Are Blogs The New Newspapers?

Mar 29th, 2009 | By | Category: Citizen Media, Commentary, Featured Story

The Huffington Post announced today that it plans to bankroll a group of investigative journalists, directing them at first to look at stories about the nation’s economy.

The liberal-leaning blog site is collaborating with The Atlantic Philanthropies and other donors to launch the Huffington Post Investigative Fund with an initial budget of $1.75 million. That should be enough for 10 staff journalists who will primarily coordinate stories with freelancers, said Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post.

Huffington also announced that the work that the journalists produce will be available for any publication or Web site to use at the same time it is posted on The Huffington Post.

The announcement comes as some are worried about the future of journalism, as newspapers across the United States are laying off hundreds or shutting down completely.

Huffington’s move raises the question: Are blogs the new newspapers?

The Huffington Post already has a broader reach, with only seven staff reporters, than most newspapers. As it scales up, it promises to move the idea of a blog site into new territory.

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4 Responses to “Are Blogs The New Newspapers?”

  1. msbpodcast says:

    The Global Hews [ ] and the Huffington Post [ ] are part of what is coming next as newspapers are dying (and the trees would breathe a sigh of relief if they had lungs.)

    The age of the printing press is over. (After all, it didn’t do Gutenberg any good and he died broke anyway,)

    There will still be anachronisms.

    Like non-digital cameras are still produced, (although the flood of the sixties is down to a trickle and film is getting harder to source.)

    But the big players, like Heidelberg, A B Dick, Merguenthaler and the fifty or so press makers in China of any size will slowly fade away like ink smudges. Their competition will fade away faster though.

    The media are all moving to the lowest costing denominator: the internet and the web.

    And so the newspapers are moving to the web to give away the family jewels, which strikes me as a mugs game.

    Even if the existing news reporting organizations
    • manage keep some ‘news’ fresh for themselves while “giving away he ‘olds’ ” and
    • manage to partner with people like the post office to find a way to
    • get the money for their content while
    • the post offices get to collect for the fulfillment of the contract between the end-user/consumer of the news and the news providers,
    even if they manage to survive moving to the same internet which has shifted the advertising revenue to Google, craigslist and the bazillion manufacturer web sites, they will never again be in the same positions of power and privilege.

    “Tempus fugita” (time flew)

    Or perhaps more appropriately someone needs to whisper in their ears “Sic transit gloria mundi”

  2. Georg says:

    There’s no way that blogs are ready to replace newspapers.

    The medium regional newspapers will probably die out, online and offline, but the larger papers, like Washington Post or the New York Times, bring their reputations to the web and will be able to compete with blog sites like Huffington.

    In a few years, though, will you be able to tell the difference between Huffington and other news sites?

  3. msbpodcast says:

    There is no way that blogs can replace newspapers…

    Until the general level of writing and all of the research, fact checking and editing becomes automated (I give it five years before writing tools get that good, even in the internet age,) an news organization is absolutely essential.

    But that doesn’t mean that that the quality of blogs can’t rise to the challenge.

    its just that blogs have to evolve to become collaborative efforts (where the software has add some features to support it.)

    But it will happen…

  4. […] here may be the answer, or at least the direction.  The Huffington Post says it plans to hire a group of investigative journalists.  Thier first job will be to develop stories about the economy.  […]

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