Paul Andrews

February 24, 2009

A Seattle HuffPo?

The Stranger (Slog) is doing what looks to be a fascinating piece on the Seattle P-I’s future online plans (if indeed it has any). I posted on Horsesass.org on this with observations on what a local HuffPo would have to look like. The comment queue is high quality as well, including posts from Seattle Jew, and I added this in response to one of the comments:

@15 Ah yes, the archives…who owns ‘em and what happens to them? This is the question raised by the legacy “Northwest Source” URL that essentially buckets both newspaper archives into one destination/database. I’ve never been able to get a straight answer on why this is, and what it means in terms of the two papers’ future.

This is especially crucial because archives represent a real revenue stream if, make that when, paid content comes to the Web. For academics, researchers, historians, authors, journalists, activists and others, news archives are a crucial resource worth paying for (a reasonable amount, which the NYT’s $1.50 a pop was not before they dropped it).

I think The Times plan was always to buy out the P-I and absorb its archives, and the P-I went along because it figured Hearst would buy out The Times with the same deal. Then the news biz went south…but if the P-I folds and The Times declares bankruptcy to rid its debt and somehow survives — or vice versa! — the archives will exist in one big pot. If they both just plain cease to be — has this happened yet at a major paper? — then some online entity will surely purchase the archive database for standalone or synergy with other properties.

The Rubric Theme Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.