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Hypergene MediaBlog » The vision thing

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Tuesday, 03 Feb 2004

The vision thing

Jeff Jarvis has an posted a provocative post inspired by a speech by Martin Nisenholtz, the head of New York Times Digital.

Jeff gives Nisenholtz props for his message but gently prods his reluctance to see that the future he is describing already exists to a large degree.

One of the more interesting points Jeff makes is the need for a “new architecture” for news stories. This reminded us a of a piece we wrote a while back called “Amazoning the News”.

Perhaps it’s time to think about “Amazoning the News V2.0.” Stay tuned.

For the record, here is our comment to Jeff’s post:

a few years back (2001) we wrote about a way to structure news stories with a similar philosophy. it is called “Amazoning the News.”

we presented at the American Society of Newspaper Editors. the idea was soon published in The American Editor magazine.

at the time blogs were just starting to take off and RSS had yet to find much of a use beyond headline feeds for portals.

the point of the “Amazoning” talk was to spur editors out of a traditional mindset and start them thinking network before they fell too far behind the curve. however, with the exception of one editor from poland (god bless him), we didn’t get any response from the “old media types.”

i mention this because my experience (including stints at The Detroit News and Dallas Morning News) gives me little hope that old media will be able to embrace or encourage new forms of journalism any time soon - at least beyond delighting in it’s novelty.

to jeff’s point it might be smart to be cautious while being visionary - but how far can that really get you? the potential for change is too great to be considered incremental. and there is the corporate culture for control, which will only grow with changes in FCC ownership rules.

remember: old media wants to own the network. it wants to sanction the message. that is it’s nature.

but, what does old media do when innovation stops being incremental. what does it do when its audience suddenly finds its voice?

Posted on Feb 03, 2004 | 12:16 am EST
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