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New newspaper taking blogs to print twice daily

With all the doom and gloom in the newspaper industry, I find this story interesting. Joshua Karp is launching a twice-daily free print newspaper in Chicago, San Francisco and later in New York City with content from blogs on January 27. The idea is to take local content from blogs and print them in tabloid form in time for the morning and evening commutes. The newspaper is supported by advertising trying to reach the targeted, local audience. It will also include classifieds.

From The Printed Blog web site, Joshua describes the venture:

The selection of content in The Printed Blog is based solely on the votes of readers and their geographic location. In such a way, The Printed Blog revolts against the top-down, ‘one size fits all’ model of newsprint, as we know it. Instead of one paper serving hundreds of thousands of people, as is often the case, The Printed Blog publishes hundreds or even thousands of highly-localized editions based on what a community declares is important to them. The papers are distributed to neighborhood pickup points in A.M. and P.M. editions, and will incorporate rapid turnaround reader comments.

We at The Printed Blog believe that there will always be a readership for off-screen, printed media- but in order for that media to survive, it must leverage the best information technology has to offer. Through the integration of online social networks and web-based syndication technologies, The Printed Blog is tapping into the wellspring of brilliant bloggers that has revolutionized collective media. As our society moves towards individualized information, The Printed Blog has the courage to respect our readers. We recognize the value of what individuals have to say, we publish the information they create, and provide them with the information they demand.

No mention is made about compensation to the bloggers, nor is there any mention of any comics appearing.

Community Comments

#1 Rob Tornoe
January/14/2009
@ 9:12 am

“It?s an opportunity to leverage concepts that are working online, and to apply them to a medium that is not going away any time soon. What are these concepts?”

“Respect for the journalist (read: respect for the blogger)”

So I wonder how much he’s paying them?

#2 jesse
January/14/2009
@ 9:51 am

Now that is a good idea.

#3 John Cole
January/14/2009
@ 9:55 am

“So I wonder how much he?s paying them?”

Hopefully no more than the average blogger pays to use print media content. Which is nothing, by the way.

Take THAT, new media.

#4 Rob Tornoe
January/14/2009
@ 10:25 am

From Gawker:

Josh Karp’s next company after the Printed Blog fails? A company that prints out your emails for you and FedEx’s them to your home and office.

“A busy professional doesn’t have time to look at his emails on a computer” says Karp. “They want it offline and in front of them in this go go go world.”

#5 Stacy Curtis
January/14/2009
@ 11:28 am

So you’re taking information off the internet and putting it on paper and then handing it back to people who have the internet on their Blackberries or iPhones?

#6 rstevens
January/14/2009
@ 1:07 pm

God forbid someone tries something clever to see if it catches on.

#7 Stacy Curtis
January/14/2009
@ 1:17 pm

I’m waiting for CLEVER.

#8 josh shalek
January/14/2009
@ 1:46 pm

I don’t have internet during my lunch breaks, and that’s when I usually read during the day. That’s one thing these papers have going for them. If it introduces me to new blogs that I find interesting, then I’m for that.

If it runs webcomics too, it has my full support.

#9 Mike Peterson
January/14/2009
@ 2:56 pm

“The selection of content in The Printed Blog is based solely on the votes of readers and their geographic location.”

So, what do you do, fill out a slip of paper and hand it to the person who is giving out the papers at the subway station?

What? I have to go on the lines to vote? But … what if I boot up the Internet and a child molester attacks me?

No, no. I’ll just read. I’ll let the other guys vote.

#10 Alan Gardner
January/14/2009
@ 3:04 pm

The part where readers vote seemed a bit confusing to me. What do they want me to do? Read a blog post, recommend/vote for it, then read it again in a newspaper for the sake of a more “tactile experience?”

#11 Mike Sieber
January/14/2009
@ 3:21 pm

The article doesn’t say anything about compensation, but this line might sum it up: “What blogger or photographer would turn down an offer for more exposure, especially in the confines of a luxurious printed page?”

If that means what I think it means, then exposure will be the compensation. It seems like the model of, giving away the content in order to sell ads, is going to be the model of the future for creative types.

I’m interested to see how well this works.

#12 Stacy Curtis
January/15/2009
@ 12:47 pm

Bloggers and photographers hand this guy their content for no pay…I mean, EXPOSURE. He sells ads for his newspaper and he pockets all the money. Money he would not have access to if it wasn’t for the content provided for free by bloggers and photographers.

Sadly, there are bloggers and photographers and CARTOONISTS out there who are easily duped into thinking exposure is adequate pay for their work, while other people rake in profits.

#13 Ed Hall
January/15/2009
@ 1:30 pm

“If that means what I think it means, then exposure will be the compensation. It seems like the model of, giving away the content in order to sell ads, is going to be the model of the future for creative types.”

I’ll tell you what that means – it means everything will become LESS creative (it’s already happening BTW). Even if someone with chops & talent buys into this senario, over time, the continuous, cheapening & dumbing down of the content will render said content void of any relevance whatsoever. I’m afraid it’s going to take a long time before the mindset comes back around to the deep pockets appreciating and understanding our craft, and in the meantime, anyone who “gives it away” for “exposure” is a fool. The irony here of course is that the beast wants to be fed. People want instant images, instant gratification, instant visual stimulus; and it better be good, or they will turn away in an instant.

The thing that is making it most difficult to build any profitablity on the Internet is that it started out with an “everyting is free” mentality, and that mindset hasn’t really changed. When you can “get” a new song, a new movie, a new video online for free, just a couple of clicks away, do you really think people will pay for cartoons or photographs? I don’t know what the answer is, but right now, the internet & free blogging ain’t it.

#14 Beth Cravens
January/15/2009
@ 4:00 pm

Um….I thought there were already blog aggregaters which are highly localized? Blogrolls? Links?
The print version of that makes no sense to me.
While it would be nice to get exposure (aka free advertising) it would make me uncomfortable financially (mad) to see my cartoons in print without compensation.

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