Blogging the Don’t-Bee way
Eric Zorn, Chicago Tribune blogger, has excellent advice for any major media organization itching to join the revolution:
To edit a blog almost instantly and whenever the blogger wants to post would require an expenditure of resources from the sponsoring publication that dwarfs the income — right now, essentially zero in the free-access info-market of the web.
Yet to edit a blog conventionally — putting it into a comparatively slow, one-way pipeline toward publication — robs it of its essential blogness. It takes a potentially fresh new medium that, as Andrew Sullivan has pointed out, is a hybrid of talk radio and print, and turns it back into just more old medium….
In reality, what needs to emerge here if the j-blog isn’t going to die at birth, is an understanding on the part of editors and readers that, procedurally, a blog is much more like an appearance on a TV panel program or talk-radio show than it is a fully sanctioned, completely vetted declaration in cold type.
My fellow columnists and I frequently appear on radio and television and offer live (and in many cases broadcast on the internet), unedited statements under the color of our publications. Several Tribune staffers even have their own radio shows. We give speeches. We respond to e-mail and letters in writing. We give interviews to the New York Times.
And almost never is the substance and wording of such communication approved in advance by minders or editors.
Very, very rarely — never in my case — this freedom causes real problems.