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08/02/2006

Media Guardian: professional journalism will win readers in the attention economy

Kim Fletcher wrote a piece in Monday's Guardian Media  supplement reflecting attitudes in UK newsrooms to their papers' integration with online media:

The Daily Telegraph has become obsessed with podcasts and weblogs; the Mail, Mirror and News International have been buying up internet companies; the Guardian has unveiled plans for greater integration between its paper and its web activities. Everyone is looking at US newspapers, such as the New York Times, working out the best way to run all publishing activities in one place.

He gives a good insight into some of the challenges that newspapers face in making the most of the Web, and some of the concerns felt by journalists, but what caught my eye was his optimistic appraisal of the opportunity for professionals to find a prominent place in the connected media world:

There is a bigger audience for pieces by professional journalists than for amateur work because, for the most part, it is better. By maintaining high standards, journalists will ensure their work continues to stand out on the web.

He's right. In the market for attention, quality will out, it will win readers - the best content will flow through the networks of connected media, professional and personal.

How to make money out of that, as Mr Fletcher concedes, is another matter. But where there's crowd there's a market, and the market will find a way.

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Comments

Thank you for the common-sense approach that we all need to be reminded of: even newspapers will keep their readers if there is simple, decent journalism. That means solid investigation, objectivity, and excellent writing.

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