NYT Looking To Hire A ‘Climate Change Editor’ As Ad Revenues Slide

New York Times Building. REUTERS.

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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The New York Times wants to hire a “climate change editor” to make what it calls “most important story in the world” more appealing to a global audience.

“The Times is ramping up its coverage to make the most important story in the world even more relevant, urgent and accessible to a huge audience around the globe,” reads a job ad from the international edition of The Times.

Its push for more global warming coverage comes as the paper embarks on a new strategy to shed its American identity and appeal more to international audiences. It’s all part of CEO Mark Thompson’s plan to spend $50 million over three years on “a new era of international growth,” Politico reported in May.

“Drone footage that shows Greenland melting away. Long narratives about the plight of climate refugees, from Louisiana to Bolivia and beyond. A series on the California drought. Color-coded maps that show how hot it could be in 2060,” reads the job ad. “The New York Times is a leader in covering climate change.”

The Times has made a name for itself covering global warming. Times reporters published a lengthy expose on Greenland, featuring images, video and other media in order to highlight the ice melt happening on the northern ice sheet.

“The coverage should encompass: the science of climate change; the politics of climate debates; the technological race to find solutions; the economic consequences of climate change; and profiles of fascinating characters enmeshed in the issues,” the climate editor ad reads.

Not everyone was thrilled with The Times’ decision to hype global warming. University of Colorado climate researcher Roger Pielke Jr. thought The Times’ ad hinted at more of a political campaign than a journalistic venture.

But can more global warming coverage help it recover from a dip in digital ad revenues?

The Time’s Sydney Ember reported in July that “revenue fell 3 percent, to $373 million from $383 million, in the same quarter a year earlier, as The Times continued to struggle with declining advertising revenue.” Digital ads makes up about one-third of The Times’ revenue.

“Total advertising revenue fell about 12 percent, to $131 million,” Ember wrote. “Print advertising revenue slid 14 percent in the quarter, and digital advertising revenue dropped 7 percent, to $45 million.”

“The company reported a slight net loss of about $500,000 for the quarter, compared with net income of $16 million in the second quarter of 2015,” she wrote.

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