Paperless in Seattle - digital news media success stories

Can newspapers survive without the 'paper?' The Seattle area has spawned many successful digital news media ventures...
Written by Tom Foremski, Contributor
The Seattle Post Intelligencer ditched its paper product and went all-electron a year ago. To mark this occassion, Monica Guzman, at the Seattle PI, has written an excellent roundup of how other digital news ventures in the Seattle area are doing.

Here are some extracts from: New media ventures blossom in Seattle

West Seattle Blog
Independent neighborhood news site covering West Seattle.

The site is profitable, and more than 60 paying businesses known as sponsors support it, editor and publisher Tracy Record said.
...Apart from having to beat down an early stigma that independent news "bloggers" were not to be taken seriously (she's a journalist, so she prefers you call her that), Record didn't take a vacation until August 2009, when she could pay enough freelancers to keep an eye on things back home.
"All the people who send story ideas, crime reports, texts about traffic, a picture of a cool event at a school -- that's the part that grows exponentially," Record said. "That's the part that's always humbling, every day."
Tech news site owned by The Puget Sound Business Journal.
"It's not something I imagined I'd ever be doing back when I was in J-school (journalism school)," said Bishop.
"It shows you can be entrepreneurial and still be a journalist."
"Journalism isn't only about giving a community information. It's about helping to build that community up."
"I laugh when I think about coming into the Seattle Post-Intelligencer at 9 and leaving at 6. It's almost comical. Twelve hours a day is probably the norm."
Seattle-based community news platform and ad-sharing network.

"We see room for something that lets people be journalists, lets people focus on newsgathering, lets us worry about the technology," said Carder.
"The cost of content is so high, you have to find ways to pinch technology and all the tools as tightly as possible. Plenty of players will be gone because they don't know how to do that," he said.
Next Door Media
Seattle collaborative community news network.
"We believe there's a natural balance between journalism and the community. For too long journalism hasn't listened, and it really caught up with the industry," said co-founder Cory Bergman.
"A lot of companies take a tech approach. We're taking a more people-centered and community building approach."
All Next Door Media authors happen to have either worked in journalism or have a journalism degree, Bergman said -- though that's by no means a requirement.
Seattle civic and cultural news site.
"We are reporters who are changing blogging, as opposed to blogging dumbing down reporting," said Feit, a longtime political writer.
Northwest nonprofit investigative reporting shop.
"Our model is to sell in-depth journalism at the price that existing news outlets would pay for plain old journalism," said Robert McClure, the Northwest reporting shop's chief environmental correspondent and one of several former Seattle Post-Intelligencer reporters behind the nonprofit.
"It's kind of scary," McClure said. "You're a little mouse on a wheel. You've got to keep going. You can never relax and say, 'We have enough.'"
"I just can't believe that people in this country are going to let in-depth journalism go away completely," he said. "To what degree we can sustain what we have and modernize it in a way that gets the public engaged and keeps them engaged -- that's the big thing."
Northwest nonprofit news site.
... if you want short, flashy treatments of tough local issues, you're in the wrong place. The site's often lengthy analytical pieces aim for a certain audience...
Crosscut is out to activate local discussion ..."Our tagline, 'news of great nearby,' is partly an attempt to say that local can be big local," Brewster said. "We want to have people feel like they're a part of something big."

You can read the whole of this excellent report here: New media ventures blossom in Seattle

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