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Happy birthday, Old Forest New Trees

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

birthday cakeTurns out you turned 5 last week, kid. You had a different name back then, but it was you all along.

Go outside to celebrate. Throw a baseball in the air or something.

I’ll be watching from the window. I promise.

(Creative Commons birthday cake photo by Jeremy King.)

Summer job to save the environment

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Exciting news: I’ve been asked (okay, I basically groveled, but they are actually paying me) to cover local-news startups this summer for one of my favorite blogs, Josh Benton’s ridiculously results-oriented Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard’s Nieman Foundation.

A few other part-time interns and I should each be posting once a week.

I expect this gig to consume most of my creative energy through September, but I’ll be cross-posting here each week to add a few reflections on my reported pieces.

If you have any suggestions of startups, startup plans or startup trends that need covering, I’ll be scrambling for good ideas, so please shoot an email to mike (dot) andersen (at) Gmail or leave a comment below.

Old forest, new trees

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009

If you stand far enough back, the future of local news is so easy to see at this point that you can practically phone in your story and still sum things up well.

That’s exactly what Perez-Pena does today. He quotes the right people, including Jeff Jarvis, who has the emerging conventional wisdom:

The death of a newspaper should result in an explosion of much smaller news sources online, producing at least as much coverage as the paper did, says Jeff Jarvis, director of interactive journalism at the City University of New York’s graduate journalism school. Those sources might be less polished, Mr. Jarvis said, but they would be competitive.

That’s where things are going, and that’s where this blog is going, too.

The Medium Run rebooted

Saturday, January 10th, 2009


1) The subtitle: “local newspapers” -> “local journalism”
2) The goal: local newspapers -> local journalism
3) The sidebar: fresh blogroll, less noise from Delicious




Saturday, January 10th, 2009

I danno, boss. Thing been sitting right next to me all year, never rang once.

(photo courtesy Flickr user storm_gal)

The post-intrepreneurship Medium Run

Sunday, December 31st, 2006

Mike rediscovers the first law of blogging: never promise anything. If you say you’ve got three posts in the works, you won’t write a thing for months. If you say you’re going to type up your final thoughts on a seminar you went to, the file will sit permanently unfinished on your laptop’s desktop. And if you say you’re going to post something tomorrow, you’ll have an existential crisis, quit your job and go to work as a direct-to-print reporter for a paper that doesn’t even post its content until noon.

It wasn’t actually much of a crisis, but a couple weeks ago I did leave the Daily News of Longview for the Columbian of Vancouver, a family-owned paper down the road that does some things online very well and others pretty clumsily. But it won’t be my job to worry about that.

I don’t expect to stop thinking or writing about the Web, but I’m abandoning the pretense of regular updates here.

Leaving the front lines always comes with a sense of loss and guilt, I guess. My previously mentioned friend David linked to a Guy Kawaski post that hit home:

From the outside looking in, entrepreneurs think intrapreneurs have it made: ample capital, infrastructure (desks, chairs, Internet access, secretaries, lines of credit, etc), salespeople, support people, and an umbrella brand.

Guess again. Intrapreneurs don’t have it better—at best, they simply have it different.

I can do without the chair, but I’ll miss the capital. Increasingly, though, my hopes for the future of online news lie away from capital. In the meantime, I just want to learn how to write.

See you around.

Not the feed you were looking for?

Monday, October 2nd, 2006

Move along; move along.

If your feed’s been acting up in the last week, it’s not your fault or imagination — I’ve been upgrading to the new Blogger Beta in order to add features like topic tags (below every post), improved archives (at right) and peekaboo summaries (rather than always sending you to a separate page to read the full post). Thanks for your patience.

Inky fingers, sandy toes

Thursday, September 7th, 2006

(Photo courtesy jonofpob)

Well, Labor Day is gone, and that means it’s the end of The Medium Run’s, er, unannounced summer vacation.

Honestly, it’s an old story: expectations too heavy, news consumption too low, distractions too many. We’re rolling out a two-pronged strategy for changing the story this fall, gentle reader:

1) More ad-hoc updates (with news pegs!) during the week. See the VERY NEXT POST for such an effort.
2) Below the fold, I dare to lay out a long-term schedule for future weekend posts.

This weekend (9/9): the long-awaited conclusion of my Poynter notes.
Next weekend (9/16): the unique ad economics of print, broadcast and Web, and why they matter to content.
After that (9/23): the brand, and why local newspapers need it so.
After that (9/30): a comprehensive look at business models available to local newspaper sites.

As for 9/37 and on beyond Zebra, we’ll see.

Welcome back.

New: subscribe by email

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006

If you haven’t yet jumped on the RSS train (see the right column for details), the good folks at FeedBurner are now powering an email subscription to The Medium Run (again, right column). Here’s their privacy policy, and here’s mine: I will never give your information to anybody, or send anything other than requested blog content to any subscriber’s address.

(That felt nice.)

Blogging from Poynter Online seminar May 16-19

Sunday, April 23rd, 2006

This whole “conference blogging” thing is obviously too hot for me to resist. I’ll be at Poynter’s upcoming seminar for online news managers next month, and plan to file at least once a night while I’m there, reporting the best stuff I learned and reflecting on what was said. So stay tuned for that. In the meantime, of course, I’ll continue to publish as usual.