I am in Fort Lauderdale where I have been working this week with the Sun-Sentinel on the Tomorrow's Workforce project (hence, the blogging break), but today I am doing a quick session at the National Writers Workshop on blogging for reporters.
To prepare, I talked with several reporters who write blogs. Here's what they had to say about the advantages blogging brings to a beat reporter.
Gery Woelfel, The Woelfel World of Sports, Racine Journal Times:
"While I've been a journalist for almost three decades now, and still firmly believe in the traditional journalistic standards, I think it's imperative we present our news outside the box. Most of our young readers have been exposed to things we never were at their age. … I always get a chuckle out of fellow journalists, mostly newcomers to the profession, that blogs are the future of journalism. I beg to disagree; I think they're the 'present' of journalism.
Michael Bazeley, Silicon Beat, San Jose Mercury News:
"I think blogging has also sharpened my reporting some. Because Matt and I put original content that comes from original reporting on the blog, we are spending more time mining our beats, talking to sources and reading about issues. We're consuming more information, which can only be good."
Todd Bishop, Microsoft Blog, Seattle Post-Intelligencer:
"… it's pretty clear that having the weblog has increased the general awareness of the paper's Microsoft coverage among our readers and also among Microsoft employees. Some number of months after starting the blog, I was at an event where one employee introduced me to another as, "you know, that guy who writes the Microsoft blog for the P-I." That was an eye-opener for me, because it was pretty clear that they didn't know I wrote for the traditional newspaper, or didn't care."
Matt Williams, Inside Scoop, Greensboro News-Record:
"Does it help my reporting? Yes. It does take some time to blog, but it saves me from writing a whole story about some marginally important item that I might have felt necessary if I didn't have another outlet. That gives me more time for in-depth stories that make it into the paper."
I should be back to my regular blogging next week.Posted by Tim Porter at June 25, 2005 07:59 AM