too. Take a look at this Hitwise data, via 24/7 Wall Street, that show what happens to political sites like Huffington Post, Slate.com and Politco in the aftermath of an election–their audience starts melting away.

All of the sites will tell you they’ve planned for that, of course. But they were probably also planning on an expanding market for Internet ad dollars. And that’s no longer a given.


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus