Nieman Foundation at Harvard
HOME
          
LATEST STORY
Newsonomics: 10 headlines we may see this fall about the future of news
ABOUT                    SUBSCRIBE
Nov. 12, 2008, 11:28 a.m.

Seth Godin: Blog to change your perspective

In a video from an American Express conference, business gurus Seth Godin and Tom Peters talk about the value of blogging. And while they’re focused on business and marketing, their advice applies just as much to journalists. Godin:

Blogging is free. It doesn’t matter if anyone reads it. What matters is the humility that comes from writing it. What matters is the metacognition of thinking about what you’re gonna say. How do you explain yourself to the few employees or your cat or whoever’s gonna look at it? How do you force yourself to describe in three paragraphs why you did something? How to do you respond out loud?…This has become such a micropublishing platform that basically you’re doing it for yourself, to force yourself to become part of the converstaion, even if it’s just [pinches fingers] that big. And that posture change changes an enormous amount.

That is the fundamental reason I argue every journalist should blog — either for her news organization, on her own, or (ideally) both. So much of the public’s disdain of journalists is rooted in the one-way-conversation model traditional news is based on. No one likes to be lectured. The very format of a blog forces a journalist to rethink her relationship with the audience. It makes you conscious of the unappealing voice we assume when we write a traditional news story. And I think that reconsideration is going to be critical in rebuilding good will toward journalists and the work we do.

Tom Peters adds:

No single thing in the last 15 years professionally has been more important to my life than blogging. It has changed my life, it has changed my perspective, it has changed my intellectual outlook, it’s changed my emotional outlook (and it’s the best damned marketing tool by an order of magnitude I’ve ever had). And it’s free.

POSTED     Nov. 12, 2008, 11:28 a.m.
SHARE THIS STORY
   
Show comments  
Show tags
 
Join the 15,000 who get the freshest future-of-journalism news in our daily email.
Newsonomics: 10 headlines we may see this fall about the future of news
From pipes to platforms, overseas to over-the-top, the shifts we’ll see in the remainder of 2015 will set the stage for 2016 and beyond.
FOIA site MuckRock launches new efforts to let users track projects and contribute to reporting costs
MuckRock is also debuting project pages that will highlight groups of FOIA requests and let users follow specific stories.
Do article tags matter? Maybe not for traffic, but publishers are using them to glean insights
Analytics company Parse.ly found that sites are expanding their use of article tags to track sponsored content and control paywall access.
What to read next
2577
tweets
The New York Times built a Slack bot to help decide which stories to post to social media
The bot, named Blossom, helps predict how stories will do on social and also suggests which stories editors should promote.
1310Jo Ellen Green Kaiser: Do independent news outlets have a blind spot when it comes to ethnic media?
The head of the Media Consortium argues that, by defining themselves in opposition to mainstream media, independent progressive outlets miss out on the power of ethnic and community journalism.
1029Newsonomics: 10 numbers on The New York Times’ 1 million digital-subscriber milestone
Digital subscribers are proving to be the bedrock of the Times’ business model going forward. How much more room is there for growth — and at what price points?
These stories are our most popular on Twitter over the past 30 days.
See all our most recent pieces ➚
Encyclo is our encyclopedia of the future of news, chronicling the key players in journalism’s evolution.
Here are a few of the entries you’ll find in Encyclo.   Get the full Encyclo ➚
TechCrunch
Voice of San Diego
Bureau of Investigative Journalism
Futurity
Windy Citizen
Spot.Us
Gawker Media
Press+
Global Voices
The Sunlight Foundation
The Daily Beast
Associated Press