Presentation to the Assoc. for Journalism Education
Association for Journalism Education
18 June 2009
Tell you about the blog
Give you my take on political reporting
Thoughts on the business economics of
blogging and news making
My take on the digital future
Criticisms of blogging
Guido's Mission :
Narcissism and personal amusement
Despair with the political class
Despair with the Lobby system
Despair with Private Eye, “Fiskers”
Unwanted on Samizdata
Total monthly hits 600
Total monthly hits 27,000 Page Loads
Latest 3,600,000 hits
Guido’s blog is political scandal central
No pretence to objectivity
Guido is aimed at journalists, Westminster
insiders, wonks, politicians, the
Lobby, activists, spin doctors and broadcast
During Tory and LibDem leadership battles
crucial point of information for activists
Insider / Outsider?
Guido has some credibility
More Drudge than Wonkette
Will be like Rush to Bush under Tories
Journalists in the beginning gave Guido tips
No longer. Guido sells to papers front pages
Blogging journalists new competition
Diarists were Guido's main competition
Why Smeargate went to the papers
and not on Guido’s blog first.
Why Smeargate went to the papers:
Wife is a feisty cautious lawyer
Downing Street spinning “security threat”
Legal issues over copyright and the manner
in which the emails were obtained
Whistleblower laws exclude “for profit”
Maximise the impact
The Lobby is an obedience school:
Come to heel and you get titbits.
How many political journalists can really hold
their head up high?
Cowardice and cronyism run right through the
Lobby, fearful of being taken off the teat of
pre-packaged stories served to them. That is
not journalism; that is copytaking.
Thoughts on the business
of news and blogging.
No real general money making model in UK
for bloggers currently
Popbitch and Guido are viable businesses
Blogging plus traditional media pays enough
Iain Dale does punditry / Guido sells stories
Tech blogs make good money
Some “specialist” blogs make money
MessageSpace blog advertising network data
•The single highest paid blogger had sales
on average of £3,872 per month
•The top 10% of bloggers had monthly sales
averaging £2,861 in (Q4 ‘08) a rise of 64%
from £1,741 last year (Q4 ’07).
•The middle 40% of bloggers had
average monthly sales of £351.
•The remaining 50% had average monthly
sales of £54.
"How Markets and Technology Empower Ordinary
People to Beat Big Media, Big Government, and
Other Goliaths", by Glenn Reynolds. This is the 21st
century, the days of media conglomerates making
the news in a top-down Fordist fashion are over.
Boutique news sources will proliferate.
The "news" is no longer what Paxman says it is, the
news is whatever is disseminated to a wide
audience, Big Media is going to be disintermediated
when it falls down because technology has
drastically reduced the cost of dissemination. Failing
to hold our political class to account is the failing of
Big Media in Britain.
First they sneered
Then they feared
worry, be happy, there will still be
news journalism without newspapers
Video blogging is the future
Podcasting is so yesterday
The Press will be pixellated not print
Newsrooms will survive, newspapers
won’t, they will be news brands
More people read Guido than read
Private Eye, Hislop is wrong
Platform for wannabee journalists
That is a feature not a bug
Comment costs nothing and a lot of
paid for comment is rubbish filler
News costs a lot to do professionally, maybe
NGOs and campaigns can do it on the cheap
Unaccountable and unedited:
Accountable to readers
Sub-editing is crowd-sourced
US has more paid bloggers than lawyers
Read what was written about the Fourth
Estate and the coffee house pamphleteers of
yore, the same is now said of bloggers.
Newspaper journalism isn’t something
sacred, it is a business.
A business that is failing.