Saturday, August 1, 2009

The New New York Times according to TechCrunch

Michael Arrington of TechCrunch has a vision of the financial future of journalism that involves the top writers and editors of the current NYT... walking. Read his 'what if" here.

He also includes some intriguing info re Politico, which is making money by offering a print edition of its online site, and AOL, which is silently building a newsroom on the cheap:

A couple of weeks ago I met the Politico guys just before they taped their Charlie Rose segment. I watched them live from the green room at the show, and read Michael Wolff’s excellent Vanity Fair article on the young company. Their news room is 100 strong and they have more people in the White House Bureau than any other brand. They have roughly the same traffic as we do - 7 million monthly visitors - but they’ve been around just half the time. How did they do it? The site was founded by well known political journalists who bailed to start their own company. They took their personal brands and credentials with them, and the readers followed. Today they are profitable - largely because they launched a three-day-a-week print version of the site. Amazing. Print isn’t dead (yet). Just the overhead is.

And earlier today I got a glimpse at what AOL is up to - they are hiring all the journalists being fired and laid off by the newspapers and magazines. And they now have a news room 1,500 journalists and editors strong. Amazingly, failing old media is throwing away their most valuable assets. And AOL is eagerly picking those assets up for a song. Before anyone knows it, AOL may be the most powerful news outlet in the world.

Journalists still matter. A lot. Especially the good ones.

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