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Doug Barney: You're Right, and Yet So Wrong!

BarneyI really like Redmond magazine and admire what editor-in-chief Doug Barney and the rest of the crew there have built...but...this his latest editorial, entitled Print Is Dead--Not!, really rubbed me the wrong way.  That's not to say I feel print is dead -- far from it.  I just disagree with much of the logic he presents in the column.

For example, he notes that "Matt Drudge spends his days searching the web sites of print publications, finding interesting stories and linking to them."  What a horrible crime!  You mean Drudge is actually driving traffic to the sites where these original stories appear?  Jeez, I'll bet those sites absolutely hate getting all those extra eyeballs!

Or how about Barney's point that "Google is trying to kill print by using content that comes from print!...Will they (Google) have to hire all the reporters that got fired when their papers folded?"  Um, first of all, my Google News configuration merely links to the stories that appear on all those news sites; it doesn't house the articles themselves.  And again, if the newspaper sites don't want all that incoming traffic from Google why don't they just tell Google not to spider their site?  Why?  Because that would be suicide!

Come on, Doug, the whole content model is changing, including the revenue component.  Deal with it!

That's not the worst of his column though.  My blood really started to boil when I read his thoughts about bloggers, where he says "they're the opinions of amateurs.  Bloggers are like those annoying students in college that wouldn't shut up in class, even though they had nothing much to say."

Gee, if you really feel that way, why not just tune them out?  Do you really feel obligated to visit their blogs or read their RSS feeds?  Maybe you'd be better off just sticking your head in the sand and acting like the world really isn't changing all around you.



Nice rebuttal.

And believe me, print is indeed dead.

For more info, check out my blog:

Morgan Ramsay
... the whole content model is changing ...
In the early 19th century, almost all the revenues of the U.S. postal system came from letters. ... [T]he explicit policy of the U.S. government was to promote wide dissemination of newspapers. ... The Post Office would have thrived on letters alone, but would have gone bankrupt instantly had it been forced to survive on newspaper deliveries.

Content models that focus on content are a dying breed. Content models that focus on users are not.

Doug Barney

Good comments Joe. I guess since I'm here I can't resist reading some blogs, but it's only the really good ones!
Did you hear about the launch of a new magazine, Blogger & Podcaster? Pretty ironic.

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