Who wants to own distribution?

People can’t see TV in New Orleans because there is no power to broadcast or receive. But the stations are broadcasting on the internet, just in case someone can see.

People can’t get newspapers in New Orleans because there’s no way to distribute it. But the Times-Picayune put up its entire edition on the internet, at Nola.com, just in case someone can see.

: LATER: See Terry Heaton and Rex Hammock on WKRN’s online and blog efforts during the storm in Nashville. Says Rex:

WKRN isn’t merely using a blogging platform to format news “content” (which I would applaud even if that were all they were doing), but they are using their blogs to help do away with the concept of “on-air-personality” and to replace it with, what?, on-air human beings — The station manager is even jumping onto the weather blog to let us know when one of them has to go home to get some sleep, when one of them gets sick.

The station has spent months inviting Nashville bloggers to the station (and even giving them and their kids air time. They’ve come to wherever bloggers find themselves together. They not only talk-the-talk but walk-the-walk. In short, they’ve earned “street cred” with a community of bloggers who, when we find ourselves in the midst of breaking news, will not only blog it ourselves as citizen journalists, but will gladly volunteer to be citizen stringers to help the station get the news out.

Working with bloggers, aka viewers/users/readers/people, is enlightened self-interest.

  • Gunther

    Yes, I guess that the denizens of New Orleans will be checking in to the internet from their rooftops and toasting the arrival of the new information zeitgeist while the bodies float by.

  • It is a good thing.
    It is dramatic what it passed in New Orleans

  • John

    Actually, the services can prove helpflu for people who evacuated New Orleans and have access to the Internet from where they’re staying. While the national news certainly has blanketed the major aspects of the story, the local sources you would assume would have a better grip on the smaller details of the disaster, which people who live in those neighborhoods but who may now be a few hundred miles away from would want to know.

  • Gunther’s understandable cynicism aside, I have to agree with John. This is pretty significant for local news outlets in that it gives them the ability to stay online with their coverage. It can’t always be about the big guns from New York and L.A. This is fraught with significance. Calm down, Gunther. I’d say the news outlets in NOLA are probably pretty thrilled to be able to stay in the game at this point — something that would have been unthinkable even a few years ago.

  • EB


    Tuesday, August 30, 2005

    Tuesday, 9:40 a.m.

    The Times-Picayune is evacuating it’s New Orleans building.

    Water continues to rise around our building, as it is throughout the region. We want to evaucate our employees and families while we are still able to safely leave our building.

    Our plan is to head across the Mississippi River on the Pontchartrain Expressway to the west bank of New Orleans and Jefferson Parish. From there, we’ll try to head to Houma.

    Our plan, obviously, is to resume providing news to our readers ASAP. Please refer back to this site for continuing information as soon as we are able to provide it.

  • Right of Center

    It is hard to know what is going on there. I read on blogs that a major levee broke and yet the MSM barely mentions it. There is no analysis, no charts, no reporting. None. The MSM says things like the water is rising and officials are confused as to why. Isn’t it the levee? Is the “bowl” going to fill up? Is this the doomsday scenario? Lake Ponchatrain (sp?) is pouring through the levee and the MSM has no analysis? No helicopters? What is going on?

  • Bill


    Who wants to own distribution? It depends.

    Like everything else, distribution channels evolve….but they are not going away.

    Yesterday, ‘news’ was distributed through old media channels including TV, printed newspapers, & Radio.

    In the future news will be *distributed* through other channels – Yahoo is one good example. Google is another.

    Would I like to own them? You bet.

  • What’s come thru the Times-Picayune to those of us in the North, on high ground, has been invaluable. TV broadcasts have shown the same photos over and over. It’s what they have, and it’s not giving us a full picture–it almost seems to be sugar-coating homeland devistation, whereas it was extraordinarily voyeuristic when the tsunami happened. The true value of what the T-P is doing is for the people who are far from home and should not go back any time over the next few days…although I’m sure knowing that looters might be ravaging your flooded home could be all that much of a comfort.

  • Jeff, your email isn’t working.

    Here’s an example of a station that’s fully incorporated blogs into its coverage. This is a self-serving link, because they’re a client of mine. That doesn’t, however, change the reality that online plus broadcast is a better way to reach people during a time of breaking news.

  • Pingback: BuzzMachine » Blog Archive » It’s the relationship()