Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Suburban Journals Article Today

Suburban Journals Article Today

Featured in today's South Side Journal, South City Journal, Southwest City Journal, Oakville-Mehlville Journal, and South County Journal (but unfortunately not in the North Side Journal):

"The New Media: Bloggers Find Niche in St. Louis Information Scene"

The following blogs are mentioned, generally in a positive light:

  • Steve Patterson's Urban Review - St. Louis
  • Dave Drebes et al's, Arch City Chronicle
  • Chris Westmeyer's Praxair Watch
  • My very own Ramblings by Joe Frank, urbanist!
  • Richard Callow's
  • Josh Wiese's 24th Ward St. Louis Politics

    There are also some less positive comments about blogging from Don Corrigan, Webster University prof of communications/journalism, editor of the Webster-Kirkwood Times and South County Times (a regional competitor of the Suburban Journals), regular contributor to the excellent St. Louis Journalism Review, and faculty advisor to the Webster University Journal student paper.

    Corrigan does note that blogging "keeps traditional media on its toes and keeps it from sitting on stories.

    However, his main arguments seem to be that "The people who commonly set themselves up as bloggers don't have journalism backgrounds. They don't understand the ethics of the profession," and "The vast amount of stuff that goes on blogs is just a lot of hot air."

    I appreciate Corrigan's concern about the fracturing of media coverage, but realistically, traditional print media cannot respond to ongoing events as quickly as bloggers can. Further, most letters-to-the-editor aren't going to be printed because of limited space availability. Blogging gives opinionated folks like me another way to make their views public.

    Newspaper reporters, editors, etc. deserve to be appreciated by society and by their employers for the work they do. I am a member of the "WashTech" technology workers' local 37083 of the Communications Workers of America (The Newspaper Guild is also part of CWA), so I am well aware of the major hits that news professionals are taking right now. Similarly, IT professionals are getting hit hard by corporate cutbacks in the form of outsourcing and offshoring.

    However, I don't think blogging should get much blame for these massive job cuts. The major culprit is the consolidation of corporate media, including TV, radio and print. The ever-greater push for more profits to please the stockholders is what's really putting the squeeze on newspaper workers.

    Admittedly, my house did drop our Post-Dispatch subscription last year, but that was due to continuing problems with on-time delivery and even moreso due to our need to cut expenses in the face of ever-growing bills and stagnant/declining income.

    Anyway, I never expected this little side project of mine to be getting so much attention: first the RFT in October '05, and now this.

    Appropriately, this Friday will mark the 3rd anniversary of my first posting on this blog!

    Anonymous said...

    Lee's Posties are set to redo their STLtoday website soon, but as Marston over at Commonspace points out, it's mostly just a change in colors.

    In addition to the crazed rants on the STLtoday forums or the Journals' Town Talk, maybe the Posties need their own blogs, like Mannies has tried on politics.

    But the Post should link such blogs easily off of STLtoday or tie them back to the paper. Otherwise, indies will continue to win more tech-savvy readers via their e-journalism, biased or not.

    Urban Review - St. Louis said...

    It was funny talking to both reporters as I explained the software and RSS feeds. I quickly realized my site was more user friendly than the Journal's portion of STLtoday. They have no RSS feeds and their articles last only a week or so. I'm not sure they like being part of the old media.

    Matt Fernandez said...

    Too bad I didn't get a chance to call Merkel. Damn work. Oh well. Good job with the article to those that got a chance to be included.

    Lily Bleu said...

    Why do I not get noticed on these local blog articles? Argh. It is very frustrating to have a local blog, put so much effort into it, know that I am a good writer, and never be the blog to be recognized. Congrats all the same.

    (So jealous I could spit - *laugh*)

    Joe said...

    It was really weird - Jim Merkel called me on the morning Tuesday December 27th, just as I was leaving for work, totally out of the blue.

    I guess my phone number is out there on my web site, and he'd talked to me before about a previous story, so I'm pretty easy to find.