NYT Facebook App Succeeds, Saves The Day?

    September 14, 2007

In my mind, Facebook and The New York Times were never aimed at the same demographic.  Nonetheless, the Times has launched a Facebook application, and – here’s the really surprising part – the app appears to have succeeded.

Admittedly, it’s kind of early to say for sure, but The New York Times News Quiz already enjoys 1,010 “daily active users.”  That’s pretty popular.  In terms of “critical success” (if you can even measure such a thing on the Internet), the app is also doing quite well.  Its basic premise involves testing people on current events and then making their results visible.

The New York Times is doing two things right here,” writes Josh Lowensohn in an article for Webware.  “The first is making your results public.  There’s nothing worse than having your lack of knowledge shown off to everyone, and while you can tweak what gets published in the news feed, people can still see your scores in the results page.”

He then continues, “The second is getting you to come back and visit the site – specifically The New York Times – to get ready.”

So it would appear that The New York Times has established a fairly firm connection with a lot of young people.  The lack of such connections is, in part, what spawned many “print is dead” articles.