Friday, March 27, 2009

three quick hits...

Again with the three dot bloggery...

But all good stuff, tho only connected by a slim thread. Anyhow...

Go here for a good laugh, re making a career out of the newspaper deathwatch, from Paul Dalling, who writes on Huff Po that he has decided to become a "Death of Newspapers" blogger:

I'll join the ranks of Jeff Jarvis, Paul Gillin, Jay Rosen and Clay Shirky in competing to see who can use the most jargon to describe something everyone knows is happening.

Apparently, it's very simple. The more you self-reference, pick feuds and talk about the failure of TimesSelect, the better you're doing. If you make it sound like you're the one who figured out newspapers are dying, you win.

I mean, the point's not to fix anything. It's to describe the problem more dramatically than the next guy. If Steve Outing says newspapers have a "death spiral" and Clay Shirky predicts "a bloodbath," the point goes to Shirky.

Thus prepped, go here for something more serious: A reading list from Jay Rosen on the future of news (or death of news, whichever), featuring links to thoughtful pieces by many of the names you may remember from Dalling's piece.

Finally, go here for an op-ed in today's Chron by David Sirota on "newspapers' self-inflicted blows". He makes many good points, which you will have to read for yourself, but what really caught me was his lead:
At Northwestern University in the mid-1990s, the journalism professor with the most devoted student following was an understated teacher who said that substantive writing and reporting isn't everything, it's the only thing. Alternately despondent and sanguine, he reminded me of Grady from the book "Wonder Boys" when he told us that he spent weekends drinking in his closet and that he corrected papers in green ink because "green is the color of hope."

I love it: ".... it isn't everything, it's the only thing." And that's why, all evidence to the contrary, I could never become a "death of newspapers" blogger.

Unless of course, there was money in it. bk

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