Morning Snip:
A Boor and a Bore

Felix Salmon, impressive in many ways, continues to astound us with his feet-on-the-ground optimism about the marriage of journalism and hypertext. He’s also adept at spotting quirky pockets of professional resistance to the digital way of doing things. In his view, new technology improves journalism by making it easy — and therefore obligatory — for reporters to read before they write.  

The reason, fundamentally, is that journalism is becoming much more conversational. It started with the rise of the blogs, and if blogs are now slowly dying out, that’s only because the conversation has overtaken them. It’s moved to Twitter, and Facebook, and many mainstream websites, too: the web is social now. You no longer need a blog to be part of the conversation; you don’t even need a Tumblr. Everybody is a publisher now, and all these new networks have helped to create a new vibrancy in public discourse.


Think about it this way: reading is to writing as listening is to talking — and someone who talks without listening is both a boor and a bore. If you can’t read, I don’t want you in my newsroom. Because you aren’t taking part in the conversation which is all around you.