Thursday, May 04, 2006

Ten, Already!? 

The Wall Street Journal online edition is celebrating its 10th year. Wha? Already? It couldn't be that long. But it is, and it has grown before our eyes from a small and somewhat useless thing to a force in journalism.

The anniversary is a reminder of how much the internet has changed traditional media, and this article on what reporters do today is proof. Reporters now, especially in smaller markets, have so many more skill sets than I ever had when I worked in journalism. And, less time to do the job right. And, no clear idea of what it is that they should be doing first. And too little editing help.

It is notable that there are still dunderheads among editors who insist on holding stories for the print edition of the paper. It is also interesting that newspapers don't quite know what to do with blogs. They want reporters to comment but not too freely, and they certainly don't want negative comments about the newspaper itself. Hmmmm.

Then there is the pay issue... Publishing has remained true to its tradition of underpaying its workers.

What does all this mean? PR will inevitably change as some, or many, of these reporters leave the news business and "enter the dark side." They will bring much-needed and tested skills with an understanding of web-based publishing.

I'm looking forward to meeting them.


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