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Jun. 3 2009 - 10:14 am | 5 views | 0 recommendations | 0 comments

Paying for Journalism; Bringing Experience to new platforms

It’s “funny” when they write like this about it.

Reading the newspaper: Brookgreen Gardens in P...

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Will Arianna Huffington Be Paying You This Month? [Charts]

The Huffington Post has been taking flack for not paying writers, but it’s not so simple. Most bloggers aren’t paid, but some are. On staff, there are paid interns, unpaid interns, and paying interns. So if you’re trying to get paid at Huffington’s innovative new media game-changer, it might help to be born to the right parents, if you can pull that off.

Ms. Huffington is held up as someone to be looked toward as we discuss the New News – Huffington has been empaneled before the Senate, and is frequently asked how things will bein the “New Way.” Her views on journalism are regarded as Important.

Huffington Post says half of its 22 interns will be paid

This is not a pile-on; The Huffington Post is without doubt a resounding success story; *who’s* success, for the most part, is what’s in question.

“The site is thoroughly dependent on the reporting that Arianna Huffington has spent three decades bashing,” says Chotiner, who briefly worked for Huffington. “One of The Huffington Post’s tricks is to link to a mainstream news story by means of a politicized headline.

They are *very* successful at this: packaging others’ stories, borrowing a lede, making sure the search engines see their spin before seeing even the source. It’s an effectiveness to be wished for, without doubt. Again, though, paying for original journalism is firmly within Ms. Huffington’s purview, yet Ms. Huffington – as a rule – prefers not to do so.

Ibarguen resents criticism of newspapers’ early digital efforts

… all of us who came from the old media had conceptual constraints. We tried to simply go from one medium to another

This is simply not true in my experience:

  • not everyone brought “constraints” from their previous medium
  • many embraced the possibilities of the new while bringing what was felt was the Best Of the “previous” medium along
  • there wasn’t a whole lot of “trying” much of the time – the new medium – and its potential – was there and so was the pursuit of goals that had existed beforehand

There are understandable, vested interests at newspaper orgs. These interests have scuttled more progress on the digital front than any conceptual constraints ever did. Again, it’s understandable – there’s a business to run, and there are few clear ways ways to create sustainable revenues withe news online. It’s a work in progress.


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    I've been building web stuff (pardon the argot) since ~1994. Since we started up, I've lead technology for True / Slant. I spent the previous 8 years working with the magazines and web properties of Condé Nast; the last 18 months of that were working on parade.com and with their hundreds of newspaper partners. Before that I built cool products and businesses for About.com, Prodigy and IBM.

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