: New York’s amazing. I ran into Jay Rosen on the street today as I headed to an MBA conference, where I was blathering on a panel. Then he emailed me to let me know that he and Anil Dash were speaking at noon at the Information Law Institute about how weblogs are changing the world. In the lobby on the way in, I met the famous Zach Rosen, Jay’s nephew, who built much of DeanSpace (along with Jay’s mother). In the room, there’s David Isenberg, expert in stupid networks (whom I just saw at ETech and who’s holding his own confab in April… update in a minute). So I’m here and I’ll blog.
: Anil is taking the crowd — many PhD candidates, a journalism teacher from Moscow, Red Burns of NYU’s ITP, a stellar crew — on the basics of weblogs.
He shows Glenn Reynolds blog and links from there to mine and says this page is a triumph of content over presentation. Anil truly hates this undesign. And he’s right.
: Anil shows the top story on Blodex for the Grey Tuesday music protest. A prof asks whether there has been major-media coverage. None.
: Michael Weiksner, a founder of e-the-people, is talking now. His blog.
E-thepeople sounded like a good idea when it started (I tried to do a business deal with them) but it never quite took off. It was a one-size-fits-all space for any cause, any grassroots effort to start a petition or a movement. Deanspace, on the other hand, exploded, as did MoveOn.org. That tells me that the tool is just a tool; it’s the movement that draws the people.
: Now Jay Rosen is up. “I called it Pressthink because that’s what I do… I didn’t want to do it until I had the perfect title and this is the perfect title.” That is how Nick Denton thinks, too; he won’t start a site until he has the ideal name.
Jay says that when he asked people advice on starting a weblog, everyone said the same thing: Make it short. And that’s why he didn’t.
Jay says he has his own magazine in his weblog, but “it has an outlet to the sea.”
He says the weblog lets him to be an online equal to, say CJR.org.
Jay’s saying many smart things that I’d dilute if I tried to summarize them. Just go reread his seminal post on what’s radical about the weblog form in journalism; that’s what he’s going through now.