Nieman Journalism Lab
Nieman Journalism Lab
Pushing to the future of journalism — A project of the Nieman Foundation at Harvard

@niemanlab archives: October 2009

Have a great weekend! (For Halloween, I might be Monday’s circ figures.) 40 most-recent links, ranked by clicks: 
@litherland Absolutely. @iA/ux has a bunch of designers, but let me know if you’ve got other good lists in that space. 
In picking lists to follow I’m keeping in mind that journalists are only a slice of the news future. 
“I love computers and robots, but I love humans even more” — @anildash on Twitter lists and curation 
In reversal, Senate’s shield law would cover amateur journalists But House’s version only covers pros. 
@gabosama They only show lucrative, local ads to local readers, and the core is local. So there’s that, plus core = potential donors. 
Another step into the mainstream: Talking Points Memo joins the White House press pool 
GlobalPost, the international-news startup, has revenue of $1M in its first year, probably losing $4M 
Awesome, important: State court rules that “metadata attached to public records is itself a public record” 
@vanityfairer Hyperlocal generally refers to an area smaller than a city, but “local” is usually fine/clearer, and I should use it more. 
Good morning! MinnPost has 168,000 monthly visitors and considers 25,000 of them “our true regulars” 
This is great: Huff Post’s guide to the World Series on Twitter Healthcare: (HT @ckanal
Oh, hey, it’s a site — for advertisers, but we can look, too — with all the New York Times’ cool multimedia 
Enticing panels set for SXSWi, including @mthomps @jayrosen_nyu @tristanharris on the “future of context” 
Pet Holdings, which profits off digital content (albeit LOLcats), makes a third of its revenue from books 
Omaha World-Herald, rethinking its product and reconnecting with its mission, buys hyperlocal WikiCity 
Always worth remembering the Bloomberg terminal is also a social network for Wall Street 
“Trust me, people, you’re going to be paying for content,” says Politico co-founder Jim Vandehei 
@kenfisher Haha thanks. That’s all good to know. I’ll shy away from those estimates. 
@kenfisher I’ve generally found comScore and others reliable enough for relative measurements. But, yeah, taken with a lot of salt. 
Good morning! Traffic to Gawker Media’s nine blogs is a hair above the LA Times, with the NY Times in sight 
Memo confirms it: Politico’s owner launching DC local news site, run by @jimbradysp, with 50 staffers 
Quick video: @davewiner on what happens to media and the real-time web after Twitter 
Newspapers in Cleveland, DC, Phoenix, and Albany have just as many investigative reporters as before cuts 
Protections for journalists should apply to amateurs, too: the case for an expansive shield law 
Today went behind a paywall. Unlike WSJ, they’re not letting Google users through for free. 
Details staffers say their website is “very 1999.” At, an editor says, “We’re very 2002 right now” 
@saduros Thanks a lot! Fixed, with credit to you 
Thanks for all the 1st-birthday wishes today. Also celebrating a birthday, its 15th, is the banner ad 
@saduros That’s unfortunate. If there are still errors, let us know. 
@lydelcan Sad news. I’d heard great things about it. 
A new nonprofit news outlet is born: Columbia U.’s building a team to cover the education beat 
@KarthikaM Not an argument against all government funding. Could be fine if the funding weren’t so easily manipulated. 
NYT style chief: “No longer seems clever…to attach an ‘i’ to words in articles and headlines about Apple” 
How government money can corrupt the press: hard, sobering data from Argentina 
In this fascinating thread, we learn that a $25,000 ad buy with Gawker Media gets you a free sponsored post 
Happy birthday to us! @niemanlab turns 1 today; HUGE thanks to all our wonderful readers and followers 
Has newspaper circulation finally done the ol’ bus plunge off the cliff? Can online save the day? 
Programmer philosophy: What Ruby on Rails and the “news blob” mean for the future of journalism 
Talking Points Memo considering a for-pay “membership” model, hopes fans will pay for chats w/ reporters 
Can you serve core users by charging them? TPM mulls a membership model. 
Try telling me this post, “What data exploration feels like,” doesn’t sound like good ole reporting 
This Yahoo video doesn’t make *me* LOL, but it’s huge in the ad world, so that alone is reason to watch 
The first big test of a “low-profit” newsroom — yeah, that’s a formal term — is emerging in Chicago 
Good morning! NYT’s @nickbilton: “We trust the news media 29%, and we trust our friends and family 90%” 
Investors confused about the future of news, too. Turbulent day for New York Times Co.’s stock 
Talking Points Memo getting hammered by readers over anonymous quotes — standard for DC but new for TPM 
@jcstearns Haven’t heard anything yet, but we’ll stay on it. 
Dropping the daily print edition has been “close to a wash,” financially, for the Christian Science Monitor 
CNN sees Huff Post, Daily Beast as online opinion leaders. “We should have a horse in that race, right?”