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We don’t need journalists, right? Is this the future of news-gathering? I have great respect for Professor Rosen, but I am not sure about this latest experiment. We’ll see. To me, this may produce something that’s very popular, but is this a measure of successful journalism. Often, the best journalism tells us what we really…

Who Needs Journalists?

We don’t need journalists, right? Is this the future of news-gathering? I have great respect for Professor Rosen, but I am not sure about this latest experiment. We’ll see. To me, this may produce something that’s very popular, but is this a measure of successful journalism. Often, the best journalism tells us what we really don’t want to hear or read.

It’s called “crowd-sourcing.” I call it cheap. The New York Times: “Of course, there’s an economic rationale, as well. Many hands make light work and cheap ones if they belong to volunteers. But Gannett is also betting that people will be more compelled to stay with a product they helped make. (Ms. Carroll said that jobs will not be cut, but redefined. We’ll see about that.)”

Posted by Joel on March 28 2007 • Journalism

Creative Management

In my effort to learn more about classical music, I recently came across two quotes from two very successful conductors, composers and leaders of the world’s most respected orchestras. They are very similar, and they made me think about how we manage creative people.

“To be able to work with an orchestra over an extended period is rare, but fruitful. The players get to know my musical language and I get to know their individual qualities ... Spending time with members of the orchestra, and listening to how they interact, influences the way in which you compose in much the same way writing for a particular voice does. Simply emersing yourself in rehearsals, soaking up the problems and the things that work, is all part of the amazing learning curve which is a continuous and lifelong process.”
-Michael Berkeley, composer, recently composer-in-association with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

“It’s my purpose to help them shape priorities and decide, so that at the concert they can be as spontaneous and engaging as possible. The more artistic the musicians are, they more you can work, not on the little details, but on the larger things.”
-Michael Tilson Thomas, music director, San Francisco Symphony

Posted by Joel on March 18 2007 • Current Affairs

TED Talks

Each year, more than 1,000 of the biggest movers and shakers in the world are invited to attend the TED Conference (I believe it’s invite-only) to hear about some of the most cutting edge ideas on the planet. Now there’s a conference I’d like to attend. The 2007 conference is currently underway, but if you would like to see some of the presentations, I’ve found them here at Google. I know the word gets used a lot, but these presentations are truly inspiring. In particular, I like what Sir Ken Robinson has to say about education.

P.S. You can find more of the TED Talks videos here at BMW. (TED’s own site seems to be down for the moment.)

Posted by Joel on March 11 2007 • Current Affairs

Juror #9

A fascinating blog at The Huffington Post that takes a look inside the jury room of the Scooter Libby trial. It’s a diary from Juror #9, Denis Collins. An excerpt: Defense attorney Theodore Wells addresses the jury. “Karl Rove had to be protected. The one to be sacrificed was Scooter Libby.” Wells’ voice rises in anger. It wasn’t the Vice President’s office that made him the scapegoat. Libby himself told Wells, “People in the White House are trying to set me up.”

Wow. Some reading indeed.

Posted by Joel on March 07 2007 • Current Affairs