Tag Archives: Patrick Thornton

Patrick Thornton: Journalism’s beacons of light can’t even make it

Patrick Thornton, the US-based ‘beat blogging’ enthusiast, has decided to move out of full-time journalism, to a position as community and social media manager for a conservation organisation. His blog post announcing the move reflects on the wider industry; despite having only worked in journalism full-time since 2006, he was already depressed:

“Loss and destruction has been almost all that I’ve ever known in journalism. Sure, there has been great work along the way, almost always at the individual level. But many of those innovators that I chronicled at BeatBlogging.Org moved on to other jobs and other fields.

“And that was depressing. These were our beacons of light, and they couldn’t make it. The journalism industry has lost a lot of journalists, and many of those that it has lost were the best, brightest and most innovative.

“But the real problem isn’t a journalism problem. Journalism is moving forward. It’s a business model problem, and that something I can’t help that much with.”

Full post at this link…

Poynter Online: Washington Post’s new ‘WebCom’ comment system

Washingtonpost.com has developed a new commenting interface, ‘WebCom,’ that displays comments in a web – based on which ones are most-liked by readers and create the most discussion, Patrick Thornton reports at Poynter Online.

“Some commenting systems allow users to vote comments up or down. Some let users respond directly to each other and display the threads of discussions. But on most sites, comments are presented in the same basic way: chronological or reverse-chronological lists. Those lists don’t do much to help users find the best comments, especially when hundreds of people have responded to a single post.”

Full post at this link…

Patrick Thornton describes WebCom in the video below: