Rebooting the News #85

In Podcast on March 13, 2011 by Jay Rosen

Minimal blogging suite ‘o tools: an update, and why Dave’s doing this.

Why bloggers vs. journalists is still with us: Jay’s upcoming presentation at SXSW.

And more! Didn’t have time for more extensive show notes..

Here’s the program (recorded March 7, 2011), hope you like it:


Rebooting the News #84

In Podcast on February 28, 2011 by Jay Rosen

Tweeting while watching the Academy Awards. Connecting up and across at the same time. An example of Audience Atomization Overcome.

Dave and Jay discuss the minimal blogging tool, along with the rebooting of RSS, the effort to get beyond the corporate blogging silos and why everyone needs to be able to run his or her own server.

Good question from Nieman Lab. What does it look like for a quality news organization to focus on making journalism that is more (inherently) sharable?

An idea for election coverage 2012. A coalition of bloggers, journalists, J-schools and news organizations who leave the horse race to the savvy and take a citizen’s agenda approach.

Andy Carvin was innovating live on Twitter while curating coverage of the uprisings in the Middle East.

Here’s the program; we hope you like it.


Rebooting the News #83

In Podcast on February 21, 2011 by Rex Hammock

[This post is from Rex Hammock, ceo/founder of the media company, Hammock Inc. and longtime blogger at where it is cross-posted.]

This morning, I spent an hour chatting with Dave Winer on the podcast he typically records with Jay Rosen. To me, getting invited to spend an hour with Dave Winer on a podcast is like getting to spend an hour with Guglielmo Marconi on a radio show. (If I have to explain it, this 2009 RexBlog post may help connect the dots.)

On the podcast, we discussed these topics:

Why Twitter, the service, is too vital for Twitter, a company, to control exclusively. [Background]

The New York Times rehash of the “death of blogging” story, a meme dating back to a week after people stopped writing the stories about “blogs are never going to be born.” Like Dave, I believe Facebook and Twitter are blogging platforms, so, well, I don’t get it. [A long post about my thoughts regarding online identity. NYTimes story: “Blogs Wane as the Young Drift to Sites Like Twitter”]

Apple’s subscription plan and my outrage at their ban on in-app links to purchasing alternatives available via the browser. [Background on my opinion.]

Why I think magazine publishers are missing the mark on early generation magazine apps — and the real opportunity of the iPad. How the iPad (and Kindle) change notions of what is readable on a screen. [My reviews of The Daily app and Virgin’s Project app.]

My opinion on Wikileaks, which I have no link to point to, so, in short it’s this: I’m an advocate of transparency and openness and probably would, if push came to shove, be supportive of Wikileaks. That said, I prefer diplomacy over war and don’t want Wikileaks to be in charge of judging what the consequences of their actions are going to lead to.


Rebooting the News #82

In Podcast on February 14, 2011 by Jay Rosen

Today on Rebooting the News #82 we discussed:

Jay quit Quora over the weekend. One more corporate blogging silo (a phrase that’s getting traction) was a bridge too far.

Dave at “We’ll do much better if there are a million personal blogging silos instead of one or two huge corporate blogging silos. The corporate ones are too easy for governments to control without the people knowing they’re being controlled. In the case of Twitter, the freedom-loving founders will eventually leave, and the new management will likely care more about return on investment than All The News That’s Fit To Tweet. And Facebook has never been about freedom. They desperately want to get into China, as does Google (again) and that’s going to involve compromise, at least on behalf of the Chinese populace. What they learn about control can and probably already is being applied around the world, including the US.”

Dave’s post: Find me stuff I’m interested in. Where the personalization of news hasn’t gone yet.

“It’s important that people learn to manage their own infrastructure. It’s going to happen, we can do it. We can make servers much easier to set up and maintain, and do more stuff that’s meaningful to people like the people in Egypt fighting for freedom. By spreading out we’re harder to stop.”

Jay’s post, The “Twitter Can’t Topple Dictators” Article: a genre analysis. “What’s the appeal? … here’s a guess: almost everyone who cares about such a discussion is excited about the Internet. Almost everyone is a little wary of being fooled by The Amazing and getting carried away. When we nod along with Twitter Can’t Topple Dictators we’re assuring ourselves that our excitement is contained, that we’re being realistic, mature, grown-up about it.”

“Some day an historian is going to write a fine book on how American journalism came to see calling out lies as taking sides.” Link.

Here’s the show; hope you like it.


Rebooting the News #81

In Podcast on February 7, 2011 by Jay Rosen

We used to do this show using Blog Talk Radio’s services. That appears to be ending.

The big rebooting-the-news event today is that AOL bought Huffington Post. Equally important, Arianna Huffington becomes editor-in-chief for all of AOL’s editorial properties, including Here’s Arianna’s explanation of the deal.

Jeff Jarvis: “One wonders why big, old media companies didn’t buy Huffington Post. The better question is why they never started their own HuffPos. Only one did: The Guardian.”

Also of interest to both Dave and I: Bill Keller, the New York Times and Wikileaks. It’s good that Keller sees the threat to him and his tribe in prosecuting Assange. But he’s also been focused on separating himself and his newspaper from Assange as an undesirable.

Dave at “Along comes WikiLeaks to prove that even investigative journalism works differently with the advent of the Internet. But that’s okay, because finally — the mainstream guys, instead of fighting Internet-inspired change, see the opportunity and are embracing it! The Times, Guardian, Spiegel et al, have been working with WikiLeaks to establish a publishing workflow that protects sources and gets readers the information we need. Before judging the Times as wholly ineffective and dishonest, let’s acknowledge that someone down there is doing their job. They may not like Julian Assange, but that’s life. We all have to do things we don’t like. Or you could just sit it out.

But equally big has been the uprising in Egypt and the superior performance of Al Jazeera, along with the continuing debate over how to credit (without overstating) the role of social media in such events.

Dave: The Internet is for revolution. “We must make it so that a country, if it wants to turn off Internet-enabled revolution, must turn off the Internet itself.”

What Jay told Jose Antonio Vargas of the Huffington Post:

“Wildly overdrawn claims about social media, often made with weaselly question marks (like: ‘Tunisia’s Twitter revolution?’) and the derisive debunking that follows from those claims (‘It’s not that simple!’) only appear to be opposite perspectives. In fact, they are two modes in which the same weightless discourse is conducted. Revolutionary hype is social change analysis on the cheap. Debunking is techno-realism on the cheap. Neither one tells us much about our world.

“Almost everyone knows it’s not as simple as saying Twitter or Facebook ’cause’ revolutions. Almost everyone knows it’s foolish to discount social media and peer to peer communication as new and potentially disruptive forces. Grown-ups trying to puzzle through what is actually happening will have to leave the sandbox in which the debunkers and their straw man playmates throw headlines at each other.”

Here’s the show; we hope you like it. Please comment if you are so moved, or if you have a solution for us to replace Blog Talk Radio. Thanks.


Rebooting the News #80

In Podcast on January 31, 2011 by Dave Winer

Jay  is on the road, and I just got back — but the news keeps on rebooting — so we got Doc Searls to fill us in on what’s going on with cable and how Al Jazeera is covering the events in Egypt. He calls it the Sputnik Moment for cable. Doc weaves a wonderful story.

We had nothing but technical glitches starting up the podcast, but we found a rhythm. We talked about WikiLeaks, educating the journo-programmer, and whether the US will flip the Kill Switch if there ever is such a thing. Doc thinks not, but I think hmmm…


Rebooting the News #79

In Podcast on January 10, 2011 by Jay Rosen

A few minutes on the Arizona shootings and the “both sides do it” attitude about political discourse that seems to be mandatory for the political class and Washington journalists. Some, like Dave Weigel, broke free of that. Others, like Matt Bai, were trapped within it.

As Jay said on Twitter, the rhetorical extremes are a feature of the “he said, she said” style in reporting on public controversy, not a bug that he said/she said corrects for.

Twitter and the court order it received to hand over information about Wikileaks and its supporters. The most impressive part:

far more interesting than the government request for wikileaks related info, is the fact that Twitter has gone out of its way to fight for its users’ privacy. The company went to court, and was successful in asking the judge to unseal the order (something it is not required to do), and then promptly notified its users, so that they could seek to quash the order. Twitter could have quite easily complied with the order, and would have had zero legal liability for doing so. In fact, many other Internet companies routinely hand over their users’ data in response to government requests, and never take steps to either have the orders unsealed, or give their users notice and thus an opportunity to fight the order.

The unbundling of Twitter: loosely-coupled tools for a new blogging ecosystem. Also called the re-invention of RSS. To understand what we’re talking about, see Dave’s sketch of how the parts all work together.

The View from Nowhere has definitely crossed over into the mainstream of journalistic thought. Jay’s ideas about it were featured on NPR last week.

Dave’s ideas about future safe archives found a home in the New York Times Magazine this week. And pretty respectfully, too.

Here’s the show; please comment if you feel so moved. Thanks!


Rebooting the News #78

In Podcast on January 3, 2011 by Jay Rosen

Why Wikileaks continues to fascinate us…

Why EL PAÍS chose to publish the leaks: “Editor Javier Moreno explains the decision to publish the State Department cables, which expose on an unprecedented scale the extent to which Western leaders lie to their electorates.”

Dave’s blogger of the year: “Julian Assange is the tank guy” from Tiananmen Square, 1989. “We all hold our breath to see if we go all the way.”

Pathetic performance by CNN: Glenn Greenwald vs Francis Townsend on Wikileaks, interviewed by Jessica Yellin, who seemed to know nothing.

The life and times of, Dave’s aggregator for Wikileaks news. How it works and why he did it.

Dave: The connection between RSS and Twitter.

Magazines on the i-Pad and why they are not working.

The Journal Register Company (JRC) gave Jay an i-Pad. He’s an advisor to their Digital First overhaul. If you want to watch the unbuilding of “fortress journalism” just follow what JRC’s Connecticut newspaper, the Register Citizen, is doing with its open newsroom project.

Here’s the show (45 mins); please comment if so moved:


Rebooting the News #77

In Podcast on December 20, 2010 by Jay Rosen

Our guest for RBTN #77 is Net thinker, author, blogger and project VRM pioneer. Doc Searls. His blog. His bio.

A few items we discussed:

Dave drafted a statement: Tech Without Borders.

We are people of tech.

We live and work everywhere.

We value our own freedom, the freedom of people who use our technology and freedom in general.

We think there is no meaningful distinction between WikiLeaks and the news organizations covering the stories in cooperation with WikiLeaks.

We urge all governments to respect freedom of the press, whether the news originates online or offline.

We apply these principles in our work and they are embodied in our technology.

Dave’s an aggregator for Wikileaks news.

The lie that Wikileaks has been “indiscriminately dumping” documents.

Yahoo is shutting down Delicious. What is to be done?

Dave: How Twitter and Delicious are alike.

Here’s the show; we hope you like it. See you after the holidays!


Rebooting the News #76

In Podcast on December 15, 2010 by Jay Rosen

It’s been said that Dave sounds like the actor Jeff Bridges and that Jay sounds like Wallace Shawn.

Wikileaks, continued. “This is not a drill.”

Reflections on the Personal Democracy Forum “flash” conference on Wikileaks and Internet freedom. (Video highlights.)

Dave: Wikileaks has put into bold relief things we have been talking about for a long time without getting people’s attention. Like: We need a Web Trust to publish and store our creative work.

1. It must be long-lived, like a university — probably with an endowment, and a board of trustees, and operations limited to what’s described below. It can’t operate any other kind of business.

2. It must create a least-common-denominator storage system that is accessible through HTTP. Everything must be done with open formats and protocols, meaning all components of its system are replaceable.

3. It must cost money, so the user is a customer and is treated as one. This also allows the vendor to assume its own independence from the interests of the publisher who uses the system. The same way the operator of a printing press was not responsible for the words he or she printed on the paper.

4. Simplicity of the user experience is primary so it can be accessible to as many as possible, and so that technical people don’t provide yet another filter for the free flow of ideas. Factor and re-factor for simplicity.

5. The trust must serve the bits exactly as they were published. No advertising.

Dave: “You can’t host journalism on Amazon anymore.”

Jay: I shouldn’t be, but I am a little shocked that the leaders of companies like Amazon and PayPal didn’t explain their actions. PayPal Vice President of Platform, Mobile and New Ventures Osama Bedier came out at the LeWeb conference and either lied or demonstrated total incompetence in explaining why his company cut off Wikileaks.

Dave: the tech industry has done this over and over. They don’t understand how much scrutiny they they are under.

The French newspaper Liberation decided to host a mirror site for Wikileaks. That was inspiring too.

The EasyDNS story is kind of inspiring, though.

The five key points Jay made at the PDF symposium (in 140 characters or less.)

1. It takes "the world's first stateless news organization" to show our news organizations how statist they really are.

2. The sources are voting with their leaks. That they chose to go to Wikileaks rather than the newspapers says something about the newspapers.

3. The watchdog press died. What's possible today is a distributed "eye on power" system that includes the old press as one component part.

4. It's said the state has a monopoly on the legal use of force. But the state cannot have a monopoly on the legitimate use of digital "force.&quot.

5. Everything a journalist learns that he cannot tell the public alienates him from the public. Wikileaks is built to prevent this alienation.

You can watch the archived livestream of the symposium here.

There was a lot of dispute at the PDF symposium over whether the denial of service attacks on, say, Amazon, were a legitimate form of civil disobedience.

Jay’s post: From Judith Miller to Julian Assange. “Our press somehow got itself on the wrong side of secrecy after September 11th.”

Here’s the show…