April 16, 2009 at 3:09 pm | Posted in read this, the media | 2 Comments
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Last night I attended a seminar on social media networking for journalists led by one of my former professors at Columbia J-School, Sree Sreenivasan, who has become a kind of new media/technology guru. At the time, he taught a course called something like, “New Media for Journalists,” in which we learned how to use the Internet for research and maybe how to create a webpage. In other words, there wasn’t much to the class (frankly, I remember finding it irrelevant — no offense Sree. You were just way ahead of all of us — I mean, I only acquired a legit email address in 1995…).

Of course, little did we know back in the mid-1990s how integrated journalism and the internet would become, and how this integretation would “threaten” traditional media. If I were still a print journalist right now, I would be fighting like hell to get as many Twitter followers as possible (Sree mentioned that some guy had just scored a book deal based on his Tweets — blogs are, like, so over) and would of course have a blog. Yet, were my employer a newspaper, they’d probably be fighting me every step of the way, lest I give my content away for free.
>My brother-in-law, the internet-savvy Pax Arcana, had a witty (as always) — but yet astute and insightful — post yesterday analyzing this impass and the looming failure of traditional media. Yes, it will cease to exist as we know it. And until recently I was one of the traditionalists who would argue, “You can’t let a newspaper fail.” But face it Bostonians: someone is going to buy the Boston Globe, sell off its cumbersome assets (printing presses, trucks), outsource weekend delivery, and move almost everything online.
Anyway, the overall point of the seminar was that the conversation (the big, meta conversation) is now online. It’s on Facebook, Twitter, and even LinkedIn. So journalists have to get in there — to get story ideas, to make contacts. This may seem obvious, but if you think about it philosophically (or even from a marketing perspective) it can be kind of overwhelming.* And, of course, media companies have to be where the conversation is, as well, so they too need Facebook pages or Twitter feeds. (That’s why CNN and Astin Kutcher apprarently are locked in an epic battle to be the first to claim one million Twitter followers. For reals.)
And, to that end, Marbury v. Madison Ave. has to be there too — so you can now follow me on Twitter (where you’ll get a Tweet each time I have a new post, or with links to other articles and tweets, and/or whatever else I figure out you can do on there).

*And exciting. Last night’s event reminded me how passionate I am about the media on that very meta/philosophical level — as much about the industry and its scope as about the craft itself.



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  1. Not sure how to link my blog to my tweet but I should figure it out!

  2. Does this mean I have to start using twitter now?

    How about getting that coffee?

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