Arrianna

Blogging is Now Part of Journalism


Huffington Posts makes its own headlines.

The news this morning that the Huffington Post has been sold to AOL for $315 million begs the question: Is there any difference between a news blog and an online news publication?

I’d argue that few people can tell the difference anymore.

In fact, the term “blog” may have run its course (with the exception of those people who continue to use blogs as a daily diary or as a personal record of their lives and experiences).

The term “blog” really doesn’t mean anything anymore.  Nor does the term “blogger.”

We have reached a point where “blogging” has become an intricate part of  journalism.  Blogging is part of the way every newspaper, news magazine or broadcast outlet covers the news.

Consider: What major news outlet doesn’t blog?

The New York Times, for example, features more than 50 blogs – everything from food to technology.  And CNN has more than two dozen blogs.  These blogs are written, edited and maintained by journalists.  They break news.  They offer commentary and opinion.  They engage with readers.  They build community.

How do they differ from popular news blogs like GigaOm or Mashable?

The answer is that they don’t.

The sale of the Huffington Post to AOL further blurs the line of what is a blog or if it even matters anymore.  Part of the deal will put Arianna Huffington in charge of AOL’s online content strategy.

A blogger now driving AOL’s online content.

What do you think?  Do “blogs” exist anymore?  Does it really matter?

Other Thoughts on AOL’s Purchase of the Huffington Post

  • Is Michael Arrington of TechCrunch kicking himself this morning?  Last year, Arrington sold his popular technology blog TechCrunch to AOL for a reported price of $25 million.  At the time, TechCrunch was pulling in a monthly audience of more than 2 million readers a month.  The Huffington Post, according to Compete.com, grabs an audience of about 12 million.  So the Huffington Post is six times larger, which means TechCrunch probably should have been valued at about $50 million.
  • AOL is become a powerhouse in online content.  It will be interesting to watch how the company consolidates its online properties and evolves the brand.

Links:

New York Times story on Huffington Post sale

New York Times blog directory

CNN blog directory

TechCrunch sold to AOL

2 Responses to “Blogging is Now Part of Journalism”

  1. Blogs are just another channel for information. What determines if the material on a blog is journalism is if the content there was gathered using the journalist’s tools and training. If it wasn’t, it’s still just writing. I would reference http://spj.org to see what defines a journalist and not just someone trying to report the events of the day.

  2. Hi Jeff:
    Blogs are indeed a channel for information, but it is also a different platform for new types of reporting.

    I should also clarify that I’m distinguishing “news” blogs from other types of blogging. So I’m referring to blogs that try to operate under journalistic principals – like the Huff Post, TechCrunch, Mashable, etc…

    No one is arguing that all bloggers are journalists or that every blog is journalism.

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