We’re on top of that story

We’re on top of that story
: When Janet Jackson’s top came off, Adrian Holovaty saw more than a breast. He saw the future of news. And he’s right.

He happened into the Super Bowl during halftime:

Well, we all know what happened during that performance. And I saw it — live. Er, I thought I saw it. I wasn’t sure. The camera cut away so quickly that I couldn’t really tell what’d happened.

So I did what any self-respecting Internet-junkie would do: I flipped open my laptop and hit the Web.

CNN had nothing. MSNBC had nothing. Neither did the New York Times, Washington Post or Chicago Tribune. Google News didn’t say anything about it, either. I checked a bunch of other big-media sites but couldn’t find any coverage.

I began to think I’d just been delusional. Then I checked Fark.

Fark.com — a deranged mix of quirky news-article links, hilarious Photoshop antics, incestuous user comments, and a healthy dose of porn — had the story. In my estimation, it’d been less than 15 minutes since the halftime show ended — and Farkers were already talking about it….

Read the archived comment thread to see the story unfold. There were first-person accounts of watching the event. There was background information. There was analysis and piecing-together of the facts. And, most importantly, there was an effort to distribute any and all raw information about the incident, mostly in the form of high-resolution TV-screen-grabs and video.

It was clear that all of this was fueled by a desire to get to the bottom of the story — a desire not unlike that of a professional reporter.

Could this have been a glimpse of the future? Could a much more traditional news story be covered in the same way, given the right mix of a dedicated audience and enabling technology?

: Update: What goes around comes around. [via the comments]