Posts Tagged ‘Newspapers’

Cambridge Reporter Revisited

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

It seems that my foray into community publishing in 2008 has garnered some interest on the Twitter… There is some confusion, understandably, about who was doing what when and under what when.

I may do an in-depth post sometime on the whole experience, but for now I’ll offer a simple timeline to clear the air:

(I’m doing this from memory, so I may revise these a bit after publishing)

June 2008: I launch it’s a community-driven site where anyone can submit stories and opinion. It’s intended to be more news than opinion – similar to but on a smaller scale.

October 2008: TorStar sends me a friendly email about how they still own the Reporter name and they’d appreciate it if I could stop using it. Important to note that in Sept 2008 TorStar did not own any of the relevant URLs, but in October, suddenly appeared with syndicated content from the K-W Record. Update: did a story about this here:

Later in October 2008: becomes

Spring 2009: The Cambridge Voice becomes The Cambridge Advocate under new ownership. (I’m totally drawing a blank on the timing here, so I’ll update after a little research)

There it is – my best recollection of the events surrounding my involvement with the Cambridge Reporter.

On the Twitter, there’s already talk about trying again to create a community-driven local news & opinion website. Stay tuned.

An Online Newspaper Makes a Mid-Course Correction

Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

About two months ago I launched an online newspaper called the Cambridge Reporter. The response has been extraordinary with many of the city’s notable writers and columnists submitting opinion pieces and a variety of topics. I’ve also received a fair number of ‘Letters to the Editor’, usually with the complaint that the ‘other guy‘ refused to print them. These letters and opinion articles have generated reasonable conversation about issues that are important to the residents of Cambridge.

All of which is great, except that wasn’t the intent. The idea behind the Reporter was to give the traditional print guys a run for their money by crowd-sourcing the news – real news. The thought was that the 100k+ residents of the city could cover current events more efficiently than a handful of reporters.

Turns out folks want to talk about and debate the issues of the day, not report on them. Which, in retrospect, I should have anticipated. I grossly underestimated the potential for ‘news’ to be discerned from ‘opinion.’ I was actually expecting the opposite.

So, two months in, I’m making some slight changes to the layout to incorporate ‘opinion’ into the main news stream. I’m also re-positioning the Reporter as a place to discuss the news that’s being reported elsewhere. I will, of course, still accept news reports ‘from the field’, but it will not be the focus from now on.

If you haven’t already done so in the last two months or so, I’d appreciate hearing your feedback on the Reporter.

MESH08 Day One (part 2)

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

I feel compelled to finish writing my MESH coverage since Mathew Ingram has already linked to me as a source of coverage!

Day One Cont’d: The Panels

Video is Everywhere:
This panel, moderated by CommandN’s Amanda MacArthur, was most notable for me for it’s discussion around Canadian online rights to American content – and why we can’t watch shows on from Canada.
Sparks flew when the panelist from CBC suggested that ads might soon appear in torrent-distributed content. An audience member took exception to “paying twice” for content – once through taxes and again via advertising. He seemed to think that CBC should be completely devoid of advertising. I’m not sure the room agreed.

The New Front Page
This panel interested me for many reasons – not the least of which was that I had interviewed for job with panelist Candace Faktor(, once upon a time. This was perhaps the most entertaining panel of the conference thanks to the bold critisms of traditional media offered by Daniel Burka, Creative Director at At one point he called’s homepage ’embarrassing’ and indistinguishable from The Onion. He later called the newspaper business model “insane” and predicted the demise of the “paper” newspaper within a few years – much to the chagrin of moderator Mathew Ingram, a newspaper columnist.

Random Thoughts in Philly

Thursday, November 30th, 2006

(Details on these to follow)

People are walking around in short sleeves — in Philly — in November!

McGillins Pub is awesome – but you’d never find it if you didn’t know it was there.

I learned something about hockey in America – which led me to realize something about newspapers and local search. No really.

Quality beats volume EVERY TIME.

I love my job. ;)