Friday, October 19, 2007


In a New York Times Minute

... the stock of the Old Gray Lady gets dumped by its second largest shareholder like Sen. Craig at a fundamentalists' fundraiser.

Amazingly, the NYT held out for the longest on making people pay to read their "Select" portions, which meant paying for the, uh hum, privilege of reading hackneyed, washed-up columnists and their (often baseless) opinions. To paraphrase an old saying, opinions are like *ssh*les and everyone's got one, along with their own blog. Did you really want to pay actual money to read Dorothy Parker wannabe Maureen Dowd?

As for "traditional content," i.e. "news," some of the best scoops these days come from willing or unwilling "amateurs" armed with cheap and plentiful digital cameras, cellphones, laptops, and Wi-Fi connections. Think Saddam Hussein's hanging, or Michael Richards imploding at a comedy club. Furthermore, with direct access to news makers, scientists, economists, researchers, government agencies and foreign nationals---many with their own web sites and cyber-P.R.--- who needs traditional journalism?

The Times may still be the record of note to beltway and fellow print journalists who don't know any better. As the Comic Book Guy (no, not our gracious host) on The Simpsons recently said, "I get my news from the Internet---like everyone else under the age of 70!"

Of course, the inevitable video link below. NOT one of my favorite Don Henley songs (that would probably be "Get Over It" from Hell Freezes Over). Maudlin enough, though, for the NYT's current fortunes:

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