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Forecasts and predictions

Tackett CS855 Phase 3 DB 3

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From an reading assignment a few weeks ago I will be discussing the World Association of Newspapers (WAN) conducting scenario planning (2013). In the consortium the future of newspapers were discussed. Newspaper executives and representatives of various countries developed the scenarios. In the figure below the leading newspaper experts developed a diagram with possible scenarios for the industry.

WAN arrived at two factors establishing a guide for the group’s plan. The forces were technology and social. Consumers drove the factors with multiple choices in gathering information and news. The scenarios were forecast into the year 2020.

WAN predicts 4 outcomes dependent on possible changes in technology as well as the way people choose to react to the news mediums. The survival of newspapers is dependent on the kinds of targeting the individual business choose to take.


Do newspapers try to appeal to the masses? Will other media disrupt the newspaper tradition? It seems that most papers have started to become part of the other media. WAN chooses to call this disruptive media, but most members are now part of that disruption discussed. Wade (2012) tells us that the forces affect the scenario plan. In the case of these newspapers we can see that these forces are historically what caused the rise of the newspaper. Since the mass production of print, newspapers have dominated our opinions as well provided a source for daily information. Withe rise of the web, we have so many choices in how we gather information. This information can be targeted to individuals because of the web technologies that allow personalization of our news. Newspapers appealed to mass audiences. With Television newscasts, many predicted the fall of newspapers. Perhaps readership dropped, but the larger and stronger newspapers survived.

The scenarios are currently being played out, but I believe in this particular case other forces may be in play to disrupt newspapers as they transition to the web environment. Other technologies may rise and pull our information to other venues. In some places politics change the way information is dispersed. Will this cause readers to distrust and leave any semblance of news gathering? We’ve already seen personal freedoms compromised because of the desire for safety and security. Will political forces infringe on freedom of speech in the name of national security?


Personal Expert System: World Association of Newspapers Scenario Planning. (2013, January 1).

Wade, W., & Wagner, N. (2012). Scenario planning a field guide to the future. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley.

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