April 30, 2008

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Papers are endangered. But I’m not sure the same is true about the collection, editing and printing of news. Or of journalism at its best (as well as its worst, which will always abound).

Marc (Andreessen, not Canter — from down here it’s so easy to confuse these tall guys) has started a serial posting on the subject of newspapers. It led me to revisit my advice for newspapers, which I first offered in ten-point form a little over a year ago.

It’s gratifying to see many papers following advice in numbers 1 through 6…

  1. Stop giving away the news and charging for the olds.
  2. Start featuring archived stuff on the paper’s website.
  3. Link outside the paper.
  4. Start following, and linking to, local bloggers and even competing papers (such as the local arts weeklies)
  5. Start looking toward the best of those bloggers as potential stringers
  6. Start looking to citizen journalists (CJs) for coverage of hot breaking local news topics

But still coming up short on the last three:

  1. Stop calling everything “content”.
  2. Uncomplicate your webistes, and get rid of those lame registration systems
  3. Get hip to the Live Web
  4. Publish Rivers of News for readers who read on mobile devices

So I just went to the other Marc’s site, and whoa! Dig the title of his latest post: How to build the mesh – #4: the Live Web. Way(s) to go!

Here’s where I wrote about The Live Web in 2005. Marc does a nice job of bringing the whole thing up to date. In that piece I give credit to my son Allen for coming up with the term in the first place, back in 2003 as I recall.

Hope it finally catches on.

And a hat tip to Chip Hoagland for getting me started on this.