Friday, October 06, 2006

Washington Post: Every Reporter Wants To Be A Blogger

Washington Post editor Len Downie offers a refreshing view of bloggers in stark comparison to the Star's Dennis Ryerson's negative view that we're just "noise." He says his reporters love blogs and everyone wants to be one. He tells Editor & Publisher:

Reporters love newsroom blogs, said Downie, because they put writers in better touch with their readers: "Everyone in our newsroom wants to be a blogger."And the blogs that pick apart every article that the Post produces are a good thing, said Downie, because they "keep the paper honest" and, even if their commentary isn't positive, bring people to the site."Blogs are not competitors and not problems," he said. "Instead we have a very interesting symbiotic relationship. Our largest driver of traffic is Matt Drudge."

It is reassuring to hear Downie admit that the blogs help keep the paper honest and, more importantly, drive traffic to their website, noting that the Drudge Report drives more traffic than any other site to the Post's site. As to the online competition with the newspaper's traditional print newspaper, Downie finds a silver lining. Its reach has grown dramatically because of the Internet:

While it's true that competition for print media has increased tremendously due to the Web, the Washington Post's overall audience has now become huge compared to what it once was, Downie added. And instead of weakening the paper's brand, as he said it was feared, it has strengthened it and made the Washington Post well known around the world.

Editor & Publisher also reports that Downie "speculated that perhaps in the future content sharing between old media and new media would be less of a one-way street, with print media taking cues and integrating ideas from multimedia integration and blogs." The Star's Dennis Ryerson would do well to heed Downie's advice. He obviously gets it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Are you listening, Dennis?

In many facets of newspaper evolution and production, The Post is a worldwide leader.

Now they've finally "discovered" that blogs can be helpful.


And, blogs have a esponsibility too, which, to my way of thinking AI has responded well. Blogs have to make sure that the blog owner's posts are authentic, to the best of the poster's knowledge. That's if they want to be credible.

Credibliity is hard-earned, and easily destroyed.

Good lluck, blogs. You now have a reputable partner. The ball's in your court.