Friday, January 30, 2009

Seattle's City Council Clearly Behind The Curve In The Digital Age

This week the Seattle City Council made it their business to address the possible closure of The Seattle PI. Cory Bergman from Lost Remote, a great media blog I just stumbled upon this morning, has a fantastic summary of the public city council forum about this very topic here. Beyond the summary, Bergman adds his own viewpoint, which is very similar to what I've been saying all week:

While I applaud Licata for tackling the complex topic — and giving people a forum to talk about it — I about fell out of my chair while I watched the live stream of the event at my desk. The vast majority of the discussion missed the point, straying into common misconceptions and old-school thinking about journalism in a new connected world.

There's a lot more meat to Bergman's account and he adeptly shows through his argument how much better of a grasp he has on the situation than the Seattle City Council (as do other local bloggers like and, like when he states what should be obvious to anyone following media trends over the past few years:

What needs saving is journalism, not newspapers. Arguing about saving newspapers and their large staffs misses the point: their business model is antiquated and did not adapt to a new reality. So let’s figure out how to create new sustainable business models that result in quality local journalism. Let’s think of ways to reinvent newspapers from the ground up online. Let’s focus our energy there instead of hearing ourselves talk about the institution of journalism and the good old days.

Oh, and in case you are questioning Bergman's insight of the situation and think Licata and other council members might be more in tune with news media publishing in today's world, Bergman's day job is as Director of Business Development for I highly suggest you follow that link above for the full article, it's good reading.

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