Calm Down Bro

03.07.13

It's Not Time to Pick Sides, Journalists

NSFWCorp's Paul Carr draws a line:

On one side there’ll be the ad supported sites like the HuffPost, Buzzfeed, the Daily Mail and Forbes who have embraced their role as aggregators, choppers and filterers out other people’s work. There will be far fewer of these sites than there are now, but those that remain will be highly profitable, fantastically soul-destroying places to work.

On the other side will be the publications which have figured out a way to pay for all of those real costs of journalism I listed above. They’ll have combined a variety of business models to allow them to run almost entirely ad-free, funded in large part by readers. The New York Times will likely be one of those companies. The New Yorker will be. And so will a handful of startups. This group will be significantly less profitable than the content farms (who will constantly try to acquire them), but their comparative poverty will be offset by prizes, and employees who can look their friends in the eye.

It's quite amusing to see Carr slam sites like Buzzfeed and the Huffington Post, which have both moved from initial roles of aggregation into very serious and in-depth reporting. The same site that jokes about a sideboob verticle features some of the best political reporting in DC. Likewise, the home of cat GIFs and Matt Stopera's feel goodery features high quality political coverage of its own. It's cute to see Carr publicly feel good about what he thinks is "journalism," but if all that's left for purists are a few startups, the New Yorker and the Times, is that really something to celebrate?