Category Archives: journalism

Where you are is where it’s at

Location-based social networks are growing in popularity.  Here’s my recent take on the phenomenon — which focuses on how, when it comes to innovation, timing makes all the difference.

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Filed under Analysis, journalism, social networks

The growing market for virtual goods

was the subject of a tech analysis piece I wrote for the London Evening Standard this week.

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Filed under Analysis, journalism, technology

Imagining the end of the Google Era

I did just that in an analysis piece for today’s London Evening Standard.

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Filed under Analysis, journalism, technology

Mark Zuckerberg profiled

I just profiled Mr. Zuckerberg, my College Terrace neighbor, for the London Evening Standard.  It seemed to me that until very recently Zuckerberg had not been taken very seriously by the media.  He may yet fail to make something of Facebook, but he’s done enough now to be treated with respect



Filed under journalism

Food for journalistic thought

I’ve just found the set of radical ideas for improving journalism published by veteran Silicon Valley journalist Dan Gillmor last week.

If adopted, they’d truly create a very different-looking news experience.

One of the weird things about the  existential angst that’s currently afflicting journalism is how easily it’s become a debate about trying to save as much as we can of the old system — without acknowledging how the old system really hasn’t been serving readers as well as it can.

New technology is allowing news to be delivered in new ways.  If these new methods serve people better, I don’t see why they won’t pay for it.  And that, I think, suggests that we need to get away from the currently-dominant debate about how newspapers can survive in a world where people read their stories online for free and think more about how starting with a clean slate can create next-generation news organizations that serve us better than ever.

The solution won’t be simple.  Many of the changes Gillmor suggests would be easier to implement (and have more impact on readership and therefore revenue) at a local rather than a national level, for example.

But it will be people thinking like Gillmor, I suspect, who will be running the best and most successful news operations a decade from now.

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Filed under commentary, journalism

Recent columns

Recently, I’ve written about the storm of bad PR that’s been hitting Craigslist, the pressure that children in Silicon Valley feel to appear ‘perfect,’ and the way in which suppliers tend to beat out prospectors when it comes to reaping long term gains from short term (gold) rushes.

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Geography as journalistic destiny

Since I was writing recently about the Bay Area’s unique creative culture, it’s interesting (to me at least) to note that Ready Made magazine is moving from Berkeley to Des Moines, Iowa.  There was a thoughtful dissection of what that might mean for the magazine in last Sunday’s San Francisco Chronicle.

“The move raises the question of how the change will affect Ready Made’s hip editorial sensibilites,” says the Chronicle’s Joe Garofoli.

Garofoli also notes that none of the magazine’s six staff have chosen to go with the magazine to Des Moines.  I think that pretty much answers his question.

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Filed under culture, journalism

Recent Evening Standard columns

So this week I wrote about Silicon Valley’s new Singularity University.

And last week the topic was the wider Bay Area’s creative culture, of which the Valley’s own culture of creation is very much a part.

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This week’s column

I’m thinking I should post my weekly Evening Standard column here, just in case anyone is interested.

So here is last week’s, about Twitter.

And here is the one from the week before, about the Crunchie awards.

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The Anderson Valley Advertiser and the Future of Journalism

I’ve been following with time-sucking intensity the debate on the future of journalism now playing in locales as disparate as the New York Times, the Columbia Journalism Review, various technology blogs and back-and-forth ripostes between individuals with skin in the game on twitter.

The bare bones of the issue is that traditional advertising-based models of media financing are collapsing.  People still want high-quality news content, only they would rather just grab it online — and they’re not fussy about who serves it to them, be they the content’s owners or not.

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Filed under Blogging, commentary, journalism