David Carr writes in today's The Media Equation column about the increasing lack of distinction between web and print news outlets. His thinking was prompted in part by the swift and strong reaction to his piece last week on the adolescent culture at the top of the Tribune Company (and he doesn't even mean the reaction by Tribune's CEO, who tried to discredit Carr in advance.) From today's piece:
So if news is wherever the public finds it, what really is the value of creating a complicated, labor-intensive print product? I thought a great deal about that last week when a story I had worked on for months, on and off — about the leadership of the Tribune Company — went to press, a term that is not a metaphor, but a daily exercise here at The Times. There were many versions of the resulting article, lots of feedback from near and far, fact-checking, copy-checking and double-checking, all part of the practical effort to publish something as accurate as possible in a defined space at a time certain.
At the end of the night, I was thrown clear and out on the street, dazed and thinking about the rococo miracle that is a daily paper. The story was about to move onto the Web and onto the front of a large, national newspaper.
Boom. Boom. Boom.
Meanwhile, the editor of the Chicago Tribune reacts to the reaction with a memo saying his newsroom is all right.