Here’s to the democratization of the web. A few key people tweeted this blog posting about The Next Twitter, and the story that never got published now comes up more often in searches associated with my name than anything else. I’m not sure what to make of it, really, except to be humbled. We who once called ourselves “gatekeepers” in the media really have lost our keys, it appears.
Here’s a sample of some of the stuff I saw:
There’s a lot of irony here for me. A story about the power of Twitter that I couldn’t successfully sell I then sort of self-published and it got a lot of attention. But what it didn’t do is draw a paycheck, which is fine except I would never have put the effort into the story that I did if I didn’t think it was already pretty much sold. So, back to the future of journalism, then. Sure, we can disseminate information widely and quickly today, but who will create original content, invest the kind of time and energy involved in doing the kind of meaty reporting that doesn’t just involve aggregating someone else’s content or retweeting someone else’s post? It’s great that a bunch of people passed my piece around, but it also reminds me that paid journalism practitioners are increasingly scarce.