Magazine article Nieman Reports

Politics and the New Media

Magazine article Nieman Reports

Politics and the New Media

Article excerpt

When "Stories About Campaign Coverage: From BlackBerries and the Web to Images and Ideas" appeared in the Spring 2004 issue of Nieman Reports, its opening words belonged to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Executive Editor David M. Shribman. In excerpts from a book chapter he'd written entitled, "Only a Lunatic Would Do This Kind of Work," Shribman explored some of the factors motivating someone to be a political reporter and helped us peer into how political reporting was being done, how it read, looked and sounded, and why any of this mattered to those receiving the information.

Fast-forward four years. Shribman holds the same job, but he now speaks about the swiftly changing demands of getting and distributing political news. In a piece the "NewsHour with Jim Lehrer" broadcast a few days before the Pennsylvania primary entitled, "Pittsburgh Media Adapts to Shifting News Landscape," Shribman focused his words squarely on his newspaper's Web strategy, as he explained to viewers how and why political coverage must be delivered in all kinds of media--all at the same time.

Once again Shribman's words, excerpted from his interview, lead us into a collection of stories that journalists wrote about new media overtaking the old in political reporting.

Shribman began by telling viewers what he'd told his newspaper's political staff: "The Web is more important in this presidential campaign and the Pennsylvania primary than the newspaper. Think Web first, and then think newspaper, because you're going to do something different for the newspaper. …

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