An impatient audience wielding smartphones says, ‘We want it NOW.’
Count with me, please: one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three, one thousand four, one thousand five, one thousand six, one thousand seven, one thousand eight.
Eight seconds. That snippet of time, about 1/300,000,000 of an actuarial life, has driven The New York Times (among others) into the inviting arms of a Facebook lusting for revenue. Eight seconds. That’s the time Facebook says a user endures after she clicks on a Facebook link to a third-party site like nytimes.com.
About 15 percent of The Times’ digital traffic arrives via Facebook.
Consider this: 87 percent of adults ages 18–29 and 73 percent of adults ages 30–49 use Facebook. Arguably, they’re conditioned to be impatient. “We want it now,” is the generational demand. They abhor the eight-second journey from the Facebook app on their smartphones to The Times’ own ecosystem.
The Times should have recognized this long ago: It needs these young readers and the future ad revenue they represent. Longtime readers like me who subscribed to print are dead or soon will be.