Category Archives: newspaper

of forests and trees

On Salon Machinist Farhad Manjoo considers the virtues of skimming and contemplates what is lost in the transition from print broadsheets to Web browsers:

It’s well-nigh impossible to pull off the same sort of skimming trick on the Web. On the Times site, stories not big enough to make the front page end up in one of the various inside section pages — World, U.S., etc. — as well as in Today’s Paper, a long list of every story published that day.
But these collections show just a headline and a short description of each story, and thus aren’t nearly as useful as a page of newsprint, where many stories are printed in full. On the Web, in order to determine if a piece is important, you’ve got to click on it — and the more clicking you’re doing, the less skimming.

Manjoo notes the recent Poynter study that used eye-tracking goggles to see how much time readers spent on individual stories in print and online news. The seemingly suprising result was that people read an average of 15% more of a story online than in print. But this was based on a rather simplistic notion of the different types of reading we do, and how, ideally, they add up to an “informed” view of the world.
On the Web we are like moles, tunneling into stories, blurbs and bliplets that catch our eye in the blitzy surface of home pages, link aggregators, search engines or the personalized recommendation space of email. But those stories have to vie for our attention in an increasingly contracted space, i.e. a computer screen -? a situation that becomes all the more pronounced on the tiny displays of mobile devices. Inevitably, certain kinds of worthy but less attention-grabby stories begin to fall off the head of the pin. If newspapers are windows onto the world, what are the consequences of shrinking that window to the size of an ipod screen?
This is in many ways a design question. It will be a triumph of interface design when a practical way is found to take the richness and interconnectedness of networked media and to spread it out before us in something analogous to a broadsheet, something that flattens the world into a map of relations instead of cramming it through a series of narrow hyperlinked wormholes. For now we are trying to sense the forest one tree at a time.

blogs… or just “the media”?

In the wake of Techmeme’s new top 100 Leaderboard site listing, IP Democracy wonders where have all the blogs gone?

Not only does the list include many old media mainstays such as the Wall Street Journal and New York Times, along with top trade publications such as Computerworld, but it is also heavily tilted toward new media “brands” formerly known as blogs such as GigaOm, TechCrunch and Engadget.
….All of these sites — TechCrunch, GigaOm, Engadget, and, plus many others — are big deal media concerns, albeit still in their earliest stages of development, backed by venture capital and staffed by professional writers, editors, graphic designers and sales people. Nothing about them says “blogs,” if by blog you mean a true web log that reflects an individual’s take on a particular topic, or just life in general.
These guys are go-for-broke publishing concerns that face the same issues (staffing, accounting controls, growth strategies, compensation policies, editorial expertise, ad sales and so forth) as any bona fide media business. Robert Scoble, in a post that he entitled “TechMeme List Heralds Death of Blogging,” counted a mere 12 blogs in Techmeme’s leaderboard.
While the actual number of blogs on the list is probably higher than that, the point is: blogging seems to have been (and might still be) a mere waystation along the road to becoming a true publishing company and not quite the democratizing force in publishing that it once promised to be. Om and Rafat and TechCrunch’s Mike Arrington and everybody else used the rise of blogging software to inexpensively launch publications, just like any other publisher, and are now legitimate publishers.

I’d say independent blogging is still alive and well in the vast middle tier, but it’s true that things have become increasingly institutionalized at the top. But it’s not like we haven’t seen this before. Today’s newspapers are evolved from the 19th century upstart penny presses and pamphleteers who were the bloggers of their day… so it’s not particularly surprising that today’s top blogs are collectively becoming “the media” (history doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes). Also, best not to look at certain parts of the media ecology in isolation. The Leaderboard oligarchy sits atop a richly tangled bank of medium-trafficked and tiny niche sites, and millions of participating/linking/suggesting/commenting readers. Everything feeding everything else.
What’s most interesting to me is how blogs can develop their own imprints that start publishing well beyond the individual voice or voices that started them. if:book is becoming a sort of imprint in that way.


A few good readings to inject into recent conversation here about a post-copyright world (1, 2, 3), and in light of the death of Times Select and the ripple effect that is likely to have across the Web. First, a two-year-old post by Jeff Jarvis, “Who Wants to Own Content?”, ruminating on the supreme value of trust and conversation in a post-scarcity publishing ecology:

But in this new age, you don’t want to own the content or the pipe that delivers it. You want to participate in what people want to do on their own. You don’t want to extract value. You want to add value. You don’t want to build walls or fences or gardens to keep people from doing what they want to do without you. You want to enable them to do it. You want to join in.
And once you get your head around that, you will see that you can grow so much bigger so much faster with so much less cost and risk.
So don’t own the content. Help people make and find and remake and recommend and save the content they want. Don’t own the distribution. Gain the trust of the people to help them use whatever distribution and medium they like to find what they want.
In these new economics, you want to stand back and interfere and restrict as little as possible. You want to reduce costs to the minimum. You want to join in wherever you are welcome.
So in the content world, it is better help enable and be part of fluid networks of content than it is to create and own content…It is better to find new efficiencies than new blockbusters…It is better to gather than create…It is better to share trust than to horde it.

Whatever the media business models of tomorrow may be, they will almost certainly not revolve around owning content. It will be about, as Jay Rosen says in his Times Select obit, “weaving yourself into the Web”:

…that’s the decision in Web court the New York Times is accepting. Consent decree with the open web. Dismisses all courses of action against Google. Times agrees to drop Times Select, which was a barrier to Google – ?and the blogosphere – ?working the right way.
The decision says you can try to charge, and some people will pay, but there is more money and a brighter future in the open flow of Web traffic, a lot of which is coming sideways into your content stack because Google sends tons of users in that way, not through your pearly gates of news, also called a home page. RSS sends stuff from the middle of the stack out.
When every barrier you create to their participation with your product weakens your revenue stream, which is tied to openness, you’re in the world of the consent decree. Advertising tied to search means open gates for all users. It means link rot cut to zero, playing for the long haul in Web memory and more blogs because they are Web-sticky.

Now back to Jarvis, who in a new post predicts among other things that the Times’ decision will likely be the first domino in a chain of paywall demolitions: Wall Street Journal, Economist, Financial Times. He picks up the thread from his older piece:

It’s the relationship that is valuable. It’s the relationship that is profitable, not the control of the content or the distribution. That is the essential media moral of the internet story. It has taken 13 years of internet history for media companies to learn that, to give up the idea that they control something scarce they can charge consumers for, but they’ve finally learned it. That is the lesson of the death of TimesSelect.

all the news that’s fit to search

Placing a long-term bet on online advertising and the power of search engines, the New York Times will, effective tomorrow, close down its two-year-old “Select” subscription service (which was actually making money for the paper) and opened up access to columnists, Select blogs, and archives from 1987 to the present, and 1851 to 1922. Nice!
From PaidContent, quoting the Times’ own coverage:

The change is because of what’s happened in the internet in the past two years – ?particularly the power of search.” She [Vivian Schiller, senior vp and general manager of] added later: “Think about this recipe – ?millions and millions of new documents, all seo’d [search engine optimized], double-digit advertising growth.” The Times expects “the scale and the power of the revenue that would come from that over time” to replace the subscriptions revenue and then some.

ny times publishes first video letter to the editor

The Times has published its first video “letter to the editor,” a 10-minute mini-documentary by Charles Ferguson on the decision by L. Paul Bremer and other US officials to disband the Iraqi army shortly after the US occupation began. The video is posted as a rebuttal to a recent op-ed by Bremer that tried to redistribute some of the blame for that catastrophic blunder that arguably gave birth to the Sunni insurgency.
This is no doubt a milestone for the paper, although calling it a letter to the editor is slightly disingenuous. Ferguson isn’t just your average concerned reader, he’s a highly respected filmmaker and author who has made a full length doc about Iraq, “No End in Sight,” from which much of this video’s material is taken.
Moreover, at ten minutes, and meticulously edited and produced, filled with interviews with top military brass and gov’t officials, the clip is more on par (at the very least) with a full op-ed. The main opinion page even features it as such – ?under op-ed contributors – ?rather than placing it down among the letters. Will we eventually see actual ad hoc video letters to the editor from “readers” at large? That could be interesting.
Nomenclature aside, though, this is a fantastic broadening of the Times‘ editorial output. Once again, they prove themselves to be one of the more innovative digital publishers around.

the future of the times

Here’s a great item from last week that slipped through the cracks… A rare peek into the mind of New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger, which grew out of a casual conversation with Haaretz‘s Eytan Avriel at the World Economic Forum in Davos. A couple of choice sections follow…
On moving beyond print:

Given the constant erosion of the printed press, do you see the New York Times still being printed in five years?
“I really don’t know whether we’ll be printing the Times in five years, and you know what? I don’t care either,” he says…..”The Internet is a wonderful place to be, and we’re leading there,” he points out.
The Times, in fact, has doubled its online readership to 1.5 million a day to go along with its 1.1 million subscribers for the print edition.
Sulzberger says the New York Times is on a journey that will conclude the day the company decides to stop printing the paper. That will mark the end of the transition. It’s a long journey, and there will be bumps on the road, says the man at the driving wheel, but he doesn’t see a black void ahead.

On the persistent need for editors — Sulzberger talks about newspapers reinventing themselves as “curators of news”:

In the age of bloggers, what is the future of online newspapers and the profession in general? There are millions of bloggers out there, and if the Times forgets who and what they are, it will lose the war, and rightly so, according to Sulzberger. “We are curators, curators of news. People don’t click onto the New York Times to read blogs. They want reliable news that they can trust,” he says.
“We aren’t ignoring what’s happening. We understand that the newspaper is not the focal point of city life as it was 10 years ago.
“Once upon a time, people had to read the paper to find out what was going on in theater. Today there are hundreds of forums and sites with that information,” he says. “But the paper can integrate material from bloggers and external writers. We need to be part of that community and to have dialogue with the online world.”

backwards into the future

Reading Christine Boese’s anticipatory critique of the new NY Times Reader, I was reminded of something I saw last winter in Seoul at Chosun Ilbo, which is pretty much the Korean equivalent of The New York Times. Off the main lobby, the newspaper has set up an exhibition space called the “Media Lab,” where the latest prototypes from the paper’s digital technology wing are on public display. A sneak peak at the future of news.
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While there, I taped a demo that shows a new reading interface they’ve developed called “T-Paper,” which was supposedly slated for release this year (though I haven’t heard anything about it since). Strolling through the gallery, I found it running across a range of devices, from large flat-screen televisions to laptops, to Sony PSPs, to tiny pocket assistants. Here’s the wall display:

My first reaction was much like Chris’s: “a ‘horseless carriage’ retrenchment” — porting the artifact of the broadsheet newspaper into a digital environment. I have to admit, though, that I was slightly seduced by the zoom interface, which reminded me of this proof of a similar concept by the late interface pioneer Jef Raskin. It’s especially impressive to see it done with video. Though the Times Reader doesn’t sport anything as fancy as this, a commenter named Kevin (who I can only assume works for the Times — or Microsoft) insists that it will have much of the reader-driven functionality we would hope for (including the ability to share comments and annotations with other readers), in spite of the fact that it will be, as Chris puts it, “a walled garden.”
Kevin also refers to usability studies that suggest the Times Reader helps users “retain more information and read for longer periods.” I’ll buy longer periods — I always read more of the paper when I have it in print, and this new device certainly replicates much of the experience of print reading, while incorporating some nice new features. But still, are these proprietary, bound devices really going to replace newspapers? It seems doubtful when news consumption is such a multi-sourced affair these days (though to some extent that’s an illusion). A device that allows readers to design their news menu seems more the ticket. Maybe the Times should be thinking more in terms of branded software than proprietary hardware. Make the best news reader on the web, prominently featuring Times content, but allowing users to customize their reading experience. Keep it open and plugged in. Let the Times be your gateway to more than just the Times.
Chosun Ilbo’s vision seemed similarly constrained. As much as they tried to create a futuristic atmosphere with their Media Lab, much of the technology on display seemed, like the Times Reader, to be stuck in old mindsets — fixated more on the digital apotheosis of their product than on really grappling with the realities of the new media environment. 180px-MarshallMcLuhan.gif T-Paper also reminded of another museum piece, the British Museum’s “Turning the Pages,” which remounts famous old manuscripts like DaVinci’s journals in a fancy page-turning interface. A while back, Sally Northmore wrote a nice piece for if:book pondering this strange print-digital artifact, and what it means to electronically replicate the turning of a page. All of this recalls Marshall McLuhan’s famous observation in The Medium is the Massage:

“When faced with a totally new situation, we tend always to attach ourselves to the objects, to the flavor of the most recent past. We look at the present through a rear-view mirror. We march backwards into the future…”

Much of the disoreintation I felt while in Korea came from this feeling of time pulling in different directions. A society saturated in technology, far more wired than ours, Korea rushes headlong into the future, yet at the same time digs its heels obstinately into the past. At the end of the Korean War, Seoul was a bombed-out pit of some half million people. Now it’s a sprawling megalopolis of over 20 million, and though many centuries-old, it feels streamlined and new. There’s no “old city” in any real sense. Shiny glass towers and enormous shopping centers loom over the streets, pedestrian shopping lanes explode into jungles of neon, tiny alleys teem with life like fissures in a coral reef, and a vast network of subways rumbles beneath. And yet this dynamic scene — the swirl of steaming tripe vendors and blinking electronics — is periodically interrupted by a medieval gate or pagoda, a historic remainder sitting tranquilly amid the churn of modern life.
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Spend an afternoon walking through Seoul and you’ll see the full pageant of the local techno-culture. Cell phones are clearly several generations further evolved than anything we have here in the States. People seem to be doing just about everything with their mobile devices: playing games, watching TV, surfing the web. I even saw one woman on a train using her phone’s video camera as a pocket mirror to fix her make-up. Young men spend hours tucked away in smoky, windowless internet cafes known as “PC Bangs,” playing multi-player online games that involve a quarter of the citizenry. At the same time, you are frequently reminded of Korea’s abiding infatuation with printing, paper crafts and calligraphy: stores sumptuously arrayed with handmade paper hung on racks, prodigiously plumed ink brushes hanging like icicles from the ceiling, and delicate little rice paper journals piled neatly on the shelves.
seoulbooks.jpg daegupaperrack.jpg
Mountains also serve to anchor swift-moving Seoul in time. 70 percent of the Korean peninsula is mountainous and the Seoul region is no exception. Sitting in the heart of downtown is the petite Namsan peak, surrounded by one of the city’s best-loved parks and sporting at its summit Seoul’s most recognizable landmark, Seoul Tower, a rocket ship awaiting blastoff. Facing Namsan, the snow-streaked Bugaksan peak rises over one of Seoul’s central boulevards, an avenue running through what feels like the Korean equivalent of Rockefeller Plaza, past City Hall, the big newspaper offices, the Ubiquitous Dream Hall and the Ministry of Reunification, leading to the Gyeongbok Palace, and beyond that the Presidential “Blue House,” nestled in Bugaksan’s shade.
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Framed by the mountain, presiding over the unending traffic of Hyundais, Kias, Daewoos, and Samsungs, is an imposing statue of Admiral Yi, the famous military leader who in the late 16th century dealt a humiliating blow to the Japanese navy with the most advanced technology of his time: a fleet of armor-plated, smoke-breathing “turtle boats.”
cheonggyecheon.jpg cheonggyecheon2.jpg
Much of Seoul’s past lies beneath the modern streets, and occasionally something is unearthed and restored (or reinvented). Announced by a waterfall perpendicular to the grand boulevard is the Cheonggyecheon, an ancient stream running through the heart of the city into the countryside beyond, and which until very recently was covered over by an elevated highway. Last year, the city demolished the roadway, uncovered the stream and built a lovely sunken path alongside it cutting quietly through six miles of the city’s bustle. If you’ve ever been to Paris and walked directly along the Seine on the lower walkways, you can sort of picture this, though the Cheonggyecheon is no Seine — a small stream and a fairly narrow trench. But walking there, with the tops of buildings peeking over, an improbable calm steals over you in the heart of town.
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And because this reminiscence began with newspapers, take a look at these pictures. A few blocks from the waterfalls that reintroduce the Cheonggyecheon to the city after all these years, the very same newspapers that pride themselves on publishing at the cutting edge of technology still mount their daily editions, page by page, in glass cases on the street for all to read.

NYTimes reader

[editor’s note: The New York Times released a new software reader. It is Windows only. No Mac compatibility at this time. We asked Christine Boese, of, to post her thoughts on the matter.]


I got this off another news clip service I’m on…

NYT Finally Creates a Readable Online Newspaper (Slate)

Jack Shafer: About six months ago, I canceled my New York Times subscription because I had found the newspaper’s redesigned Web site to be superior to the print Times. I’ve now abandoned the Web version for the New York Times Reader, a new computer edition that has entered general beta release.

I went around to try to sign up for it and get a look. I couldn’t, because the Times IT dept overlooked making its beta available for Macs. I scanned through the screenshots, tho, and the comments on the blog preview of features, sneek peek #1 and #2.
Jack Shafer isn’t exactly an expert in interactive design, so I don’t know if his endorsement means anything other than, "Gee whiz, here’s a neato new thing!".
My initial impressions are that it looks like the International Herald Tribune
with a horizontal orientation I just can’t stand (the Herald Tribune often requires horizontal scrolling, and it’s far easier to read the printable version of stories). Yes, I see there is a narrow screen screenshot, but I’m thinking more about the text flow nightmares this design must cause.
But I think I have bigger reservations about the entire concept behind the Times Reader beta.
Here’s just a summary of questions I’d want answered, if I were actually able to test the beta:

  1. How is re-creating a facsimile of a print newspaper online a step forward for interactive media? Is it really, or is it just a kind of "horseless carriage" retrenchment? Shafer talks about some non-print-like pages that tell you what you’ve read or haven’t read, to assist browsing and search, but notes that the archives are thin. I wonder if the Times "Most Popular" feature makes the cut.
  2. Code. The big deal here is that it uses Microsoft .NET and advancers on Vista technology. I smell a walled garden. Is this XML-compatible? RSS-enabled? Is it even in HTML code that can be easily copied and pasted? (Shafer’s piece says it can be, but I want to see for myself) W3 validated? Does its content management system have permalinks? How do bookmarks work?
  3. Hyperlinks. Will the text accomodate them? Will the Times use them? Or by anchoring themselves firmly in a "reader" technology, perhaps a completely web-independent application, is the Times trying to go beyond simply a code-walled garden and also create a strong CONTENT walled garden as well? Is this a variant of TimesSelect on speed?
  4. Audience. Presumably the Times has some research that shows a need to court its paper-bound print-loving audience to its online products by making the online products more like the print products.
  5. But my question about audience is this: is there a REASON to make heroic efforts to lure print readers online? Isn’t the bigger issue trying to keep print readers attached to print, so that the ad-driven print editions don’t have to go the way of the dinosaur? The online news audience is already massive, and (Pew, Poynter) studies show that during the recent wars, large numbers of people were turning away from traditional news providers and outlets to seek out other sources of information, particularly international information, on the Internet and with news feed readers (RSS/Atom).
    So in a competitive online news landscape, the Times makes a strategic turn to become more like its print product? And this will lure large numbers of online news readers back exclusively to the Times exactly HOW? Especially if it is a walled garden that doesn’t integrate well into the Blogosphere or in RSS news feed readers?
    People like Terry Heaton and other media consultants (Heaton has a terrific blog, if you haven’t found it yet) are going out and telling traditional news media outlets that they have to move more strongly into an environment of UNBOUND media, to make their products more maleable for an unbound Internet environment. It appears the Times is not a company that has purchased Heaton’s services lately.

  6. Usability and Design. I’ve already mentioned the Mac incompatiblity. What other usability and design issues are present in this Times Reader technology? I’ll leave that to people who actually get use it.

From the screenshots I’ve seen, there seems to be very little functionality or interactive user-customizable features at all. I don’t know. Color me stupid, but my gut reaction is that this is nothing more than another variant of the exact PDF version of the paper that the Times put out, only perhaps with better text searching features and dynamic text flow (meaning I’d bet it is XML-based instead of PDF-based, only with some custom-built or Microsoft-blessed walled garden DTD).
You know, for the money the Times spent on this (and the experienced journalists the Times Group laid off this past year), I’d have thought the best use of resources for a big media company would be to develop a really KILLER RSS feed reader, one that finally gets over the usability threshold that keeps feed readers in "Blinking 12-land" for most casual Internet users.
I mean, I know there are a lot of good feed readers out there (I favor Bloglines myself), but have any of you tried to convert non-techie co-workers into using a feed reader lately? I can’t for the LIFE of me figure out why there’s so much resistance to something so purely wonderful and empowering, something I believe is clearly the killer app on par with the first Mosaic browser in 1993. But because feed readers caught on bottom up instead of top down, there’s not only usability problems for the broadest audiences, there’s also a void at the top of the technology industry, by companies that fail to catch on to the RSS vision, mainly because they didn’t think it up themselves.

the commodification of news / the turns 10

It began with what is still referred to as the “Kaiser Memo” within the Washington Post organization. In 1992, Bob Kaiser, then managing-editor, wrote a handwritten memo on the way back from a technology conference in Japan. In the memo, he posits the development of an electronic newspaper. In 1996, was launched. Last week, it marked its 10th year with three insightful articles. The first, gives a brief overview of the effect of the Kaiser early vision, recounting some of the ups and downs, from losing millions in the heady bubble of the 90s to turning its first profit two years ago. Lessons were learned in this new form be it from the new growth from coverage of the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal to traffic bottlenecks during 2000 US presidential election to the vital role online news played during 9/11 and its aftermath. Ten years later, the online news landscape looks nothing what people, including Kaiser, originally envisioned, which was basically a slight modification of traditional news forms.
The other two articles serve as counterpoints to each other. Jay Rosen, NYU journalism professor and blogger on PressThink, reflects on the Internet as a distruptive technology in the world of journalism. Washington Post staff writer Patricia Sullivan argues that traditional journalism and news organizations are still relevant and vital for democracy. Although, both authors end up at the same place (having both traditional and new forms is good,) their approaches play off each other in interesting ways.
There is a tension between to the two articles by Sullivan and Rosen. In that, they are focusing on different things. Sullivan seems to be defending the viability of the traditional media, in terms of business models and practices. She acknowledge that the hugh profit margins are shrinking and revenues are stagnant. This is not surprising, as the increases in citizen journalism, “arm chair” news analysts, as well as, free online access to print and born-digital reporting all contribute to making news a commodity, rather than a scarce resource. Few cities still have more than one daily newspaper. Just as cable news channels took market share from the evening network news, people can read online versions of newspapers from around the country and read feeds from web news aggregators.
With the increasing number of voices in print, network television and cable, news is becoming increasingly commodified. Commodified here means that individual news coverage is becoming indistinguishable from one another. It is useful to note Sullivan’s observation that the broad major weekly magazines as Time, Newsweek, and US Weekly are losing readers while the weekly magazines, The Economist and the New Yorker with their specialized perspectives, have increasing circulation. If a reader cannot distinguish between the reporting of Time, Newsweek, or US Weekly, then it is easy to move among the three or to another commodified online news source. Therefore, the examples of the Economist and the New Yorker show the importance of distinct voices, which readers come to expect, coupled with strong writing. Having an established perspective is becoming much more important to news readers.
If general news is becoming commodified, then news sources that differentiates its news will have an increased value, which people are willing to pay money to read. Rosen comes to a similar conclusion, when he mentions that in 2004 he called for some major news organizations to take a strong left position with “oppositional (but relentlessly factual)” coverage of the White House. His proposal was decried by many, including staff at the CNN, who claimed that it would destroy their credibility. Rosen asks why a major news organization cannot do for the left what Fox News has done for the right?
Rosen directly and Sullivan indirectly suggests that one key feature in the reshuffling of news will be the importance of voice and perspective. If a new publication can create a credible and distinct voice, they claim it will attract a sustainable audience, even in the age of free, commodified news.
Sullivan closes by discussing the importance of investigative reporting that reveals secret prisons, government eavesdropping is expensive, time consuming, and requires the subsidies from lighter news. However, history shows that the traditional news room is not infallible, as seen with the lack of rigor journalists examined the claims of weapons mass destruction during the events that lead to the invasion of Iraq. When Sullivan sites that “almost no online news sties invest in original, in-depth and scrupulously edited news reporting” it is clear that her conceptualization of new journalism is still tied to the idea of the centralized news organization. However, in the distributed realm of the blogosphere and p2p, we have seen examples that Sullivan describes, not from single journalists, but rather by a collaborative and decentralized network of concerned “amateurs.” For example, citizen journalists can also achieve these kinds of disruptive reporting. Rosen notes how the blogosphere was able to unravel the CBS report on President Bush’s National Guard Service. As well, technical problems with the electronic voting machines in the 2004 election (an example Yochai Benkler often recounts) were revealed by using the network. People using individual knowledge bases to do research, uncover facts, and report findings in a way that would be quite difficult for a news organization to replicate.
Where as, Rosen finishes with a description of how during the India Ocean tsunami, that despite Reuters’ 2,300 journalist and 1,000 stringers, no one was in the area to provide reporting, as the concerned world waited for coverage. However, tourists armed with amateur equipment provided the watching world with the best and only digital photographs and video from the devastated areas. For Reuters to report anything, they had to include amateur journalism, until professional journalists could be deployed to supplement the coverage.
Not surprisingly, ten years on, along with the rest of the news media industry is still figuring out how to use and grow with the Internet. Nor it is surprising that their initial strategy was to re-purpose their content for the web. We understand new media based on the conventions of old media. The introduction of the Internet to newspapers was more than adding a new distribution channel. With increases in the access to information and the low cost of entrance, news is no longer a scarce resource. In the age of commodified news,, the political blog network, major daily newspaper columnists, and the editor-in-chiefs of weekly new magazines are all striving to create credible and reliable points of view. Active news consumers are better for it.