Content Ninja's Weblog

An exploratory journey on the edge of newspaper evolution

Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death May 9, 2008

Filed under: journalism,newspapers — contentninja @ 4:35 pm
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I came across a reference to this site in Paul Gillin’s post today at Social Media Today: Praying for Papers urges that folks do just that.

It’s like saying your football team won because God was on the quarterback’s side. Hmm. Seems highly unlikely to me that a higher power would be overly concerned with such trivialities as which team wins and how many newspapers close this year.

Life is what we make of it, folks. If newspapers will have a savior, it will be of the human, not divine, persuasion (and I doubt there will be any one savior). Look in the mirror, not to the heavens. What can we do to save a job, the newspaper, the Fourth Estate?

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3 Responses to “Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death”

  1. Dale Jones Says:

    This isn’t breaking any ground, but one thing we have to do right away is change minds within the newsroom that we’re not just a print product. Too many newsroom staffers still think print first, some of them print exclusively. We need a “breaking news” mentality, not a “first on the street” mentality.

    It’s happening, to be sure, but it’s not happening quickly enough. Hell, I have to remind myself sometimes that we’re on a 24/7 news cycle. Old habits die hard, but if we don’t break this one we’re in worse trouble than most of think we’re already in.

    We’ve always prided ourselves in getting more and digging deeper than other media. Now we have to present it quicker in digestible chunks that people will consume.

    Some days I’m glad I’m getting old and getting out soon. Other days I wish I were young and getting in on the ground floor of something new and exciting. Guess I’ll just be glad I’m still somewhere kind of in between!

  2. iowakitkat Says:

    Dale makes a great point, one that we online staffers have been pressing for years now. Time for the thinking to shift to understanding if a story breaks on GazetteOnline, it was still a Gazette breaking story, just not ink on paper.
    The culture in the newsroom is changing but slowly. It needs to speed up and we need to be approaching both breaking news and lively, engaging reporting on “soft” news that will grab the reader’s attention.

  3. Matthew M Says:

    For some reason I just thought of this.

    Create a key-chain scanner that scans bar codes on newspaper coupons and ads. You carry the key chain scanner to the store and the clerk reads it in a USB port for you to get your savings.

    If you serve print-only ads that are scan-able and offer the key chain scanners for a small price or free, people will still want the printed paper. Well my mom would anyway.


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