Monday, September 24, 2007

Meeting Readers in New Places

Two of America's best and most important writers, the New York Times' Paul Krugman and the New Yorker's Hendrik Hertzberg, now have blogs. Krugman, a world-class economist, shows some commercial savvy by giving his blog the same name as his upcoming book, The Conscience of a Liberal. Hertzberg, an impossibly lucid and passionate writer who once served as a presidential speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, stands out for his elegant style and sensible take on things, even in the talent-rich environment of the New Yorker. I recommend them both.

Meanwhile, has recently launched Wide Open, an interesting experiment in pro-am online collaboration, in which it will host (in unedited fashion) four prominent independent political bloggers. It's the latest example of where the profession is headed: so-called "networked journalism," taking the best of print and online, and independent and traditional journalists, and serving them up in new and imaginative ways. That might make the lazy and/or paranoid hacks in both camps nervous, but so be it. In fact, the guy who coined the networked journalism term, Buzzmachine's Jeff Jarvis, has organized a conference on the subject next month in New York. It will be supported by none other than the visionary McArthur Foundation, famous for its "genius grants." Anyway, good luck to all these geniuses.


At 12:33 PM, Blogger Jill said...

I'm not selling anything connected to Costa Rica, but thanks for mentioning Wide Open, John. Very appreciated. I hope you'll comment and let us know when you think we should be pushing the envelope further. Not that we'll agree, but agreement isn't necessarily the goal.

At 3:10 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I don't know that we'll disagree so very often. Mostly, I'm just glad you'll have this additional outlet for your voice. Also that you'll be yet another important peg in the slow, steady march toward networked journalism. I can't think of a better person in the region to serve as a savvy ambassador to both sides. I'll be watching with great interest. Good luck. I know you won't let your head swell with the genius label.


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