Rupert Murdoch’s less than two-year-old foray into digital-only publishing has officially come to an end with the news that The Daily, News Corp.’s iPad-only magazine, will cease publication on December 15th. Some of The Daily’s assets and 120 employees will transition over to other News Corp. entities; Jesse Angelo, its editor-in-chief, will serve as the new publisher of the New York Post.
Mr. Murdoch wrote in a press release:
From its launch, The Daily was a bold experiment in digital publishing and an amazing vehicle for innovation. Unfortunately, our experience was that we could not find a large enough audience quickly enough to convince us the business model was sustainable in the long-term. Therefore we will take the very best of what we have learned at The Daily and apply it to all our properties. Under the editorial leadership of Editor-in-Chief Col Allan and the business and digital leadership of Jesse, I know The New York Post will continue to grow and become stronger on the web, on mobile, and not least, the paper itself. I want to thank all of the journalists, digital and business professionals for the hard work they put into The Daily.
The news comes on the heels of downsizing that took place at the iPad mag this past summer, when it went from 170 employees to 120.
News Corp.’s brazen bet on an iPad-only format raised eyebrows when it was announced two years ago, and it may have been the mag’s inability to expand its audience within the cluttered app market that led to its demise. Likewise, the company’s hacking scandal, which caused it to split News Corp assets like The Daily and The Post away from profit-filled pocketbooks like film and broadcast, may have prevented it from supporting money-losing ventures.
While many seem saddened by the news, new media evangelists on Twitter have already taken to gloating. “How well did that pay wall religion work at The Daily,@rupertmurdoch?” tweeted CUNY journalism professor Jeff Jarvis.