Book it

The Santa Barbara Book & Author Festival started last night with an award presentation to local author T. Coraghessan Boyle, and continues tomorrow with, among other things, a panel titled What’s Next for Newspapers. On the panel will be: Jeramy Gordon, editor and publisher of of the Santa Barbara Daily Sound; Matt Kettman, senior editor of The Independent; Jerry Roberts, author of Never Let Them See You Cry and former managing and executive editor of the San Francisco Chronicle and the Santa Barbara News Press, respectively; Peter Sklar, publisher of Edhat; and Craig Smith, columnist, law professor and author of Craig Smith’s Blog. I’m the moderator.

A few questions running through my mind…

  Will all newspapers eventually be free?
  How can papers, which have a daily or weekly heartbeat, keep up with the hummingbird-heart pulse rate of Web-based journalism?
  Do you see the newspaper becoming Web publications with print versions, or (as they mostly are now) vice versa?
  Is there enough advertising for all of you?
  Will advertising survive as a business model? What will be the mix of advertising and other sources of revenue?
  How do you see the emerging ecosystem that includes bloggers and expert locals who are in good positions to participate in the larger journalistic process?
  What will be the complementary or competitive roles of radio and TV stations in the future local journalistic ecosystem? Bear in mind that analog TV will be a dead chicken in early 2009.
  Is it possible, really, to replace a once-great institution such as the News-Press?
  How do you see each of your roles playing out in the event of an emergency such as an earthquake, a wildfire, a tsunami?
  What do you see as Santa Barbara’s role in the journalistic world? Are we leaders? Followers? Both? Neither?

Be interesting to see how it goes. Hope to see some of ya’ll there.

1 comment

  1. Nishant Kaushik’s avatar

    You might find Scott Adam’s take on this amusing. Read his blog post on the future of newspapers at

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