Newspapers take notice - Blogs are the future

Don Dodge · July 17, 2008 · Short URL:

Opinion and commentary are replacing "just the facts" reporting

Blogs are going professional and replacing newspapers for insightful, fast breaking, news and analysis. The same thing happened to network TV news years ago. Chris Mathews, Tim Russert, Bill O'Reilly, and others replaced the "just report the facts" news casts with more personal, insightful, opinionated commentary.

techmeme_leaderboard TechMeme has several blog articles over the past week that made me think about the parallels between TV news vs. Meet the Press, and newspapers vs. blogs. The direction is the same. More personal and more opinionated. Chris Mathews, Tim Russert, and Bill O'Reilly are personalities that make the news personal, interesting, and sometimes controversial. Blogs do the same thing for text based news and commentary. Newspapers and magazines should pay attention. The smart ones already are.

The Industry Standard says the TechMeme Leaderboard of "A-List" bloggers is being replaced by professional publishers.

"the old-school A-listers aren't being displaced by the many talented B-to-Z listers out there. Rather, the Leaderboard is increasingly populated by mainstream publishers, tech blog networks, and corporate blogs and PR sites."

Fred Wilson, an A-list blogger and VC, thinks blogs are personal and that is what makes them unique. Fred says;

"This blog is me and I am this blog. It's mine and will always be mine. I understand why many of the individuals who made blogging what it is are either moving on or turning their blogs into businesses. That's the way it is."

Blogs vs Newspapers - Big Differences - We are starting to see professional publishers (newspapers and magazines) get into blogging and make it a business. This makes perfect sense to me. But there are big differences. Blogs are personal. The author is the star, not the newspaper brand name. Blogs are news and commentary, not just news. Blogs are fast breaking stories that can be edited and updated later, not highly polished newspaper articles that get printed tomorrow.

There will always be a place for network TV news, newspapers and magazines. Blogs provide another channel for the big media publishers to leverage their talented writers and brand, with several advantages. Blogs have the advantage of instant delivery over the Internet, and basically zero cost of distribution. It is generally accepted that blogs will be fast, unedited, frequently updated, and opinionated.

Bambi Francisco and Vator.TV are an excellent example of this transition from "just the facts" reporting to opinion and analysis written by real people in the industry. Bambi brings the same professionalism from CBS Marketwatch to Vator TV News, but adds the conversational medium of blogs. Bambi has also done a great job recruiting industry veterans to write and produce video segments for Vator.TV.

Blogs are a conversation - Newspapers and print media are one way broadcasts. Blogs encourage conversation with comments and cross linking. The writers are accessible and responsive. This is why I get most of my news from online news sites and blogs.

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