Friday, April 26, 2013

New News?


On the way to yoga today Mr.T and I were talking about the search by news organizations for a new funding formula. The traditional formula developed by newspapers in the late 19th and early 20th-century was to use subscriptions and sales to sell advertising space to companies wishing to flog their wares to newspaper customers. This old formula no longer works and all of the media organizations are searching for the next way to guarantee funding. But maybe that is the wrong approach. 

With the growth of the internet and the multiple platforms it creates that are constantly changing we have multiple ways of collecting information. This wealth of information has changed not only the business model but also news itself. Journalists who chased down stories and searched out information have been replaced by increasingly smaller bits of information that are passed and traded around the web. While this wealth of information is exciting it also needs to be parsed. We don't need more news, but more analysis. In the age of information technology, it is not the news itself that is important, but rather how to make sense of all this information, to analyze the deluge of information. It would be nice to see a platform that was devoted to writing and writers who addressed information rather than simply repeating it. We need writers who can parse all this news for what is important. Think only of the New Yorker, the Op-Ed pieces in the New York Times or articles in The New York Review of Books for examples of pieces that address substance rather than simply news. 

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