links for 2009-07-03

  • Kevin: Lyn Headley writes: "Relations between journalism and the web have always been tense, but things are getting nasty. A coalition of publishers, journalists and scholars is taking shape in opposition to "parasitic aggregators" in order to "protect" "original" content. Moral and political agitation is afoot which will challenge deeply held convictions about the nature of journalism and the web. These forces align well with a number of ventures aiming to lower the barriers preventing orderly payment in exchange for access to news. At the other end of the spectrum, a new crop of startups and ventures, recently profiled by Steve Outing, is working an angle some are calling micropatronage. Will either of these approaches encourage a sustainable, high quality journalism?"
  • Kevin: * The 2009 categories are:
    o The Knight Award for Public Service
    o General Excellence in Online Journalism
    o General Excellence in Online Journalism, Non-English
    o The Gannett Foundation Award for Technical Innovation in the Service of Digital Journalism
    o Breaking News
    o Specialty Site Journalism
    o Investigative Journalism
    o Multimedia Feature Presentation
    o Online Topical Reporting/Blogging
    o Online Commentary/Blogging
    o Community Collaboration Award
    o Outstanding Use of Digital Technologies
    o Online Video Journalism
    o Student Journalism
  • Kevin: An overview of new attempts by newspapers in the US to build local blog networks around newspapers. Simon Owens looks at a blog aggregator in Chicago, ChicagoNow, which is linked to the Chicago Tribune. Bloggers will get a share of the revenue from the site. At the LA Times, their blog editor, Tony Pierce, wants to focus on 'posts, not blogs', linking to individual posts. Owens writes, "Pierce said he thinks blog networks are only the first step toward true engagement. Despite the hype over Web 2.0, not all content deserves to be highlighted for a newspaper's readership. To be truly innovative, he said, editors are going to have to roll up their sleeves and wade through drivel to find the gems."
  • Kevin: "Google has eliminated an experimental feature that allowed people quoted in articles in Google News to post comments on those articles."
  • Kevin: Will Bunch gives his thoughts on why newspapers didn't invent Google News. "The problem, Michael Nielsen argues, is not a story of failure but of success — newspapers had developed an elaborate architeciture to do the things they did well, and making changes to adjust to Internet start-ups would have done more harm than good. …To compete, a newspaper could lay off that award-winning photo talent — but at what cost to morale, to the paper's brand name, and to its internal way of doing business?" I think the other problem is that newspapers still are rarely part of the link economy. Linking to other sources is still an anathema to many journalists.
  • Kevin: Twitter demographics are difficult and contradictory. Some of this is down to measuring traffic solely through the web interface, and a recent article showed that the vast majority of Twitter usage, 80%, comes through their API. Nick Burcher looks at statistics from Quantcast, Hitwise and and compete. The result is inconclusive at best.