CATHY SEIPP: Old farts vs. bloggers:
Iâ€™d say that if it takes you a month to think of an idea for a blogging post you probably shouldnâ€™t be blogging – or maybe even reporting or editing, at least not for the sorts of salaries they pay you at the Times, where indeed you can make a nice living while being almost completely bereft of ideas. Thatâ€™s why Iâ€™m less sympathetic than many at the cost-cutting standoff going on now between the Tribune Company and its sometimes bloated L.A. outpost.
But maybe thatâ€™s me, and I admit this opinion may be flavored my general prejudice against writing coaches, which Baker was at the Times and now is on a freelance basis. From his own site: â€œHelping you is my calling. Getting there is your job.â€ Oh, dear. Journalists who want to help always strike me as better suited to social work or something, and unfortunately their earnest attitudes are one of the mainstream mediaâ€™s biggest problems now in dealing with the rude new world of Internet journalism. . . . Some of bloggingâ€™s important elements include: regular and frequent posting, interactivity with readers, reaction and commentary to mainstream media news, links proving oneâ€™s point, and so on. You can get away with weakness in some of these areas if others are strong enough. But some perfectly fine journalists are just not bloggers, they donâ€™t really get the Internet, and therein lies the basic problem facing newspapers today.
Read the whole thing.