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« QUESTION THREE: What is journalism, anyway? | Main | QUESTION ONE: How to support community journalism? »

June 29, 2007


Doug Thompson

Is Journalism the profession of reporting the news or the method used to distribute that news? I would argue that the medium is not as important as the message (with apologies to Marshall McLuhan).

Does it matter if we get our news from TV, a printed broadsheet, a computer screen or a PDA? The object should be to become a trusted source to provide the news by the most efficient medium possible.

A few years ago, Howie Kurtz wrote in The Washington Post that the growth of the Internet means "anybody with a modem and a mouth can become a publisher." True, but the largest, most-read web sites are still traditional media outlets.

Journalism can survive if journalism adapts.

rick edmonds

I don't think printing pressess are "all but obsolete." Print advertising has perceived value that justifies a premium rate and is gnerally welcomed by newspaper readers. That is mainly to say that the online business model challenge is doubly difficult since a parallel value to advertisers at news sites has yet to develop and may not.


I think "all but obsolete" is an overstatement. That day might come, but it's not around the corner.

Also, I have some concern that those of us who are more digitally connected could forget about those who aren't, and possibly can't, be.

Although people with lower incomes are not the biggest audience for news, they at least have the opportunity. Most weekday papers cost only 50 cents, less than the cost of a soda or candy bar. Many TVs can be had for a few hundred dollars, some for even less than $100.

Compare that to the cost of a computer, plus Internet access, plus the space for it. And although cell phones cost much less, they don't have the same delivery capabilities.

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