The first iPad-only newspaper, The Daily, will cease to exist as of December 15th. As part of a major restructuring initiative at News Corp, some of The Daily's staff will be moved over to The New York Post, but it's not clear yet how many staff will make that transition. In a statement, The Daily's creator and News Corp. founder Rupert Murdoch said that "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."
This shutdown doesn't come as a major surprise — back in the summer, it was reported that The Daily was "on watch" as an option to help News Corp. cut costs. It sounds like The Daily brand will live on, however, with a new release stating the brand will be used in "other channels." Murdoch's new plan is to "take the very best of what we have learned at The Daily and apply it to all our properties." There's no word yet on whether annual subscribers will receive any partial refunds for their $39.99 annual subscriptions, but the app is still available for purchase in the iTunes Store.
Update: TPM has just obtained and published an internal memo regarding the closing The Daily — the full text is below.
To All Daily Staff,
News Corporation made a series of announcements this morning about the future of its publishing divisions. You can read the full press release attached.
Two years ago, we set out to create a revolutionary product that people would love. The Daily delivered great original reporting, excellent design, and custom interactivity to users every day. Although we have over 100,000 passionate paying subscribers, unfortunately we have not been able to build a big enough audience fast enough to make our business model work.
As part of the reorganization, News Corp will look to take the best of what we have done at The Daily and the lessons we have learned, and apply it to our other publishing properties. Some of our assets, technology and personnel, will be absorbed into the New York Post and all full-time staff will have the opportunity to take advantage of various benefits to assist with the transition away from The Daily, including three additional months of pay.
Our iPad app will cease publishing on Dec. 15 with a farewell issue. The Daily has a strong social media presence and a large, engaged community of fans and we intend to continue to engage our social following with our unique take on the news.
The Daily innovated every day. We broke some great stories. We made a publication that a lot of people love. We should be proud of what we achieved.
We'll be working diligently with staff in the coming days to review the opportunities that exist within other News Corporation companies going forward. We will have staff meetings at 11am and 6pm today to provide more detail on what to expect. Please come to one of them, depending on your shift.
- Jesse & Greg