This year’s Online News Association sounds very different from those I’ve attended in years past. When I went a few years ago, I heard a lot of resistance to change and blogs and all that damned stuff. Last year, I heard a lot of fear, moaning, and wailing and read Rafat Ali’s post about it on a panel. This year, I’m hearing a lot about new things that are succeeding on news sites and about the possibilities to do more; I’m hearing optimism and passion. I talked with the editor of a certain major paper (no, not that one), who said that the revolution is over; the newsroom is not resisting. But I’ve talked with other online folks who lament that the war is over, yes, but the print people won and though they talk a new game, they don’t get it as much as they think they get it. And I just spoke with an online pioneer who said we’ll know the revolution will be over when a major American newspaper is edited by an online guy (and, I’ll add, when it’s not a newspaper anymore but a norg). That will come in time, he said (read: evenetually). Yes, I asked, but will it come in time (read: before it’s too late)? I hear less resistance to, resentment of, and fear of change and that’s good. I hear excitement and imagination and that’s very good. The question remains: Are the changes big enough and fast enough?
by Jeff Jarvis