I’m no scholar, but I did Google the terms “saving journalism” and “future of journalism”, and didn’t find the answer I was looking for, so I’m turning it over to you.
With all the doom and gloom recently, Newspapers are fâ€™ed, you’d think that someone would have stepped-in by now and tried to help revive our dying industry, right? That’s what I’m asking.
I’m a glass half-full kinda guy, but even I’m beginning to see the glass as a little more empty every day. I’ll admit it, I’m scared.
I know there are deep pockets in journalism, for example, The Knight News Challenge contest awards $5 million for ideas using digital media to deliver news and information in real time to people in real places. There are more deep pockets, I’m sure. But how about $5 million to help deliver a saving breath to journalism, in real time.
Now this is my serious and naive question, why aren’t these deep pocket patrons of journalism, setting-up journalism incubators in major cities around the country, hiring folks from the business world and some very talented and laid off journalists, to figure this whole thing out. I’m talking about the bigger questions. Revenue models, usability and design, along with local and citizen journalism innovations, etc.
When I read things like this:
Former San Francisco Chronicle Editor Phil Bronstein said: “Anybody who tells you they have the answer to that question, ‘whatâ€™s the successful business model for journalism,’ is lying to you. Because no one has it.
Inside I’m screaming, “Shouldn’t SOMEONE have the answer? or at least be working on it?” You know, like in a Hollywood movie when a space shuttle in orbit is having trouble and the crew will die if the smart folks in the room don’t come up with an answer on how to get them back to earth, FAST. They circle the wagons, gather the smartest folks and lock them in a room until they figure this crap out!
So, is someone working on it? Please tell me they are, so I can sleep at night. I picture a smoke filled room somewhere, with important people with deep pockets, putting their resources together to figure things out? Is this just a dream? Too naive? Doesn’t corporate America do this kind of thing when they’re backed in a corner? Why can’t journalism companies and foundations do it? Are they?