Friday, November 5, 2010

New media, extinction, gridlock: Read!

(via Flickr: jj_pappas423)
It's the weekend. Time to wrap your brain around these ideas:

"New Journalism Ecosystem Thrives" (Investigative Reporting Workshop): The iLab, as it's called, a part of American University's School of Communication, set about chronicling the new nonprofit news operations that have risen as Old Media has declined. Charles Lewis, founder of the group, calls it a "living resource" in that it is a first pass at a list, with additions and corrections expected. One interesting finding: "Of the 60 nonprofit organizations profiled here, 38, or 63 percent, were begun just since 2006," he writes. And another: some two-thirds of the people who work full-time for these organizations once were employed at commercial enterprises. Be sure to click on the interactive map and the link to the detailed list of the nonprofits, complete with head-count and budget information.

Music video interlude: Because my daughter and I couldn't get far enough into the crowd at the Stewart-Colbert rally on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., to see anything via JumboTron or hear everything we wanted to (over the constant chanting of "Louder, louder, LOUDER!" from those behind us.)

"NBCU: Old Is the New Young" (Mediaweek): Boomers, rejoice. You no longer are irrelevant once you hit the far side of the 25-54 demo. Now, says NBC Universal, 55-64 is just as important for advertisers as 18-34. And the company has even given the group a new name: AlphaBoomers. W00t!

"Launch of Newspaper Extinction Timeline for Every Country in the World" (Trends in the Living Networks): In case you want to keep track of how soon the newspaper (the ink-on-dead-trees variety) will disappear, futurist Ross Dawson has obliged with a color-coded map and graphic outlining "key factors" in their extinction. For the U.S., he predicts they'll be irrelevant by 2017; Canada isn't far behind at 2020. Unfortunately, some of the countries where newspapers are likely to hang on longer have also been identified as among the most dangerous for journalists, so moving there might not be a good career decision.

"10 Things I Wish I Knew about Freelancing a Year Ago" (Adam Westbrook): Westbrook, a radio broadcaster turned multimedia journalist, offers lessons from his 12 months as a freelancer. You'll need to click over to a French site to get the actual list, but the tips are in English. (Is it just me, or do some of them sound more negative than positive: "Being underpaid sucks"; "Cold-calling does not work"?) Words to the wise in any event.

Bonus video: Last week, I attended a day-long program in Washington, D.C., put on by the Donald W. Reynolds Center for Business Journalism, a group that offers free training to business reporters. (Disclosure: I've taken several of their courses in the past year; I'm a fan.) Our lunch speaker was Ezra Klein of The Washington Post, who coordinates Wonkbook, a blog about economic and public policy. His talk, pre-election, focused on how partisan Congress had become -- particularly the Senate -- and predicted "less and less will get done" with a new Congress in which each party controls a house. The Reynolds Center taped his talk. Listen for his discussion of the predicted gridlock beginning at about 3:50.

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